New South Wales Premier Mike Baird Extinguishes Democracy

New South Wales Premier Mike Baird Extinguishes Democracy

New South Wales Premier Mike Baird Takes The Axe To Local Government

Victor P Taffa

New South Wales Premier Mike Baird has announced sweeping changes to Local Government that are basically forced mergers and marriages of discontent following the Premier’s previous announcement that there would be no forced council mergers.

Under the Premier’s plan Sydney’s councils will be reduced from 43 to 25 and Regional councils will be reduced from 109 to 87.

Fit for the future is the term used by Premier Baird to justify whether or not a council is economically sustainable. However Premier Baird’s methodology is similar to building a house on quicksand.



Premier Mike Baird is falsely assuming that people will love their new council. The best analogy that can be used is that the administrators of Rugby League also assumed that people are stupid and would follow any team for the sake of following a team. This was the type of comment a former Canterbury Bulldogs Rugby League Player and Sports Commentator made to Editor Victor P Taffa during the Super League war in 1999.

When News Limited took over Rugby League in 1999 club mergers were forced on Sydney. In a national competition, having New Zealand included when Australia plays test matches against New Zealand shows how little the administrators of Rugby League cares for Rugby League supporters in the biggest market of Rugby League. As with a house if you remove the foundations you end up losing the house. The foundations and base of a national Rugby League competition is in Sydney.


Balmain Tigers

Balmain Tigers won 11 Premierships between 1908-99










  • Balmain Tigers and Western Suburbs Magpies merged as Wests Tigers
  • Manly Sea Eagles and North Sydney Bears merged as Northern Eagles*
  • St. George Dragons and Illawarra Steelers merged as St. George/Illawarra

*Manly and North Sydney always hated each other. Manly ended up getting rid of North Sydney.

Newtown Jets were never involved in a merger. They were simply kicked out of the competition and South Sydney went to court to be readmitted after they were also kicked out of the competition.


Balmain Leagues Club, Rozelle. Home of the Tigers.

Balmain Leagues Club, Victoria Road Rozelle. Home of the Balmain Tigers.









The forced Rugby League mergers and forced Local Government mergers are very similar. People have a close attachment to both and Premier Mike Baird just does not understand the issue which as a Manly Rugby League supporter is not surprising.

The plans announced by Premier Mike Baird and to be reviewed by the Boundaries Commission will result in an election defeat for the Liberal Party of landslide proportions if the plans are not changed.

There is nothing in politics more parochial to people than their local area.

Carving up Northern Beaches councils that leaves people without a community of interest will see swings against the Liberal Party from the 2015 Election in Northern Beaches seats turn into electoral defeats.

At the March 2015 New South Wales State Election the Greens Party outpolled Labor into second place in 5 Northern Beaches seats as listed below.

Should Premier Baird stick to his Local Government Boundaries then most of these seats will be lost by the Liberal Party at the 2019 State Election.



Districts Where The Greens Party Outpolled Labor Including Percentage Of TCP*:

Two Candidate Preferred (TCP) Margin

  • Ballina District won by Greens Candidate Tamara Smith                  53. 12%
  • Balmain District won by Greens Candidate Jamie Parker                  54. 73%
  • Davidson District won by Liberal Candidate Jonathon O’Dea           21. 81%**
  • Lismore District won by National Candidate Thomas George            47. 14%
  • Manly District won by Liberal Candidate Mike Baird                           25. 48%**
  • Newtown District won by Greens Candidate Jenny Leong                   59.27%
  • North Shore District won by Liberal Candidate Jillian Skinner          28. 81%**
  • Pittwater District won by Liberal Candidate Rob Stokes                      24. 35%**
  • Vaucluse District won by Liberal Candidate Gabrielle Upton              27. 07%
  • Willoughby District won by Liberal Candidate Gladys Berejiklian     25. 59%**

*Courtesy of New South Wales Electoral Commission

** Northern Beaches/Northern Sydney District

Although the Districts of Ballina, Davidson, Lismore, Manly, North Shore, Pittwater, Vaucluse and Willoughby are normally safely held by the Liberal and National Parties, the impact of The Greens has seen Ballina lost by The National Party to The Greens.

The Liberal Party suffered double digit swings in many of its safely held districts. While the National Party held onto Upper Hunter, the Party suffered a swing of more than 20%.

At the 1978 and 1981 State Elections both Manly and the neighbouring seat of Wakehurst were won by the Labor Party from the Liberal Party.

The Liberal Party suffered a 13% swing in the 5 December 2015 Federal North Sydney By-Election.



The Local Government Boundaries Commission is an independent statutory authority constituted under section 260 of the Local Government Act 1993.

The Commission examines and reports on any matter referred to it by the Minister for Local Government in relation to the boundaries of local government areas and the areas of operation of county councils.

The Commission is appointed by the Governor of New South Wales and has four members.

  • One (the Chairperson) is nominated by the Minister for Local Government;
  • One is an officer of the Office of Local Government nominated by the Chief Executive;
  • Two are persons appointed from the panel constituted under section 262(1) of the Local Government Act (the members of this panel are nominated by the Local Government and Shires Associations of NSW).


IPART (Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal)

Premier Baird needs to review his Local Government Boundaries plan. In a submission to IPART (Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal) Editor Victor P Taffa wrote for the need for Whole Suburbs to be in a Whole Council area rather than boundaries placed down the middle of a street.

Land and Property valuations are derived from that of a suburb.

When taking into account that Land and Property valuations determines a councils rates base and thus its income stream, it would seem far more beneficial to a council to have




Premier Baird is shifting boundaries on an outdated model. Under Premier Baird’s plan suburbs boundaries will still be split between new council areas thus weakening a councils income stream.

Currently the suburbs of Epping and Croydon Park are split up into 3 different council areas.

  • Croydon Park is divided between Ashfield, Burwood and Canterbury councils
  • Epping is divided between Hornsby, Parramatta and Ryde councils

By lining council boundaries along suburb boundaries instead of the middle of roads such as Parramatta Road will provide councils with a stronger income stream thus making them




Even then lining up council boundaries along suburbs boundaries will also achieve Premier Baird’s goal of a reduced number of councils.

Editor Victor P Taffa’s plan will not see mass sackings of Council Managers and Staff.

The Boundaries Commission could also start drawing up new boundaries based on Editor Victor P Taffa’s plan from the Parramatta River that would result in the survival of Ryde and Hunters Hill councils.


NSW Premier Mike Baird

NSW Premier Mike Baird










The Baird Government has driven a Fit For The Future concept with IPART to justify merging half of Sydney’s Local Government areas.

The SES is funded and organised largely through Local Government.

Every time there is a Flood, Bushfire, Cyclone etc…people do not dip into their pocket before their life or property is saved.

Claims on Insurance Companies runs into millions and yet what would happen if people had to stump up the cash firsthand before being helped?

Sydney’s Tramway Network, which was the world’s largest ran at a financial loss with the exception of the Watson’s Bay Line.

Sydney has lost significantly since the system was destroyed.
Expanding Heavy Rail is so much easier and quicker.



Marsden Road, West Ryde currently is a boundary between Parramatta City Council and Ryde City Council. Under the horse and buggy model of drawing up Local Government Boundaries, the boundary is down the middle of the street. Premier Mike Baird supports this outdated model for Local Government.

Editor Victor P Taffa was a candidate at the 1999 and 2004 Ryde Local Government Elections and at the 2008 Ryde State By-Election where residents of Marsden Road, West Ryde asked Victor to have a concrete footpath installed.

Marsden Road, West Ryde is a long street of hilly terrain.

Consequently, Victor asked that Ryde Council install such concrete footpath.

  • Ryde Council placed the Marsden Road Footpath in the 2008-2012 Management Plan.
  • Ryde Council placed the Marsden Road Footpath in the 2012-2016 Management Plan.
  • Ryde Council placed the Marsden Road Footpath in the 2016-2020 Management Plan.

Ryde Council resolved to build the footpath from Rutledge Street to Winbourne Street in 3 stages.

  • The footpath from Rutledge Street to 101 Marsden Road has been built.
  • The footpath from Winbourne Street to 55 Marsden Road has been built.
  • The footpath from 101-55 Marsden Road has NOT been built.

Victor at NO time ever requested that a footpath be built from Terry Road to Rutledge Street.

Terry Road is also a Council Boundary and does not have as many residents living in this section.

Under Editor Victor P Taffa’s Whole Suburbs In A Whole Council Area Plan for Local Government, Ryde Council will have the rates income stream to pay for many more footpaths in addition to Marsden Road and Darvall Road, West Ryde.

So very soon Premier Mike Baird will get rid of many Sydney Councils.

Yes in life everything has a price.

So very soon Premier Mike Baird will go.


Ryde Civic Centre