With Bunbury City Council Local Government Elections closing on October 19, the South Western Times offered each candidate the opportunity to tell readers why they should vote for them.
Questions we asked:
1. Why have you decided to run for council?
2. What is the most important issue facing Bunbury and why?
3. In one sentence, why should people vote for you?
Ballot papers have been sent out and need to be returned before October 19.
1. I think that I can provide some solutions and help with the problems in our city. We have councillors and a Mayor who are good people, but I think some of them are too set in their ways. I can provide a fresh.
2. Waste of money which Bunbury does not have. Turning Bunbury into the tourist mecca will be my equal priority.
3. I am for equality of all electors – willing to listen to their voices.
1. I have decided to run because we need councillors who are committed to the city, have the time available to research each issue, and will act independently. I believe that I have the ability and communication skills to be an effective advocate for the ratepayers and their best interests.
2. The most important issue facing Bunbury is how to better determine on what ratepayers want their money to be spent.
Communication is key to determining the direction to be taken for future generations.
More accessible electors’ and council meetings, information sessions and expos could improve the information council receives from its constituents.
3. I hope people will see fit to vote for me because I have the time, ability, experience and common sense to be a conscientious and valuable member of a team, which should be just as interested in the city’s core business of roads, paths and parks as in improving the environment for business and visitors.
1. Tired of being one of the complaining ones and not doing anything positive about it. Being on council one can contribute to the positive future of the city.
2. Get business going again. Too many empty shops. Fill shops and get foot traffic back into the centre of the city. We need to get cruise ships into the port, tourists from all over into the city and the train station into the city centre.
3. For the past 36 years, I have run a number of successful businesses and I believe that this experience can assist in forward-thinking and planning on council.
1. I believe I can make a positive contribution to the council. I want Bunbury to be seen as a place where people invest, live and visit. I am ready for the challenges of a councillor and will commit my time and energy to see positive outcomes for Bunbury.
2. Job opportunities, cost of living pressures, funding of projects, road safety, public transport. Some of these can be addressed at the local government level, others need lobbying to State and Federal governments.
3. I have the professional skill and work ethic and believe I can contribute in a positive and proactive manner to improve Bunbury.
1. I believe I can make a difference. I have watched for many years as council has had to backflip on one decision after another, and despite community consultation chooses to either ignore or overthink the community’s requests.
2. The most important issue facing Bunbury is being lost as the city is bypassed on the road to somewhere. We need to make Bunbury the place to come to, with the BORR project starting soon, we have to make Bunbury a stand out destination, bring the train station back into the city. We must entice more good quality retailers into the CBD and build a sea pool at the Back Beach.
3. I have been active in the community, fighting for the return of free parking and questioning the council’s decision to proceed with a feasibility study on the cultural precinct when the city’s own report stated that the community did not support this project.
1. I believe our suburbs are under-represented at council and there is a disconnect between residents and the City of Bunbury. Many residents don't know who their current councillors are, and I will work to bring elected members closer to the public.
2. Council needs to be more savvy about which projects Bunbury chooses to proceed with. We need to entice tourists and residents into the CBD and to enjoy our leisure and entertainment areas. Ratepayers want to see better value for their money.
3. I am dedicated to the community's interest and will work hard to advocate on behalf of all residents
1. I was born here and grew up hearing “the boom is coming”. I’m not sure if the boom ever came, but I’d like to see if we can bring that boom on now.
2. Lack of self confidence – for years we’ve allowed other towns to give us a reputation not of our own choosing. We all know it’s a great place to live, work and do business, but it’s time for our 30,000 residents to start talking things up.
3. I’m focussed on making Bunbury prosper, by being sensible, strategic, confident and innovative.
1. To remove the disconnection between the people who govern and the people that live in the city. This disconnection is the head of a systemic problem that has led to a community that instead of engaging before a project is rolled out, giving their input and moulding it into something the majority accepts and appreciates, we have a community that is critical and unappreciative of projects and plans when it’s too late, as they are already complete.
2. Its image.To anyone who lives here, we can attest that the city is and has so much more to offer, with some amazing events ... the city needs to embody the idea of holding events, to the point of something big planned or supported every weekend of the year and then promote it as such.
3. Bunbury council needs a fresh injection that will come from passionate members of the community that are both young and old, that are from all walks of life, and with new ideas and different sets of opinions – I know I can be a valued part of the change that is well overdue.
1. Frustrated by lack of representation on the council from working class suburbs. I feel that I could contribute a fair bit and add some much needed diversity.
2. I’d say it’s the continued atomisation of the community. People not knowing or caring about their neighbours, alienated from their street, suburb and greater area, alienated from their fellow man.That’s why I think it’s such an important issue and my main policies, ideas, values are all about establishing meaningful community.
3. I’m not another suit, because I approach things in a unique and fresh way and because I will do my absolute best to shake things up in council.
1. I believe we need to be the change not just talk about it. Everyone wants someone else to go fix the problems but few “leaders” are willing to give up their agendas and genuinely pursue greater good for their communities.
2. We must completely eradicate what I call an “us and them” culture. I've seen it in many workplaces, in hospitals, sporting clubs, in churches and in council too. It’s divisive, legalistic and tears the community apart and the sooner we realise we are all in this together, the sooner we will see great blessing and prosperity for Bunbury.
3. That’s up to the ratepayer to decide.
1. A natural progression from my community work and engagement with council. The experience I have gained will make me an effective community advocate on council.
2. Jobs and opportunity – I’m concerned about our community vibrancy, we need our local economy stimulated to assist jobs and small businesses.
3. I don’t walk away from hard issues and I get the job done.
1. The key single issue is the mismanagement of council planning services. It must have a dedicated planning committee, which brings a sense of community ownership, via councillors to the directions being taken by the city. Good planning allows for the dynamism of a city’s inhabitants to show through, it doesn’t in Bunbury, and that needs to change.
2. In short, Bunbury needs to start believing in itself again. Bunbury needs to be allowed to expand, and should not be artificially or prematurely closed down. Bunbury has always had an enviably diverse economy and should be in a better position than it currently is.
3. If elected, I would challenge the current system in well researched and constructive ways to the benefit of Bunbury residents.
1. I believe I have the experience and skills to further contribute to the growth and development of Bunbury as one of the best major regional centres in Australia. My desire to help achieve this has strongly motivated me to nominate.
2. The development of Bunbury for a 21st century outlook that attracts tourists and businesses so we can maintain a vibrant strong economy and community. Ensuring the Bunbury Outer Ring Road is completed with the interests of the community in mind. That businesses are given incentives to remain in the CBD so they are in a better position to compete against online retail.
3. My commitment to being a councillor is to the people of Bunbury, who can rely on me to listen to their concerns and make decisions for the good of the Bunbury community.
1. I grew up in a low socio-economic area of Los Angeles and those experiences are what drive me to make an impact every day of my life, regardless of where I reside. Upon moving to Bunbury in 2017, I instantly fell in love with the city and the lifestyle Bunbury has to offer but it was the birth of my son (Marlow) in 2018 that developed a desire in me to contribute to Bunbury.
2. The cohesion of council leadership and I feel there is a critical component that underpins this – improving the balance between bold, strategic and empathetic leadership with connection, compassion, and support for the community. From exports to tourism to sports to arts to local affairs, Bunbury’s diversity is a luxury but there is a real need to keep Bunbury relevant and a destination of choice to live, visit, and invest. This requires a strong and cohesive council.
3. I ask the people of Bunbury to vote for me as someone who will bring a fresh approach, diversity and youthfulness to the role.
1. To moderate the extremes and to progress development in business, residency, recreation and tourism. Improve methods of communication and engagement with the community.
2. Economic malaise – development in the Bunbury area is progressing, but very slowly. We need to work together to find and act on solutions that will increase our population, promote our city for tourism and bring new business investment to town sooner rather than later.
3. I wish to continue being an effective and productive team member of our council and will execute my elected member responsibilities conscientiously with knowledge, pride and passion that will bring positive outcomes for all.
1. I have always enjoyed challenges. Sixteen years ago, I started a business here in Bunbury – Taffys. Using innovation, good customer relations and a quality product, the business has thrived in a tough economic environment.
Being on council is no different. One sees issues that affect the everyday lives of people in our city and I try to use the same principles that I have used in my lifetime. Innovation, good customer relations and knowing how to stay within a budget. Bunbury is at a point in its development where crucial decisions need to be made.
2. Over the past ten years we have seen a revolution in the retail sector of our economy as well as the rest of the nation. Not having a job can be extremely demoralising, leading to many other social problems including depression, drug use and crime. This is where our city needs to work together to find innovative solutions.
3. I’m a person that stays positive about life, our future, and our city and isn’t that what we want for Bunbury?