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Inner Western Courier Thursday Not Used Anymore : September 3 2008
MB INNER-WEST WEEKLY, Thursday, September 4, 2008 5 COUNCIL ELECTIONS www.innerwestweekly.com.au MP savages council FIONA BRADY How can Chris Hartcher bag me for following the law?' '-- Burwood Mayor JOHN FAKER Liberal candidate John Sidoti with MP Chris Hartcher in Burwood this week. Picture: PHIL BLATCH ~P0612872 OPPOSITION local government spokesman Chris Hartcher says he will seek an urgent inquiry into the administration of Burwood Council when State Parliament resumes later this month. The State Liberal MP labelled the Inner West council the ''worst in western Sydney'' and accused it of abandoning the people of Burwood to the ''tender mercy'' of Planning Minister Frank Sartor. In July last year Mr Sartor asked an independent panel to decide planning decisions on proj- ects worth $40 million or more in Burwood. ''Residents of Burwood might just as well have not had a council in recent years given that the existing council has been unable or unwilling to protect them against overdevelopment,'' Mr Hartcher said. Mayor John Faker said he would welcome any inquiry be- cause ''we have nothing to hide''. He said the planning panel con- sisted of two expert planners and an architect, and were responsible for formulating Burwood's local environment plan. ''They have experience in plan- ning policy and codes,'' he said. ''We councillors are not plan- ning experts. ''We wanted to make sure we got planning experts on board.'' The mayor said he was interested in protecting Burwood's residential areas. ''I wanted to ensure that any new rezoning occurring in next 20 to 30 years was formulated by professionals and that those devel- opments would be restricted to the town centre next to railway lines,'' he said. Mr Hartcher also criticised Cr Faker for absenting himself from a vote on planning decisions 17 times since 2004, because it affec- ted someone related to him. ''Burwood Council cannot run effectively when Labor council- lors continually defer council de- cisions because no quorum can be obtained because the Labor mayor and mates have to remove them- selves,'' Mr Hartcher said after a visit to Burwood to support Lib- eral candidate John Sidoti on Tuesday. However, Cr Faker said there had only been one time when the council could not obtain a quorum and he had followed ''legally cor- rect procedure'' when he absented himself from the chamber. ''How can Chris Hartcher bag me for following the law?'' he said. He said Mr Hartcher should focus on state issues. ''This is all about Chris Hartcher trying to help the Lib- eral candidate who is not a true local,'' he said. Mayor cops meter flak SHIREEN KHALIL THERE'S no stopping Burwood's Cr David Weiley when it comes at taking pot shots at Mayor John Faker. Cr Weiley alleges Cr Faker wasn't being frank when he pledged to get rid of parking meters in front of Burwood Plaza a year ago, saying his real plan was to get rid of parking spots. At the time, the mayor proposed to put half-hour limited parking rather than meters on Railway Pde. ''Residents have complained to me that Faker's photo (in Inner- West Weekly) of pushing over a parking meter was just another Labor party stunt and it makes an absolute mockery of his claim that we need to provide more shopper parking spots,'' Cr Weiley said. Cr Faker responded that the council was undertaking major works on Railway Pde to improve pedestrian safety, better access for buses, and also to enhance its look. ''In order to facilitate the ma- noeuvre of machinery, and most importantly to prevent any risk of accidents with cars parked on the side while works are carried out in the middle of the street, council had to place temporary no stop- ping signs,'' Cr Faker said. He said the situation would return to the half-hour parking limit once the work is completed. ''I believe the residents, the railway users, and the shoppers will be very satisfied with the result of this major renovation we are carrying out on Railway Pde,'' the mayor said. Permanence is built on 30+ years of industry leadership and success stories Visit us at www.permanence.com.au We invite you for a FREE 1/2 Hour consultation valued at $60. Call us today on: Embarrassed by ugly unwanted hair? Want a permanent hair solution that's not laser and guarantees to get rid of your unwanted hair forever? You are not alone! 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August 27 2008
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