‘I believe it is essential at this stage of the merger process for Mosman Park to maintain links with the other councils, as this is not the time to be going it alone,’ Mr Norris said.
On Thursday, Cr Ian Flack listed opposition from April 3 to Mr Norris’ participation in the anti-merger CfD of 12 councils, and events after Mr Norris’ April 7 offer to meet with councillors, which had still not been organised.
At an April 9 committee meeting, Cr Brett Pollock opposed Mr Norris speaking for the council at the CfD and to the media.
‘The majority of the committee members were so incensed by the Mayor’s involvement in the alliance ” a motion of ‘no confidence’ was mentioned ” that they instructed the chief executive to withdraw an invitation from the alliance to meet at the Mosman Park administration building on 16 April, 2012,’ Cr Flack said.
CfD funding has been stopped and after emails between Mr Norris and disgruntled councillors, a statement critical of Mr Norris and his CfD support was read by Cr Flack on July 22.
Last week, Cr Flack cited Local Government Act definitions of mayors’ leadership and councillors’ roles to set policies, and said ‘chaos’, a confused administration and debate in the media would occur if councillors followed Mr Norris’ ‘independent path’.
Cr Zenda Johnson said Mr Norris could not comment on mergers when the council did not know residents’ preferred option and the council was part of the State Government process by proposing a G5.
‘The mayor feels justified in his decision to beat a drum for the CfD about the unjust behaviour of the Government, but he does this without a mandate from the council or indeed the residents of the town,’ Cr Johnson said.
Mr Norris said he had never undermined the G5, while Cr Flack’s statements ‘at worse’ ignored other councils’ concerns about the Government’s forced process towards mergers.
He will continue with CfD, saying it was the only voice against the Government, the source of a motion helping secure residents’ polls on mergers at WALGA’s AGM two weeks ago and section 2.8 of the Local Government Act defined his role and not councillors.