Mayor Gary Brennan has labelled a Bunbury resident’s push for a special electors meeting as a “stunt” in the lead up to October’s council election.
Bunbury City Council candidate Marina Quain has successfully petitioned for the meeting regarding plans for a multimillion-dollar civic and cultural precinct.
Ms Quain says she is alarmed about the details surrounding a “$40 million cultural precinct” and believes many in the community have no idea about the project.
“I have requested a special meeting of electors to give the community the opportunity to discuss the project and to raise a motion for council to undertake public consultation for the purpose of demonstrating the $40 million Cultural Precinct is a viable project and well supported by the City of Bunbury ratepayers and residents,” Ms Quain said.
But Mr Brennan said the council did not have any such project worth $40 million and it was “very disappointing” Ms Quain was costing ratepayers money by calling the “unnecessary” meeting.
“I can only describe it as a stunt by one of the candidates in the upcoming local government elections in Bunbury,” he said.
“I believe the electors of Bunbury will see through that for what it is — a waste of resources, a waste of time and a very ordinary attempt to garner support at the upcoming elections.
“It’s very disappointing because I know the CEO (Mal Osborne) has spoken to her to explain that the city does not have a project worth $40 million.”
The council hosted a CBD planning forum in July last year when about 160 community and business members took up the opportunity to provided input on the proposed precinct along with parking in the city.
Concept designs were also revealed and a likely price tag of $40 million — subject to State and Federal funding — was floated, but a business case is yet to be prepared.
Ms Quain said the cost of the electors meeting was “inconsequential” in comparison to the money “set aside and already spent” on the precinct and she “absolutely” believed the meeting was good use of ratepayers’ money because they “deserve to know what might be coming their way”.