Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - OPINION -

I RE­CEIVED an email ad­dressed “Dear City of South Perth Ratepayer” ask­ing me to com­plete a sur­vey re­gard­ing the pro­posed Wes­tralian Cen­tre at the flag­pole lo­ca­tion on the South Perth Fore­shore of Sir James Mitchell Park..

While the sur­vey cov­ers many as­pects, I think it is bi­ased to help jus­tify an out­come be­ing pushed along.

The sur­vey states that par­tic­i­pants in the South Perth Fore­shore Plan “ex­pressed an in­ter­est in the cre­ation of a land­mark site”.

It is a very big stretch to say this war­rants con­struct­ing a $7 mil­lion multi-pur­pose cen­tre.

The sur­vey asks “Why are you in favour of the pro­posed con­cept?”.

It does not ask “Why are you not in favour of the pro­posed con­cept?”.

Rea­sons for not be­ing in favour in­clude the cost to City of South Perth ratepay­ers, con­cerns about in­ad­e­quate park­ing and con­flict with Sir James Mitchell's vi­sion that the park should be a pub­lic open space for pas­sive recre­ation pur­poses with no com­mer­cial build­ings.

The sur­vey states “The City of South Perth would seek State, Fed­eral and pri­vate fund­ing for the project”.

It is not yet known or re­vealed whether a large por­tion of the es­ti­mated $7 mil­lion cap­i­tal cost, and bal­ance of on­go­ing op­er­at­ing costs, is likely to be funded by the City of South Perth and by how much this will in­crease the rates.

If this is a likely sce­nario, the sur­vey should have quan­ti­fied the likely in­crease in rates and asked ratepay­ers whether they were still in favour.

For those want­ing to have their say, visit https://your­say.south­ wes­tralian-cen­tre.

The ques­tion­naire is only open for 24 days and closes on June 2.

A spe­cial elec­tors' meet­ing has been called at 6pm on June 8 at the South Perth Com­mu­nity Hall, where ratepay­ers and elec­tors will hope­fully be pro­vided with an­swers to their ques­tions be­fore the coun­cil is ex­pected to con­sider the pro­posal at its meet­ing on June 27. GREG BEN­JAMIN South Perth

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