Hands off Burswood: Wyatt

Treasurer Ben Wyatt.
Treasurer Ben Wyatt.

VICTORIA Park MLA Ben Wyatt says the City of Perth could absorb the Burswood peninsula with the legislation in the new City of Perth Act which was debated in Parliament recently.

The peninsula includes the Crown Perth complex and Perth Stadium.

Mr Wyatt said if the peninsula was taken out, the Town of Victoria Park would be deprived of revenue and it would have a dramatic negative impact on both rates and services.

“While our local community in Victoria Park rejected Mr Barnett’s plans, the Premier has unfortunately continued to make it clear to Parliament that he will revisit plans to hand these assets over to the City of Perth in 2018,” he said.

“Despite Mr Barnett’s continued ambition to take the Burswood Peninsula out of Victoria Park and place it into the City of Perth, my WA Labor colleges and I will be opposing any capacity for these amendments to do so.”

Town chief executive Anthony Vuleta said it wanted the removal of sections 29 and 37 of the Bill due to concerns that they could be used in the future to remove or change responsibility for areas from the Town of Victoria Park.

“Section 37 of the Bill ‘opens the door’ for the City of Perth to take over the Peninsula in the near future by changing the focus of the considerations the Local Government Review Board would have in considering any future boundary change proposal,” he said.

“Section 29 presents a possibility that in the future Burswood Park could come under the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority Act, and the council will lose much of its decision-making responsibility for that area.

“Both of these areas are integral parts of the Town, connected to our community and the people here, and the Town would feel more comfortable knowing that there is no possibility that they could be lost in the future.”

When the Act was introduced to State Parliament in May, Premier Barnett said it recognised Perth as the State’s capital city and acknowledged its central role in tourism and economic development.

“With the revitalisation of Perth under way, including investments such as Elizabeth Quay, the Perth City Link and Riverside, the City of Perth deserves greater recognition,” he said.