Tuesday, August 11, 2009


A petition signed by 350 people was presented to Parramatta City Council condeming Integral Energy's plans to build a substation in Elizabeth Street, Granville.

"The local neighbourhood were very vocal at a recent protest meeting and called upon the Minister for energy to reverse his decision to build the substation in EliZabeth Street", Garrard said.

"While the State Member, Daid Borger said that he would oppose the government on this issue, more recent comment distributed within the electorate would seem as though he actually sees the development as a 'plus' for the local area', said Councillor Garrard.

Local activist, Neil Harbridge said, "The planning process bypasses the local council planning process".

At the Council Meeting, councillors concluded that there had not been proper public consultation, and that the Council's planning department could have chosen a more appropriate location.

Local residents are now seeking a meeting with the Minister.

Monday, August 10, 2009


The Minister for Transport, Mr David Campbell has failed to give the people of Parramatta equality with those of other regional centres. While the eastern suburbs of Sydney enjoy a smorgasbord for travel options, the 'Capital of Western Sydney' simply suffers.

Further more, Newcastle and Woollongong have been given a free transport system but Parramatta is made 'pay its own way'. Parramatta residents have spent $2.5 million to introduce the 'Loop' bus but the State Government continues to deglect its Labor homeland.

Councillor Garrard believes that this is the price which Parramatta residents pay after believing David Borger as Mayor and then compared to his ability not to deliver, when he got elected to Parliament.

"Buses services are already under attack in Holroyd and South Granville, yet the State Government adopts an approach to make the less well off in our community suffer".


In what must be regarded as an unprecedented action upon 'neighbourhood living', the State Labor Government has by-passed Parramatta City Council and sought to have objectionable developments introduced into Elizabeth Street, Granville (power sub-station) and 4 other housing sites in South Granville.

Residents have failed to capture the attention of State Member Borger, who is also the Housing Minister, as he refuses to address residents on the issue of unwanted medium density development.

The Parramatta Advertiser reports, "I won't indulge in a slanging match with Cr Paul Garrard.... and I also want to spend Saturday morning with my two-year-old daughter", Borger said.

"The residents of this area will not be over-riden by a State Member who just does not know his area", said Councillor Garrard.

Developments in Markey Street and Sheahan / Kirk Avenues are the point of debate, where the State Government is using the powers under its 'Infrastructure Legislation' to bully local communities.

Monday, April 20, 2009


In what must be regarded as one of the meanest acts ever, by the NSW Government, at least 30 families have had their home ear-marked for demolition by the Department of Housing.

This cruel event became a reality recent when department tenants in Brussels, Laverack, Byrnes and Dixmude Streets were advised by the Department of Housing that they wanted to redevelop those sites with townhouses.

In a draft submission to the Department of Planning, Parramatta City recently determined that town houses would not be permissible on these sites, but the Housing Department are 'hell-bent' on over-riding the wishes of local residents.

" At a time when Governments should be showing sympathy and concern for struggling families during hard economic times, the NSW Department of Housing, lead by Minister David Borger, simply turn their backs on working class families in South Granville" said Councillor Garrrard.


After a period of unprecedented leniency in recent years towards brothel control and any sort of reasonable monitoring procedures, Parramatta City Council has established an impressive bench mark in addressing the sex industry behaviour within the local community.

Tainted by the ICAC inquiry into Wade Fryar, a former Council employee and his association with various brothels in return for sexual favours and cash, Parramatta Council now leads the way in addressing the Sex industry and continues to set new benchmarks for local government.

"In this term of Council, not one new brothel or massage parlor has been given approval, which is in quite stark contrast to the previous four years," Councillor Garrard said.

The record shows that there probably 50 sex premises within the Parramatta LGA. In recent times there has been a proliferation of oriental and therapeutic massage and treatment establishments in areas like Clyde, Granville and Toongabbie, providing sex services.

"In the last 3 months approximately $30,000 in fines have been issued against sex premises for breaches, together with orders demanding conformity with various consents".

With the creation of a new Council position, Council's Strategic Crime and Corruption Officer, a person is now responsible for the auditing and monitoring of the sex industry's behaviour. This position has highlighted the very 'cashed up' style of business which brothels represent, together with the litany of criminal activity such as sex slavery, illegal immigration, social welfare fraud, under age prostitution and drugs.

"Clearly our joint agency approach with Police, Custom Officials, Immigration and Centrelink has worked", said Councillor Garrard.

Recently other local government entities have approach Parramatta Council so as to better address their Council areas and reflect the model approach taken in Parramatta.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Parramatta needs a 'Neghbourhoods Policy'. Woodville Independents believe that neighbourhoods help communities to have a greater say over what happens. Councils need to play a major role in facilitating action between all levels of government in order to address community needs.

Neighbourhood activity can have a positive impact on issues such as education, health, transport and crime. Policy-makers needs to take this conection more seriously.

In Parramatta we need to do things differently to achieve better community outcomes.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


At the Council Meeting set down for the 20th March, Cr Garrard will present a 'Notice of Motion' which seeks to extend Development Approvals for an extra 12 month period, up to a maximum of 5 years, upon application.

Woodville Independents believe that the latest economic indicators reflect a shrinking economy with little growth and only the prospects of a worsening economic picture.

While Parramatta is holding up better then many other areas, promoting the idea of lengthening DA approvals will effectively give more time to applicants to 'weather the economic storm' and at the same time allow more flexibility for millions of dollars of construction work to begin within the next 2 years.

This will result in millions of dollar being injected into the local economy, which would have been other wise lost.


At the council Meeting held on the 9th March, Council introduced strategies which will assist in improving processing times and customer service for development applications.

Changes that were introduced addressed delegations, site meetings and the fast tracking of certain types of Development Approvals.

The delegations related to the number of objections to be received before the matter goes to council, but council still wishes to oversee the carriage of D.A's which relate to brothels, massage parlour and the sex service industry.

Cr Paul Garard said, "Woodville Independents support the move, as it creates a more competitive environment for people to do business in Parramatta and at the same time ensures that the staff of council is better monitored and their performance more accurately measured".

Sunday, March 8, 2009


HMAS Commander Jonathon Sadlier boldly steamed through rough seas off Sydney and looming thunder clouds to berth at Fleet base, bring to an end her tour of duty in the Middle East.

I'm sure that Woodville Independents speak for everyone when we say that we welcome the ship's company home as hero's after 6 months at sea, protecting the Iraqi oil platforms and training the Iraqi Navy.

The HMAS Parramatta was welcomed by the Defence Minister, Warren Snowdon, the Commander of the Australian Fleet Nigel Coates, Councillor Paul Garrard, City Liaison Officer between the City and the Ship,(also Representing the Lord Mayor of Parramatta) together with other Councillors and community people.


It is important for the economy of the Parramatta Region, for Parramatta City Council to improves its performance in dealing with all matters pertaining to development issues.

In an initial attempt to address the economic stimulus brought forward by the Federal Government last November, Council has committed to the timely determination of development applications for the construction of single dwellings, where the applicant may be eligible for the 'First Home Owners Boost Scheme'.

As a result of the policy position outlined by the Woodville Independents, administrative changes and changes to delegations and the site meeting process, have been made in order to facilitate this.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Yes, neighbourhoods are important. During 2008 - 2009, Woodville Independents have rewarded residents with a certificate of appreciation for helping to keep their neighbourhoods tidy and also for their efforts in celebrating christmas and the festive season.

We believe, that our local neighbourhoods area vital part of every day life. We should strive to have cleaner, safer and greener communities.

The way that a neighbourhood looks, how clean, green and managed, has many knock-on effects. The better its appearance, the more pride people take. It can also have a direct impact on crime, and just as critically, the perception of safety.

Christmas lights and decorations are also a great look and also help to make our neghbourhood, a more liveable place. Though the custom of christmas began in association with the birth of Christ, it has become an Australia custom that has been supported by christians and non-christians alike.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Woodville Independents acknowledge that council has spent $4 million introducing parking meters into areas of Parramatta and that this tax cannot be easily reversed. However, we believe that their presence should not be expanded within the City and that a review of the existing parking fees and charges needs to occur so that perhaps, a more practical outcome of users within the CBD can be discussed.

Equally, the distribution of the tax collected by the council needs to more fairly reflect the entire community and not just the City Centre as is presently the case.

The community need to be able to benefit from the revenue raised in the face of the run down condition of local neighbourhood centres.


Woodville Independents believe that community developmenthelps build a strong and self-reliant community, and assists council to be responsive to community needs.

I am committed to supporting participation, involving people in decisions which effect their lives, leads to improved outcomes and develops a sense of belonging, ownership and pride in the commintiy.


Woodville Independents endorse a view, which acknowledges, that there must be equality for women in every aspect of their lives and respect for, and value of the choices, contributions and diversity of women.

They must be participants in all decision making processes and given the opportunity to be active participants in all spheres of public and private life. Their needs should be central considerations within local social / community planning and for the provision of facilities, services and programmes.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Woodville Independents endorse a vision for the future which acknowledges children's best interests as the primary consideration in the provision of services. Children have the right to care and education, and that high quality children services is an investment which develops and enhances the social, spiritual and economic well-being of the entire community.

I support this view and will promote strong and effective linkages between the range of children's services and between all levels of government, the community and private sector.


Woodville Independents share the vision that all of our community should be involved in some type of activity in sport, community recreation, fitness, outdoor recreation or in other physical activities.

We encourage people to be more active and to realise the social, health and economic benefits of participation. Medical services need to provide equitable and accessible health services across the city.

I oppose the use of illicit drugs and recognise the result from the abuse of such substances, and seek to work with authorities to involve a range of strategies including early intervention, specialist treatment and supply control.


Woodville Independents believe in sustaining the bonds of community and relationships as a major emphasis of councils. Growing loneliness and alienation translates into a variety of social and economic problems. With a proliferation of gambling, drug abuse, suicide and family breakdown, we see reflected social change and profound insecurities.

Woodville Independents seek to support and create better social mechansms which will build relationships and a sense of personal belonging within neighbourhoods.

I wish to work with and lead the council, to build a strong community framework and a renewed commitment to community organisations.


Woodville Independents acknowledge that, 'Parramatta' is an aboriginal name and as such, that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people be recognised as the traditional owners of the land by including Aboriginal people in official council ceremonies using local customary protocols such as 'Wecome to Country' or flying of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Flag.

I support their right to have a practical reconciliation and quality of life equal to the wider community. With this view, I have no problem working with indigenous groups and support the continuance of the ATSI Council Advisory Commitee and applaud their past contributions.


Woodville Independents recognise that culture encompasses our diverse heritage and we also recognise that creating liveable cities is fundermental to our social well-being, long-term ecological sustainability and economic prosperity.

In Parramatta, we recognise the rights of individuals and communities to determine their own cultural identityby promoting consultation and encouraging participation.

Through my many years of experience in public life, I believe that it is essential to support and encourage full participation by people from culturally / linguistically diverse backgrounds, in local government political life.


Woodville Independents recognise that the right to free and equitable access to basic information is a cornerstone of our democratic society. Public libraries are centres for free and equitable access to learning, literature, heritage, knowledge and cultural activity.

On behalf of my Party, I support the principle, that they should be places that are safe, convenient and accessible community spaces that encourage interaction and information seeking.

Library services should also provide access for those unable to visit and thus mobile services should be provided.


Woodville Independents recognise that older people have a right to quality services and programmes that enable them to remain living in their own homes and active in their communities. I believe that we should identify and provide facilities which meet the needs of older residents to maximise their quality of life and well-being.

I support strongly, the recognition of Senior's Week as an important vehicle to reflect the valuable contribution made by older people to their communities through respect, inclusion and being sensitive to the needs of older people.

To support this aim, I recognise the important role 'Senior Centres' play in local communities.

Monday, February 2, 2009



Since March of 1993, Councillor Paul Garrard has been hold Community Precinct Meetings at both Guildford and Granville in order to keep the wider community informed on Council issues and to allow residents the opportunity to have a say and be heard on local matters.

The dates for the Woodville Precinct meeting and the South Granville Precinct meetings which are held at Guildford and Granville respectively, are listed below:

Wooodville Precinct
Tom Collins Meeting Rooms
(Next to Guildford Library)

February Saturday 7th

May Saturday 2nd

August Saturday 1st

**November Saturday 21st
(This Meeting held at Granville Town Hall)

South Granville Precinct
Granville Town Hall

February Saturday 21st

May Saturday 16th

August Saturday 15th

November Saturday 21st


Woodville Independents believe that Local Government is best placed to consult with their communities and further, that they should be given the opportunity to comment on any development or land-use control, policy or proposal that will effect their locality.

On behalf of my Party, I will seek to provide more effective methods by which community consultation should be carried out. Further, we support the development of the 'Community Engagement' area of council's activity together with a continuance of the 'Resident Panels'.

In support of our policy of inclusiveness, we will continue to hold community precinct meetings to advise / and listen to community concerns.


Woodville Independents recognise that people with a disability have a right to quality facilities and services that enable them to live and fully participate in their communities.

They must be included in council planning and regulatory actvities relating to infrastructure and council / community planning.

I believe that we must continue to develop a local 'Disability Discrimination Act Action Plan' as well as encourage improved physical access to public facilities, and ensure that local pedestrian networks are accessable to all people in the community.

Council's Access Committee is a vehicle by which new standards can be developed and progress upon their implementation monitored.


Woodville Independents recognise that young people have needs for their own specific local facilities, services and programmes that assist them in their own right and in their transition to adulthood.

It is our view that youth culture is an expression of young people's needs and beliefs. Young people should be involved in planning and delivery of services, community activity and social activities that can enhance self-respect, competence and connect to family and community. Youth Week is an important vehicle for focussing on the strengths and needs of young people to promote a sensitive approach to local youth development.

Further, to identify with our city's youth, I beleive that an effective statement can be made be establishing a 'Youth Year', perhaps 2010.

Such an occasion could galvanise our wider community in appreciating the importance of our community's greatest asset.


Woodville Independents believe that waste should be the responsibility of whoever creates it. Industry must take responsibility for that waste and give full life responsibility for the products and packaging that it creates.

Appreciating that this is a state government consideration , council needs to advocate strongly a position on recycling and more efficient behaviour by industry in their general practices within their own area of responsibility.

I believe that Parramatta needs to play a lead role in protecting and enhancing the natural and built environment in order to achieve ecologically sustainable development so that a secure future for present and future generations is obtained.

In launching 'Truck Art Recycling Week' on behalf of the Lord Mayor, last November, I stated that our waste per person in Australia has grown by 32% over the last 10 years, and that while Australia recycles about 40% of our waste, countries like Germany and Norway recycl about 70% of theirs.

We have a lot to do!


Woodville Independents recognise that Parramatta has more significant heritage items then any other place within Australia and is home to more nineteen century heritage then even Port Arthur or Norfolk Island. As their representative, I support the principles of heritage contained in the Burra Charta which establishes a framework for identifying and managing heritage places and objects.

I also recognise the role of heritage and seek to provide a balance between continuity and change ina local environment and acknowledge that this balance is critical to a rich and productive culture.

I will be promoting the point that Council needs to maintain a heritage conservation strategy which reflects our local community.


Woodville Independents believe that all residents have a right to housing that is affordable, secure and appropriate to their needs. We also recognise the importance of housing outcomes for its community, and that it is reliant on the provision and maintenance of a basic level of infrastructure facilities and services.

As the Woodville Independents' representative on Parramatta City Council, I oppose the indiscriminate increase in housing density without being able to address education, policing, health, transport and general infrastructure such as gas and water.

To this end, there must be a down zoning of the existing South Granville estate through the LEP process presently being put into place. The NSW Government's edict, that the Parramatta LGA must accept an extra 22,000 homes, must not be carried out at the expense of those areas which are already under social and physical stress.


The 'Woodville Independent Party' supports a safe and secure environment for its community. We believe that with maximum community input, we can develop a strategic Community Safety Plan that provides direction as to how to address issues such as community safety, and that such a plan should incorporate and reflect a proactive approach by the NSW police. Extra detailed attention needs to be given to frequented sites and places and where necessary, special regulation may need to be introduced to achieve community expectations.

Personally, I express some concern that the development of the new police station at Granville does not address what would seem to be a lack of policing within Guildford.

Sarcastically, one might believe that when the new police station is built, that all policing within the Rosehill Command will be carried out from Granville.

Under no circumstances, will I support any future closure of Ermington Police Station.