Saturday 7 February 2015 in the Town of East Fremantle, votes on amalgamation.
There seems to be a strong movement of locals in EF to block or stop this part of the state’s amalgamation process. I have an opinion but this is a decision best left for EF electors to resolve. In the best interests of democracy let’s hope they get a good turn out as this will give the best true reflection of electors wishes.
The most important point raised, which is something I have mentioned in past posts is the issue of elected members, Mayors positioning themselves for a commissioners appointments in their own city, to run council till a new body is elected. Could you think of anything more detrimental to the democratic system than allowing current elected members and individuals, to be appointed commissioners who could then run for the coming election? This is a massive conflict of interest, isn’t it?Them to have virtually unvetted control over our cities operation, finances, budgets, manning, contracts, planning, etc. poor decisions could leave us financial crippled for years to come.
I think the minster would be wise to appoint an independent commissioner, to run the city till a new council could be elected. This commissioner should also be ineligible to run for an elected position, (this removes any concerns of acting in self-interest or bias) it would be in the best interest of a true democratic election or process. Not hard, just ensure that the commissioner/s are not a resident or rate payer of the new Greater City of Fremantle.
Further in the interests of real or true democracy, ensure that no delaying tactics are used to extend the commissioner/s appointment time by guarantying an election as soon as possible i.e. come Oct 2105 we should go to polls to vote in a newly elected body, as recommended by the Local Government Advisory Board. Surely it would be in the Minister best interest to have a smooth transition and to have a truly independent commissioner/s, well it would be a good start? Not ones that have questionable self-interests in taking up the roles?
More importantly no real community consultation on this issue at all, just elected members sitting in chambers voting for themselves to be appointed. If that’s not self-interest what is????? The government will leave themselves very open for public scrutiny and criticism by appointing a non-independent person, should anything go wrong, well its they who will be held publicly accountable.
No wonder people in East Fremantle want to put a stop to amalgamation.
One last point on amalgamation the government has put out a list of pros and cons, the pros are pretty much opinion, they are yet to be proven, watch out for that coolaid.