How Two Council Puppies Took Ryde To The Brink Of Disaster

If you click play on the video above, you’ll hear a tune that reminds me of comedy through the ridiculous – and that’s why it’s very fitting for a post about Ryde’s rookie councillors, George ‘Simple’ Simon and Jerome ‘Laxettes’ Laxalle.

Describing this pair as dropkicks would be far too generous. A dropkick requires a certain degree of skill and precision and these two blokes haven’t yet attained those characteristics in their counter-productive efforts on Ryde Council.

For the uninitiated, both Simon and Laxalle tried to force the latter into the Mayoralty at this year’s Mayoral Election, which took place not long ago. When they didn’t get their way, they had a dummy spit and boycotted the election, eliminating the 7-5 numerical advantage of the non-Liberal councillors to a 5-5 tie, allowing the Mayor to be drawn out of a hat and their arch-rivals, the Liberals, to claim the Mayoralty.

bill-pickeringBut what many do not know is that the man pictured to the left, Councillor Bill Pickering, came close to becoming Mayor during a Liberal caucus vote to determine their candidate. Cr Pickering was only backed by his ally Cr Artin Etmekdjian, the former Ryde Mayor.

The pair, along with former GM John Neish, made up the three ringleaders pushing the doomed civic precinct proposal that wasted millions in ratepayer funds and has led to a farcical Ryde ICAC inquiry, the consequences of which seem to only be known by Cr Pickering and Cr Etmekdjian. And of course, the independence of the ICAC in its Ryde inquiry, appears particularly suspect.

The consolation for the community was that with the support of Cr Craig Chung and Cr Sarekis Yedelian, the man elevated to Mayor, Roy Maggio, is an outstanding community representative, with a focus on improving Ryde’s sporting facilities and exploring opportunities to create more open space.

He’s active in his local community, is genuinely liked by most of his constituents and wants council to do more with the ratepayer funds it uses.

Back to the two puppies – and they can thank their lucky stars that among the Liberal councillors is a community representative of the calibre of Cr Maggio. The alternative would have been unforgivable. But ratepayers should not forgive Cr Simon and Cr Laxale for their latest acts as wreckers of the Labor Left – it’s nearly three years to the next council elections and voters should not forgive or forget.

All I know is that from now on, when I hear The Benny Hill Show theme, I will always think of the two puppies.


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