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Greens strongly opposed to forced amalgamations

Media Release
Lee Rhiannon 16 May 2016

The Greens are strongly opposed forced council amalgamations and have worked closely with the many communities across NSW fighting these amalgamations, said Greens candidate for Parkes Matt Parmeter. 

The Greens are also committed to working towards Constitutional Recognition of Local Government at a federal level and to enshrine in legislation the requirement that any proposed amalgamation to be decided by a referendum.

David Shoebridge Greens MLC and NSW Local Government spokesperson said "The fact is, when residents get the chance to vote on forced amalgamations they come out and slam the proposals. They want to keep their local councils local.

'Surely even the arrogant and out of touch Baird government now knows that it's forced amalgamation agenda is about as popular with voters as a dead cat.

Senator Lee Rhiannon Greens Local Government spokesperson said “With the merging of these forty-two councils we will see hundreds of jobs and public services lost.

'This is a classic display of developer driven politics and contempt for local communities from the Baird government, who have ushered in administrators to replace elected officials.

‘The entire process of forced amalgamations has run roughshod over local democracy - the unreleased KPMG report, which the NSW government has relied upon to support its case for amalgamations, is case in point.

Matt Parmeter Greens Candidate for Parkes said 'Wellington and Dubbo are different communities. 

'Both Councils have stated that they are strongly opposed to the merger.

'Western Plains Regional Council will not be able to give as much individual local representation as Wellington Council could to its residents, or as Dubbo could to its.

'There will be some loss of local community identity, as well as less local representation.

'The Greens are strongly against forced amalgamations. We support grassroots democracy. And local government is the part of government closest and most responsive to its communities.'

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