A year off: what has Perth's celebrity Lord Mayor Basil Zempilas achieved? (2023)



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Eleven days into the reign of Perth's famous mayor, Basil Zebila, he made national headlines.

Western Australia's answer to Eddie 'Everywhere' McGuire as one of showbiz's busiest workers sparked controversy in October 2020 when hetransphobic commentson a morning radio show he co-hosted.

Just weeks before the annual Pride march, backlash was swift and the response from LGBTQIA+ Perth was scathing when TransFolk of WA president Hunter Gurevich said the advocacy group would not accept an apology from Zempilas until he "deals with the damage who may have his comments ready".

A year later, the City of Perth became the lead local authority in Washington with an LGBTQIA+ advisory group and a three-year action plan that includes a comprehensive review of its community services and a commitment to increase awareness and the number of toilets in the community organization, public spaces and new constructions.

(Video) Demands for Perth Lord Mayor to resign I 9News Perth

Sitting atop the Council House on the roof of St George's, Zebilas says he is still listening and improving.

“[The past year] has been a time of incredible learning and growth,” he said.

“I mean I was blue and out of something you know, out of something that was wrong on my part… I was incredibly lucky that they [the LGBTQIA+ community] were willing to open their hearts and minds to me. .


“They told me I was wrong, I knew I was wrong.

"They were good enough to allow the city of Perth and me in particular to travel with them and I feel very lucky and very grateful."

A year off: what has Perth's celebrity Lord Mayor Basil Zempilas achieved? (1)

Following Zempilas' comments last year, Perth resident and former WA lesbian and gay transporter David Goncalves and former Pride WA president Paul Hunt have been regular attendees at board meetings.

The pair bombarded the board with public questions to go beyond the apology and bring about systemic change within the organization.

Both are now co-chairs of the LGBTQIA+ advisory group established by the City of Perth.

said Mr. GoncalvesToday, in their personal capacity outside of their advisory group role, who while dealing with the backlash at the time, hoped to find a way to make the council more responsive to community attitudes.


"We are convinced that if elected officials were more in touch with the diverse communities they hope to represent, many problems could be avoided simply because there would be understanding and alignment among all involved," he said.

“Even when things were close to tipping point, I was amazed that the board stood up and supported us when the whole community demanded and expected real consultation, real processes and real participation.

“With the delivery of the 34 recommendations of the LGBTIQA+ plan, we hope that it is part of this ongoing journey, not a forget-and-change approach.

“With 2022 on the horizon, I think next year will be a real test year to see, after the legs and the recent election, if the board can pull it off and do it in a way that engages the community, to commits and participates in all stages. holds of the decision. - do the procedure."

In his speech to launch the plan, Mr Hunt said it was proof local government had the capacity to listen.

"I must say that it is right that the mayor, who was once on such difficult ground, is now proud to support such concrete actions," he said.

"Actions that we, the community, shape and execute through self-empowerment."

(Video) Lord Mayor Tropical Cyclone Seroja Appeal


Only 13 months left with many challenges

During local elections, Zebilas said "if you want a job done, give it to a busy man," when asked how he would balance being mayor with his work commitments.

And he was busy.

On weekdays, Zebilas wakes up at 4:15 am. and heads to Triple M for his morning radio show, which runs from 5.30am. to 9:00 a.m.

Then it's straight to the town hall until 4:30pm, when it's off to Seven to read the sports report, except on Tuesday nights when there are public meetings and public meetings.

"I'm very fortunate to have an incredible relationship with my primary employer," Zebilas says.

“They are encouraging and understand that there would be an impact on how much I could contribute to Seven and that they would have to be generous and flexible with their time.

(Video) WA’s hard border a ‘real double-edged sword’, says Perth mayor


“It's interesting because it was also at a time when there was no travel, and one of the things that will soon come to light is the importance of travel in furthering the defense of my city.

"And so I'm thinking about how we can structure things so that I can do that when I have to go away for a week or two."

A year off: what has Perth's celebrity Lord Mayor Basil Zempilas achieved? (2)

After newscasts, Zebilas and his wife Amy often run to official events.

Zebilas said he couldn't have been mayor if his family hadn't been on board.

For years, the media personality flew to Sydney every weekend to do morning TV.

Now back in Perth, he says the main difference now is that he can spend weekends with his children and if there are events, they will come.


"It's an experience for the whole family and I feel incredibly lucky for myself and my family to be exposed to these kinds of amazing opportunities and learning," she said.

"We're going to look back. No matter how long this takes, we're going to look back and go wow. That was amazing."

Although Zebilas combines family and professional life, the city faces many challenges.

(Video) Perth Skyworks event to go ahead as planned

Perth has historically had higher rates of commercial vacancy compared to other Australian CBDs and the global phenomenon of city centers being evacuated to the suburbs has also affected WA.

The medium-term increase in homelessness remains a concern and the increasing violence in the Northbridge entertainment district, with recent stabbings and other violent attacks, are visceral and complex issues.

But Zebilas has fulfilled several of his campaign promises, although many initiatives by the state government are being implemented to varying degrees, and the rest are still pending.

Foot traffic and retail spending are up on last year and Zempilas has a few wins, including the city hosting its own AFL parade when the sports body didn't host one for this year's grand final.

The 'People's Parade' has been the CBD's biggest Friday crowd for the past two years.

City-owned parking lots are also more full than they were before the pandemic and have seen zero percentage increases in two years.

Another taxpayer victory was the messy WACA case, in which the city refused to pay for the upkeep of a new public swimming pool as part of a sports ground refurbishment. The state government sought a third party to manage the water reserves. to propose.

A homeless women's shelter has been set up, though it was in the works ahead of last year's local election, and Zebilas says he hopes the $4.2 million the city will pay the state to investigate the local government will go toward safety initiatives around the CBD.

As for next steps, Zebilas said the transition period with opening WA's borders to the rest of the country would be complicated.

A year off: what has Perth's celebrity Lord Mayor Basil Zempilas achieved? (3)

“The challenge now is when Sydney is open, Melbourne is open, Brisbane is open, Adelaide is open, why is Perth attractive? What can we do to bring people here?' he said.

Zempilas aims to name Perth the City of Lights on February 19 with a night-time illuminated drone show, then a re-enactment of the events when astronaut John Glenn, who coined the slogan, flew over the city 60 years ago, the February. 20.

"I want us to show the rest of the country and the rest of the world what we stand for and make noise that we can fool ourselves with," he said.

With no sign of a lack of energy, Zebilas, after a year in office, said he would like to run for mayor again when his term ends.

"It is now my intention to race again in 2023," he said.

“Well three years – I'm feeling a bit short now that I've won the election, normally that means four years.

"My intention is definitely to start running again. I love the role and I'd like to see a lot of what we started, I'd like to see it finished."


What has Basil Zempilas done for Perth? ›

Basil Zempilas was elected Lord Mayor of the City of Perth in October 2020. He became the 18th Lord Mayor, joining Local Government after a successful and ongoing broadcasting career in television and radio. Basil is also a regular columnist in The West Australian with is Australia's second oldest newspaper.

What does the Lord Mayor of Perth do? ›

The special role of the Lord Mayor is defined in section 10 of the City of Perth Act, listing the role of the Lord Mayor as follows: To act as an ambassador for the City in hosting international delegations and attending local, regional, state, national and international civic functions and events.

Why is Basil Zempilas famous? ›

Basil Zempilas was elected Lord Mayor of the City of Perth in October 2020, the 18th Lord Mayor of Perth and the first following a three year period without elected leadership. He began his television career at Channel 7 in Perth in 1994 and since 2001 has been the station's Senior Sports Presenter.

How much does the mayor of Perth earn? ›

Elected Members attendance and allowance
Lord Mayoral meeting attendance fee$48,704 per annum
Council Member (including Deputy Lord Mayor) meeting attendance fee$32,470 per annum
Lord Mayoral allowance$137,268 per annum
Deputy Lord Mayoral allowance$34,317 per annum
1 more row

What is Basil Zempilas doing now? ›

Since 2012, Zempilas has been part of the Seven Network's expanded AFL broadcast team.

How many games did Basil Zempilas play for West Perth? ›

ZEMPILAS, Basil Anthony
5 more rows

Do you get paid to be Lord Mayor? ›

The tribunal also gave special consideration to the Lord Mayor, who will now receive up to $175,000 in allowances and sitting fees. The allowances will be determined by a salary band system, similar to that used elsewhere by the government.

What powers does the Lord Mayor have? ›

The Lord Mayor is the Chair of Council meetings

This is a legal provision of the Local Government Act 1972, enabling Council business to be carried out in an orderly and proper manner, having regard to statutory obligations and the Constitution of the Council for the conduct of meetings.

What is the purpose of the Lord Mayor? ›

The role of the Lord Mayor includes: leading decision making at council meetings. representing the views of the council and local community. hosting civic and ceremonial events.

Does basil still work for Channel 7? ›

Basil Leaves Channel 7 News after 21 Years.

What radio station is Basil Zempilas on? ›

Zempilas, who has shared breakfast with Xavier Ellis since the launch of Triple M Perth in late 2020, told listeners this morning that extra commitments in his other roles have pressured him into leaving early.

Who is the Lord Mayor of Perth? ›

Lord Mayor Basil Zempilas

He also hosts the Triple M Breakfast show on Perth radio.

Does Perth have the most millionaires? ›

Perth is the fourth largest city in Australia. It is also regarded as the capital of Western Australia. The city has the highest number of self-made millionaires in the whole world.

How much does the mayor of Australia get paid? ›

From 18 December 2022, the Lord Mayor receives $248,941 the Deputy Lord Mayor receives $124,470 and councillors receive $56,346. This includes an amount equivalent to the Superannuation Guarantee.

What is the average salary in Perth WA? ›

$81,546 (AUD)/yr

The average salary for jobs in Perth, Australia is $81,546 (AUD) per year or an hourly rate of $39 (AUD).

Who is the CEO of the City of Perth? ›

*Michelle Reynolds took up the role of Chief Executive Officer of the City of Perth in August 2020. Prior to this, she held the positions of Executive Director at Rottnest Island Authority and Chief Executive Officer at WorkCover WA.

Why is it called Lord Mayor? ›

Lord mayor is a title of a mayor of what is usually a major city in a Commonwealth realm, with special recognition bestowed by the sovereign. However, the title or an equivalent is present in other countries, including forms such as "high mayor".

How do you address the Lord Mayor of Perth? ›

Use the honorific 'Ms', 'Mr', 'Mx', 'Mrs' or 'Dr' with the names of the lord mayors of Adelaide and Perth.

What is the history of Perth Football Club? ›

League formed 19th March 1922 as the Mercantile Football Association at the instigation of WANFL Secretary W.R. (Billy) Orr. Six senior mens teams played three matches on the 6th May 1922 at the Showgrounds, Zoo Grounds and Victoria Park.” “Renamed Perth Districts Football Association.

How old is the West Perth Football club? ›

Follow West Perth Football Club from it's foundation in 1885 through 78 years of playing at Leederville Oval before moving to Arena Joondalup.

How long can you be Lord Mayor for? ›

Lord Mayors are elected for one-year terms; today by custom they do not serve more than once. Numerous individuals have served multiple terms in office, most recently William Russell in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic.

Who pays for the Lord Mayor's show? ›

Naturally, the Lord Mayor's Show is has little to do with business. London's corporations may pay for it, but it is a show for the people. In today's Lord Mayor's Show, the new mayor rides in his ceremonial carriage at the head of a long procession of vehicles, floats and marching bands.

What's the difference between a mayor and a Lord Mayor? ›

The Lord Mayor is a different role to the elected Mayor of Bristol. The Lord Mayor: is the first Citizen of the City and County of Bristol and is elected by other councillors unlike the Mayor who's elected directly by the citizens of Bristol. serves a one year term, the Mayor of Bristol serves for four years.

What do you call a female Lord Mayor? ›

The usual verbal forms of address are:

The Lord Mayor only: “Lord Mayor” (the older form, “My Lord Mayor”, is also correct) The Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress: “Lord Mayor, Lady Mayoress” The Lady Mayoress only: “Lady Mayoress” The Deputy Lord Mayor: “Deputy Lord Mayor”

Why does a Lord Mayor wear a chain? ›

The Lord Mayor's chain of office

The chain was to be worn on municipal occasions to dignify the Mayor. The chain was in a ribbon pattern, tied by a medallion.

How powerful is the mayor of DC? ›

The mayor has the powers to either approve or veto bills passed by the District of Columbia Council; to submit drafts of legislation to the council; and to propose federal legislation or action directly to the president and/or Congress of the United States.

What does the mayor do all day? ›

Common responsibilities for a mayor include: Attending town council meetings and proposing and debating initiatives. Casting votes, potentially in a tie-breaking capacity, at town council meetings. Speaking with constituents at meetings, their office or in public, answering questions and listening to concerns.

Why is Basil Zempilas leaving radio? ›

Zempilas quit the job to focus on his role as Perth Lord Mayor and his other media commitments.

Did Basil Zempilas play sport? ›

Zempilas played for the West Perth Football Club playing as a ruckman and forward, but retired due to injury. Zempilas played 24 games in the West Australian Football League between 1990 and 1994, kicking 25 goals including kicking 5 in a semi final in 1993.

Is Basil out of season? ›

Since basil plants do not survive winter, basil can only be a year-round outdoor plant in warm climates where temperatures do not go below freezing. In climates with frost during the winter, new basil seeds or plants need to be planted each spring.

What happened to 92.9 Perth? ›

On 19 January 2015, Southern Cross Austereo rebranded 92.9 as Hit 92.9. On 1 December 2020, Hit 92.9 relaunched as Triple M Perth, joining the Triple M network and adopting a mainstream rock music format. The Hit Network affiliation was switched to sister station Mix 94.5.

Why is Basil leaving Triple M? ›

He told listeners that his Lord Mayor role has come with further commitments and travel, requiring more flexibility. "Clearly with my other roles, there has been an increase in my travel commitments that i'm required to fulfil."

Does 700WLW have an FM station? ›

Description: Listen to 700WLW for Cincinnati's best news & talk radio station. Hear news, talk, traffic and weather plus much more on TuneIn!

Is Basil the mayor of Perth? ›

Welcome to the news and updates page for the Lord Mayor of the City of Perth, Basil Zempilas.

Who is the editor of The Sunday Times Perth? ›

Anthony DeCeglie - Editor in Chief of West Australian Newspapers - Seven West Media | LinkedIn.

What is coffee with the Council City of Perth? ›

The City provides the opportunity for members of the public to ask the Lord Mayor Basil Zempilas and Councillors questions relating to Council in the form of Coffee with the Council sessions.

How much does the mayor of Fremantle get paid? ›

How much your mayor gets paid
FremantleBrad Pettitt$135,910
JoondalupAlbert Jacob$135,910
KwinanaCarol Adams$135,910
MelvilleRussell Aubrey$135,910
21 more rows

What is a mayor in Australia? ›

The mayor presides over regular General Council Meetings, where councillors debate and vote on motions, and manages the conduct of participants at these council meetings. When the mayor is unavailable, a deputy mayor can act as the mayor. The deputy mayor is elected by a majority of the councillors.

Who is Perth now owned by? ›

Owned since 1955 by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp Australia and corporate predecessors, the newspaper and its website PerthNow, were sold to Seven West Media in 2016.

Who is the technology editor of The Sunday Times? ›

technology business editor. Katie Prescott is technology business editor at The Times and a weekly columnist for the newspaper's award-winning business section.

Who is the arts editor of The Sunday Times? ›

arts and leisure managing editor, the sunday times. David Mills has been at The Sunday Times since 1989, working mostly on Culture.


1. Home ownership no longer 'as important' for young people
(Sky News Australia)
2. NT’s gender policy will make things ‘a little easier’ for people struggling with identity
(Sky News Australia)
3. Opening submission, Inquiry into the City of Perth
(Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries)
4. It's being hailed as WA's answer to the Sydney Opera House, an Aboriginal Cultural Centre to be
(9News Perth)
5. Perth's first female Lord Mayor
(The LEAP Foundation)
6. How to Transform and Make Perth a Better Place | #hellodarlink | 2020
(Hello Darlink!)


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