Council Mergers: “We Won’t Abandon the Fight”
Mike Baird and John Barilaro's Government have done everything they can to quash opposition to their forced Council mergers.
Shooters Fishers and Farmers Party (SFF) Member for Orange Philip Donato reaffirmed his position today against the forced Council amalgamation of Orange City Council, Cabonne Shire and Blayney Shire.
This follows yesterday’s Supreme Court of Appeal decision against Woollahra Council’s challenge to the forced merger with Randwick Council and Waverley Council.
“Mike Baird and John Barilaro have been doing everything they can to quash any dissent from Councils across New South Wales,” Mr Donato said.
“The National Party have been just as complicit in the entire process as the Liberal Party. They have had the chance to stop this but have just done whatever the Liberal Party wanted them to do.”
“Local Councils are the first port of call for people in country areas to get something done in their local area. It’s a long way to Macquarie Street, so people start off by contacting their Council.
“We cannot deny people access to representation, and I’m concerned that jobs and services will be cut if this merger proceeds. We won’t abandon the fight.”
The SFF will be introducing legislation in the New Year to invalidate the forced Council merger process and introduce a binding plebiscite process for residents to oppose any proposed merger.
“The National Party will have to show their true colours when our plan reaches the floor of Parliament,” Mr Borsak said.
“It will be up to every single Member of Parliament in the Lower House to ask themselves: ‘Will I just blindly follow Mike Baird’s unfair plan, or will I listen to my community and give them a chance to have their say?’”
SFF MLC Robert Brown said that the Government has not learned anything from the by-election and the Greyhound racing ban.
“The greyhound debacle was a mess, and the forced Council amalgamations are a mess,” Mr Brown said.
“The Government has to do something. They can’t just sit on their hands and do nothing.
“We know we will get the support of other political parties who aren’t in Government – so it’s up to the Nationals and Liberals to show their true colours.”