Commit to ongoing good working relationships with Federal and State Government representatives, and local colleagues.
Many of the public see government as one big monster, expecting their services to be delivered without much concern with the individual responsibility of each level of government. The reality is that each level of government have unique and separate responsibilities, meaning the working relationships between all levels of government are critical if the public are to have their expectations delivered.
Since 2012, the relationships between my office, and the offices of our federal and state representatives have never been better. Politics aside, the working relationships we’ve seen evolve have been fantastic, sharing and celebrating together as we face the challenges of the division and work together to find solutions. We don’t always see eye to eye, for a variety of reasons, but my commitment is that I’ll do my best to make sure Division 9 residents get what they’re due on state and federal issues.
At a state level, Ros Bates MP and I work together closely, often consulting the public together on occasions, particularly since the electorate and division we represent are so similar geographically. While we sometimes hit the odd roadblock, perhaps when it comes to state government policy I or the Council don’t support, almost all of the time we can find a way through smoothly, working together to deliver for locals.
Sid Cramp MP and I are the same, with a specific example being the Highland Park Traffic Calming project that required police and neighbourhood watch support, ably managed by Sid, while we planned strategically the calming infrastructure on the council roads. Our shared constituencies mean local school issues or environmental issues or traffic/road issues often have common variables we can address, and this working relationship just gets things done.
My relationship with our Federal representatives is the same with a great example being the Stronger Communities Grant funding, recently awarded. I joined the advisory committee of Scott Buchholz MP (Wright) for the grants and was able to provide important insight into the community groups that should be awarded funding and the relevance of their projects to the local area. Karen Andrews MP (McPherson) offers the same positivity and optimism when it comes to working together, having provided strong words of encouragement with our Gold Coast Science and Technology Centre, and partnering with us to help deliver the improvements to Elsie Laver Park under the Centenary of ANZAC funding program.
While relationship with all these representatives is important, local colleagues can help deliver outcomes too. Having good working relationships with most of my Council colleagues has served me well, meaning the delivery of services and needed infrastructure in our Hinterland isn’t stymied by personality clashes and silly self-interest. Many of you may have remembered the public disagreements of the previous Council before 2012 and you’ll know now how this Council has committed to avoid that sort of almost-schoolyard shenanigans.
I encourage you to Vote 1 Tozer on March 19 to see these key relationships continue to deliver outcomes for our local area. It’s only my experience, with almost two decades now in the corporate world and public service where empathy, professional relationship development and negotiation skills are critical, that can offer Division 9 certainty when it comes to optimum partnerships between all levels of government and inside Council.