8 more sleeps

September 2, 2016

Signe Westerberg Headshots FAV (26 of 102)WOW…the time is going so fast. Only a little over a week to go in this election campaign and I cannot tell you how delighted I am to be in such a  privileged position as to be able to speak with residents each and every day. I can tell you how proud I am of the amazing team we are putting forward in this election. Each and every one of them would be a wonderful addition to Liverpool Council and its a priviledge to work alongside them.

Wednesday night was the final council meeting for this term, a good deal of time was spent electioneering for the 7 councillors who are seeking your vote again, a few good byes and a whole lot of ….leave it to the next lot. So it’s official, not only have they left the next term of councillors a pretty crap budget, undetermined asbestos problems, staff morale at an all time low  but this week they decided to leave a number of items  to the next group. Seriously while I am always the first and often the only voice calling for due diligence, holy crap a donation to Macedonia and Italy in their time of need was not that big a call. Over the past 8 years some councillors shuffled enormous amounts of money for all and sundry and not all as deserving.

The big winner of the night was when in the departing Mayor admitted he’d not been able to work with everyone. Well that was an understatement but at least an acknowledgement I guess. Cllr Ristevski  didn’t waste an opportunity to put in a final dagger or two before he was  missed off the ‘I’ve enjoyed working with you’ list of the Mayor. The whole Propel issues lives on, with the independent report being handed on to ICAC, another of the deferred decisions for the next council. Importantly most of the candidates seeking your vote will have no clue about the issues that have been on and off the agenda for so long other than what they’ve heard in the press. Today we’ve made the news yet again and the comparison between this disaster of a council and the one who had us put into administration had best not be the comparison used in the future because some of us actually know and have seen the happenings of this bunch.

Alas those seeking your vote who have been on council should be scrutinised quite aggressively, what have they actually contributed to the council over their tenure as councillors. If elected to council I will work to ensure that all voting information will be made publically available. Calling oneself independent doesn’t  necessarily mean candidates aren’t aligned. While Greens are sometimes seen in agreement of ALP policy we are not bound in any way to following blindly, our whole remit is to assess each piece of information on its own merit, we vote according to what is in the best interests of the whole community and stand proudly by our reputation to do exactly that when a matter is not in the line with our core beliefs.  (I will print them below so you can see the tenets by which our decisions are made) Council should be about caring for the community, creating services to fill the needs of that community and reduce costs wherever possible.  During the meeting our #powermadmayor (for not long now)  took to highlighting some of the issues in the budget, minus a detail or two  and taking credit for changes that he and his cohorts actually  obstructed which meant many of those projects were actually delayed in the first term.

There will be issues that need to be addressed by the new council, firstly there will have to be very close scrutiny of some of the budget decisions, a very, very close look at the Propel agreement and investigation into same and a serious discussion about the number of jobs that have been outsourced to consultants. Planning issues are a big part of any council and we will need to see what can be done to ensure social and affordable housing options can be set up to ensure our city’s homeless numbers reduce,not grow. Especially important will be to ensure that the community is privy to the actions and decisions of council. Transparency has not been the strong suit of this particular term. Council can and should be the first point of call for citizens needing advice about planning, the go to place for questions and a source of information in relation to many social issues, even those they cannot be directly responsible for, many don’t realise the lobbying ability of council and this needs to be explored. The days need to come to an end where the local member is only heard from in parliament when he/she can bash the council for poor decisions. More soon….

Sign off





Ecological sustainability | Social equality and economic justice

| Grassroots democracy | Peace, nonviolence and disarmament

LASTLY. If you have some spare time anytime next week or on Saturday the 10th we are still looking for people to help us hand out at Pre-Poll and on Election day. We will provide a light lunch and a T-shirt just give me a call or email me at swesterberg@iinet.net.au.

Liverpool HTV 2016


No happy endings in Liverpool Council today

April 1, 2015

Signe Westerberg Headshots FAV (26 of 102)Today I attended the extraordinary council meeting, two items were on the agenda and to be fair only one of them will have any long term impact. (the other about meeting close times has been debated ad infinitum)

Before the meeting I stood outside the chambers with approximately 350 council staff as they rallied to fight the proposed changes to their working environment. Recounts of how they spoke with a Councillor/candidate prior to the election and how he promised to support them in their hour of need, stories of how the last meeting failed to be recorded so all the promises and commitments made  are sadly not on record for all to refer to if and when the proposed changes go sour (I really don’t believe that was intentional and I do feel for the council worker who inadvertently didn’t set the record button.) , stories as appeared in todays Champion suggesting not all is wine and roses in Ipswich and some Ipswich councillors were reconsidering their participation in the Propel initiative and withdrawing.

But even more I feel for the staff who have been monumentally let down by the Liberal majority of Liverpool Council. All they were asking for was time, time to investigate the proposed changes, time to understand the negatives and the positives and time to find out more. The Labor councillors put forward the rescission motion, an opportunity if you will to rethink the urgency, an opportunity to side with the staff to allow investigations to proceed before anyone signed on any dotted line. ALAS that was not to be so, even with the absence of Cllrs Balloot and Harle the Liberal majority still had the numbers to push through this unpopular agenda.

From some of the research I’ve been made aware of and what I’m told this is what CEO Mr Wulff does, I refer to a previous commenter and some of the links I’ve posted here and previously. While clearly we aren’t privvy to all the details there seems to be a significant thread that goes where he goes, and if it doesn’t he goes. Interesting since one of the chants I heard today specifically called for the CEO’s departure from Liverpool. While I’ve not so much as said boo to him, seems people around the country are keen to share information, the links below were emailed to me from a fan (NOT). I had a couple of others but was unable to open them but it does seem google is your friend if you are prepared to spend the time.  There also seems to be recurring theme but again this is for you to decide and for people to make up their own minds. All I know is that many of the people who work in our council, who care about our city and many of whom are residents need answers, they need time and they need to feel a sense of security, all of which seems to have been denied them today.

For those interested in keeping up to date, I’ll post what I can find out and there is also a FaceBook page for those in the community wanting to learn more and keep up to date. Simply open your facebook account and type in RepelPropel and a link to this community page will come up. There is also a petition to sign and seek signatures (below), you can email it back to repelpropel@gmail.com

This is about all I have for now, Of course if you have a different opinion or view to mine, have heard things differently or have more information to share, please send it through, I am happy to post other opinion/ideas/interpretations etc, if you prefer not to have your name posted, simply put that in your comment and I’ll make sure that information stays confidential.  Crikey even if Mr Wulff wants to comment I’m happy to post, although his decision to declare a non pecuniary interest and not speak in council may prohibit him sharing information. Either way let’s keep the information coming, an informed community is the best kind and if there was less done ‘in confidence’  I’m sure we’d be better able to sort out detail from conjecture.

Lastly please don’t underestimate the impacts this decision will not only have on our staff but staff from other councils who are equally concerned, this kind of precedent could impact lots and lots of people.  In hindsight, one would hope Liverpool Liberals might consider the time that was requested was a small price to pay.


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