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Hurstville City Council strongly to oppose any proposal for forced amalgamations

Posted 13 May 2015 by (Hurstville News)

Mayor of Hurstville, Cr Con Hindi today announced Hurstville City Council following recent community consultation results will strongly oppose any proposal for forced amalgamations.

Mayor Hindi said this decision is a result of extensive community consultation that occurred in March 2015 which included the distribution of an information brochure and survey to every residence and business in the Hurstville local government area via Australia Post.

“We have listened to our community and the results indicate the consensus is for Council to remain independent,” he said.

“In total, Council received 5,073 responses, (both hard copy and on-line), with more than 63 per cent of respondents strongly indicating Council should stand alone and not merge with any other Council.

“Amalgamation is not a one-size-fits-all solution and the proposal put forward by the Local Government Review Panel does not fit Hurstville in any shape or form.

“I am pleased that residents ceased the opportunity to have their say and Council will work diligently to support their position on the issue which says no to any form of amalgamation.

“Council will stand united with the community to remain independent for the long-term as we have such a diverse city and it is imperative this remains unchanged.”

Mayor Hindi said Council is in a sound position financially, has a balanced budget and consistently provides outstanding services and facilities to our community.

“I am pleased that in the 2015/16 financial year, our Council will meet all the ‘Fit for the Future’ criteria except for scale and capacity,” he said.

“In 2013, the Independent Local Government Review Panel recommended that to meet the scale and criteria, any amalgamated council should have a population of more than 250,000 by 2016.

“If Hurstville amalgamates with Canterbury City Council, Kogarah City Council and Rockdale City Council, the estimated population will be more than 405,000 people by this date.

“It should be noted that the Independent Local Government Review Panel also recommended that a number of councils with less than half this population remain unchanged.”

Mayor Hindi said Council is now developing its ‘Fit for the Future’ submission and this will strongly oppose any forced amalgamation so that Hurstville City can remain independent and not be absorbed into a larger council area.

“As part of the ‘Fit for the Future’ requirements, Council must prepare a submission by 30 June 2015 to outline how it will become sustainable, provide effective and efficient services and have the scale and capacity to meet the needs of communities and partner with the NSW Government,” he said.

“The draft ‘Fit for the Future’ submission will return to Council for discussion at its meeting scheduled for Wednesday, 3 June 2015.”

For more information on Fit for the Future, visit www.fitforthefuture.nsw.gov.au or contact Council on 9330 6222.
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