More time given for questions

Shire President Sue Bilich said the council had received requests for more information about the benefits and the financial implications.

�We are focused on busting some of the myths surrounding this idea that the proposed change is just about councillors and staff wanting to be paid more � it certainly is not,� Cr Bilich said.

�In actual fact, salaries are set by the State Allowances Tribunal and would not change.�

Cr Bilich said the proposed change was also not about building high-rise apartments.

�Each and every City is unique and we want to ensure that the unique assets identified of the region are retained,� she said.

The Shire has stated its focus is on presenting a progressive local authority better equipped to reflect urban growth in the foothills.

�We are a part of the new Perth aerotropolis (cities around airports) that is emerging and that we are a sustainable local government in our own right,� Cr Bilich said.

Cr Bilich said the cost associated with a change of status or name largely related to signage and stationery.

The Shire believes it would also be more difficult to adjust the boundaries of a city if there was an amalgamation proposal.

Cr Bilich said this was demonstrated when Belmont was selected over Kalamunda, even though Belmont had a population 30 per cent smaller than Kalamunda.

�When dealing with local government, federal and state governments will give greater priority to cities that typically have larger activity centres, such as Swan, Gosnells and Belmont, over Kalamunda,� she said.

�Cities generally have a greater status within government decision making processes.�

State and federal governments largely fund infrastructure and the competition for funding often favour cities because they have larger employment centres and often serve larger populations.

The Shire has significant development potential in High Wycombe and Forrestfield with the future prospect of the airport-city rail link.

Cr Bilich said the growing population of young families in the Foothills required access to modern community facilities and services.

To complete an online survey, visit www.kalamunda.wa.gov.au/ourstoryInformation is also available at the Shire of Kalamunda and all public libraries and recreation centres.