THERE were ugly scenes at the extraordinary meeting of the newly elected Inner West Council last night as Labor and Liberal councillors teamed up to block opposition to WestConnex.
Over the course of more than five hours, the substantive motions put forward by the Greens to fund measures to oppose WestConnex were “torpedoed” by two Mayoral Minutes introduced at the last minute.
“Local Labor has been desperate to appear opposed to WestConnex, despite their state and federal colleagues’ support for the project," said independent Councillor Pauline Lockie.
“This council meeting was their first big test, but Cr Darcy Byrne’s Mayoral Minutes showed only big rhetoric and no real opposition to WestConnex.
“The concerns of community groups were torpedoed by Mayor Byrne, who replaced substantial motions of opposition with obvious mediation measures, and picked fights with our biggest anti-WestConnex ally in the City of Sydney,” said Cr Lockie.
Labor and Liberal councillors, along with independent Cr Victor Macri, teamed up to defeat motions to fund a communications campaign to oppose WestConnex and continue the previous Council funding for a No WestConnex community campaigner.
Mayor Byrne adjourned the meeting several times as residents in the gallery voiced their anger.
“Residents and community groups have said they feel betrayed by this outcome, and I don’t blame them,” said Cr Lockie.
“Real opposition to WestConnex requires action, not hot air and bluster.
"By that measure, the Inner West Council is failing every resident who voted for strong opposition to WestConnex. I'm sure Premier Berejiklian will be delighted,” said Cr Lockie.
Meeting notes and link to live stream: bit.ly/2wwMPM9