Meet the candidates vying for your vote this Saturday

THE Gladstone Regional Council by-election will be held this Saturday.

Voting is compulsory and polling booths will operate from 8am to 6pm.

There are 17 polling booths across the Gladstone Region with Chanel College offering a "flyer-free" booth.

Residents wanting to vote early can visit 132 Goondoon St between 9am and 5pm until Thursday and between 9am and 6pm on Friday. A full list of booth locations is at By-Elections-and-Ballots/ gladstone-regional-council -by-election

Colin Burke

Colin Burke has been confirmed he will be standing for Council.
Colin Burke has been confirmed he will be standing for Council. Matt Taylor GLA071018COUN

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background:

I have been in business in the region for nearly 20 years, with business in Gladstone and up until recently Calliope and Tannum Sands.

During this time I have been actively involved in the community with Rotary, GAPL (as board member then chairman), Salvation Army, Ubobo Country Campout for the last nine years, Gladstone Country Music Festival, Communities for Children, Anglicare, Relay for Life and more.

This has given me a great understanding at a community level and I know that I will be able to be a voice for the whole of the region within the council.

Which suburb or township do you live in?

West Gladstone. When I first came here I lived in Boyne Island for a number of years.

Why did you decide to nominate?

I really care for the community and because of my background in the community I feel I have a lot that I can offer to the council and a lot I can give back.

What issues do you intend to focus on if elected?

I'm hearing a lot about how our elderly need more support and facilities in the whole region.

We ran an article on our Facebook page regarding painting the silos at the harbour and had 10,000 responses.

This would be a great tourism project for the whole region.

Jobs will be a big focus - attracting industry to give us more jobs.

The Port Access Road will be one of my priorities and I have a lot of ideas for the Boyne Tannum area as well as the Boyne Valley and the Agnes, Baffle Creek and Miriam Vale regions.

I get asked a lot if I am connected with a political party.

I believe there is no place in local government for politics.

It can be detrimental to the ratepayers of the region, so I am self-funded and not connected with any political party.

Lynette Dahl

Lynette Dahl, councillor candidate 2016
Lynette Dahl, councillor candidate 2016

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background:

Myself and my family were born and raised in Gladstone. I come from an employee relations/human resources background with a proven ability to negotiate positive outcomes for all parties. I am currently working in recruitment in the disability/aged care sector.

Which suburb or township do you live in?

Tannum Sands for the past eight years and previously Gladstone.

Why did you decide to nominate?

The Gladstone Region is my home. Gladstone has been very good to myself and my family and I am determined to give back to it by being the type of councillor that will respond to you, drive the miles and help you feel the true ownership of the region that you deserve.

What issues do you intend to focus on if elected?

The Gladstone Region needs to give people a reason to stay. We are losing too many good citizens to other regions due to facilities and care services being more elsewhere. I would like to focus on attracting more aged and disability care services to the region. With facilities like retirement villages and in-home services come many benefits financially and emotionally: more employment, more sustained custom for small businesses and more long-term services.

If people believe they can stay in the region long-term they will invest in the region physically, emotionally and financially. They volunteer more, set down roots and invest in their neighbourhood.

I would like to give a voice to the areas outside of Gladstone City. Consultation with Agnes Water/1770/Deepwater over the proposed link road, facilities and roads in the Boyne Valley, neglected areas in Benaraby and Mt Larcom.

I will also be pushing for a public swimming facility for the Boyne/Tannum area, a facility that is long past due. I would also like to investigate the idea of voluntary green waste bins for the use of those who do not own a trailer or ute.

Mark McLachlan

Mark McLachlan is standing in the upcoming council election.
Mark McLachlan is standing in the upcoming council election. Mike Richards GLA131018CNCL

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background:

Hello, I'm Mark McLachlan. As a farmer and volunteer building projects in my community, I offer a new, practical and experienced perspective for the council.

I hold a basic premise about people's expectations of the things local government should do.

Quite simply, people want council to work on fixing local problems effectively.

Which suburb or township do you live in?

I live in the Boyne Valley.

Why did you decide to nominate?

I nominated for the council to contribute to balanced, logical decision-making to fix local problems. The problem is always money. It is also about choice.

Choices allocating scarce resources to fix problems is what being a councillor is all about.

What issues do you intend to focus on if elected?

I will focus on local issues such as:

Mt Larcom wants better sewerage that doesn't stink from time to time. The water supply is an ongoing and expensive problem.

Agnes Water and 1770 need better parking and turning areas for cars with vans, and a good fish-cleaning facility.

People in Gladstone, especially those getting on in years want to see the kerbside clean-up program run yearly, the coal dust gone and better tasting water.

There are perennial and ongoing requests for wheelie bins to be placed in many areas of the region, with sound and valid reasons to do so.

Many areas of the region want more bitumen on their roads. A good example is Blackmans Gap Rd from the Boyne Valley to Miriamvale. Baffle Creek wants the right decision made about an access road.

The list goes on and on. I won't promise to fix them all, there is no magic wand.

I will promise to have a red hot go at contributing to the council making better decisions. Some different choices will have to and should be made.

I also promise not to waffle on about fixing things outside the purview of local government, such as health and main roads.

Sue Beardmore

Council nominee Sue Beardmore.
Council nominee Sue Beardmore. Mike Richards GLA181018CNCL

TELL us a little bit about yourself and your background:

I am the eldest daughter of the late Geoff and Mrs Audrey Breslin, a proud Star of the Sea Primary and local state high student. My forte being music, such deep and long-term study (AMusA Piano) also has the reward of being contemplative.

Alongside my husband, Bryan, I have brought up two (now mature) offspring and have also shared the responsibilities associated with being successful retailers (food and furniture).

Which suburb or township do you live in?

We live in that wide-street, well-lit, very quiet suburb of Barney Point. Gone are the days of the Labour Day picnics, chilled watermelon, Peters Ice Cream buckets and the tug-o-wars but the people and the beach are still beautiful.

Why did you decide to nominate?

The decision to nominate was immediate. One learns so much doing community work. Over an extended period of time as secretary of an incorporated organisation, I have successfully developed finely honed skills in relation to making the case for or against community-related proposals.

As a family we enjoyed some treechange years to coincide with our children's secondary/tertiary years and these skills were used (alongside others) to develop the area from purely rural to rural-residential. Reticulated water, green space, school development, war memorial, sport and recreation facilities, school music program (personal legacy), the list goes on.

What issues do you intend to focus on if elected?

The above skill as outlined is a very important one. Sometimes when a dollar figure and the projected future job possibilities (claims) are taken out of the "thinking process", it is revealed that there is no benefit at all to the local community in the immediate or long-term future, as with an unnamed on-the-drawing-board local coal mine that might veil an inability to meet essential conditions.

Natalia Muszkat

Natalia Muszkat.Gladstone Inclusion Centre opening.
Natalia Muszkat.Gladstone Inclusion Centre opening. Mike Richards GLA040918GICO

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background:

I have been a resident of the Gladstone Region for over 12 years and I presently hold the position of CEO of a local not-for-profit organisation, Welcoming Intercultural Neighbours Inc.

Over the past eight years I have lodged successful applications for close to $4million dollars of government and non-government funding to be applied to social and community services in our region.

This includes, over the past two years, helping to secure over $100,000 funding for local community organisations including the QCWA Halls in Tannum Sands and Calliope.

I also volunteer many hours to local organisations including the Gladstone Coordinated Response to DFV, Creative Gladstone Region, Gladstone Literacy Centre and the Gladstone Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Which suburb or township do you live in?


Why did you decide to nominate?

I believe that for every community to thrive there has to be a team diligently working every day to deliver a joint vision that best serves its people.

My passion and dedication for this community are the reasons why I want to be part of the Gladstone Regional Council team.

I have a sound knowledge of the needs of our community, and my background and extensive experience working in the social and community services sectors will bring additional skills and knowledge to the council.

What issues do you intend to focus on if elected?

If elected I will:

Be a proactive part of the existing council team.

Assist all grassroots organisations by travelling the entire region to serve every area of the community.

Be dedicated in assisting the implementation of the Gladstone Regional Council's 2018-2023 Corporate Plan and its vision, "Connect. Innovate. Diversify".

Patrick Laws

Patrick Laws will be contesting the 2018 Gladstone Regional Council by-election.
Patrick Laws will be contesting the 2018 Gladstone Regional Council by-election. Matt Taylor GLA301018LAWS

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background:

My name is Pat Laws and I am the general manager of a locally owned-and-operated small business called Ship & Sail Gladstone.

I have lived in the Gladstone Region since 1992, after moving through work from Emerald in the Central Highlands.

I have invested significant time into community organisations like the Boyne Tannum HookUp, Calliope Community Bank Branch and local sporting clubs.

I am married with three children and I love all things fishing and sport.

Which suburb or township do you live in?

Glen Eden, Gladstone.

Why did you decide to nominate?

I love working in the community and making a difference.

I love our region and what we have to offer tourism and industry.

A strong connection between council and its people is critical to making our region flourish in the future.

What issues do you intend to focus on if elected?

Netting in the Boyne

Working with regional areas and their issues. Mobile reception, access road through Deepwater National Park, sewerage issue in 1770 and Round Hill Creek mouth are just a few that have been discussed by locals.

Investing significant time into regional areas to truly appreciate all issues that are their daily challenges.

These are just a small number of many issues affecting residents of the Gladstone Region.