AFTER a heated debate at its February council meeting, City of South Perth will this week reconsider its submission for the WA Local Government Association’s (WALGA) Local Government Act Review.
WALGA has put forward its preferred model for phase one of the review focusing on areas including availability of information, expectations for accountability, standards, ethics and performance and building capacity.
The City’s reporting officer recommended the council approve its submission, which generally supported WALGA’s preferred model.
However the motion was lost 5-4, with Councillor Blake D’Souza proposing an alternative motion requiring council to defer its decision until an additional council briefing, dedicated to a detailed consideration of all proposals, be held.
“If council is to ‘own’ this decision, councillors must discuss all WALGA proposals,” he said.
“It is fundamentally an exercise in good governance for councillors to consider, scrutinise in detail and bring the perspective of City’s residents and ratepayers to the review, with enough time allocated.
“(But) the time allocated occurred directly after a two-hour strategic planning briefing and was under 30 minutes (which) in my opinion was not sufficient (and) led to a feeling amongst many councillors that the process was rushed, and hence not conducive to good decision-making.”
In order to meet the WALGA’s submission deadline of March 9, a special council meeting will be held on March 8, at 7pm, to reconsider the City’s final submission.
WALGA president Lynne Craigie said all submissions received from the local governments would be presented to the next State Council meeting on May 4.