Letters 1.2.20

Rates black hole?
CONGRATULATIONS must go to Fremantle council on its handling of the Kings Square redevelopment .
Many Fremantle ratepayers doubted the feasibility of this multi-million dollar undertaking, but the council led by mayor Brad Pettitt, assured us over and over again that this was the greatest thing to happen to Fremantle .
The council were getting a brand new office building, new exciting excellent facilities were to be provided and there would be minimum cost to ratepayers.
Now we find that the only prospective tenant for the 828sqm hospitality space doesn’t have to pay full rent until the fifth year of the lease, plus the city has to pay $500,000 towards the building’s fit-out .
With my basic understanding of business, the council is foregoing nearly $1 million in leasing income, plus paying $500,000 towards fit-out; a total bill to the ratepayers of nearly $1.5 million, and fingers crossed, the business will survive until the fifth year, when the leasing payments start.
No to mention all of the outgoings.
I have written before highlighting the profligacy of this council and no one listened.
Perhaps the ratepayers will ask some questions when their next rate notice appears to be a little higher .
Councillors, it’s ‘Rates, Roads and Rubbish’.
Property speculation is never going to be successful when attempted by a bunch of unqualified, inexperienced people, who are gambling our rates with no responsibility .
Anthony Brown
Fremantle

First date
SO, our damaged planet has done another revolution around our sun, and we were recently back at January 26, and more discussion of the suitability of this date to celebrate being Australian.
My own feelings are equivocal, but there is a growing feeling among younger Australians that it should be shifted.
This begs the question: in what way should it be shifted?
Could I offer a proposal. On January 1, 1901, Australia became a nation.
We did this by a democratic process; adopting a constitution by means of a referendum.
I believe we should celebrate this event by combining Australia Day with New Years Day and have a really big celebration.
Additionally, later in the year, we should have a Heritage Day, where we all celebrate and give thanks to our ancestors.
This day would focus on our Aboriginal ancestry, and also include recognition and celebration of all our ethnic backgrounds.
I am certainly grateful that my Cornish forebears migrated to Australia 180 years ago.
To endorse this proposal, we could hold a plebiscite, perhaps in conjunction with the next federal election.
Gordon Payne
Jenkin Street, South Fremantle

Sheepish response
OF all the animals who have suffered and continue to suffer in recent bushfires, sheep are perhaps the most ignored.
Staggering numbers were killed – around 100,000 on Kangaroo Island alone.
Survivors are often badly burnt. The worst get a bullet in the head.
Those who can walk, even if badly burnt and in great pain, may be sent for what the industry calls “salvage slaughter” – trucked on an agonising journey to an abattoir.
Bushfires occur regularly in Australia, and are becoming more severe.
It’s time to say no to the wool industry.
No bushfire relief should be allowed for restocking animals who may well be victims of the next fires.
And if you see a wool label in a shop, please don’t buy it.
Mimi Bekhechi,
Campaigns Strategist
PETA (Australia)

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