Thursday, September 8, 2011


08 August 2011 SC097/2011
The Gillard Government today appointed the members of the independent expert panel that will progress t he recognition of local government in the Australian Constitution.
Unless you tell her differently. This isn't her choice to make. Would you like to take a guess whose choice it is?
Led by former Chief Justice of the NSW Supreme Court, the Honourable James Spigelman AC QC, the panel members comprise representatives from a range of backgrounds and areas of expertise.
Where are the Originie Elder representitives? There is a phone number you can call if you think this panel lacks a diverse range of opinions.

Mr Crean said the panel will consult with stakeholder groups and the community on options for recognising local government in the Constitution.
"Under the guidance of Mr Spigelman, the panel members appointed today have been asked to look into the level of support for constitutional recognition of local government and to identify possible forms that recognition could take," Mr Crean said.
"The panel will consult widely and the outcomes will help shape any proposal to put to a referendum.
"The Gillard Government is progressing the issue of recognising local government in the Constitution and this is a commitment that successive Labor governments have never wavered
"Just like the Whitlam and Hawke governments, the Gillard Government believes in recognising local government in the Constitution - our foundational document."
It is prudent to remind you that in 1988, when asked if we wanted the Constitution to include Local Government, the resuelt was a resounding 'NO' with no States accepting the proposal and only 31% of the population voting with the proposal.
Bob Hawke, of course, responded with "The Local Government Act of 1989", snubbing his nose at the result of the previous years Referendum.
This means that despite the fact that 69% of the voting population said no, Julia is going to try and give legitimacy to the most inferior of bodies.
This falls into line with her determination to impose a carbon tax despite not having a clear mandate to govern, and a massive groundswell of opposition to the controvesial legislation.
Reminds me of a certain U.S President who wreaked global havoc after 'winning' his election in November 2000 with a minority vote count.  
The panel members are:
  • The Honourable James Spigelman AC QC (Chair);
  • Cr Paul Bell AM
  • Professor A.J. Brown
  • Senator Bob Brown
  • Fr Joe Caddy
  • Mr Ross Cameron
  • Mr Peter Clarke
  • Mr Rob Hudson
  • The Honourable Karlene Maywald
  • Cr Genia McCaffery, Mayor of North Sydney
  • Mr Greg McLean OAM
  • Mrs Jane Prentice MP
  • Professor Graham Sansom
  • Right Honourable Lord Mayor of Perth Lisa Scaffidi
  • Mr Sid Sidebottom MP
  • Mr Jim Soorley AM
  • Ms Lucy Turnbull AO
  • Mr Tony Windsor MP
The Government's commitment to establishing the panel is reflected in its agreement with the Greens and Independent MPs Tony Windsor and Andrew Wilkie.
The panel will report back to the Government by the end of the year.
The Australian Government is committed to holding a national referendum on this issue during the term of the current government or at the next Federal election.
To succeed, the referendum must attract the support of a majority of votes nationally, and a majority of votes in a majority of states.
Biographies of panel members and its terms of reference are available at

Media Contacts Crean Office - Glen Atwell 0403 949 599

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