Griffith Mayor John Dal Broi has called on Business Chamber President Paul Pierotti to step down amid rising tensions on a submission to Council’s draft budget.
Council addressed points made in the Business Chamber’s submission at last night’s council meeting, including qualms over housing and a perceived lack of community consultation.
Mayor Dal Broi said the answers provided by council were factual and proved Griffith Business Chamber’s report was “a rant”.
“Because it’s inaccurate and full of misleading untruths, Paul Pierotti should consider resigning. For all my years in local government, I have never seen such an attack on a council.”
Mr Pierotti referred to council’s responses to criticisms about their own institution was acting as “their own judge and jury”.
“There are some issues senior management team could make a recommendation on, but for most of them they are conflicted entirely because the comments are directed at them.
They attack anyone who makes any comment. It’s inappropriate for them to be marking their own homework that way.”
The Business Chamber criticised Council for a perceived lack of consultation before spending money, saying it had “launched into unplanned projects without community consultation and budgeted ratepayer funds ahead of long-awaited projects”.
“I think it’s a disgraceful submission. They talk about a lack of consultation. Every year, Council goes through the draft budget and we have an evening at the library. They’ve never turned up.”
Chamber also cited issues with transparency and a failure to assist the retail sector or to properly address Griffith’s housing and rental shortage.
Mayor Dal Broi said council had committed to helping the retail sector with the planned makeover of Banna Ave and Yambil Street – two of Griffith’s retail hubs.
Council also pointed to several initiatives, including masterplanning of residential land in Collina, Griffith Now Hiring campaign and the Country Universities Centre as initiatives designed to drive growth within the region.
Mr Pierotti confirmed the Business Chamber is currently in the process of filing complaints to Member for Murray Austin Evans and the Office of Local Government, who will also be provided a copy of the submission.
He said he felt the nature of council’s response was “shooting the messenger”.