Ministerial Statements 15 November 2001)
The residents of Gosnells can be confident that their
council is visionary and is building a solid reputation for achievement
and innovation, Local Government and Regional Development Minister Tom
Stephens said today.
Speaking after a meeting today with councillors,
senior council staff and local member of
Parliament Paul Andrews, Mr Stephens said the council
had an impressive record in servicing the needs of its community and had
demonstrated it was serious about providing a sustainable and vital
The Minister welcomed the professionalism of the
council and held it up as a role model for other local governments to
adopt and learn from.
He also congratulated the council on winning six
awards in the recent WA Municipal Association 2001 Best Practice Awards
which included customer service, budget and community information,
community programs, revitalisation of the town centre and innovative
programs such as the SafeCity program.
"I was very impressed with the SafeCity
initiative which the council implemented in August 1998 to reduce the
level of crime in the city of Gosnells," Mr Stephens said.
"Based on the successful Safer Cities Program in
the UK, which focuses on preventative measures and community
involvement, the town is now seeing results for its efforts and the
program is certainly one which could be adopted by other local
"The revitalisation of the town centre is
evidence of effective working partnerships between business, Government
and the community. The City of Gosnells will rejuvenate the civic and
cultural heart of the city through its efforts in design and
The Minister took the opportunity to discuss the
possibility of working exchanges with council employees and the
Department of Local Government and Regional Development to provide
valuable interaction and the sharing of knowledge, skills and expertise.
"We have so much shared intellectual capacity in
the local government field and we need to capitalise on this to bolster
the effectiveness of all levels of government," he said.
"Partnerships with city and country councils can
also provide valuable sharing of knowledge and expertise and I encourage
more councils to take advantage of learning from each other so that
individual councils don't have to keep re-inventing the wheel."
In addition, the Minister suggested that due to the
increasing professionalism of councils such as Gosnells, he expected
there to be less need for his intervention as Minister through council
"By lifting the game on a local government
level, I anticipate that my supervisory and disciplinary role will be
diminished and that has to be a positive step forward," Mr Stephens
He said that through the efforts of such a
progressive council, Gosnells was a great place to live.
Media contact: Julie Cole 9213 6500