Freo's View

GRASS NOT ALWAYS GREENER ELSEWHERE

Posted in city of fremantle, election, fremantle society, Uncategorized by freoview on June 4, 2017

Interesting to hear that the FRRAemantle Society committee has decided to not support former Fremantle Residents and Ratepayers Association convenor Claudia Green for the City Ward council election. FS Committee voted to support Michael Finn, one of the Kakula’s Sisters owners instead.

I have no doubt that many FRRA members will not at all be happy about that and now regret the recent merger with the Fremantle Society. FS president John Dowson endorsed Ms Green, so that will make for uncomfortable Society committee meetings.

I would welcome some small business owners on Fremantle Council as that expertise is missing and most people cannot imagine what it is like to run a small shop or cafe.

These small businesses are often not well represented at local and state government levels since they cannot afford to become a member of the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce, and it is mainly Fremantle BID that tries to look after and promote them.

Roel Loopers

 

3 Responses

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  1. freoview said, on June 13, 2017 at 9:19 am

    My info came from the Herald Robert.

    Roel

  2. Robert said, on June 13, 2017 at 8:33 am

    You have it a ‘little’ wrong Roel.
    I was at the meeting and the committee is Very happy to have its members and others whose feel for Old Fremantle and want great and special redevelopment, restoration and Community that we are seriously loosing.
    The problem is that 2 good people have asked for endorsement for the same ward.
    It would be real nice if it was not the same ward and as Olwyn has pointed out Councillors act for all residences and rate payers.
    That is why the president of the Fremantle Society was to suggest at private meetings that the two nominees consider the options.. and that we are a team.
    Finally. Fremantle Society members are the ones who will be the ones to assist the want-abbes. As far as I know there is no direct financial hand outs by the society offered now or at any (recent) or any time.

  3. Olwyn Williams said, on June 4, 2017 at 3:51 pm

    Good afternoon on this fine day Roel,

    It is rare that I seek to respond to the blogs of Fremantle because so often the minutiae of the resulting argy bargy sort of sucks the oxygen out of the room. But it’s a lovely sunny day and your blog has inspired a response.

    It is really important that we have people from our business community stand for local government elections and it is fantastic we already have indications of intention to stand this far out. Even with the 30,000(ish) population of Fremantle, just under 47% of the rates base for the whole City comes from commercial and industrial properties that are spread throughout the various wards (not just the CBD). That 47% features quite a complex mix of business.

    Once elected Councillors do not just represent a specific sector of the community or a specific ward, they participate in decisions about the whole City. What we do need to do Is to look to all of our candidates for the broader set of skills they would bring to Council. A Fremantle business person standing for Council may well bring the experience of running a business in Fremantle; the impact of policy be it local, state or federal;being at the coal face of a difficult economy; and, potentially, experience in fields that may extend to include finance, hospitality, marketing, trade, retail planning or even property.

    Ideally a Council would be a representation of its broad community but that doesn’t happen if people don’t stand or vote.

    In Local Government elections, rate paying businesses and commercial property owners can vote just as any resident can, the difference is that that they have to register to be able to do so. Over the few months the Chamber will be making contact with businesses across Fremantle to facilitate their enrollment.

    On the matter of sector representation outside of Council and it’s relative costs, nothing comes for free.

    I can can assure you that there are many businesses in the CBD who pay more in their differential rates for the Fremantle BID than the $409 (plus GST) business membership of the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce. The difference is that you don’t get choose if you make payment to Fremantle BID, effectively it is a membership granted through a tax. Theoretically that can be an effective approach to getting investment into common goals.

    You may recall from the debate since August 2016, Fremantle CBD businesses have invested $1.8 million over five years into Fremantle BID, gaining little clarity about the returns through increased activation/economic development. Fremantle BID is not a representative or advocacy body, it is charged by Council and the business community to deliver. The Chamber invested considerable resources in the development of the new Fremantle BID business plan across the last 5 months. We did this so that we, as a contributing CBD rate payer, and every other CBD business and property owner, would have some clarity as to how our additional rates/taxes were being used and to what effect.

    We were happy to assist and we look forward to some great results.

    Enjoy the rest of the weekend and may the purple prosper.

    Olwyn


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