FREMANTLE city ward candidate Claudia Green says the council needs to think more about the needs of seniors.
Ms Green says while the council has been right to spend money on attracting young people, the biggest demographic in the port city was older people and she wants to make sure they have a voice in the chamber.
“When you have a lot of people who are paying the bills, you have to throw them a bone every now and then,” she says.
Ms Green is critical of what she says is the current council’s fatwa on cars, as she believes that could discriminate against an ageing population, many of who won’t be able to ride or walk into town.
She’s running hard on a platform of accountability and consultation, having been president of the Fremantle Residents and Ratepayers Association which has been peppering the council with questions about the financial viability of its Kings Square redevelopment.
Ms Green still doesn’t believe the figures stack up, saying she’s opposed to the council’s sale of investment properties to balance the books and is expecting rate hikes in the future to pay off rising debt. She says the council also showed it was poor at listening to ratepayers over the proposed Sunset Events tavern at Arthur Head.
“Seventy six of the 78 submissions said no, but they ignored those and instead took notice of Facebook likes.
“Councillors didn’t even read the submissions.”
She says the result has been a “disgraceful” mess that’s trashing the idea of an arts precinct.
Having worked at the state Treasury department after a mid-career switch (she was formerly a teacher and went on to study industrial relations), she says she’s also got the experience to help the council get into the ear of its bean counters.
Ms Green brushed off criticism from Fremantle Society president John Dowson that she’d been “disruptive” by resigning from its committee, saying he’d tried to link it to the Beaconsfield by-election when she’d actually left months earlier to concentrate on building up FRRA.
“I was the only one from the Fremantle Society who was active in that by-election, John was overseas.”
She says his email to members criticising her had come as a great surprise given he’d been talking her up when the society and FRRA merged – months after her resignation.