Chris Trevor, six others put hand up for council

FIVE people have publicly confirmed they have nominated to fill the vacant position on the Gladstone Regional Council - and there are a further two unknown candidates already in the running.

Yvette Luckock, Stephen Mills, Peter Powell, Chris Trevor and Dr PJ Sobhanian, and two others, have so far put their names forward after the resignation of former councillor Leo Neill-Ballantine before Christmas.

The council is still accepting nominations for the position until January 30.

After that time, councillors will discuss the candidates in a closed meeting, before making an announcement on February 17. A new councillor is expected to be sworn in on March 3.

Dr Sobhanian was the highest polling candidate who missed out at the 2012 election.

He says he should be chosen on a matter of principle.

"People voted in a recent election and we have to value the rights of the people," he said.

"If you put your hand up for a position and over 9000 people vote for you, you owe it to them to do the job," Dr Sobhanian said.

Of the candidates known so far, who would you like on council?

This poll ended on 30 January 2015.

Current Results

Chris Trevor

42%

PJ Sobhanian

46%

Stephen Mills

3%

Peter Powell

2%

Yvette Luckock

6%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

But with the exception of Chris Trevor, all the confirmed candidates ran in the last election.

Mr Trevor said he didn't want to be discounted just because he didn't run last time.

"They should not get extra weight simply because they ran at the last election," Mr Trevor said.

"PJ was the next in line to get the job but that's not the sole criteria to get the position.

"I think it's a decision to be made by councillors on what is in the best interest for the ratepayers."

Putting his case forward, candidate and former councillor Stephen Mills said the position should be filled with someone with experience.

"It's only a 12-month term. Anyone new to the business will struggle for 4-6 months getting their feet on the ground," he said.

"It's important to fit into the team quickly and get on with the job."

Long-time local Yvette Luckock already has some idea of things that can be improved.

"I have done a fair bit of work within the community with the Rotary Club and the harbour festival."

Peter Powell said he would bring a passion for roads and some diversity to the council.

"I have worked in agriculture, transport and business."

Gladstone Region Council CEO Stuart Randle said a decision by resolution - as it is in this case - was significantly less expensive than a by-election.

"It costs around $150,000 to have a by-election," he said.

"There are no selection criteria how (the councillors) are going to pick the replacement but I'll be helping them with the process."

"The (Local Government Act) is quite clear on the process and doesn't allow for any discretion."

The Observer knows of at least two more residents from the outlying areas of Gladstone who are considering putting their names forward, and another Gladstone resident who plans to submit her application in the coming days.



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