Rud­dock comes out fight­ing

As he em­barks on an­other chap­ter in his 42 year po­lit­i­cal career, Hornsby’s new Lib­eral Mayor speaks ex­clu­sively to the Monthly Chron­i­cle on the is­sues con­cern­ing lo­cals.

Monthly Chronicle - - Front Page - Jenny Bar­lass

Who is he?

A for­mer Fed­eral Im­mi­gra­tion Min­is­ter, At­tor­ney-Gen­eral, and sec­ond long­est serv­ing Par­lia­men­tar­ian in Aus­tralia’s his­tory, 74 year-old Philip is a long-time Pen­nant Hills res­i­dent who lives with wife Heather, a busi­ness de­vel­op­ment of­fi­cer for a pub­lish­ing firm, in a her­itage house built in 1924. They have two daugh­ters and four grand­chil­dren. His fa­ther Max was Hornsby Mayor from 1961 to 1962.

Too old?

“I’m sick to death of peo­ple ques­tion­ing whether or not at a par­tic­u­lar age you can do some­thing. Ageism is alive and well in some quar­ters. When Clover Moore is al­most my age, Sally Betts is Mayor of Waver­ley and Hil­lary Clin­ton is al­most my age...what do I say? Peo­ple who raise those points are be­ing highly dis­crim­i­na­tory. You make a judge­ment on whether peo­ple have the skills, drive, en­ergy and skills for the task. I was elected on that ba­sis.”

Rates stoush with Par­ra­matta Coun­cil

“It was eas­ier for Hornsby Coun­cil to col­lect the rates as we had the data to do the col­lec­tions. In the months to fol­low we’ll re­solve how much to pay Par­ra­matta for pro­vid­ing ser­vices to Ep­ping.”

Overde­vel­op­ment

“There are de­vel­op­ments in the shire which don’t re­flect its spe­cial char­ac­ter - look at Beecroft’s high rise unit de­vel­op­ments. It could be done bet­ter - look at Cen­tral Park in Broadway with its green walls. I have no prob­lems with high rise in the right place such as cen­tral Hornsby. But in Beecroft and Ep­ping’s 20 storey blocks next to each other with no space for plant­ing - where’s the open space and where do the kids play? I have ex­pec­ta­tions about open space, tree plant­ing and green­ing - all the coun­cil­lors elected are as con­cerned as I am.”

Hornsby out of pocket from los­ing Ep­ping?

“I’m talk­ing to of­fi­cers about the is­sues of bound­aries, rat­ing, ex­pen­di­ture and bud­getary is­sues. The state gov­ern­ment has given us an as­sur­ance that on ob­jec­tive cal­cu­la­tions still to be done, the out­come will be neu­tral for us fi­nan­cially. Gabrielle Up­ton the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Min­is­ter has said that to me - we won’t be worse off and I will be hold­ing her to that.”

Will lo­cal coun­cil pol­i­tics be hum­drum af­ter the glam­our of Can­berra?

“I don’t see it that way. But party pol­i­tics in lo­cal gov­ern­ment is ir­rel­e­vant. De­ci­sion-mak­ing at a lo­cal level can­not be party pol­i­tics. If you’re go­ing to make a de­ci­sion about a foot­path, where’s the pol­i­tics in that?”

Like fa­ther, like son: Philip Rud­dock in the Coun­cil Cham­bers, next to a photo of his fa­ther Max, also once a Hornsby Mayor

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