Media Release: Shire of Dundas addresses incorrect information regarding the GP services in Norseman and the in-principle support of the purchase of Norseman IGA.

Published on Saturday, 10 December 2022 at 5:13:53 PM

Media Release

Shire of Dundas addresses incorrect information regarding the GP services in Norseman and the in-principle support of the purchase of Norseman IGA.


Shire of Dundas Council wish to address the incorrect information currently circulating Norseman social media channels.


Norseman IGA

The purchase of the IGA is not a foregone conclusion.  There is still a process to go through, not least part of which is determining community sentiment through the current community consultation occurring via the Community Feedback survey and the community meeting being held at the Norseman Town Hall, 13th December 4:30pm.

 Should the Council agree to the business scope that is to be presented, Council will be applying to the Western Australian Treasury Corporation for a loan for the purchase of the Norseman IGA.  The purchase does not relate solely to the supermarket, there are several other components included.  The Council Resolution can be found in the unconfirmed minutes on the Shire website,

 Norseman GP Services

The purchase of the Norseman IGA has no effect on the Shire’s ability to pay the current Doctor.  There is no issue with the service Dr. Rowlands has provided over the years.  The issue is that Dr. Rowlands has asked to vary the current arrangement, and this means there is a higher amount of money involved. Therefore, under the Shire’s procurement policy and State Government legislation, the Council must go out to tender.  Council cannot, having already set the budget for the year, produce extra money without the appropriate process.  The issue therefore lies with the Doctor making a commercial decision as to whether he is prepared to continue providing a service at the current rate or put in an expression of interest where he can outline his alternate proposal.  This is the Doctor’s decision. 

To be clear Dundas Council has not requested the Doctor close his practice, merely that Council cannot just accede to his request for extra funding due to the amount involved and the legislation Council must operate within. The current budget clearly shows support for the Doctor Service in our Community.

The Doctor has not given notice to the Shire.  The Shire President spoke with Dr. Rowlands last week where he advised he has been telling people that he is closing for the Christmas period (23/12 – 03/01), and that he is then coming back to close his practice. 

There is no reason as far as the Council is concerned for him to take this course of action.  The decisions he makes in relation to his personal business are entirely up to him.  During the conversation he was advised he is more than welcome to put in an expression of interest, and he confirmed that he would do that.

The Shire of Dundas has contingency plans in place should the Doctor ultimately decide to close his Norseman practice.

In relation to the Norseman IGA survey, you can access it on the Shire of Dundas website,  on the front page of the website  . Again, the purchase of the IGA does not have any bearing on the Shire’s ability to pay the Doctor.


Enquiries, CEO Peter Fitchat mob 0429 391 291