LOCAL town planner and environmentalist Greg Smith will run for the state seat of Mount Lawley under the banner of the Julie Matheson for WA Party.
In the past Mr Smith’s crossed swords with Bayswater council for being anti-tree, got stuck into the state’s planners over the Elizabeth Quay development, and pilloried the WA Planning Commission for its handling of a privately-owned Bayswater wetlands that’s been partially bulldozed.
He wants to bin the state government development assessment panels and the State Administrative Tribunal.
“I’m sick and tired of the lies and deception that the major parties trot out before elections,” he says. “In all the years they have been in government they have failed to deliver on the agenda they now claim to be a priority for them.”
While the Labor party’s grumbled about DAPs, it was originally an ALP idea, and the party hasn’t committed to scrapping them.
“It is time for the people of Mount Lawley to stand up against the establishment which united together to deliver them the failed DAPs and the unelected but all-powerful SAT, both of which only seem to serve the development industry at the expense of the residents,” Mr Smith said.
“Both Labor and Liberal seem to forget that it is the residents they are meant to serve, not the property developers, not the mining industry and not any other group which makes political donations.”
Given his party leader’s made a few anti-apartment comments (referring to them as “termite living”) we quizzed Mr Smith on his views on unit blocks. He’s less hardline than Ms Matheson: “Apartments can offer a viable source of accommodation and provide a worthy lifestyle choice to residents, however this must not be to the detriment of the area.”
He currently works teaching town planning at Curtin University and was previously the planner at East Fremantle council where his pro-heritage decisions ruffled feathers.
He was also once arrested (but not charged) after writing “cui bono”, Latin for “who benefits” in chalk on the wall surrounding Elizabeth Quay after giant Moreton Bay fig trees were cut down.
He calls the quay project a “big gift” to corporate interests.
by DAVID BELL