Letters 16.2.19

Baby, we’ve got a problem
WHAT is over-development?
Is it towering structures reaching into the clouds in nearby suburbs?
Is it increasing urban sprawl that digs into out pristine bushland?
Is it urban infill that has thrice as many people in a localised urban area with too many people using the green space?
However you define it, it has at its core, the problem of over-zealous population growth.
Can we supply enough water? Can we use infrastructure efficiently? Do we like where we live?
We have a chance in Australia to manage the migration process and thus our population growth.
To be sure, we need some migration. Our net birth rate is not enough to keep an even playing field of a stable, consistent population.
And we are a generous and wealthy nation and refugees should be afforded our protection … no question about that.
But generalised migration and backdoor residency is a problem that grows the population at an enormous rate each year, and it is that rate of growth that is unsustainable.
It’s hurting us, it’s hurting the environment, it’s hurting our facilities, and we cannot keep up with that very bad federal policy.
When it comes time to vote and make your vote count, think about this issue because it is one we either deal with now or our children (and grandchildren) are going to suffer the consequences.
Colin Scott
Deague Court, North Perth

Streets away from satisfactory
YOUR article on Vincent’s decision to name nine laneways around Beaufort Street (“Names Laned up”, Voice, February 9), missed one important element–Vincent’s failure to consult with the local community on the proposed names.
The report to council stated that the city had complied with Landgate’s consultation requirements; that is not correct.
Landgate has a comprehensive policy concerning the naming of roads and parks.
The policy states that the community must have the opportunity to object to a proposed name, and that the local government must consider any objection.
The policy also provides a five-step process for consulting with the community on any proposed name.
It makes it clear that if a name is suggested by some form of competition, such as adopted by Vincent, the suggested name or names must advertised to the community.
A competition to identify potential names is not to be considered as the only consultation required.
All of this is in black and white, yet the council still decided not to consult the community.|Congratulations to Cr Josh Topelberg for raising the question of community consultation and voting against the proposal, and congratulations to Cr Ros Harley for questioning the names that were ultimately recommended by the staff.
And that’s the other issue: the responses provided to community suggestions exposes a range of highly inconsistent responses from the staff.
One of the suggested Aboriginal words was booma, which means to hit or kill, yet it made it to the shortlist.
The analysis of community submissions does not seem to demonstrate any rigour or internal review.
Sadly, this lack of consultation is becoming more prevalent in Vincent:
• The upgrading of the northern end of Oxford Street, which is funded as a bicycle network project but is actually making it less safe for cyclists, was not advertised to the broad community.
• The bike path which threatens the last stand of ‘original’ jarrah trees on Loftus Street was not advertised to the community.
• The advertising of the proposal for Robertson Park was via a ‘secret’ web page, only advertised to residents in the immediate vicinity, even though the city’s own documents state that the park has a two-kilometre catchment.
• The laneway names were not advertised to the community, but the fact that somebody in Stirling Street wants to have a carport is advertised.
The city should admit they got it wrong and should advertise the names, just like Landgate says they should, and just like their very own proposed procedure says they should.
Dudley Maier

Gran’s advice still holds true
MAUREEN GREEN (“Not for kids” Voice Letters,  January 26, 2019) should have no trouble devising a simple explanation of the glory hole exhibit at WA Museum, should her grandchildren ask.
When I was six my grandmother took me to the art gallery.
We were confronted with Russell Flint’s dramatic oil painting The Delinquents.
The couple in the painting had clearly gotten themselves into a bad situation.
“What had they done?” I asked Gran.
“They’re juvenile delinquents,” said Gran. “They were caught throwing stones at street lights. I hope you would never do that?”
And I never did.
Mike Roeger

We’re a filthy rich country
A RECENT public comment stated that the top one per cent of Australians have more wealth than the bottom 70 per cent combined.
After a recent world survey it was stated that one per cent of the world’s population owns 50 per cent  of the total assets.
Most of us have heard this statement before, and in my case I thought; “That is all the fat cats on Wall Street”.
However, a few statistics will show that is not true.
There are seven billion people in the world, therefore, one per cent is 70 million people.
The survey stated that 50 per cent of the “one per centers” live in the United States.
That means 17.5 million of these people live in the rest of the world.
The criteria to be a member of this group is to have assets (including your home) of more than US$ 850,000.
Due to the widespread ownership of private residences, considerable other assets plus superannuation balances, I would not be surprised if 3 million Australians qualify in the one per cent group.
Fredrick G. McCulloch
Donavon Rise, Murdoch

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