Rates, roads and rubbish: Gail Sellers
WE asked each candidates their views on the key roles of a council.
The answers have been published in the paper over the past few weeks, but below are Gail Sellers' un-edited answers.
What do you think about the current state of the following council issues/services;
Rating is a very complicated and misunderstood issue.
No one likes to pay rates and Council doesn't like to charge but we have to because they pay for 85% of our operating costs.
By carefully managing our costs through this last term of Council we have been able to keep our average rate increases very low.
Residential rates in the Gladstone Region have grown the least of any large sized Council in Queensland and our long term financial plan shows them increasing at less than the rate of inflation for the next 10 years.
Gladstone Regional Council is a leader in waste management.
We have a strong focus on recycling and resource recovery and our efforts to capture methane for future energy generation at the Benaraby landfill has been an award winning initiative.
Throughout this last term of Council we have continued to modify our waste management policies and pricing regime to provide the best service for our community.
We are working with other Local Governments in Central Queensland to provide additional economies of scale benefits and expect to be able to build on these relationships in the next term of Council. Monday
Over the last term of Council we have managed to increase the expenditure on road maintenance by more than 30% by reallocating savings made elsewhere in the organisation.
This increase in funding has coincided with record capital expenditure provided through the Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements and as a result our rural road network is in best ever condition.
Can you describe the role of a councillor?
The formal role of a Councillor is to make local laws and determine policy and other matters at a strategic level.
By setting this direction we enable the administrative arm of Council under the Chief Executive Officer to undertake the day to day operations.
We achieve this formal role by carrying out our informal role of listening to and engaging with the community to understand the needs and values.
We use our knowledge of the needs and values of the community when we make decisions that set the strategic direction of Council.