Extraordinary General Meeting Called in Ryde

Ryde City Council has called has an Extraordinary General Meeting for next Tuesday night, February 17 to debate possible action by the NSW Government to abolish the City of Ryde.

The Extraordinary General Meeting will commence in the Civic Centre at 7.30pm and Mayor Bill Pickering will address councilors, staff and ratepayers on a threatened merger of the City of Ryde into a Northern region super council with West Ryde to be given to Parramatta City Council.

Ryde’s independence is under threat as part of the NSW Government’s Fit For The Future policy which seeks to create Sydney wide super sized local government authorities to achieve savings and to override existing local heritage, environmental and other planning restrictions on property developers.

Mayor Pickering stressed that all councillors are united behind his commitment to save The City of Ryde and he told last Tuesday night’s council meeting that ratepayers had a right to know the facts about the threat.

“There are a number of issues including our size and scale,” he said.

“It is critical we respond to these issues and show we can run the city efficiently.”

He told the meeting he felt that Ryde ratepayers will not stand for the abolition of their city.

At the same meeting, Ryde City Councillors voted in favour of a Four Year Plan that aims to achieve multi-million savings alongside a rate increase of around $64 dollars per household each year with flat owners to pay a $39 annual rate increase.

In neighbouring Hunters Hill, Mayor Richard Quinn and the councillors are also opposed to the abolition of their council and their ratepayers are strongly opposed to being amalgamated into any new entity that incorporates Ryde.