So more parking revelations Melbourne City Council places bounty on parking fines

The Herald Sun today reports that the City of Melbourne has set in place a bounty and quota on its parking officers. This raises ongoing concern that the City of Melbourne is using parking infringements for revenue raising and not as a penalty for non-compliance.

The City of Melbourne has increased parking fines within the city of Melbourne by 46% over the last 12 months resulting in consumers abandoning the City centre and retail trade begins to suffer and Council revenues begin to drop.

The City of Melbourne under the direction of John So is creating a gated community where visitors to Melbourne City centre can expect a hefty bill at the end of the day. With poor public transport and better alternatives elsewhere most consumers are already beginning to give the City the miss.

Traffic fines should not be used as a means of revenue raising or a means of social control.

Whilst the City Council continues to push its ‘War on Cars’ the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor continue to benefit from free Council funded Limousines and free inner City Parking.

The long-term parking tax recently imposed on Melbourne’s Car Parking establishments has been used to fund “Tourist Buses” that are in direct competition to local businesses and also compete with Melbourne Free Tourist Trams. This tax was supposed to help Melbourne elevate traffic problems and provide improvement to inner city public transport. the Tourist bus proposal will cost over 1 Million dollars into its first year and it is expected the costs will blow out even further.

The Council should have been investing in alternative cross-city mini bus services linking East Melbourne – Carlton – Parkville and North Melbourne Communities.

The article in the Herald sun is just another example as to how John So and his team are out of touch and a fraid to say no to the administration who’s schemes fail to address the real needs of Melbourne.

Unfortunately we have a City Council that is not prepared to take on the administration and John So and out forward real workable alternatives. They are more interested in the perks and lurks of public office and travel overseas.

Green Councillor Fraser Brindley has provided no challenge to John So’s policies as he flys off to Africa for a con-fest on the environment in fulfillment of his duties as an executive member of ICLIE, an international environment con-fest organization, funded by the City of Melbourne. The question that still has not been answered is Why is the City of Melbourne picking up the executive costs of a third party organisation? How does this directly relate to Councillors role as an elected Melbourne City Councillor or is it just a way of buying favour and complaints from Cr Brindley? Wine and dine them and they will keep quite.

And the result is Melbourne faces serious issues and the Council is absent from the debate as the administration continue their unfetted spending spree at the cost of ratepayers.

Parking spot of bother
Jen Kelly and Keith Moor
06apr06

MELBOURNE City Council reaped almost $50 million in a parking fees and fines bonanza last year — then jacked up hourly meter fees yet again.

Meter fees jumped from $3 to $3.50 an hour in January, hot on the heels of an increase from $2.40 last July — a 46 per cent rise in six months.
The council’s yearly haul from parking fees has soared 37 per cent in five years, hitting $20.1 million last financial year.

It reaped another $26.6 million from parking fines in 2004-05.

Lord Mayor John So and chief executive David Pitchford ducked for cover yesterday, refusing to speak to the Herald Sun to answer questions about the council’s huge parking fines bungle and their knowledge of strict quotas imposed on parking officers.

A State Ombudsman’s report reveals Melbourne’s 120 parking officers were threatened with the sack if they did not hand out at least 30 fines a day.

It has also emerged the Docklands Authority offered two council employees $1 a year to try to get around the parking ticket blunder.

The council was given legal advice that thousands of parking fines issued in the Docklands area were not enforceable.

On receiving legal advice only Docklands Authority employees could enforce parking tickets, the authority tried to appoint two council employees for $1 a year. Both refused.

Deputy Ombudsman John Taylor said the council was sub-contracted to handle parking enforcement for 28 other organisations.

Corrs Chambers Westgarth law partner Richard Leder said every person who paid a parking fine in the Docklands area between 2002 and 2005 — plus all those issued in the other 28 areas if the same mistake was made — would have good grounds to claim their money back.

“And that is irrespective of whether or not they were illegally parked,” he said.

“The Ombudsman has found those issuing the tickets were not authorised to do so, or were not legally in a position to enforce them, and therefore there was no necessity for anybody to pay the fines.”

Cr So said in a statement anyone who received an improperly issued fine should receive a letter from the council and would get a refund.

The only person the council would allow to speak on its behalf yesterday was Cr Brian Shanahan, the finance committee chairman.

He said there would be a culture change in the parking branch, with less focus on revenue raising, but could not answer whether officers would be told they no longer needed to book 30 cars a day.

Drivers seeking off-street parking have been hit just as hard as those parking on the street.

A controversial State Government $400-a-year parking tax on long-term spaces began on January 1 and will double next year.

KPMG chairman of partners in Victoria Michael Andrew said the company had been hit hard by the $400 annual levy on each of its 250 car spaces — costing $100,000 a year.

Mr Andrew said the tax was designed to ease congestion, but was having the opposite effect.

“The parking levy is making on-street parking cheaper than off-street parking, so it seems to be counterproductive,” Mr Andrew said.

“It’s just a blatant revenue grab and there’s no justification.”

The parking fee jump and soaring petrol prices are blamed by council officers for an expected $4 million hole in the budget this financial year.

It is bracing for a $3 million shortfall in meter fees and a $1 million shortfall for fines as people ditch their cars in favour of public transport.

So more parking revelations Melbourne City Council places bounty on parking fines

The Herald Sun today reports that the City of Melbourne has set in place a bounty and quota on its parking officers. This raises ongoing concern that the City of Melbourne is using parking infringements for revenue raising and not as a penalty for non-compliance.

The City of Melbourne has increased parking fines within the city of Melbourne by 46% over the last 12 months resulting in consumers abandoning the City centre and retail trade begins to suffer and Council revenues begin to drop.

The City of Melbourne under the direction of John So is creating a gated community where visitors to Melbourne City centre can expect a hefty bill at the end of the day. With poor public transport and better alternatives elsewhere most consumers are already beginning to give the City the miss.

Traffic fines should not be used as a means of revenue raising or a means of social control.

Whilst the City Council continues to push its ‘War on Cars’ the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor continue to benefit from free Council funded Limousines and free inner City Parking.

The long-term parking tax recently imposed on Melbourne’s Car Parking establishments has been used to fund “Tourist Buses” that are in direct competition to local businesses and also compete with Melbourne Free Tourist Trams. This tax was supposed to help Melbourne elevate traffic problems and provide improvement to inner city public transport. the Tourist bus proposal will cost over 1 Million dollars into its first year and it is expected the costs will blow out even further.

The Council should have been investing in alternative cross-city mini bus services linking East Melbourne – Carlton – Parkville and North Melbourne Communities.

The article in the Herald sun is just another example as to how John So and his team are out of touch and a fraid to say no to the administration who’s schemes fail to address the real needs of Melbourne.

Unfortunately we have a City Council that is not prepared to take on the administration and John So and out forward real workable alternatives. They are more interested in the perks and lurks of public office and travel overseas.

Green Councillor Fraser Brindley has provided no challenge to John So’s policies as he flys off to Africa for a con-fest on the environment in fulfillment of his duties as an executive member of ICLIE, an international environment con-fest organization, funded by the City of Melbourne. The question that still has not been answered is Why is the City of Melbourne picking up the executive costs of a third party organisation? How does this directly relate to Councillors role as an elected Melbourne City Councillor or is it just a way of buying favour and complaints from Cr Brindley? Wine and dine them and they will keep quite.

And the result is Melbourne faces serious issues and the Council is absent from the debate as the administration continue their unfetted spending spree at the cost of ratepayers.

Parking spot of bother
Jen Kelly and Keith Moor
06apr06

MELBOURNE City Council reaped almost $50 million in a parking fees and fines bonanza last year — then jacked up hourly meter fees yet again.

Meter fees jumped from $3 to $3.50 an hour in January, hot on the heels of an increase from $2.40 last July — a 46 per cent rise in six months.
The council’s yearly haul from parking fees has soared 37 per cent in five years, hitting $20.1 million last financial year.

It reaped another $26.6 million from parking fines in 2004-05.

Lord Mayor John So and chief executive David Pitchford ducked for cover yesterday, refusing to speak to the Herald Sun to answer questions about the council’s huge parking fines bungle and their knowledge of strict quotas imposed on parking officers.

A State Ombudsman’s report reveals Melbourne’s 120 parking officers were threatened with the sack if they did not hand out at least 30 fines a day.

It has also emerged the Docklands Authority offered two council employees $1 a year to try to get around the parking ticket blunder.

The council was given legal advice that thousands of parking fines issued in the Docklands area were not enforceable.

On receiving legal advice only Docklands Authority employees could enforce parking tickets, the authority tried to appoint two council employees for $1 a year. Both refused.

Deputy Ombudsman John Taylor said the council was sub-contracted to handle parking enforcement for 28 other organisations.

Corrs Chambers Westgarth law partner Richard Leder said every person who paid a parking fine in the Docklands area between 2002 and 2005 — plus all those issued in the other 28 areas if the same mistake was made — would have good grounds to claim their money back.

“And that is irrespective of whether or not they were illegally parked,” he said.

“The Ombudsman has found those issuing the tickets were not authorised to do so, or were not legally in a position to enforce them, and therefore there was no necessity for anybody to pay the fines.”

Cr So said in a statement anyone who received an improperly issued fine should receive a letter from the council and would get a refund.

The only person the council would allow to speak on its behalf yesterday was Cr Brian Shanahan, the finance committee chairman.

He said there would be a culture change in the parking branch, with less focus on revenue raising, but could not answer whether officers would be told they no longer needed to book 30 cars a day.

Drivers seeking off-street parking have been hit just as hard as those parking on the street.

A controversial State Government $400-a-year parking tax on long-term spaces began on January 1 and will double next year.

KPMG chairman of partners in Victoria Michael Andrew said the company had been hit hard by the $400 annual levy on each of its 250 car spaces — costing $100,000 a year.

Mr Andrew said the tax was designed to ease congestion, but was having the opposite effect.

“The parking levy is making on-street parking cheaper than off-street parking, so it seems to be counterproductive,” Mr Andrew said.

“It’s just a blatant revenue grab and there’s no justification.”

The parking fee jump and soaring petrol prices are blamed by council officers for an expected $4 million hole in the budget this financial year.

It is bracing for a $3 million shortfall in meter fees and a $1 million shortfall for fines as people ditch their cars in favour of public transport.

So more parking revelations Melbourne City Council places bounty on parking fines

The Herald Sun today reports that the City of Melbourne has set in place a bounty and quota on its parking officers. This raises ongoing concern that the City of Melbourne is using parking infringements for revenue raising and not as a penalty for non-compliance.

The City of Melbourne has increased parking fines within the city of Melbourne by 46% over the last 12 months resulting in consumers abandoning the City centre and retail trade begins to suffer and Council revenues begin to drop.

The City of Melbourne under the direction of John So is creating a gated community where visitors to Melbourne City centre can expect a hefty bill at the end of the day. With poor public transport and better alternatives elsewhere most consumers are already beginning to give the City the miss.

Traffic fines should not be used as a means of revenue raising or a means of social control.

Whilst the City Council continues to push its ‘War on Cars’ the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor continue to benefit from free Council funded Limousines and free inner City Parking.

The long-term parking tax recently imposed on Melbourne’s Car Parking establishments has been used to fund “Tourist Buses” that are in direct competition to local businesses and also compete with Melbourne Free Tourist Trams. This tax was supposed to help Melbourne elevate traffic problems and provide improvement to inner city public transport. the Tourist bus proposal will cost over 1 Million dollars into its first year and it is expected the costs will blow out even further.

The Council should have been investing in alternative cross-city mini bus services linking East Melbourne – Carlton – Parkville and North Melbourne Communities.

The article in the Herald sun is just another example as to how John So and his team are out of touch and a fraid to say no to the administration who’s schemes fail to address the real needs of Melbourne.

Unfortunately we have a City Council that is not prepared to take on the administration and John So and out forward real workable alternatives. They are more interested in the perks and lurks of public office and travel overseas.

Green Councillor Fraser Brindley has provided no challenge to John So’s policies as he flys off to Africa for a con-fest on the environment in fulfillment of his duties as an executive member of ICLIE, an international environment con-fest organization, funded by the City of Melbourne. The question that still has not been answered is Why is the City of Melbourne picking up the executive costs of a third party organisation? How does this directly relate to Councillors role as an elected Melbourne City Councillor or is it just a way of buying favour and complaints from Cr Brindley? Wine and dine them and they will keep quite.

And the result is Melbourne faces serious issues and the Council is absent from the debate as the administration continue their unfetted spending spree at the cost of ratepayers.

Parking spot of bother
Jen Kelly and Keith Moor
06apr06

MELBOURNE City Council reaped almost $50 million in a parking fees and fines bonanza last year — then jacked up hourly meter fees yet again.

Meter fees jumped from $3 to $3.50 an hour in January, hot on the heels of an increase from $2.40 last July — a 46 per cent rise in six months.
The council’s yearly haul from parking fees has soared 37 per cent in five years, hitting $20.1 million last financial year.

It reaped another $26.6 million from parking fines in 2004-05.

Lord Mayor John So and chief executive David Pitchford ducked for cover yesterday, refusing to speak to the Herald Sun to answer questions about the council’s huge parking fines bungle and their knowledge of strict quotas imposed on parking officers.

A State Ombudsman’s report reveals Melbourne’s 120 parking officers were threatened with the sack if they did not hand out at least 30 fines a day.

It has also emerged the Docklands Authority offered two council employees $1 a year to try to get around the parking ticket blunder.

The council was given legal advice that thousands of parking fines issued in the Docklands area were not enforceable.

On receiving legal advice only Docklands Authority employees could enforce parking tickets, the authority tried to appoint two council employees for $1 a year. Both refused.

Deputy Ombudsman John Taylor said the council was sub-contracted to handle parking enforcement for 28 other organisations.

Corrs Chambers Westgarth law partner Richard Leder said every person who paid a parking fine in the Docklands area between 2002 and 2005 — plus all those issued in the other 28 areas if the same mistake was made — would have good grounds to claim their money back.

“And that is irrespective of whether or not they were illegally parked,” he said.

“The Ombudsman has found those issuing the tickets were not authorised to do so, or were not legally in a position to enforce them, and therefore there was no necessity for anybody to pay the fines.”

Cr So said in a statement anyone who received an improperly issued fine should receive a letter from the council and would get a refund.

The only person the council would allow to speak on its behalf yesterday was Cr Brian Shanahan, the finance committee chairman.

He said there would be a culture change in the parking branch, with less focus on revenue raising, but could not answer whether officers would be told they no longer needed to book 30 cars a day.

Drivers seeking off-street parking have been hit just as hard as those parking on the street.

A controversial State Government $400-a-year parking tax on long-term spaces began on January 1 and will double next year.

KPMG chairman of partners in Victoria Michael Andrew said the company had been hit hard by the $400 annual levy on each of its 250 car spaces — costing $100,000 a year.

Mr Andrew said the tax was designed to ease congestion, but was having the opposite effect.

“The parking levy is making on-street parking cheaper than off-street parking, so it seems to be counterproductive,” Mr Andrew said.

“It’s just a blatant revenue grab and there’s no justification.”

The parking fee jump and soaring petrol prices are blamed by council officers for an expected $4 million hole in the budget this financial year.

It is bracing for a $3 million shortfall in meter fees and a $1 million shortfall for fines as people ditch their cars in favour of public transport.

City under siege John So loses support as State Government considers its position and begins to distance itself from the City Council

Melbourne City Council continues to come under attack as Melbourne’s business community begin to loose confidence in the Lord Mayor and the administration of the City Council. John So extraordinary long honeymoon has come to an end as he faces the reality of running a city.

Herald-Sun 9Feb2006

More and more City business leaders are beginning to question the Lord Mayor’s policy and directions. John So’s hypocritical and ill considered ‘war on cars‘ is seriously undermining public confidence in his ability to manage Melbourne’s future development amidst concern that the City Council unjust tax on inner-city car-parks and increases in the cost of on-street car-parking is beginning to bite as city consumers begin to give the city the miss.

How long can they keep milking the cash cow before it stops giving milk

The selective taxation on Melbourne businesses and city commuters and associated increased cost to the consumers seriously undermine the viability of Melbourne’s retail sector with suburban shopping complexes being the main beneficiary.

The Herald-Sun reports that business are already planning to shut up and move shop to another location.

John So is quick to reclaim the title of Lord Clown as the City Council is fast becoming beyond a joke.

Lord Clown and his Deputy hold on to their cars as the Council refuse to disclose cost to ratepayers – Claims of hypocrisy as the Lord Mayor advocates other to abandon their cars.

Whilst John So advocates a tax on City commuters to ease congestion the
Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor continue to zealously hold on to their Council funded Limousines, with the City Council last Tuesday refusing to disclose or make public the full cost for the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s cars which include free petrol, free inner city car-park and the Lord Mayor’s Diver (estimated to be worth over $250,000 per year)

What are the benefits from the Council’s unjust double-taxation

Although Melbourne is still yet to finalise its transport policy the City Council has already allocated the spoils of the new tax which is a bit like pulling the horse before the car.

The car-parking tax, supposedly designed to ween Melbourne off cars and help ease inner City congestion is being used to establish a free tourist bus in direct competition to the free tourist-tram and existing ‘private’ service providers. The Tourist bus along with other proposed transport solutions are ill-considered. As the Herald-Sun editorial correctly points out Melbourne needs to first improve its public transport before providing a free ride for 1/2 day tourists. Tourists also use public transport.

Melbourne’s transport policy was developed in isolation with the needs of Motorcycle Riders and other transport users not consulted. The fact that the Council’s policy ignores the needs of Motorcycle riders altogether is an indictment against the Council administration along with the our City Councillors who are ultimately responsible for the management of the City.

The longer the City Council continue down this road the more the State Government will distance themselves from the Lord Mayor and Town Hall and Melbourne begin to face the problems associated with having a directly elected Lord Mayor and a City Council that is unaccountable and oblivious to reality and living in fools paradise.

City under siege John So loses support as State Government considers its position and begins to distance itself from the City Council

Melbourne City Council continues to come under attack as Melbourne’s business community begin to loose confidence in the Lord Mayor and the administration of the City Council. John So extraordinary long honeymoon has come to an end as he faces the reality of running a city.

Herald-Sun 9Feb2006

More and more City business leaders are beginning to question the Lord Mayor’s policy and directions. John So’s hypocritical and ill considered ‘war on cars‘ is seriously undermining public confidence in his ability to manage Melbourne’s future development amidst concern that the City Council unjust tax on inner-city car-parks and increases in the cost of on-street car-parking is beginning to bite as city consumers begin to give the city the miss.

How long can they keep milking the cash cow before it stops giving milk

The selective taxation on Melbourne businesses and city commuters and associated increased cost to the consumers seriously undermine the viability of Melbourne’s retail sector with suburban shopping complexes being the main beneficiary.

The Herald-Sun reports that business are already planning to shut up and move shop to another location.

John So is quick to reclaim the title of Lord Clown as the City Council is fast becoming beyond a joke.

Lord Clown and his Deputy hold on to their cars as the Council refuse to disclose cost to ratepayers – Claims of hypocrisy as the Lord Mayor advocates other to abandon their cars.

Whilst John So advocates a tax on City commuters to ease congestion the
Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor continue to zealously hold on to their Council funded Limousines, with the City Council last Tuesday refusing to disclose or make public the full cost for the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s cars which include free petrol, free inner city car-park and the Lord Mayor’s Diver (estimated to be worth over $250,000 per year)

What are the benefits from the Council’s unjust double-taxation

Although Melbourne is still yet to finalise its transport policy the City Council has already allocated the spoils of the new tax which is a bit like pulling the horse before the car.

The car-parking tax, supposedly designed to ween Melbourne off cars and help ease inner City congestion is being used to establish a free tourist bus in direct competition to the free tourist-tram and existing ‘private’ service providers. The Tourist bus along with other proposed transport solutions are ill-considered. As the Herald-Sun editorial correctly points out Melbourne needs to first improve its public transport before providing a free ride for 1/2 day tourists. Tourists also use public transport.

Melbourne’s transport policy was developed in isolation with the needs of Motorcycle Riders and other transport users not consulted. The fact that the Council’s policy ignores the needs of Motorcycle riders altogether is an indictment against the Council administration along with the our City Councillors who are ultimately responsible for the management of the City.

The longer the City Council continue down this road the more the State Government will distance themselves from the Lord Mayor and Town Hall and Melbourne begin to face the problems associated with having a directly elected Lord Mayor and a City Council that is unaccountable and oblivious to reality and living in fools paradise.

City under siege John So loses support as State Government considers its position and begins to distance itself from the City Council

Melbourne City Council continues to come under attack as Melbourne’s business community begin to loose confidence in the Lord Mayor and the administration of the City Council. John So extraordinary long honeymoon has come to an end as he faces the reality of running a city.

Herald-Sun 9Feb2006

More and more City business leaders are beginning to question the Lord Mayor’s policy and directions. John So’s hypocritical and ill considered ‘war on cars‘ is seriously undermining public confidence in his ability to manage Melbourne’s future development amidst concern that the City Council unjust tax on inner-city car-parks and increases in the cost of on-street car-parking is beginning to bite as city consumers begin to give the city the miss.

How long can they keep milking the cash cow before it stops giving milk

The selective taxation on Melbourne businesses and city commuters and associated increased cost to the consumers seriously undermine the viability of Melbourne’s retail sector with suburban shopping complexes being the main beneficiary.

The Herald-Sun reports that business are already planning to shut up and move shop to another location.

John So is quick to reclaim the title of Lord Clown as the City Council is fast becoming beyond a joke.

Lord Clown and his Deputy hold on to their cars as the Council refuse to disclose cost to ratepayers – Claims of hypocrisy as the Lord Mayor advocates other to abandon their cars.

Whilst John So advocates a tax on City commuters to ease congestion the
Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor continue to zealously hold on to their Council funded Limousines, with the City Council last Tuesday refusing to disclose or make public the full cost for the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s cars which include free petrol, free inner city car-park and the Lord Mayor’s Diver (estimated to be worth over $250,000 per year)

What are the benefits from the Council’s unjust double-taxation

Although Melbourne is still yet to finalise its transport policy the City Council has already allocated the spoils of the new tax which is a bit like pulling the horse before the car.

The car-parking tax, supposedly designed to ween Melbourne off cars and help ease inner City congestion is being used to establish a free tourist bus in direct competition to the free tourist-tram and existing ‘private’ service providers. The Tourist bus along with other proposed transport solutions are ill-considered. As the Herald-Sun editorial correctly points out Melbourne needs to first improve its public transport before providing a free ride for 1/2 day tourists. Tourists also use public transport.

Melbourne’s transport policy was developed in isolation with the needs of Motorcycle Riders and other transport users not consulted. The fact that the Council’s policy ignores the needs of Motorcycle riders altogether is an indictment against the Council administration along with the our City Councillors who are ultimately responsible for the management of the City.

The longer the City Council continue down this road the more the State Government will distance themselves from the Lord Mayor and Town Hall and Melbourne begin to face the problems associated with having a directly elected Lord Mayor and a City Council that is unaccountable and oblivious to reality and living in fools paradise.

Lost in Cuckoo land Council divorced from reality avoiding accountability – John So time to go

The Editorial in Today’s Herald-Sun (Printed in full below) is confirmation that Melbourne Direct Election of Lord Mayor is failing as is the policy of Our City Council and it’s future direction. A Council that is lost in Cuckoo land devoid of integrity and responsibility. A Council that avoids accountability and is full of hypocracy. Standby for the John So – Time to Go.

Wiser council now needed

09feb06

THE Herald Sun today reveals how the Melbourne City Council transport policy is divorced from reality.

Readers’ opinions of the city’s public transport are that in its present appalling state it is not an acceptable alternative to the motor car.

Yet the latest manifestation of the council’s anti-car policy makes it clear that when it come to transport policies, the Town Hall is in cloud cuckoo land.

The MCC’s “experts” suggest lowering the speed limit to 40km/h, forcing cars out of dedicated bus lanes and stripping more road space from motorists in favour of pedestrians and cyclists.

The council also suggests blocking new long-term parking spaces and offering residents discounted public transport fares if they give up parking permits.

Long-term parkers are already hit by the State Government’s unfair parking impost.

But as we report today, the public is angry over the alternative – the city’s expensive, unpunctual, and filthy public transport.

As we have noted before, the council, in league with the State Government, is embarking on social engineering under pressure from special interest groups.

Instead we need a solution that leaves people with their right to choose whichever form of transport suits them best

Lost in Cuckoo land Council divorced from reality avoiding accountability – John So time to go

The Editorial in Today’s Herald-Sun (Printed in full below) is confirmation that Melbourne Direct Election of Lord Mayor is failing as is the policy of Our City Council and it’s future direction. A Council that is lost in Cuckoo land devoid of integrity and responsibility. A Council that avoids accountability and is full of hypocracy. Standby for the John So – Time to Go.

Wiser council now needed

09feb06

THE Herald Sun today reveals how the Melbourne City Council transport policy is divorced from reality.

Readers’ opinions of the city’s public transport are that in its present appalling state it is not an acceptable alternative to the motor car.

Yet the latest manifestation of the council’s anti-car policy makes it clear that when it come to transport policies, the Town Hall is in cloud cuckoo land.

The MCC’s “experts” suggest lowering the speed limit to 40km/h, forcing cars out of dedicated bus lanes and stripping more road space from motorists in favour of pedestrians and cyclists.

The council also suggests blocking new long-term parking spaces and offering residents discounted public transport fares if they give up parking permits.

Long-term parkers are already hit by the State Government’s unfair parking impost.

But as we report today, the public is angry over the alternative – the city’s expensive, unpunctual, and filthy public transport.

As we have noted before, the council, in league with the State Government, is embarking on social engineering under pressure from special interest groups.

Instead we need a solution that leaves people with their right to choose whichever form of transport suits them best

Lost in Cuckoo land Council divorced from reality avoiding accountability – John So time to go

The Editorial in Today’s Herald-Sun (Printed in full below) is confirmation that Melbourne Direct Election of Lord Mayor is failing as is the policy of Our City Council and it’s future direction. A Council that is lost in Cuckoo land devoid of integrity and responsibility. A Council that avoids accountability and is full of hypocracy. Standby for the John So – Time to Go.

Wiser council now needed

09feb06

THE Herald Sun today reveals how the Melbourne City Council transport policy is divorced from reality.

Readers’ opinions of the city’s public transport are that in its present appalling state it is not an acceptable alternative to the motor car.

Yet the latest manifestation of the council’s anti-car policy makes it clear that when it come to transport policies, the Town Hall is in cloud cuckoo land.

The MCC’s “experts” suggest lowering the speed limit to 40km/h, forcing cars out of dedicated bus lanes and stripping more road space from motorists in favour of pedestrians and cyclists.

The council also suggests blocking new long-term parking spaces and offering residents discounted public transport fares if they give up parking permits.

Long-term parkers are already hit by the State Government’s unfair parking impost.

But as we report today, the public is angry over the alternative – the city’s expensive, unpunctual, and filthy public transport.

As we have noted before, the council, in league with the State Government, is embarking on social engineering under pressure from special interest groups.

Instead we need a solution that leaves people with their right to choose whichever form of transport suits them best

Car cost free city Melbourne City Council refuse disclosure and publication of Lord Mayors and Gary Singers car costs

The City of Melbourne Transport policy has been put on hold and will be subject to further community review. The City Council last week releases its transport policy advocating a car free city.

A car fee city that is unless you are the Lord Mayor or Deputy Lord Mayor.

Our City Councillors, who all receive generous subsidies and benefits from the City Council, are required to declare the costs to ratepayers associated with local travel, these costs are published on the Councillor’s quarterly expense statements. That is all councillors except the Lord Mayor, John So and Deputy Lord Mayor Gary Singer.

Both the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor are provided with an all expenses paid limousine, the Lord Mayor has a chauffeur and the Deputy Lord Mayor is self-drive.

The Herald Sun in 1994 reported that John So’s Chauffeur was on a salary of over $100,000.00 per year. The overall costs to the Council for the Lord Mayor’s luxury car was around $200,000 a year (including petrol, maintenance, garage and driver) The costs associated with the Deputies car was around $60,000.00 per year.

On Tuesday this week the City of Melbourne including Greens Councillor Fraser Brindley and Committee Chairperson and Labor’s Brian Shanahan, refused to consider a report calling for teh full disclosure of the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor limousines be included and published in the Councillor’s expense statements.

Sadly our councillors do not want to be held accountable and continue to go to extraordinary efforts to avoid publication and disclosure of the cost and the true amount paid in subsidies to the Lord Mayor and Councillors. In order to avoid accountability the Council even refused to publish or make available copies of the report and recommendations for public scrutiny.

Hypocrisy is alive and screaming in the City of Melbourne

In the meantime the City of Melbourne continues to advocate a policy of double-taxation for Melbourne’s commuters whist our Lord Mayor, Senior Staff and Councillor’s continue to enjoy the benefits of “free car parking” in the City (cost undisclosed).


And if you thought the Greens were about honest transparent governance and integrity think again.

Greens Councillor Fraser Brindley, who during the last election campaign advocated for the scrapping of the Lord Mayor’s Car remained silent and did nothing to fulfill his promise to the electorate. Cr Fraser is renowned for having advocated illegal closed information sessions to avoid further public disclosure of Council’s expenses.

More soon…