By Paul Hemsley
The City of Perth will swallow up all of the City of Vincent, Kings Park, the new Crown Casino and the new Perth Stadium at Burswood under Premier Colin Barnett’s final proposal to the independent Local Government Advisory Board (LGAB) to rationalise metropolitan boundaries.
The ambitious plan by Mr Barnett to create “fewer, bigger, stronger councils” follows a string of objections, including resistance to amalgamations from more affluent residential areas.
A key element of Mr Barnett and Minister for Local Government Tony Simpson’s proposal is the plan to bring the University of Western Australia’s (UWA) Winthrop Hall in into one local government area because it is presently split by local government boundaries.
Mr Barnett said this boundary is just one of the anomalies in the present local government boundaries in the Perth metropolitan area, which the Premier says was “in many cases were drawn up more than 100 years ago”.
“The government’s model for the City of Perth will dispense with this absurd situation – which has UWA overseen by three separate councils – by bringing the entire campus into the City of Perth,” Mr Barnett said.
Other aspects of the government’s new preferred model include the expansion of the northern boundary of the City of Perth to follow the present City of Vincent boundary along Green and Walcott Streets.
The state government will also form the new western boundary on Hampden Road and Broadway in Nedlands and encompass the QEII Medical Centre and Hollywood Private Hospital and UWA’s Crawley campus within the expanded City of Perth.
Although the City of Perth has to date been one of the most vocal supporters for amalgamations and boundary changes, the latest announcement has drawn a distinctly negative reaction from Lord Mayor Lisa Scaffidi.
Ms Scaffidi has labelled the new proposal a “backflip” on directives that Mr Barnett and Mr Simpson proposed in a revised city plan on 30th July, 2013.
“The City now joins a growing list of strong adversaries on the way this process is being managed while previously they had been very much in sync with the Government on this matter,” Ms Scaffidi said.
She also warned that the extension to “low growth residential areas” in Vincent to Green Street will create a “ward structure”, which Perth doesn’t have “due to the nature and diversity of stakeholders”.
Comment below to have your say on this story.
If you have a news story or tip-off, get in touch at email@example.com.
Sign up to the Government News newsletter