LETTERS 15.3.14

15. 821LETTERSFast job, slow signs
THE Labor member for Maylands and her leader, Mark McGowan, are complaining about the speed at which the flashing speed signs are being put up at schools (Voice, March 8, 2014).
Was this an early April Fool’s day joke?
These signs, popular with school communities, are being rolled out by the Liberal government at a rate almost 10 times faster than under Labor. The Liberal government has put a high priority on this program, resulting in more than 200 schools having the signs erected under an ambitious target of having all schools done by the end of 2017.
Under the previous Labor government, when Labor regularly boasted about billion-dollar surpluses, less than 10 signs a year were installed. At that rate, it would take about 100 years for all schools to get the signs.
If Labor is concerned about the pace at which the signs are being rolled out under the Liberal government, it should be ashamed about its own performance on this subject.
Michael Sutherland MLA
Member for Mt Lawley

A balanced view
TWO weeks ago the Voice published a letter from Marie Slyth in relation to my stance on heritage and my running for south ward.
I have a sensibly balanced stance on heritage, and I support the protection of any building in Vincent that has significant heritage value. However, I’m concerned the council may be again trying to amend its planning policies so it can nominate entire street blocks for “protection”, as if all that street’s buildings had heritage status. It does this by extending its “streetscape” design guidelines far beyond the street or verge and onto any parts of your house visible from the street.
The community overwhelmingly rejected this idea in 2009, but it seems to have resurfaced in the council’s 2014-15 Key Projects as: “Develop a Heritage Area Protection model to protect streetscapes”.
The saying goes “your home is your castle”, and we take for granted our rights over our property. Arbitrary “protection” rules like these may limit your options, if in future you want to alter or demolish any building elements visible from the street.
Simply consulting residents on a planning policy is very different to obtaining an owner’s explicit and wilful consent for a statutory heritage listing.
With regard to running for south ward, as an elector in the district I was eligible to nominate for any ward. When elected, a councillor represents the whole city in the chamber.
I wish to thank everyone for their support: I thoroughly enjoyed meeting so many residents.
Mark Rossi
Buxton St, Mt Hawthorn

Winds of change
MR LITTLE’S petty and misguided attack on the Vincent mayor and council in his paid advertisement in the Voice last week could not have had a more resounding rebuttal than Sunday’s Vincent campaign rally at the old North Perth Town Hall, attended by several hundred residents.
The audience totally and enthusiastically supported the mayor’s and other speakers’ call for either a fair and equal amalgamation with the City of Perth, or for Vincent to remain unscathed.
If the latter is Mr Little’s preference why has he publicly announced it only after the decision to not renew Mr Giorgi’s contract? Surely, Mr Little’s time and money would have been better expended at the beginning of the process when he might have influenced the position that Vincent took.
Mr Little derided the councillors’ lack of experience, but I think Vincent residents recognise their vigour and vitality more than compensates: they have initiated, and implemented, fresh ideas and changes of direction.
In recent years the council has become significantly more community-orientated and community-responsive than any of the previous ones I have encountered in my 25 years living in this area.
The council was democratically elected to represent the residents of Vincent. Mr Little is a lone demagogue howling in the winds of change.
Geoff Cooper
Glebe St, North Perth

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