Political tension rife in Belmont

Just 330 votes separated then ALP candidate Cassie Rowe and current Belmont MLA Glenys Godfrey in 2013 ” a margin of 0.9 per cent.

Most recently, WA Labor ran advertisements in local newspapers in marginal seats, targeting local members about the Liberal Government’s decision to cut money from schools.

About $1.2 million was declared to be cut from Belmont schools.

The advertisements were part of the party’s ‘broken promises’ campaign, and promoted the website www.brokenpromises.org.au/edcuts.

Mrs Godfrey responded, telling the Southern Gazette that targeted attacks in Belmont came as no surprise because Labor had lost the seat of Belmont.

Opposition leader Mark McGowan also made two appearances in Belmont with East Metropolitan MLC Samantha Rowe, Cassie Rowe’s sister, in recent weeks.

One visit was to meet with residents on amalgamation issues. On the second visit Mr McGowan criticised the State Government’s changes to senior safety rebates.

‘The Barnett Government was elected on the promises they made at the election,’ he said.

‘It is our role to hold them to account for those promises,’ Mr McGowan told the Gazette.

‘Colin Barnett and Liberal candidates never said anything about cutting local school funding. It is a disgraceful thing to do and WA Labor will continue to campaign against the cuts to make sure our children have access to the highest standard of education.’

Mrs Godfrey said Labor said a lot about local schools’ funding, but they had not told the public that the inflated numbers they quoted actually includes the dollar value of teachers and education assistants that were never employed at the schools in Belmont.

‘I have known many of the local principals, teachers and school officers for many years and I think they are doing an absolutely amazing job, especially considering the range of social issues we face here in Belmont,’ she said.