TENSIONS between councillors Alex Christian and Jess Jennings were very much on show on Wednesday as the two fought in open council.
Discussion of a notice of motion about Breast Screen turned somewhat personal, as Cr Jennings accused Cr Christian of using council's policies for grandstanding.
Cr Jennings, who attended the meeting via audiovisual link, also criticised the use of a notice of motion to request that council write a letter.
"It would appear that the recommendation is, essentially, after all that grandstanding, to write a letter. It seems a very inefficient use of council policy to go all to the effort of a notice of motion, which is simply to write a letter," he said.
"All you had to do was send an email around and get the mayor's approval and send a letter off three weeks ago. Why couldn't that have be done? Calling this a notice of motion is an inappropriate use of council policy mechanisms."
He then said Breast Screen should be left to make a decision regarding what is safe during COVID times.
But he did not stop there, suggesting Cr Christian's actions were hypocritical.
The comment led to the first of two point of order declarations from Cr Bobby Bourke, who said Cr Jennings was "going on again about another councillor".
Mayor Ian North advised Cr Jennings to "keep to the subject", but seconds later Cr Jennings again mentioned hypocrisy.
Cr Jennings was reminded twice more to keep to the subject.
Cr Christian hit back at him during his right of reply.
"We're talking about something as serious as women's health here with breast screens and cancer, and the hatred spewed forth by Cr Jennings towards me just never ends, Mr mayor, it wouldn't matter what I talked about, but the hate, the twisted face, the anger, the aggression, it's really quite putrid," he said.
Cr Jennings issued his own point of order, saying Cr Christian's was "totally false", forcing the mayor to intervene again.
The spat came shortly before council entered confidential discussion of two code of conduct complaints against Cr Christian, one of which was from Cr Jennings.
Speaking to the Advocate, Cr North said he had no issue with passionate debate in the chamber, but councillors had to remain respectful.
"I think it can be said, and they won't disagree, clearly there's two councillors who don't really like each other," he said.
"... I'm not to say who did what right or wrong. What I think is people need to probably be a bit more respectful of people and if you're not a fan of someone, I don't think you have to keep voicing it to people."
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can access our trusted content: