August 6 - 12, 2017: Issue 324

Pittwater Locals Disappointed by Delay in Plebiscite Bill

Supporters of the de-amalgamation bill, including: Pittwater residents; Save Our Councils leaders; representatives of the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party; the Labor Local Government spokesman Peter Primrose; and Greens Local Government spokesman David Shoebridge gathered prior to Thursday's 'debate'.

Pittwater Locals Disappointed by Delay in Plebiscite Bill

Pittwater locals hoping for a chance to demerge their council via a bill in the NSW Parliament were disappointed when it stalled this week.

The bill would provide plebiscites in areas amalgamated across NSW last year, allowing residents to decide if they want the mergers reversed and ensuring any future amalgamations would have to be passed at referendums.

However, by the time NSW Local Government Minister Gabrielle Upton had finished her address opposing the bill to the chamber on Thursday, time had run out for either debate or a vote.

Protect Pittwater Association President Bob Grace said the group was disgusted by the government’s tactics in Parliament on Thursday.

“It is disappointing the minister would filibuster over a bill that seeks to restore the full voice of the people at the level of government closest to them,” Mr Grace said.

“However, Pittwater MP Rob Stokes now has another week to reflect on his position regarding this bill.

“We hope he will show his commitment to the people of Pittwater by supporting it. Anything else will be a disgrace.”

Introducing the bill, Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party MP Philip Donato said at heart, it would allow people to decide the future of their councils.

If the Government has nothing to hide and believes that local communities are happy with their forced mergers, then there is no reason why this bill should not pass,” Mr Donato said.

However, during her speech, Ms Upton said the plebiscites would be wasteful, as well as a burden on communities and the electoral commission.

“This bill is a roadblock to all future merger proposals,” Ms Upton said.

“The provision in the bill that requires all future merger proposals to be endorsed by a referendum is unnecessary and may prove to be an insurmountable barrier to any future council mergers.”

Ms Upton also lauded the benefits of amalgamations, with examples from a number of councils, including the enlargement and improvement of the Walter Gors Park at Dee Why.

The work was “of significant benefit to the ratepayers of the Northern Beaches Council”, she said.

In an attempt to end Ms Upton’s speech, NSW Deputy Opposition Leader Michael Daley moved a gag motion, saying: “This is a shameless and arrogant filibuster. It’s fooling no-one”.

However, the motion was defeated by the government after a division was called – the only point at which Mr Stokes was present during the debate.

The Local Government Amendment  (Amalgamation Referendums) Bill 2017 passed the Upper House in June with support from all parties except those in the Coalition.

It is expected to return to the Lower House next Thursday.

Before the council mergers, Pittwater had nine representatives on a stand-alone council, however, after elections on September 9 will have only three representatives on a council of 15.
Protect Pittwater has engaged lawyers and is circulating a petition which under the Local Government Act would require the Local Government Minister to refer the amalgamation to an inquiry.

By Protect Pittwater Community Group


Pittwater - Amalgamation Proposal 

+ NSW Government's White Paper Proposed Local Government Reforms + Fit For the Future

Pittwater Council Community Forum on Amalgamation and Planning - May 2013

Pittwater - To Be Or Not To Be?

Hands Off Pittwater !! - Media Releases on the Dee Why Community Consultation on the Future Directions for Local Government proposals 

Transcription of Speakers at Independent Local Government Review - Dee Why, 4th of June, 2013

Front Page Issue 115 - Amalgamation and Transcription of Community Consultation by ILG

NSW Government's White Paper - Issue 116

Hon Rob Stokes Hosts Roundtable Discussion On Council Mergers from Hon. Rob Stokes and People for Pittwater

Pittwater Council submissions on the White Paper – A new planning system for NSW and the Draft Metropolitan Strategy for Sydney and Future Directions for NSW Local Government – Twenty Essential Steps 

Presentation by Better Planning Network at Mona Vale Memorial Hall on the NSW Government's White Paper

Bigger is Better Theory on Council Amalgamations De-bunked by Mayors Townsend and Hay of Pittwater and Manly (New Report: AN ASSESSMENT OF SGS REPORT LOCAL GOVERNMENT STRUCTURAL CHANGE: OPTIONS ANALYSIS) - published 6 September 2013 - Professor Brian Dollery

ONE NORTHERN BEACHES COUNCIL OUT OF THE QUESTION: At its 13 October, 2014 meeting, Pittwater’s councillors reviewed the NSW Government’s local government reform package ‘Fit for the Future’ (FFTF), which was released in September 2014.  The proposal, reconfirming the Independent Local Government Review Panel’s recommendations that Pittwater be merged with Manly and Warringah to form one council, was rejected. 

Front Page Issue 185

One ‘mega council’ Would Be A Disaster for Pittwater - Pittwater residents are satisfied with Council - NSW government's Fit for the Future package includes amendments that make it harder for councils to prove they are financially viable, write Professor Brian Dollery and Joseph Drew - Front Page Issue 189

Artspot 2015 Opened with Aplomb

Pittwater Council to Purchase Avalon Beach Bowling & Recreation Club’s Green 3 - Keeping our Community’s Future 'Fitting' + Front Page Issue 211

Pittwater Uprising Again by ‘Pittwater Scout’ + Front Page Issue 212

Community News Issue 212  - May 2015: Local Government Reform - Have your say

NSW Government's "Fit For The Future" process erodes democracy and local lifestyle by 'Pittwater Scout'

Public Meeting on Proposed Local Government Reforms Indicates Forthcoming Backlash Against NSW State Government - Community Votes 'No' Amalgamation Again

SHOROC Shenanigans - Amalgamation Ploy to Undermine 'Scale and Capacity'? + Community News Issue 216

New Data Proves Overwhelming Support for Pittwater to Stay As We Are + Fit for the Future timeline makes mockery of fair process from Pittwater Council and LGNSW

Save Our Councils Coalition Launched – State MP’s Join their the Ranks Against Forced Amalgamations from SOCC 

Front Page Issue 218 

Community News Archives - June 2015

Pittwater Declares Autonomy: FFTF IPART Required Documents Lodged

NO Amalgamation Chant Becomes Louder in Pittwater: Rally at Local MP's Office + Front Page Issue 234

Pittwater Residents attend NO Amalgamation Rally in Hunters Hill Front Page Issue 235

Front Page Issue 236: Pittwater Residents Maintain NO Amalgamation Stance at Rosehill...

Keeping Pittwater Independent Stance Persists:  Media Releases Monday 12th October to Friday 16th October, 2015 relating to FFTF Reforms by LGNSW, IPART, State and Pittwater Council

Front Page Issue 237:  NO FORCED AMALGAMATION RALLY at Winnererremy Bay Park Thursday 29 October 5pm 

FFTF Facilitators Found Faulty: 'No Amalgamation' Chant Continues: + Front Page Issue 238  

A Greater Pittwater Option Discussed at Public Meeting on Proposed Council Amalgamations: Some Attendees Suggest A Statewide Referendum  

Two Council Model Option Preferred to Mega Council Pittwater and Manly Mayors Announce: Mosman Stands Firm

Pittwater Prefers to Remain Pittwater: Greater Pittwater Option Forwarded as Second Preference: Cr. Hegarty's Address at Council Meeting of November 16, 2015

NSW Government Announces Amalgamation Proposal Plans: Reactions and What's Next in Process - 2016

Having Your Say on Local Government and Council Proposals: Written Submissions and Public Inquiry at Mona Vale Feb. 2nd, 2016  

Community News February 2016VOICES of PITTWATER - community leaders on amalgamation

Pittwater Residents Urged to Have Their Say on Proposed Council Changes - Passionate residents speak out at Public Inquiry Meetings

Pittwater's Future Down to A Numbers Game? Warringah Council's Bid to Have it ALL Revives New/Old One Council Proposal -Community News March 2016  

Pittwater Asked to Have Its Say On Council Amalgamations AGAIN 

Pittwater Residents Reject Mega Council Proposal at Public Inquiry Meetings - Written Submissions To Close on April 8th

Front Page Issue 257  Community Have Their Say on Proposed Amalgamation

Front Page Issue 258Community Have Their Say on Proposed Amalgamation

Front Page Issue 259: Community Voices on Amalgamation

Front Page Issue 260 - Pittwater Councillors Passed Motion to Commence Legal Proceedings Against Forced Amalgamation Overturned Due to 'No Substance' to Grounds Raised

Pittwater is STILL Pittwater: Residents - Sacked Councillors Discuss Options: Legal action and second Secession to begin discussed

Mona Vale Place Plan: Have You Say By November 13, 2016 - community dismayed at draft slating six storey buildings for Mona Vale

Mona Vale Place Plan Meeting Discloses Salient Points And Communitys' Objections

Administrator's Message: draft Mona Vale Place Plan

Community News Issue 291 - Administrators Minute November 22nd, 2016

Mona Vale Rally on Mona Vale Place Plan Reopens Recent Wounds - Pittwater Council's MVPP List echoes Greater Sydney Commissions List for Mona Vale

Renewed Calls To Return Pittwater Council To Pittwater By Pittwater People in Wake of Recent Retirement Announcements: Issue 298

Community News Issue 299 :  Council Amalgamations Windback: Community Feedback This Week: Issue 299

Calls To Restore Pittwater Council Persist: Issue 300

Community News Issue 304: Interview with Hon. Rob Stokes on Mona Vale Hospital

Save Mona Vale Park Protest against B-Line Destruction of The Village Green space reignites calls for Protection of Pittwater

Resident Birds Baffled By B-Line Sleight Of Hand: Where Did All Our Trees Go?

Forced Amalgamations Hit "Procedural Fairness" Snag That May Bring Every Imposed Merger Completely Undone

'Don't Be Developed Out Of Pittwater' Rally At Mona Vale's Memorial Hall: Motion to Fight to Restore Pittwater Council Passed Unanimously

Protect Pittwater Community Forum7 P.M. Tuesday May 16 At Pittwater RSL - What impact will the new government body - the Greater Sydney Planning Commission – have on Pittwater? How will development approvals be carried out? How can we recover our local Pittwater Council?

One Year On: Amalgamation STILL RejectedMay 2017 Issue 312 + Front Page Issue 312

Pittwater Community Forum Supports Legal Action To Restore Council - Protect Pittwater launched + Front Page Issue 313 

Crowd-funding Appeal for Legal Action to Protect Pittwater Launching on Tuesday - contact points fixed + Front Page Issue 314

Huge Response To Pittwater Crowd-Funding Campaign To Reinstate Pittwater and Demerge + Front Page Issue 315 

Protect Pittwater Campaign Grows and Prepares to Join Careel Bay Marina Winter Festival Next Weekend by Miranda Korzy + Front Page Issue 316  

Careel Bay Marina Winter Festival 2017: + Community News Issue 317

The Local Government Amendment (Amalgamation Referendums) Bill 2017 Passes Upper House: gives residents in councils that have been forcibly amalgamated the right to a binding vote on de-amalgamation - goes to Lower House first week of August + Front Page Issue 318 

Community Expresses Dissatisfaction With B-Line To Newport Proposal and Reduction of L90 Service - Newport SLSC carpark to meet Mona Vale shortfall and be used as bus terminus, 100 buses a day turning through Newport + changing from L90 to B-Line services will make a longer commute for current longest bus run in Sydney + Front Page Issue 318 

Protect Pittwater Community Backed Group Engages Lawyers For Action On Council Restoration

B-Line Terminating At Newport Won’t Work: Community Residents Groups Alternative - Residents Groups Meeting with Project Team notes there will be no community feedback sought prior to new timetable being published, no through city services covering the ‘Newport Loop’ during peak hours, Newport Surf Club carpark to be used as commuter carpark, proposed L90 cuts during peak hour 

Pittwater Calls For Pittwater To Be Restored: We're Not Backing Down - Not Going Away, after NSW Premier's Announcement amalgamations of councils fighting in court against forced mergers will not proceed + Front Page Issue 323