Border dis­pute still un­set­tled

Western Suburbs Weekly - - News - By JON BAS­SETT

MOS­MAN Park and Fre­man­tle coun­cils still need to re­solve a push by about 200 dis­grun­tled North Fre­man­tle ratepay­ers to leave their port city and join the river­side coun­cil af­ter the res­i­dents met new Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Min­is­ter Paul Miles last month.

“Mr Miles is try­ing to fa­cil­i­tate the change with­out get­ting in­volved,” ratepayer or­gan­iser Ge­off Tot­ter­dell told the West­ern Sub­urbs Weekly.

The ratepay­ers’ year-long bat­tle to change their border and join the west­ern sub­urbs, cit­ing a lack of ser­vices and in­fra­struc­ture from Fre­man­tle, was ini­tially stalled by an ad­verse Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Ad­vi­sory Board de­ci­sion ear­lier this year.

The ratepay­ers then lob­bied Cottes­loe MLA Colin Bar­nett, who sent in for­mer Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment min­is­ter Tony Simp­son. Mr Simp­son said no de­ci­sion could be made un­til the coun­cils agreed on any change.

Af­ter a July 18 meet­ing be­tween the coun­cils, a new idea emerged to shift the coun­cils’ bound­ary about 400m west to a new, north-south align­ment along Thompson Road, North Fre­man­tle, to McCabe Street, Mos­man Park.

How­ever, Mr Tot­ter­dell said sub­se­quent meet­ings and pro­gres­sion of dis­cus­sions on the is­sue by Fre­man­tle Coun­cil failed to ma­te­ri­alise in Septem­ber and Oc­to­ber.

Mos­man Park Mayor Ron Nor­ris said his coun­cil was also wait­ing to hear from Fre­man­tle, af­ter the port city in­di­cated it needed to un­der­take its own in­ter­nal dis­cus­sions about los­ing part of North Fre­man­tle.

“Noth­ing is firm yet, but it’s good the is­sue is be­ing pur­sued,” Mr Nor­ris said.

Fre­man­tle Mayor Brad Pet­titt said the po­ten­tial loss of rates from about 200 res­i­dents was the fun­da­men­tal is­sue raised in­side his coun­cil.

A pos­si­ble so­lu­tion could be a land swap so Fre­man­tle is not left fi­nan­cially dis­ad­van­taged by any change.

Dr Pet­titt said “ad-hoc” border changes usu­ally never worked, in­clud­ing the re­cent break­down of Hamil­ton Hill res­i­dents’ re­quest to join Fre­man­tle, which was blocked by the City of Cock­burn.

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