Council: Byron Shire Council
Town/city: Brunswick Heads
Number of years in shire/LGA: 15 years and 7 months
Current councillor: Yes (since March 2004)
Clubs/sports/interests: Family and grandchildren
Are you a member of a political party or an organised ‘ticket’?
While I am not a member of a political party, I am part of an organised ticket. It is my personal belief that there is no place for party politics at a local council level.
I am a member of a team comprising: Chris Cubis, Alan Hunter and Donna Hammond.
I am married with 10 grandchildren, and I left Sydney to come to Brunswick and run the newsagency for 6½ years with my husband. We fell in love with Bruns then and love it now.
2 What has motivated you to stand?
I have been encouraged by many in the community to stand again for a third term. There is a real need for change in the council and the hope is that we (my team) can achieve that.
3 What is your vision for the shire/LGA?
My vision for the shire is to have a diverse body of councillors and staff who can work cohesively together and improve the quality of life for our community.
This means better management of funds, fewer legal expenses, and better and safer roads and the provision of more basic needs, eg footpaths and lighting.
These are a few of the essential requirements of council that I feel have been neglected in recent terms.
4 In your opinion, how can council best balance the need for further residential development with the need to preserve the local environment?
Residential development is not something to automatically shy away from but, at the same time, we need to have a vision for how we want the shire to look and what we’re prepared to accept as a community. That said, I feel the attitude taken so far to any form of development (even basic works on personal residential properties) has been too negative. One thing is for sure, though: any development must be complemented by the provision of sufficient infrastructure, such as good road networks and adequate drainage, in order to be sustainable.
5 What particular issues do you feel strongly about?
Along with the other candidates on my ticket, I am very concerned about the E2 and E3 zonings in the draft LEP, as they will take away a great deal of power from rural property owners. I think we need a more collaborative approach to protecting our environment, rather than council dictating the terms.
I feel very strongly about the lack of continuity of council staff including the continuing revolving door of the general manager’s office, which in turn has a major impact on the history of things like notices of motion and subsequent recommendations that are not able to be acted upon because of the lack of history.