Caveat ‘won’t af­fect arts group’s fu­ture’

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Western Opinion -

MOSARTS chair Libby Eus­tance says the arts group’s long-term fu­ture will not be af­fected by a caveat ce­ment­ing its use of Memo­rial Hall, Lochee Street be­ing re­fused by Mos­man Park coun­cil­lors last week

“No, it won’t be­cause we wanted to make sure we had some se­cu­rity if the coun­cil was merged with an­other coun­cil, but now that looks as­sured be­cause it looks like Mos­man Park will be around next year,” she said.

Mosarts five-year lease with a five-year ad­di­tion is due for re­newal in June 2016.

Mrs Eus­tance said the caveat re­quest came from lawyers’ ad­vice while merg­ers were be­ing dis­cussed, be­fore Premier Colin Bar­nett can­celled re­form in Fe­bru­ary.

A “sub­ject to claim” caveat could al­low Mosarts to have first rights to re­new­ing any lease and show po­ten­tial users that the hall had long-term se­cu­rity.

“All we were look­ing for was an email from chief ex­ec­u­tive Kevin Poyn­ton say­ing ‘you can put a caveat on the lease’,” Mrs Eus­tance said.

A some­times-strained re­la­tion­ship be­tween Mosarts and some coun­cil­lors about the group’s re­quests for sup­port in re­cent years cul­mi­nated in its fi­nan­cial re­struc­tur­ing and hire of a per­ma­nent direc­tor to se­cure new users of the hall last year.

At the coun­cil meet­ing, Cr Zenda John­son said a caveat would mean the coun­cil would have “lim­ited pow­ers” if some­thing went wrong with the lease, while Cr Jenna Ledger­wood said it was not clear whether the caveat could be re­moved in the fu­ture.

Mr Poyn­ton said the coun­cil’s le­gal ad­vice was that a sub­ject to claim caveat did noth­ing to the lease “as such”, and was not a caveat over the land.

Coun­cil­lors voted 5-0 against Mosarts’ re­quest, with Mayor Ron Nor­ris and Cr Brett Car­boni ab­sent.

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