LETTERS 1.3.14

14. 819LETTERSUmbrage for Armadale
AT the Vincent council meeting of February 25 there were a number of speakers, of whom some were challenged by the mayor about being “appropriate” and/or “disrespectful”.
Can someone please explain why the mayor’s favoured candidate for the by-election, James Peart, was not pulled up for the extraordinarily elitist and disrespectful comment that a plan was so bad it wouldn’t even be approved by the City of Armadale?
Making or allowing such comments is not representative of the wider Vincent community.
An apology is required.
Katrina Montaut
Harold St, Mt Lawley
The Ed says: The former state member for Armadale—the former Vincent mayor now federal Perth MP—may have raised an eyebrow if she’d been in the chair, Katrina.

Voters MIA
AS of Friday only 21 per cent of eligible electors have voted in Vincent south ward’s by-election.
People claim to be passionate about Vincent and expect their councillors to fight for our future, but 79 per cent have failed to vote.
If you want a councillor with a proven history of fighting for Vincent’s future then find your voting papers, read the flyers, and vote accordingly.
If you don’t care who gets your $25,000 of ratepayers’ money then just sit back, but don’t complain if they do little to protect you from the circling birds of prey from St Georges Terrace.
James Peart
Leederville

Bigger not better
THE discussions on the proposed merger of Vincent with Perth (or any other entity) have gone into detail about the cost benefits, the accounting methods, the political spills and even disputes on roads and rubbish.
However, I see the issue differently.
At a time when governments of all sizes and persuasions, political parties, community groups and generally any group that is organised at all, are calling for people to be more interactive and engaging with them, we see a proposal at an amalgamation that flies in the face of all that rhetoric.
If any government, group or any beauracracy at all wants people to get off their bums and join in and contribute, then ease of accessibility is a huge factor.
If I want to contribute with the City of Vincent it is easy.
I can basically ride my bike down to council chambers. I can (mainly) get through to who I want to talk to on the phone. If I need someone to come around to see what’s happening in the local park…no problem…it is done, pronto.
Yes, I interact with my local government.
I can easily be part of one of the advisory groups. I can easily get involved with a local councillor campaign effort. I have the right to protest and can easily do that.
I am doing exactly what the beaurucrats want me to do…get involved. They know that they cannot govern or run their ship in a sterile environment. They need people to take a grass roots approach.
Now, turn that over to the City of Perth and we have completely new ball game.
I cannot see myself trundling down to St Georges Terrace, parking, getting security checked, lining up and then not even getting a chance to speak.
I cannot see myself joining a community advisory group that meets at St Georges Terrace at 4.30pm on a Wednesday afternoon.
I cannot see myself participating at all in that new council format. It’s just too bloody hard to get there. I just will not do it. Full stop.
So you see where we are going. People will find it very hard to get involved. The beaurucrats will rule in heavenly anonymous splendour. It’s got fascist overtones.
We, as a community would be going backwards with the increasingly difficult job of encouraging citizens at all levels, to participate.
I cannot support the interference into the successful running of the City of Vincent.
I have written to the Local Government Advisory Board Chairman, telling him exactly that.
Colin Scott
North Perth

WE shall probably never know the real reason why Vincent councillors voted, on February 11 to dump CEO John Giorgi (Voice, February 22, 2014).
We shall never know why seven elected members with an average of just two years’ experience on council (only two of whom have more than two years) chose to make the administration leaderless at this critical time.
Only Cr John Pintabona saw the strategic issues.
What was the straw that broke the camel’s back? The residents and ratepayers of Vincent deserve to be told why the CEO, who has been responsible for successfully implementing the often confusing directions and decisions of council for nearly 20 years, has suddenly become unsatisfactory.
Whatever the reason, it would need to be a very strong one to justify dumping the CEO at this time.
The next 18 months were going to be difficult enough, for elected members and staff alike, without having a CEO who knows he doesn’t have the support of his council.
Alternatively, if John Giorgi goes early, the city administration will initially have a temporary leader and then a new one who will need to come up to speed on all the issues facing the city.
But fear not! The cavalry, in the form of Tony “Homer” Simpson, will “come to the rescue”. Our esteemed elected members have given the WA local government minister a golden opportunity to install commissioners to run Vincent until October 2015—effectively disenfranchising the people who elected them during the crucial period of amalgamations.
With friends like that, who needs enemies?
Ian Ker
Mt Lawley

Rossi wrong on forced heritage
IT is a pity Mark Rossi is not telling the full story in his attempts to get elected to Vincent council in the by-election for south ward.
As has already been made clear by council, the city will consult first with property owners regarding heritage areas and heritage issues before taking any conclusive action.
In his flyer Mr Rossi includes the statement: “I am against heritage restrictions being placed on your property without consent”, creating an atmosphere of fear. How is it he is not aware of council’s stance on this matter? It should be pointed out he made no such statement on the How to Vote ballot information sheet that went out with the postal vote forms.
Does Mark have double standards on this issue? He has indicated he supports development and is one of “them”. And why, if he lives in Mount Hawthorn, is he wanting to run for south ward?
Marie Slyth
Carr St, West Perth

Mulching mutts?
OUR big yellow bin for recycling glass, tins and paper is welcome.
On first encounter I read the notice on the lid as “DOG recycling bin”. What a great idea, I thought. Why not cats, too? Closer scrutiny and re-reading, however, revealed “DCG”.
Aloysius Pepper (Sgt.ret.)
Queens Cres, Mt Lawley

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