Back­ing for power to sack coun­cil­lors

Southern Telegraph - - News - Ai­den Boy­ham

New leg­is­la­tion that would give the lo­cal gov­ern­ment min­is­ter pow­ers to sus­pend or re­move in­di­vid­ual coun­cil­lors was tabled in State Par­lia­ment last Wednesday, with the City of Rock­ing­ham sup­port­ing its in­tro­duc­tion.

The Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Amend­ment (Sus­pen­sion and Dis­missal) Bill 2018 would give the min­is­ter sus­pen­sion pow­ers un­der a range of con­di­tions, in­clud­ing if a coun­cil­lor was charged with an of­fence and con­victed.

City of Rock­ing­ham Mayor Barry Sam­mels said the City sup­ported its in­tro­duc­tion. “Ac­cord­ing to the ex­plana­tory mem­o­ran­dum for the Bill, the pro­cesses to de­ter­mine a sus­pen­sion or dis­missal and the source of ad­vice to the min­is­ter rec­om­mend­ing such ac­tion ap­pear to be fair and sat­is­fac­tory, so the City sup­ports its in­tro­duc­tion,” he said.

City of Kwinana Mayor Carol Adams said while the City’s coun­cil had not con­sid­ered the new Bill for­mally, she be­lieved it would be gen­er­ally sup­ported.

“I be­lieve the Bill will re­ceive wide­spread sup­port and is some­thing which is long awaited by the sec­tor,” Ms Adams said. “Coun­cils are of­ten rep­ri­manded as a whole by the ac­tions of an in­di­vid­ual or small group of re­cal­ci­trant coun­cil­lors.”

Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Min­is­ter David Tem­ple­man moved to quell con­cerns the leg­is­la­tion could be used for po­lit­i­cal pur­poses.

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