Family First member of State Parliament Robert Brokenshire is conducting a very worthy campaign to remove any semblance of party politics that may exist at the Local Government Level. His draft bill however will actually bring party politics into Local Government by default.
I agree with Robert. There is no place for political parties as I see it in Local Government. Local Government is all about the community. Those best qualified to represent the community are those who are part of the community. Those with a heart for the community.
We would all agree that members of Political Parties must first serve the interests of their party if they are to survive. Pre-selection to run for an electorate is all about finding candidates who will serve the party first and not the public. A person may get into politics with the community in mind but they have to satisfy the “party”first. Mr Brokenshire would know that only too well having served as a Minister in a Liberal Government.
He is to be commended for showing leadership to clean up the anomalies that exist know in local government elections that allow someone to enter local government without declaring affiliation with a political party. There is no consistency in what current members can advertise and those who are running for office for the first time. Unless and until elected candidates running for the first time do not have to declare political allegiances.
Clean up the Act. Thank you to push to correct this Robert.
But please Mr Brokenshire do not include item 6 -amendment of section 29, which is to legislate that party political membership/allegiance is shown on the ballot party. I ask you to consider how many people vote for someone because of their membership.
This will surely actually bring about the very thing you are trying to prevent; the politicising of local government. Show many people party political identification and they will vote party political.
We will then find party political affiliation within the membership of a local government. And all of a sudden we have voting in Council along party lines.
That will be, if it happens, the death of Local Government as we know it.
Of course we cannot stop this from happening but we don’t want to be responsible for providing the platform to make it easier to happen do we Robert. Please remove item 6 from your bill.
I see our Mayor is on the same page as me. Checkout his blog post here.