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Transport Scorecard: Detailed Evaluation of Candidates

The PTUA sent a letter to all candidates in the City of Yarra elections, which explained the background to our campaign, included our proposed motion to council, and posed four specific questions:

  1. As a councillor, will you propose or second the enclosed motion at a Council meeting?
  2. Will you vote for or against the enclosed motion?
  3. If you do not support the motion as it stands, could it be amended in a way that would ensure your support? If so, please outline your suggested amendments.
  4. In what other ways will you campaign for transport policy change as a Yarra Councillor?

Candidates were assessed for our scorecard based primarily on their responses to these questions, and secondarily on their prior record as an advocate of sustainable transport. The highest ratings went to those candidates who supported our proposed motion in its entirety, and who have an established record of transport activism. However, candidates with no past record were still given high scores if they supported our motion.

In a couple of cases it is clear that candidates are running as part of a team which has a strong collective commitment to our proposals for change. This was true particularly of the Campaign for a Better City ticket, and of the Socialist ticket led by Steve Jolly.

View assessments for your ward: Nicholls | Langridge | Melba

Nicholls Ward

Paul Mees
Paul is running as part of the Campaign for a Better City group, which has a website at Paul and CBC have given a full commitment to our proposed motion, and have agreed to use our policy document It's Time To Move as their policy template. Paul also has an excellent past record campaigning for sustainable transport, including as a past president of the PTUA. Accordingly, we have given Paul and his fellow CBC candidates the maximum score: 5 buses out of 5.
Kathleen Maltzahn
Kathleen is the Greens candidate for Nicholls Ward. Kathleen is a postgraduate planning student and relatively new to transport campaigning, but has thrown her support behind our motion, subject to some minor changes of wording. This merits a high score: 4 out of 5.
Glen Kennedy
Glen is an ALP-supported candidate for Nicholls Ward. Glen is also new to transport activism but has pledged full support for our motion, so we have rated him 4 out of 5 also.
Jody Betzien
Jody is the candidate for the Socialist Alliance (not to be confused with the Socialist Party). Jody supports the principle of our motion, but has indicated that transport will not be his 'first priority' but rather a 'primary' priority along with issues such as the war in Iraq. So while Jody's commitment is genuine, it is less strong than that of our leading candidates. 3 buses out of 5.
Jackie Fristacky
Jackie is a sitting councillor at the City of Yarra, and has probably made more effort to engage with transport issues in the leadup to these elections than any other sitting councillor. Unfortunately, she has not given any commitments in response to our proposals, and has indicated she sees the best approach as 'working within the system' which in our view is unlikely to change anything. For her efforts and PT-friendly stance, we give Jackie 2 buses out of 5.
Paul D'Agostino, Jill Ferguson
Paul and Jill are also ALP-supported candidates. Unlike Glen Kennedy, however, they have not responded to our letter or made any commitments to our policies. 1 bus out of 5.

Langridge Ward

John McPherson
John is the Campaign for a Better City candidate for Langridge Ward, and a long-standing former committee member of the PTUA, including a term as Vice President. As explained in our assessment of Paul Mees, we have given the three CBC candidates our top rating of 5 out of 5.
Steve Jolly, Erinn Sales, Zachary Wright
These three candidates are running on a Socialist Party ticket. Collectively they have fully agreed to our motion, apart from wanting a 'worker' representative on the proposed Transport Policy Committee. Steve Jolly is a local transport activist of some note, having been a key figure in the campaign against the widening of Alexandra Parade in the 1990s. Taking this past record into account, we give these candidates a rating just below CBC: 4 and a half out of 5.
Sivy Orr
Sivy is one of two Greens candidate for Langridge Ward. She has agreed to our motion in full, and though new to transport activism is keen to work for clean air, less traffic and other PTUA objectives. Her commitment merits a 4 out of 5 score.
Geoff Barbour
Geoff is an ALP-supported candidate, a PTUA member of 15 years' standing, and served as a member of the Northern Central City Corridor Study Committee. Geoff has also pledged to support our motion in full, earning a rating of 4 out of 5.
Jenny Farrar
Jenny is the second Greens candidate in Langridge Ward, and a sitting councillor. Jenny has given a partial commitment to our motion, saying no to our proposal that Yarra resign from the Municipal Association of Victoria. (We maintain that the MAV is currently part of the road lobby and is only likely to change if councils resign in protest.) Jenny has agreed to the other components of our motion, so rates 3 buses out of 5.
Annabel Barbara
Annabel is an ALP-supported candidate, and has agreed to partially support our motion, saying no to resignation from the MAV. This is substantively identical to the position of Jenny Farrar above, and merits the same score: 3 buses out of 5.
Jim Bernard
Jim is an independent candidate with an interest in transport issues. He has agreed to key parts of our motion, though he disagrees with us on some other points of policy. 3 buses out of 5.
Dominik Kucera, Alice Tudehope
These candidates did not respond to our letter, and so get the default rating of 1 bus out of 5.

Melba Ward

Beth Driscoll
Beth is the Campaign for a Better City candidate for Melba Ward, and a current PTUA committee member (though she has not received special treatment on this basis). As explained in our assessment of Paul Mees, we have given the three CBC candidates our top rating of 5 out of 5.
Gurm Sekhon
Gurm is the Greens candidate for Melba Ward and a sitting councillor. Like Jenny Farrar, Gurm has partially agreed to our motion, but has opposed resigning from the Municipal Association of Victoria. Gurm accordingly receives the same rating as Jenny: 3 buses out of 5.
Ian Quick
Ian is an independent candidate with an interest in transport issues, having participated in a number of Council committees. He has a website at Ian has made supportive statements and agreed in principle with many elements of our motion, but opposes certain key components, as explained on his site. While substantive, his commitments are less strong than Gurm Sekhon's, so our rating for Ian falls slightly below that for Gurm: 2 and a half out of 5.
Judy Morton
Judy Morton is an independent candidate and a sitting councillor, with an interest in planning and development issues. She takes a supportive stance on public transport, being a non-car-owner who relies on it, but will not support our motion. In our assessment Judy lacks the commitment to change shown by other candidates, but for her positive stance we have rated her 2 buses out of 5.
Dale Smedley, Juliana Viegas-Dias, George Wright, Matthew Drummond
These candidates did not respond to our letter, and so get the default rating of 1 bus out of 5.
Kay Meadows
Kay is the current Mayor of Yarra and an ALP-supported candidate. Kay has responded negatively to our motion, and in addition has a past record of opposing changes in transport policy, particularly where they clash with the freeway-building agenda of the Bracks Government. We have reserved our special 'smogmobile' rating for this candidate.

Authorised by Tony Morton for the Public Transport Users Association, 5 November 2004
247 Flinders Lane, Melbourne - Org No. A-6256L -
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Last Modified: 15 November 2004