‘Mayor in the Square’

Starting this Wednesday 1 February, I’ll be kicking off ‘Mayor in the Square’, the first in a series of regular informal opportunities to talk in our town square.

No appointment is necessary for the regular Wednesday morning initiative (11am – 12 noon) being held in Kings Square. All are welcome to ask questions and to share any concerns or ideas with the me in a relaxed and friendly and hopefully not too hot an environment. You are even welcome to challenge the me to a game of table tennis if you like!

It will also be a great opportunity to check out what’s happening in Kings Square–the civic and geographical heart of Fremantle–where you can enjoy free wifi, table tennis and chess, or  read a book in WA’s first  ‘outdoor reading room’ .

A community update on all things Freo Council

This won’t be everyone’s cup of tea but for those of you interested in where Council is up to on its key projects and initiatives, then check out the just released community update on our five-year strategic plan.

The interactive community update document is worth a look – it offers a brief summary and also provides links to further more detailed  information on some of the most important of these initiatives for those of you interested or just suffering insomnia. It encompasses a everything we do from economic and cultural development, through to urban planning, climate change, transport, community safety and corporate governance.

To view a copy of the community update click here


Street vendors wanted in the square

You might have noticed the article in the West today, in which the City of Fremantle is calling for street vendors to help activate Kings Sq. We’ve got the Donut Guy and the Yogurt Van – maybe the flower cart and fruit stall will be next. If you haven’t hung out in Kings Sq for a while come down and check it out. The colourful tables and chairs , free wifi and table tennis and what I believe to be Perth’s first outdoor library are starting to make this a fun place to stop and chill for a while. If you have a stall apply.

 

Mark McGowan and his new ALP team coming Freo

Mark McGowan the new WA Labor leader and members of his shadow cabinet are coming to Fremantle next week.

The Fremantle Chamber of Commerce invite you to a breakfast meeting with them discuss issues affecting your business and community.
When: Tuesday 31 January 2012
Where: Fremantle Sailing Club
151 Marine Terrace, Fremantle
Time: 7:30am – 9:00am
Cost: $15pp
• Mark McGowan MLA
• Sue Ellery MLC
• Ken Travers MLC
• Peter Tinley MLA
Selection of Muffins & Refreshments supplied. rsvp@fremantlechamber.com.au

Fremantle Council will also be meeting with them later that day to discuss key Fremantle issues. With 12months before the next state election this is a great time to influence key policies that impact on us all.

New mayoral Facebook and meet the mayor in the square

I’ve finally taken the plunge and decided to set up a mayoral Facebook account. So if you would like to be my Facebook friend and get these blog updates and other bits and pieces about Freo then please look me up on Facebook at “Mayor Brad Pettitt”.

For those of you  less inclined to link up virtually and prefer real face to face time –  look out for “meet the mayor in the square” which will be a regular event in our Kings Square starting in February. More details to come shortly – both via Facebook and more traditional means

cheers, Brad

8 storey development passed by Council in Fremantle

Well almost – it is actually in East Fremantle where Local Planning Policy – Town Centre Redevelopment Guidelines was adopted by their council in late 2011.

It is a fascinating project and has lots of merit and is built on many of the same ideas as Fremantle’s planning scheme amendments including mixed use, higher density, affordable housing and environmental sustainability. Interestingly for some reason there’s  been a whole lot less controversial about this than Fremantle’s Amendment 49!

The scheme varies between 3 and 8 floors next to their Town Hall.

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Will this Council be the last Fremantle Council?

Quite possibly at least in terms of the current boundaries if Metropolitan Local Government Reform goes ahead as it looks like it might.

In July last year, the Minister for Local Government announced that he had established a reform panel  to review metropolitan local governance structures.  The panel is required to report to the Minister by 30th June 2012.

The panel released a discussion paper late last year and sought public submissions on the paper.  The CEO and I met with the chair of the panel in December to discuss the matter.

This week, WALGA held a workshop for metropolitan councils to help WALGA develop a consensus view that could be represented in their submission to the panel. The City of Fremantle was represented by the myself, CEO and Councillor Strachan at that workshop.

It is becoming increasingly apparent that FEWER local governments across metro-Perth is the most likely outcome of the review and that some amalgamations are almost inevitable. If this were to happen, we need to make sure that we don’t allow for local governments so big and anonymous that they are disconnected from their community. Fremantle has previously said that a reconfiguration of boundaries so ours ran on its eastern side along Stock Road to the river and then South as far as the South Freo Power Station was the way to go.

I also think that key activity centers like Fremantle still need to be homes to future local governments as a home to these ”communities of interest”. I wouldn’t be supporting a Brisbane model of one “super-Council”.

The panel has established a website www.metroreview.dlg.wa.gov.au where details of the panel’s work to date can be viewed.  The following is a link to the submissions that have been received by the panel.

http://www.metroreview.dlg.wa.gov.au/Content/Comments/Submissions.aspx

Of particular interest for the workshop will be the submissions by the City of Melville, the City of Cockburn, and the Town of Mosman Park.

The panel is expected to release a draft paper with its preliminary recommendations in March.