FREMANTLE’S PLAN TO BOOST SPENDING
THE City of Fremantle will consider ways of cutting red tape to boost investment in the city and help the community recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Councillors voted at last month’s meeting to adopt a COVID-19 recovery plan to help with short term social and economic recovery.
The plan incorporated the recommendations of three internal working groups established by the council in April.
One of the plan’s objectives is to “determine which of its own levers the city can pull to expedite outcomes”, such as parking, fees, charges and planning.
It would do this by reviewing “opportunities to temporarily address relevant discretionary planning conditions that may be presenting some challenges for potential investors in the post-pandemic environment”.
Another initiative is to create a more competitive parking environment via
“incentives” and “demandbased pricing”.
The City would also provide assistance in accessing support required to scale businesses back up.
It would do so through the development of a business and investor concierge service to “simplify and support positive and timely engagement with City services and processes”.
Other suggestions included creating a digital platform for artists to sell their work during times of restricted travel and social distancing, and providing a $50,000 grass roots arts grants program.
Social initiatives included developing a financial hardship policy in response to “increased instances of financial stress”, and to explore ways to reduce the “digital divide” for those at risk of isolation and unable to access online services.
The council also passed a series of community recovery budget amendments to increase funding for several initiatives.
An extra $20,000 will be spent supporting community groups and organisations.