While WA is having a state election in five days here in Fremantle the knives are already out for the October Council election that includes electing a new Mayor.
Although Mayor Brad Pettitt has yet to announce if he will be standing and try to get another four years, former Mayor Peter Tagliaferri launched a major attack on Petitt in the Fremantle Herald, that was strongly criticised by Councillor Jon Strachan on his blog.
Strachan told ‘Tags’ that he had served under him and Pettitt and that the leadership of the two Mayors was poles apart. Strachan claims there was “deep division” in the Tagliaferri Council while the Pettitt Council professionally works together.
Strachan writes that during the greatest economic boom in W.A. Mayor Tagliaferri had failed to attract investment into Fremantle.
It is evident from all the building sites around the Fremantle CBD that the present Council headed by Mayor Brad Pettitt has opened the doors of Freo wide and very substantial development is happening in the port city and much more in the pipeline.
Jon Strachan asked Peter Tagliaferri who his candidate for Mayor will be in October. I wonder if it could be someone from the Labor party?
There are rumours abound that former state politician Adele Carles might put her hand up, but time will tell and we’ll need to wait and see if Pettitt wants to continue with the very-demanding and highly-criticised job.
On a personal note; although I have been asked by many Freo residents to stand for Council I will not contest the October election!
The annual Electors Meeting of the City of Fremantle was an interesting one with public questions about the financial report and assets sales by concerned members of Fremantle Residents and Ratepayers Association and the Fremantle Society who are worried about the financial health of Fremantle.
There was also strong public support for the One Day in Fremantle event on January 28 next year.
The Electors Meeting became farcical though when Claudia Green for FRRA and FS put a motion of no confidence in Council, arguing that because the elected members only received votes from the wards they get voted by they do not represent the Fremantle people.
This is not a City of Fremantle issue but should be addressed with the State Government and the Minister for Local Government, as at present the democratic process for the Fremantle local government is that two people per ward get elected on council. If community groups want to change that they need to lobby the State Government.
The FRRA/FS spokes person also claimed the two groups represented many people, without giving evidence of the number of people who have signed up with them. I doubt the combined numbers of FRRA and FS would be anywhere near the combined number of votes Fremantle councillors received at elections. An indication of that is that FRRA and FS did not even manage to get enough people in the public gallery to support the two motions they put up and were both defeated.
Fact is that just about 30% of eligible voters vote at local council elections, so that is the challenge community groups should be addressing, instead of making unsubstantiated claims that they represent a majority.
In general I do agree though that community consultation needs to be improved by the City of Fremantle, but to question the validity of decisions made by Fremantle Council because supposedly they do not have the numbers to represent the electorate is……, well……., because we are close to Christmas, let’s just call it interesting instead of a much stronger word.
Tomorrow is another historic day for Femantle with the election of the new Beaconsfield Ward Councillor, who will replace Josh Wilson who resigned to stand for the federal election and has been elected the new MP for Fremantle.
If you are among the estimated 65% of people in the ward who have not yet voted and sent in your postal votes, you can still drop them off at the Fremantle Townhall between 8am and 6 pm tomorrow-Friday!
My gut feeling is that Andrew Luobikis will win the election followed by Hannah Fitzhardinge, Fedele Camarda and Peter Cruikshank. But one never knows which section of the electorate bothers to vote and Camarda could get many votes from the Italian community in Beacy and Hilton.
There is no doubt for me that those people disgruntled with Fremantle Council will vote for Luobikis, who has been vocal over the last two years against some Council decisions. The fact that Fitzhardinge is a member of the Labor party might be seen by some that local governments are being taken over by political parties, but women might prefer a third woman on the male-dominated Fremantle Council.
Whatever the outcome, which will be announced at the Townhall just before 7 pm on Friday, we should be grateful to all candidates for putting their hand up and wanting to make a contribution to the Fremantle community, so from me a heart-felt Thank You to all four of them!
In a surprising and sensational move disgruntled ALP member Chris Brown has engaged the services of prominent lawyer John Hammond to claim compensation for being removed by the Labor party as the candidate for the federal seat of Fremantle before the recent election.
Brown was replaced by Josh Wilson for not disclosing spend convictions to the party, but he claims that was discriminatory.
Wilson was backed by the Fremantle branch of the ALP but the state conference selected the MUA backed Brown, who was then removed to make place for Wilson who was subsequently elected as the new MP for the federal seat of Fremantle.
The sun is out so a nice start of the week. Enjoy it and appreciate how special it is to live in Fremantle.
I need a bit of sunshine after the dull and uninspiring leaders debate between Turnbull and Shorten. Decided to switch the TV off after 40 minutes of repetitiveness and realising none of them has a real vision for Australia.
These kids were enjoying the great Greg James sculptures in the Fishing Boat Harbour yesterday.
The traditional CANDIDATES DEBATE is on again for the Federal Election and will be held at Tannock Hall corner Croke Lane and Cliff Street at 6 pm on June 21.
The event is organised by Notre Dame University in collaboration with the Fremantle Network, Chamber of Commerce and Fremantle Society and should be a lively one.
Meet and question Labor’s Josh Wilson, Greens Kate Davis, Socialist Alliance Chris Jenkins and the Liberal candidate Pierrette Kelly.
It’s a free event so come and grill the candidates!
The Federal seat of Fremantle is jinxed or got very bad karma. Today the Liberal Party candidate Sherry Sufi resigned after receiving the cold shoulder from Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull earlier this week, who visited Fremantle without Sufi by his side.
Sufi said that he is putting the interest of the party first and that he did not want to embarrass the Prime Minister.
Sherry Sufi’s controversial remarks against the recognition of indigenous Australians in the constitution and against the apology to the Stolen Generations created uproar in the community, as did his stand against gay marriage and claiming it would create polygamy.
This comes after the Labour Party dumped its candidate Chris Brown last week and replaced him with Josh Wilson.
The Labor Party’s WILSON FOR FREMANTLE campaign launch at Clancy’s this eve had a great positive vibe, and they came from far and wide to be part of it.
Fantastic to finally meet one of my heroes, actually my only one, in Pat Dodson and shake the hand of the great indigenous leader. It made my year!
All the way from Canberra came Anthony Albanese who has infectious enthusiasm. I also spotted former Labor ministers Kay Hallahan and Fran Logan, local member Simone McGurke was there as was Freo Councillor Dave Hume, Vice President of the Fremantle Society Don Whittington and many Freo personalities.
I want to specially mention the unfairly dumped Chris Brown who showed bravery and class by attending this evening’s launch!
Josh Wilson said it was quite overwhelming and he was humbled to be the candidate. He said it would be a tough fight but he had no doubt “We’ll win Federal Fremantle.”
Senator Pat Dodson said that Labor had made opportunities for indigenous people and that there is a sense of bond, friendship and concern within the party. “Labor makes sure the small person in our society is not left behind!”
He said it was important “That the community demand from us there are outcomes and not just hot air.”
Anthony Albanese started with saying that Pat Dodson has made an extraordinary contribution to our nation.
“We have a clear idea where we want to take our country” he said and that the government has to intervene in the economy to make a difference.
Labor will fund Metronet, he promised, saying that Malcolm Turnbull likes to ride on trains but not fund them.
“We can win many more seats in WA, possibly 7-8. “We can’t have the smiling face of Turnbull selling Abbott’s policies.”
“You can win, Josh! You will win, Josh, and you will be part of a Labor government!”