Frustration at reform deviation

Last week a small insert map temporarily appeared on the State Government’s website revealing its preferred boundaries for the City of Perth as well as variations to other original maps such as increasing the number of new councils from 14 to 16.

Premier Colin Barnett previously said the Government would not allow major deviation from its original proposal for local government reform and would only consider minor adjustments to boundaries.

Cr Marks said the leaked boundary map contradicted statements by the Premier and by Local Government Minister Tony Simpson that only complying submissions for amalgamations would be accepted by the Local Government Advisory Board.

‘We have tried to work with the State Government and despite believing that amalgamation is not in the best interest of our community, the City of Belmont was forced to submit a proposal that provided a means to defend the City of Belmont community from Kalamunda’s proposal for amalgamation that may yet result in a takeover of Belmont,’ Cr Marks said.

‘This latest major deviation to the original proposal shows a State Government not acting in good faith with local government or the community. I question what the next version of the map will bring, how many councils it will include and the integrity of the entire reform process.’

Cr Marks said the City would write to Mr Simpson to clarify the issue and called on the WA Local Government Association (WALGA) to arrange a consultation between metropolitan mayors, chief executives, the Premier and the minister.