Council’s position on geographical namesPosted Monday 18 November 2013
At Council’s meeting held on 12 November 2013 it was resolved that Council advise the Geographical Names Board that it no longer supports the proposal to adopt geographical names, as advertised recently by the Board.
This resolution was passed unanimously following consideration of a Mayoral Minute which is reproduced below:
In November 2012, Council resolved to ask the Geographical Names Board to reinstate the use of historic geographic names, Balmoral, Beauty Point and Clifton Gardens. Later the Council added Mosman Bay.
Traditionally residents could choose whether to use the historic name or simply Mosman, in both cases with the 2088 postcode.
The intent of the proposal was simply to bring back this choice: to allow residents to choose between the historic name and Mosman. No one would be forced to adopt a name that he or she did not wish to.
On Thursday 7 November 2013, in response to Council questioning, the Geographical Names Board advised Council that it does not allow this choice. If an area is renamed, residents of that area are required to adopt that address albeit that all areas would share a 2088 postcode.
This substantially changes the nature of the proposal and is contrary to the intentions of all Councillors, who I know had no plan to force anyone to change their address.
Not surprisingly, many residents object to being forced to change their address and indeed to a forced division of Mosman.
If the GNB constraint had been known at the time of the Council resolution, I doubt that Council would have adopted the resolution.
The GNB has further advised that if Council recommends against the proposal following the public consultation the proposal will not proceed.
Given the changed circumstances as well as the public response during the consultation process, I recommend that Council advises the Geographical Names Board that Council no longer supports the proposal.
On behalf of Council I apologise for the confusion that has arisen.