Bondi View

‘Totally inappropriate’ meetings scheduled by Waverley

By Lydia Watson-Moore

 

Community representatives and councillors have questioned Waverley Council’s decision to reschedule the amalgamation rescission motion to a Sunday morning.
The next rescission meeting, scheduled for Sunday June 28, comes after criticism of the previous meeting’s date, which was also on a Sunday.
As earlier reported by City Hub, the previous meeting, held on Sunday June 14, was adjourned due to a walkout by Labor, Greens and Independent councillors.
Greens councillor Dominic Wy Kanak said that holding the meeting on a Sunday morning was “adding insult to injury” to an already tense situation.
He said the scheduled day and time of the meeting was “so far out of usual practice that it shows the Liberals really don’t care if the community can make these meetings”.
But a Waverley Council spokesperson told City Hub that when a second rescission meeting is necessary, the general manager decides the date, rather than the Mayor who chose the first date.
Mill Hill and Bondi Junction Precinct spokesperson Marcella McAdam said she was annoyed the meeting had again been scheduled for a Sunday morning.
“The community already has other commitments – religious, family, sporting – all on a Sunday morning,” she said.
“It’s just not an appropriate time to call in residents to attend.”
Ms McAdam said she had written to Waverley’s council directors before the June 12 meeting, raising her concerns.
She told City Hub she was disappointed Council had again chosen a Sunday, but said she knew the decision was influenced by the looming June 30 deadline for amalgamation proposals.
A Council spokesperson confirmed this, stating that June 28 was chosen to maximise the leeway before the IPART deadline, and to reach the required councillor attendance.
“The date has been set in order to maximise the possibility of a quorum for the meeting, that is, seven councillors,” the spokesperson said.
But Labor councillor John Wakefield said the meeting was scheduled to allow one of the Liberal councillors to be present. This comes after councillor Wakefield was himself unable to attend the June 12 meeting.
“I was unable to make the meeting because of family commitments. Sunday morning, 9am, is a totally inappropriate time for a public meeting,” he said.
Independent councillor Miriam Guttman-Jones said she thought the meeting may have been set to ensure as few residents would attend as possible.
“It’s not what our residents want,” she said.
Clr Guttman-Jones, who led the walkout of the previous rescission meeting, said she would stand firm against amalgamation.
“Yes I shall continue to fight against amalgamation because I do not think we need to amalgamate… Around 37 out of 41 city councils are fighting to stand free. Why can’t ours?” she said.

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