Parking problem plagues council

A PERTH City Councillor is trying to use National Competition Policy to get car parking approved on land that he owns.

Councillor Bert Tudori applied to have temporary parking for two years, or until a hotel development planned for the block next door to his Parker Street land in Northbridge is completed.

Once the hotel was finished Mr Tudori had planned to build a 52 square metre office with parking for 14 cars. Council blocked both moves last year.

Acting council CEO Garry Dunne said Mr Tudori had received valid planning approval for the office building and car park.

However, Mr Tudori is not happy because the temporary parking he had asked for was refused.

He said the company developing the hotel had offered to rent his land to park their heavy equipment during the construction phase.

Mr Tudori is waiting for answers to questions he sent to council CEO Garry Hunt and is threatening to complain to the Department of Local Government and Regional Development that council’s blocking of his application for temporary parking was anti-competitive.

“Council votes itself car parks whenever it wants. Why should the applicant be the decision maker?” Mr Tudori asked.

Mr Hunt is currently overseas.

Councils are not direct signa-tories to national competition policy but have agreed to comply with its principles. They have signed to WA Local Government Clause 7.

Clause 7 requires local govern-ments to ensure their business activities with annual incomes of more than $200,000 did not enjoy a competitive advantage.

Parking is a major business activity of council. In 2000-01 it received nearly $20 million from parking fees and charges and more than $6 million from parking


However, Clause 7 has no legislative backing so there are no penalties for councils that fail to remain competitively neutral.

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