This report takes into consideration the scale and capacity, financial sustainability, effectiveness of infrastructure and service management, and council efficiency to garner whether local councils can continue to perform in the future.
After being labelled unfit to continue, North Sydney Mayor Jilly Gibson called upon the Mosman Mayor Peter Abelson to begin discussion into amalgamating.
The Mayor for Mosman has remained silent on the subject. Gibson said of the merger, “It’s essential. Mosman have just been told they are not fit for the future. It’s either talk to North Sydney or have some other merger forced on them.”
The State Government are considering other proposals as they look towards a Lower North Shore Council made up of Mosman, North Sydney, Lane Cove, Willoughby, Hunters Hill and Ryde.
Willoughby’s Councillor Giles Gidney said she was happy to consider proposals and open to dialogue with neighbouring councils.
Mayor Abelson is furious as he believes that his council is still fit, “the three criteria that really matter are financial sustainability, strategic capacity and service delivery. My understanding is we ticked all those boxes,” he said.
As such he believes any amalgamation talks are a waste of time.
It is important for homeowners to take note of these findings as IPART’s role is to review prices for water, gas, public transport and taxi services and how they can regulate and increase prices for these services.
NSW Premier, Mike Baird has set a deadline of November 18 for councils to come back to the government with voluntary merger proposals.
Mr Baird said, “For many councils this is the final opportunity to do the right thing for the future of their communities.”
Photo by Gord Webster