The Greens have written to Premier Berejiklian to provide an open offer and our unconditional support for a legislative package that would fix Baird’s failed forced amalgamations:
1. The immediate withdrawal of all outstanding forced amalgamations proposals,
2. The immediate de-amalgamation of all local councils forcibly merged in 2016:
3. A legislative requirement that any future amalgamations proposals are subject to a binding plebiscite.
This isn’t designed to benefit the Greens or any opposition party, it’s intended to fix the mess the Coalition has made of local government and restore faith with communities.
A quick and complete parliamentary solution will even go some way to getting the government out of the hole it has dug for itself on forced mergers.
We give our commitment to support this package unconditionally, with no backroom deals or secret arrangements. It stands or falls on its merits.
The Greens aren’t afraid of plebiscites, and we are committed to giving residents the final say on the shape and future of their local councils, but the process that has occurred to date has been fatally flawed.
“here is no democratic mandate for forced council mergers and each one that has happened to date is quite simply illegitimate. They need to be undone as a matter of priority.
If any future government seriously thinks local residents want to be a part of a super-sized council, then they first need to face those residents at the ballot box through a plebiscite.