City of Rockdale

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City of Rockdale
New South Wales
Rockdale lga sydney.png
Coordinates33°55′S 151°15′E / 33.917°S 151.250°E / -33.917; 151.250Coordinates: 33°55′S 151°15′E / 33.917°S 151.250°E / -33.917; 151.250
Population97,340 (2011)[1]
 • Density3,476.4/km2 (9,004/sq mi)
Established13 January 1871
Abolished9 September 2016
Area28 km2 (10.8 sq mi)
Council seatRockdale Town Hall
RegionSt George
Rockdale City Council Logo.jpg
WebsiteCity of Rockdale
LGAs around City of Rockdale:
Canterbury-Bankstown Inner West Botany Bay
Georges River City of Rockdale Botany Bay
Georges River Sutherland Sutherland

The City of Rockdale was a local government area in southern and St George regions of Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. The city centre was located 12 kilometres (7.5 mi) south-west of the Sydney central business district, on the western shores of Botany Bay. First proclaimed on 13 January 1871, Rockdale was formerly known as the Municipality of West Botany until 1887 and the Municipality of Rockdale before being proclaimed as a City in 1995. Rockdale was amalgamated with the neighbouring City of Botany Bay on 9 September 2016 to form the new municipality of Bayside Council.

The last Mayor of the City of Rockdale at amalgamation was Cr. Bill Saravinovski, a member of the Labor Party.

Suburbs and localities in the local government area[edit]

Suburbs in the City of Rockdale were:

The City of Rockdale also managed and maintained the following localities:

  • Bardwell Creek
  • Cooks Cove
  • Lady Robinson Beach
  • Muddy Creek
  • Rocky Point
  • Sandringham Bay
  • St Kilda Point

History[edit]

West Botany[edit]

The City of Rockdale was originally proclaimed as the "Municipal District of West Botany" on 13 January 1871 and covered 23 square kilometres (9 sq mi) with two Wards, West Botany Ward and Arncliffe Ward.[2] The proclamation followed a petition signed by 85 residents calling for incorporation that was published in the Government Gazette on 22 August 1870.[3] The first election was held on 8 February 1871 at the Tempe Family Hotel on Rocky Point Road.[4] The Mayor of Marrickville, Charles St Julian, was appointed Returning Officer for the first election of six aldermen and two auditors, which was declared on 14 February 1871:[5]

The first Rockdale Town Hall (1888) on the corner of Rocky Point Road and Bryant Street, Rockdale, c. 1890, was demolished in 1940 to make way for the new Town Hall.
Seat Alderman Notes
Arncliffe Ward Thomas Woolacott Freeholder, Tempe.[5]
William Yates Freeholder, Rosebrook, Tempe. Elected Mayor.[5][6]
John McInnes Publican of the "Tempe Family Hotel", Arncliffe.[5]
West Botany Ward James Beehag Freeholder, Marsh Street, West Botany.[5]
Elias Godfrey Gardener, West Botany Street, West Botany.[5]
Charles Napper Freeholder, West Botany.[5]
Auditors Isaac Beehag Freeholder, Beach Street, West Botany.[5]
John Beaumont Mills Teacher, Arncliffe.[5]

On 28 February 1871, Frederick Keene was appointed the first Clerk.[7] Thomas Willmot was appointed Clerk on 13 August 1872.[8] Thomas Leeder was appointed Clerk on 7 August 1877.[9] Percival Somerville was appointed Clerk on 23 March 1905.[10][11] On 17 December 1886, West Botany Ward was split in two, adding Rockdale Ward and Scarborough Ward and bringing the number of Aldermen from six to nine.[12] Among the main developers during this period was Frederick Jamison Gibbes, a member of parliament whose name is perpetuated by Gibbes Street in Banksia.[13][14] From 1872, Council met in the first Council Chambers, a small purpose-built stone building on the western side of Rocky Point Road, Arncliffe built by Christopher Bush of St Peters. It continued in use until 11 December 1888, when a new Town Hall was opened by the Mayor, William George Judd, on the corner of Rocky Point Road and Bryant Street, Rockdale.[15] The old Council Chambers building was eventually sold in 1904.[16]

Rockdale Municipality[edit]

The second Rockdale Town Hall (1940), built on the site of the first Town Hall, on 2 June 1953 during celebrations for the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.

The name "Rockdale" for the West Botany area was first suggested in 1878, and that name gained more credence when the local railway station on the new Illawarra rail line, opened on 15 October 1884, was also given the name Rockdale.[17][18] However, by the time the neighbouring Boroughs of Botany and North Botany (Mascot from 1911) were proclaimed on 29 March 1888, it was clear that a name change was desirable. On 17 May 1888 the Parliament of New South Wales passed the Rockdale Municipality Naming Act (No.33, 1888), and West Botany became the "Municipal District of Rockdale".[19] On 31 December 1900, a fourth ward was added, Hopetoun Ward, bring the number of Aldermen to twelve.[20]

The area of the municipality was reduced when the mouth of Cooks River was moved further south of its original position in the mid-1940s, to allow for the extension of Sydney Airport at Mascot. Under the Local Government (Areas) Act 1948, the Municipality of Bexley, which was located immediately to the West and had separated from Hurstville in 1900, became the First Ward of Rockdale Municipality.[21] Rockdale was declared a city in 1995 as the "City of Rockdale".[17][22]

2002 corruption inquiry[edit]

City of Rockdale signpost, Stoney Creek Road, Kingsgrove

During 2002, two elected officials of Rockdale City Council were at the centre of an Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) inquiry. The inquiry revealed that the Deputy Mayor, Adam McCormick (Labor) and Councillor Andrew Smyrnis (Liberal) engaged in corrupt conduct with two property developers Con Chartofillis and Terry Andriotakis via two intermediaries, Manuel Limberis and Tony Retsos. The ICAC recommended to the New South Wales Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) that charges be laid against all six individuals under the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) and the ICAC Act 1998 (NSW) s 87.[23][24] Both councillors resigned from Council and a by-election was held on 31 August 2002 to replace the two disgraced councillors.

Following consideration of the briefs and evidence involved, the DPP commenced action. It was successful in recording convictions, and the known determinations made by the Courts are as follows:

  • Smyrnis was sentenced to two years periodic detention.[25][26]
  • Retsos was fined $80,000 and sentenced to three years periodic detention.[27]
  • McCormick, protested his innocence; with Smyrnis agreeing to testify against him.[25] McCormick was sentenced to a maximum of five years in custody for receiving $70,000 in bribes in return for delivering Labor Party support for a development application and for lying to the inquiry.[28][29]

Amalgamation[edit]

A 2015 review of local government boundaries by the NSW Government Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal recommended that the City of Botany Bay merge with the City of Rockdale to form a new council with an area of 50 square kilometres (19 sq mi) and support a population of approximately 153,000.[30] In response to the merger proposal, Rockdale Council indicated their preference to merge with the City of Kogarah and the City of Hurstville, forming a single "St George Council".[31][32]

With the proclamation of the majority of council amalgamations on 12 May 2016, Botany Bay Council appealed the decision in the Supreme Court of New South Wales, thereby delaying the proposed amalgamation until a decision was made by the Court. The Supreme Court rejected the appeal in early September 2016, and the Minister for Local Government, Paul Toole, moved quickly to proclaim the formation of Bayside Council on 9 September 2016, with the General Manager of Rockdale since 2011, Meredith Wallace, appointed as the new General Manager of Bayside Council.[33][34][35][36] On 9 September 2017, the first Council consisting of fifteen Councillors across 5 wards was elected, and the former Mayor of Rockdale, Bill Saravinovski, was elected as the first Mayor on 27 September.[37]

Demographics[edit]

At the 2011 Census, there were 97,340 people in the Rockdale local government area, of these 49.4% were male and 50.6% were female. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people made up 0.6% of the population. The median age of people in the City of Rockdale was 36 years. Children aged 0 – 14 years made up 17.4% of the population and people aged 65 years and over made up 15.1% of the population. Of people in the area aged 15 years and over, 50.9% were married and 10.8% were either divorced or separated.[1]

Population growth in the City of Rockdale between the 2001 Census and the 2006 Census was 5.09%; and in the subsequent five years to the 2011 Census, population growth was 5.66%. When compared with total population growth of Australia for the same periods, being 5.78% and 8.32% respectively, population growth in the Rockdale local government area was on par with the national average.[38] The median weekly income for residents within the City of Rockdale was on par with the national average.[1][39]

The proportion of residents who stated their ancestry was Macedonian was 6.5 times the New South Wales and national averages; the proportion of households where Macedonian is spoken at home is in excess of eight times the state and national averages; and the proportion of residents who stated an affiliation with Eastern Orthodox religion was in excess of six times the state and national averages.[1]

Selected historical census data for Rockdale local government area
Census year 2001[38] 2006[39] 2011[1]
Population Estimated residents on Census night 87,657 92,126 97,340
LGA rank in terms of size within New South Wales
% of New South Wales population 1.41%
% of Australian population 0.47% Decrease 0.46% Decrease 0.45%
Cultural and language diversity
Ancestry,
top responses
Australian 12.4%
English 12.2%
Chinese 10.0%
Greek 9.2%
Lebanese 6.1%
Language,
top responses
(other than English)
Greek 9.7% Decrease 9.4% Decrease 9.2%
Arabic 8.3% Increase 9.0% Steady 9.0%
Mandarin 3.2% Increase 4.3% Increase 5.1%
Macedonian 6.3% Decrease 5.4% Decrease 5.0%
Cantonese 4.5% Steady 4.5% Increase 4.6%
Religious affiliation
Religious affiliation,
top responses
Catholic 25.6% Decrease 24.2% Decrease 23.3%
Eastern Orthodox 19.2% Decrease 18.9% Decrease 18.3%
No religion 9.5% Increase 11.2% Increase 13.7%
Islam 8.2% Increase 9.7% Increase 10.6%
Anglican 12.9% Decrease 10.3% Decrease 8.6%
Median weekly incomes
Personal income Median weekly personal income A$457 A$555
% of Australian median income 98.1% 96.2%
Family income Median weekly family income A$1,035 A$1,443
% of Australian median income 100.8% 97.4%
Household income Median weekly household income A$1,163 A$1,276
% of Australian median income 99.3% 103.4%

Council[edit]

Rockdale City Council administration building
Rockdale City Council Town Hall

Final composition and election method[edit]

Rockdale City Council was composed of fifteen Councillors elected proportionally as five separate wards, each electing three Councillors. All Councillors were elected for a fixed four-year term of office. The Mayor was elected by the Councillors at the first meeting of the Council. The last election was held on 8 September 2012, and the final makeup of the Council was as follows:[40][41][42][43][44]

Ward Councillor Party Notes
First Ward[40]   Andrew Tsounis Labor
  Peter Poulos Liberal Deputy Mayor 2008–2009
  Mark Hanna Independent
Second Ward[41]   Tarek Ibrahim Labor Elected to Bayside Mascot Ward, 2016.
  Nicholas Mickovski Liberal
  Michael Nagi Independent Deputy Mayor 2015–2016. Elected to Bayside Mascot Ward, 2016.[45]
Third Ward[42]   Petros Kalligas Liberal Elected to Bayside Rockdale Ward, 2016.
  Lydia Sedrak Liberal
  Bill Saravinovski Labor Mayor 2015–2016, Deputy Mayor 2005–2006 Sep-Dec 2009. Elected to Bayside Rockdale Ward, 2016.[45]
Fourth Ward[43]   Liz Barlow Independent Deputy Mayor 2002–2004 2012–2015. Elected to Bayside Bexley Ward, 2016.[46][47]
  Paul Sedrak Liberal Elected to Bayside Port Botany Ward, 2016.
  Joe Awada Labor Elected to Bayside Bexley Ward, 2016.
Fifth Ward[44]   Ron Bezic Liberal Elected to Bayside Bexley Ward, 2016.
  Shane O'Brien Labor Mayor 2012–2015[46][47]
  James Macdonald Independent Deputy Mayor 2010–2011. Elected to Bayside Botany Bay Ward, 2016.

Mayors[edit]

Mayor Party Term Notes
  William Yates Independent 14 February 1871 – 15 February 1872 [6]
  James Beehag Independent 15 February 1872 – 11 February 1874 [48][49]
  Elias Godfrey Independent 11 February 1874 – 10 February 1875 [50]
  James Beehag Independent 10 February 1875 – 12 February 1877 [51][52]
  James Collins Independent 12 February 1877 – 12 February 1878 [53]
  John Bowmer Independent 12 February 1878 – 7 February 1885 [54][55][56][57][58][59][60][61]
  William George Judd Independent 7 February 1885 – 31 July 1889 [62][63][64][65][66][67]
  Edwin Godfrey Independent 31 July 1889 – 12 February 1891 [68][69]
  Alfred George Carruthers Independent 12 February 1891 – 2 May 1892 [70]
  William Taylor Independent 2 May 1892 – 12 February 1895 [71][72][73]
  John Horatio Clayton Independent 12 February 1895 – February 1898 [74][75]
  William George Judd Independent February 1898 – 5 March 1900 [76][77]
  John Francis Hegerty Independent 5 March 1900 – 12 February 1902 [78][79]
  Joseph Henry Trevarthen Independent 12 February 1902 – 11 February 1904 [80][81]
  William Taylor Independent 11 February 1904 – February 1909 [82][83][84][85]
  Henry George Broe Independent February 1909 – 12 February 1914 [86][87][88][89][90][91]
  William Monahan KC Independent 12 February 1914 – 1 February 1917 [92][93][94][95][96]
  Alfred Edward Green Independent 8 February 1917 – July 1918 [97][98][99]
  Henry George Broe Independent July 1918 – 16 July 1920 [100][101][102]
  Ronald William Rathbone Independent December 1968 – September 1972 [103][104]
September 1972 – September 1980
  Ronald William Rathbone Independent September 1980 – September 1983 [103]
  Phil Lang Labor September 1983 – September 1984 [105]
September 1984 – September 1985
  Ronald William Rathbone OAM Independent September 1985 – September 1987 [103][106]
Steve Holroyd September 1987 – September 1989 [107]
September 1989 – September 1992
  Ronald William Rathbone OAM Independent September 1992 – September 1993 [103]
September 1993 – September 1994
  Ronald William Rathbone OAM Independent September 1994 – September 1995 [103][108]
September 1995 – September 1996
Peter Bryant September 1996 – September 1997
Brian Simpson September 1997 – September 1998
Geoff Hedge September 1998 – September 1999 [109]
  Kent Johns Labor September 1999 – September 2000 [110][111]
Shaoquett Moselmane September 2000 – September 2002 [112]
  Yvonne Bellamy Independent September 2002 – March 2004 [113][114]
  John Flowers Liberal April 2004 – September 2005 [115]
  Shaoquett Moselmane Labor September 2005 – September 2006 [115]
Bill Saravinovski September 2006 – September 2007 [115]
  John Flowers Liberal September 2007 – September 2008 [116]
  Bill Saravinovski Labor September 2008 – September 2009 [116]
Shaoquett Moselmane September 2009 – December 2009 [117][118]
Bill Saravinovski January 2010 – September 2012 [117]
Shane O'Brien September 2012 – 16 September 2015 [46][47]
Bill Saravinovski 16 September 2015 – 9 September 2016 [45]

Coat of arms[edit]

Sister cities[edit]

References[edit]

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