Shire ‘no’ to Roe seat change

Michael TraillNarrogin Observer
Camera IconJerramungup. Credit: Laurie Benson Albany Advertiser

The Shire of Jerramungup has formally objected to a proposal by the WA Electoral Commission to move the shire out of the State electorate of Albany and into Roe.

During last Wednesday’s council meeting, councillors voted to oppose the Commission’s proposal to move the shire from the seat of Albany, held by Labor’s Peter Watson, to Roe, held by the Nationals WA’s Peter Rundle. Jerramungup’s move is part of a domino flow of proposed boundary changes through the Agricultural and South West regions to balance the number of electors in the seat of Moore north of Perth, which stretches from Gingin to Kalbarri, ahead of the 2021 State election.

Moore is expected to gain the shires of Wongan-Ballidu, Goomalling and Dowerin from the seat of Central Wheatbelt, held by Nationals WA leader Mia Davies.

To balance elector numbers in Central Wheatbelt, the Commission has proposed to transfer the shires of Cuballing, Wickepin and Kulin in the north of Roe to Ms Davies’ electorate.

Shire of Jerramungup chief executive Martin Cuthbert said Jerramungup residents were more economically aligned with Albany than to Roe.

“Since the move into a marginal seat and into the Albany District (in 2015) we have successfully yielded desirable outcomes when lobbying for improvements to State infrastructure and services within the region,” he said.

“The move to the Roe District would have detrimental effects on the work the Shire has put into building the relationships with our neighbouring council, Albany.

“Albany provides opportunity for our community members to access economic, cultural and educational services and programs in the region.”

It is understood the shires of Cuballing, Wickepin and Kulin had made no objections to moving to Central Wheatbelt before the Commission’s deadline on Monday.

The seat of Warren-Blackwood, which incorporates the shires of Denmark and Plantagenet is expected to gain Southampton, Balingup, Mullalyup and a proportion of Cundinup from the State’s south west.

Final boundaries for the 2021 election will be released in late November.

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