City of South Perth to review policy for naming public facilities after ‘John McGrath’ furore

Ernest Johnson Reserve.
Ernest Johnson Reserve.

A DRAFT policy provision for the naming of City of South Perth facilities states that prospective names must now be presented to council for consideration.

Sparked by public criticism over the renaming of facilities at Ernest Johnson Reserve after MLA John McGrath without any consultation, the provision was drafted at the City’s Audit, Risk and Governance Committee Meeting on March 6.

This was part of a annual mandatory policy review and will be considered for adoption at the City’s council meeting on March 27.

The new provision, if adopted, will replace the City’s current commemoration policy (P111) that states: “The City may recognise the contribution of deceased residents who have made an outstanding contribution to the community by naming a park or reserve, street, facility or topographical feature after that person.”

Under the replacement provision to be included in Policy 609, Management of City Property, shortlisted names may include prominent South Perth identities, persons who have made a significant contribution to and have had a long-term association with the South Perth community, traditional indigenous names relevant to a site, locality or with a relevant meaning, and or names that represent any relevant South Perth landmarks, flora or fauna.

Where a person’s name is involved, approval should be sought from the person or their family prior to the name being presented to council.

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