LETTERS 15.2.14

13 817LETTERSIs it all about Alannah?
WITH little more than three months having elapsed since the federal election, the federal member for Perth Alannah MacTiernan must already be feeling irrelevant, twiddling her thumbs on the opposition benches in Canberra, that she has to attack our national anthem—on Australia Day of all days—to get some media attention?
In the Voice (“Missing the mayoral chains,” January 23, 2014) she admits she “misses being Vincent mayor and has mixed feelings about her new job as a federal opposition backbench MP”.
The 62-year-old grandmother also said that “on a personal level, it may not have been the best decision for me, but it was best for the party”.
Here’s a thought: What about the 96,000 voters she’s supposed to be representing… do they get a look in, or is it just about her and Labor?
Get used to it Alannah: Given the drubbing you received with Labor’s two-party preferred vote going backwards to its lowest level in 33 years, you and your Labor buddies have most likely at least another nine more years in federal opposition.
Your irrelevant backbench hiatus is only just starting. No wonder Stephen Smith quit when he did.
What other pap media pieces can we expect?
The good people of Perth deserve so much more than to be represented in Canberra by someone who doesn’t want to be there and continues to have absolutely no influence whatsoever on federal government matters.
Darryl Moore
The Ed says: Mr Moore was the Liberal candidate for Perth at the 2013 federal election.

Truth is a smoking ruin
I AM appalled at the misinformation emanating from councillors of the City of Perth, regarding the former Michelides tobacco building, Northbridge (“Factory smoked by PCC,” Perth Voice February 1, 2014).
Cr James Limnios is reported as saying “the applicant’s heritage report made it clear there was no heritage value, so he was in favour of demolition.” Minutes of the council meeting on August 27, 2013, state: “The documentation presented by the State Heritage Office, and the documentation presented on behalf of the owners, demonstrates that the Michelides Tobacco Factory located at 92 Roe Street, Northbridge does meet the criteria for inclusion on the State Heritage Register”.
How can this be interpreted as saying the building has no heritage value? Expert assessment by the peak heritage body, the State Heritage Office, states the place, also classified by The National Trust of Australia (WA), has aesthetic, historic and social values and is a rare example.
Any one of these values would justify consideration for inclusion on the state heritage register. Despite this, the council gave priority to the owners’ assessment which argued the fabric of the building had been “compromised and therefore should not be retained”.
Then “In summary, given the divergent views expressed above it is considered that the case of heritage registration of the building fabric is unproven”. On the basis of this inaccurate summary, Cr Limnios and the majority of other councillors say the place has no heritage value and the minister has declined to approve heritage registration.
The modifications to the Roe Street frontage referred to by Ms Scaffidi have mainly been expansion as the business grew. The original small factory opened in 1924 at the western end of the site and was doubled in size with a remodelled art deco frontage in 1934.
The building was again doubled in 1939, continuing the art deco frontage up to Lake Street with design by the same architects. More recent fenestration changes do not seriously compromise the character of the facade and are capable of restoration.
Vyonne Geneve
President, WA Art Deco Society
Contour Rd, Roleystone

A service to journalism
ABOUT 50 years ago I worked under the gaze of Harold Evans. More recently he was knighted for his services to journalism.
If I’d let a report start with “Perth city council…”  there’d be a note in my pigeon hole next day, “From the Editor” with the published report pasted to it. Beside this, a scribbled example of how it might have started: “Much to the dismay…”, etc.
The note would most likely wind up with a sentiment such as “Take heart”.
Ron Willis
First Ave, Mount Lawley
The Ed says: Given Sir ‘arry is a legendary UK editor we reckon if you’d started a story with “Perth city council” he’d have scratched his head before kicking your behind.

Trolley tyrants
IS it too much to ask that lazy shoppers at North Perth Plaza return their trolleys to the trolley return—a very short walk—rather than dump them by the bicycle rack?
Some of us who actually get off our rear ends and use our legs for transport are sick of having to move half-a-dozen trolleys every time we shop, to be able to safely park our bikes. I even said to a woman on one occasion, “this is a bike rack, not a trolley return,” whereupon she said “oh” and left her trolley there! Perhaps we should start taking up car bays with our bikes instead.
Georgina Ker
Vincent St, Mt Lawley

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