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Bloc tactics at council meeting

Councillor Marcelle Hoff has been elected Deputy Lord Mayor at a meeting dominated by Clover Moore's Independent team reports Alex McDonald in City News on 30th September 2008.

The council meeting was the first opportunity for Clover Moore's five-person bloc to to take advantage of their outright majority. In an early show of strength the group of aligned independents outvoted their Labor, Liberal and Greens colleagues to snare every single committee position.

The Lord Mayor automatically retains the chair of each council committee, with the following deputy chairs elected: Finance, Properties and Tenders Committee - Cr Robert Kok; Environment and Heritage Committee - Cr Phillip Black; Cultural and Community Services Committee - Cr Marcelle Hoff; Planning Policy - Cr John McInerney; Major Development Assessment - Cr Di Tornai; Development Assessment - Cr Black; Traffic Committee - Cr McInerney.

Council also elected councillors McInerney and Black to sit on the Central Sydney Planning Committee which considers development applications worth more than $50 million.

In one of the few unscripted moments at this week's meeting, lone Liberal councillor Shayne Mallard reprimanded the Lord Mayor for rushing her Sustainable Sydney 2030 plan through council. Cr Mallard said the plan was used as an election prop.

Cr Mallard also said there was a lack of "reasonable debate" over the plan, and that the Sydney Chamber of Commerce had "grave concerns" about its impact on the city's finances and jobs.

As the new Deputy Lord Mayor Cr Hoff is entitled to 10 per cent of Clover Moore's mayoral salary. Cr Hoff is a long-standing member of Lord Mayor Moore's Independent team and is known for her work with the Friends of Pyrmont Point community group. She was unopposed in her bid to replace the outgoing Labor deputy Tony Pooley.

Source City News: