Shire tries to hide total failure of street cameras

A VIOLENT car-jacking in Stirling Terrace in which a woman was serious injured last month has exposed a complete breakdown in the town’s street video security network operated by the Shire of Toodyay.

None of the shire’s 19 video security street cameras mounted at key locations around town have worked for months.

A shire camera (left) outside the Toodyay Library facing last month’s car-jacking (see this month’s Police Beat column) was out of action when the crime occurred, and there was no shire video to provide evidence for police and insurers.

The shire decided several weeks ago not to replace faulty equipment at its Fiennes Street office but kept quiet about it to fool people into thinking that the cameras still worked.

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Targa West rally turns shoppers’ car park into high-speed pit stop

Mechanics swarm all over and under this $160,000 Lotus Exige Sport 410 driven by Peter Rullo and James Marquet which came second in last month’s annual Targa West road rally through Toodyay. The Lotus can reach 0-100km/h in 3.4 seconds and has a top speed of 280km/h.

Mechanics replace a faulty hose on a rally car during last month’s Targa West lunch-time pit stop in Toodyay’s Charcoal Lane car park.

Under-chassis check in Charcoal Lane car park during last month’s annual Targa West car rally through Toodyay.

Brake discs replaced in Charcoal Lane car park during last month’s Targa West car rally through Toodyay.


Taking a lunch-time break (below and right) from last month’s Targa West car rally action in Charcoal Lane pit stop.

Rayner ordered to apologise

SHIRE President Brian Rayner has been ordered to publicly apologise to the Toodyay Progress Association (TPA) for breaching WA local government rules of conduct.

The order relates to the shire’s April 2018 Toodyay Community Newsletter which led Shire Deputy President Therese Chitty to determine that President Rayner and Shire CEO Stan Scott both breached the Shire Code of Conduct by publishing “derogatory and improper” statements about the TPA.

At a council meeting two weeks after the newsletter was published, TPA Chair Larry Graham asked President Rayner for details about Mr Scott’s claim of an “unprincipled campaign by The Herald and the TPA” in which “people are bullied and harassed for having a different point of view”.

President Rayner responded by claiming former Herald columnist Geoffrey Appleby had “published that he was out to get the CEO in his position as Secretary of the TPA”.

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Horse dispute prompts rates threat

Dave Wakeman (above) with Tommy at Coondle where he believes the shire is setting him up to fail in a five-year battle to keep two horses.

By Michael Sinclair-Jones

COONDLE resident Dave Wakeman says he will not pay rates due on his property this month because of a long-running dispute with the Shire of Toodyay over keeping two horses on his 2.2ha (6.5-acre) property.

“I will deduct $441 for a horse application fee that they required me to pay – only to set me up to fail,” Mr Wakeman said.

“Either that, or they can refund my money.”

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Toodyay charges into electric fast lane

TOODYAY has officially jojned an ‘electric highway’ from Perth to Kalgoorlie with the formal opening of a new two-bay electric car-charging station in the Charcoal Lane carpark, opposite the public toilets.

Shire President Brian Rayner (above) unveiled the twin-outlet electric car charger during last month’s Targa West car rally, where it was used to re-charge a Tesla Roadster electric car (pictured).

The shire received a $12,891 Federal Grant for the project and contributed a further $1250.

Other electric car charging stations have been installed at Midland, Gidgegannup, Merredin, Southern Cross and Kalgoorlie.

Council trio sits tight

By Michael Sinclair-Jones

THREE shire councillors say they will stay another two years instead of facing all Toodyay voters for the first time in October.

Their decision comes as the shire awaits the result of a formal State Government inquiry.

The three were elected in 2017 under a former ward system that barred most Toodyay people from voting in their elections.

Only 11 per cent of Toodyay’s 2500 electors voted two years ago for Shire Deputy President Therese Chitty, and only 8.3 per cent for Cr Paula Greenway (pictured).

Nobody voted for Shire President Brian Rayner because he was the only candidate to stand in the now-abolished North Ward.

First earth turned at new pool site

WORK has begun on Toodyay’s new $13 million sport and recreation precinct after a 20-tonne excavator helped scoop the first shovel loads of earth for the town’s new 25-metre swimming pool.

About 30 people attended a ground-breaking ceremony led by local Federal Liberal MP and Attorney-General Christian Porter (centre), who last year announced a $4.7 million grant for the multi-sport project.

The project is also funded by Shire of Toodyay borrowings ($6.5 million) and grants and donations from the State Government ($1.79 million), local community ($117,000) and Toodyay and Districts Bendigo Community Bank ($100,000).

Local Labor MP Darren West (second left, above) said it would provide a community and sporting hub for 4500 local residents, and a fitness and social outlet for young people.

Special tribute was paid to Shire Community Development Officer Debra Andrijich (right) who wrote the successful funding applications and project co-ordinator Merridith Lamb (also pictured).


‘Winners and losers’ in 6-2 budget vote to increase rates

RATEPAYERS face an average increase of $50 in their annual rates bills after Toodyay shire councillors voted 6-2 last month to adopt a 2.5 per cent increase.

“There will be some winners and some losers,” shire audit committee chair Rob Welburn told a special council meeting.

The rates increase was moved by Cr Eric Twine, seconded by Shire Deputy President Therese Chitty and opposed by Crs Bill Manning and Ben Bell.

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