Strathfield to talk to neighbouring councils about amalgamation in about-face bowing to the inevitable

Strathfield council has begun preparing for what appears to be the inevitable, opening talks with neighbouring Burwood and Canada Bay over mergers.

The council has decided to continue a policy of hedging its bets.

It is opening talks for the first time with Canada Bay and Burwood over the transition - while paying a PR company and anti-amalgamation groups to continue the campaign against mergers.

A motion at the March council meeting said: “Given the strong indications from the NSW Premier and Minister for Local Government that mergers in the Sydney Metropolitan area are likely to proceed and a new entity may be proclaimed in mid-2016, that Council undertake preliminary dialogue with the City of Canada Bay and Burwood Council to discuss transition to a new entity.” 

It went on:

“The knowledge that the City of Canada Bay and Burwood Council have already commenced to work collaboratively to prepare for a new entity, Strathfield Council discuss transitional arrangements to ensure that the residents and ratepayers are not disadvantaged in any forced amalgamation.

“That Council write to the Premier and Minister for Local Government requesting that any transitional council Strathfield, at a minimum, be equally represented with the City of Canada Bay and Burwood Council.”

The motion also clears“the expenditure of up to $10,000 for the next three months for amalgamation awareness on the following: Save our Councils Coalition, Save our Strathfield and Mountain media”.

Save our Councils Coalition will be holding a public rally on March 13 in Hyde Park. Save Our Strathfield organisers are urging residents to turn out in force to oppose council mergers.

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