BY LANIE TINDALE
The Inner West Council’s new Deputy Mayor wants to “get back to the basics.” Independent Councillor Victor Macri replaced Julie Passas as Deputy Mayor last week.
Cr Macri told City Hub he would like to use his role to improve council meetings.
“At the moment they’re very poor, I’d like to see them cleaned up, it’s a bit of an embarrassment to the community that the community leaders can’t seem to get their act together,” he said.
Cr Macri, who was the Mayor of Marrickville in 2012-13, called for his colleagues to focus on local issues.
“What we really need to do is listen to the people and get back to the basics,” he said, adding the council’s core issues were “maintaining the area – the traditional ones, the roads, the rubbish, the trees, our sporting fields, our community facilities.
“That’s what I believe the people that elected me really want to focus on.
“They want to get back down to ground level and stop dealing in state and federal issues because they won’t be resolved at the council level.”
Cr Macri, who has played in several Marrickville-based sports clubs, identified several democratic political philosophies, says he believes in “a fair go for everyone”, that “every voice should be heard” and that “everyone is important” but that “you can’t make everybody happy [and] if you do make a decision you have to be able to explain why”.
The former Mayor of Marrickville was born in Camperdown in 1964 and attended schools in Marrickville and Lewisham.
The hairdresser often speaks to locals at his salon on Marrickville Road, which he has operated since 1983.
“Sometimes, being on the ground and in the community gives you more capacity to put more weight on things that are more merit-based.”
As Mayor of Marrickville from 2012-2013, Cr Macri claims he brought common sense into the decision-making process, by respecting people and always trying to listen to what they had to say.
Cr Macri is one of three independents on the Inner West Council, and received preferences from Labor at the last local government election.
He insists this hasn’t impacted his voting decisions.
“Sometimes I’ll vote on the left side of politics, sometimes I’ll vote on the middle, sometimes I’ll vote on the right,” he said.
“I voted against the Labor Party motion on the Sydenham creative hub because I believe the Greens were right and Labor was wrong.”
Cr Macri strongly believes councils should not have political parties, and some of the new councillors are “inexperienced” and are “single issue councillors.”
“I believe there should be no political parties in council because council should be looking after doing the basic things,” said Cr Macri. “It should just be local people in the local area, looking after people in the local area.”
“The council is not united, the problem is there’s too many factions and political factions, the main principle we had at Marrickville Council is you play the issue and not the person.
“At the moment there’s too much playing the personalities.”