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MEET the Candidates for the vacant seat of Division 6 in the Cassowary Coast Regional Council

16/July/2021
Barry Anderson, Tony Ucchino, Renee McLeod, Harry Tenni, John Hutchinson, Wayne Kimberley, and Paul Toogood, are the candidates standing in tomorrow’s by-election for the vacant Councillor position in Division 6.

A MEET the Candidates event for the vacant seat of Division 6 in the Cassowary Coast Regional Council was held at Innisfail Bowls Club on Monday evening.

This event was hosted by the Innisfail District Chamber of Commerce.

The seven potential candidates for the upcoming by-election were given five minutes to present themselves and their key campaign points. 

Tony Ucchino

“I will work full-time as a Councillor and believe the major concern of most residents is to stop the wasteful spending of ratepayers’ money.” 

“Stop giving private investors substantial discounts on fees.” 

“I believe we should stop outsourcing work that can done in house. The spending millions of ratepayer’s monies on personal defamation battles should also stop.”

Mr Ucchino’s focus areas include fixing roads, providing good basic services to the region, reducing, or freezing rates, being self-reliant, and restoring the community’s confidence in our council.

Renee McLeod

“I will personally work with community groups and schools to build a plan of action for the future and develop a strong regional foundation for future generations.”

Mrs McLeod said she would commit to hold monthly meetings throughout our division, so that residents can have the opportunity to be heard on the issues that relate to them.

“Residents should be more informed as to where the money is spent and in a way that everyone can understand.”

John Hutchinson

“I promise to bring honesty and integrity back to the CCRC and finally deliver the transparency desired and requested by the greater community.”

His key campaign points were road maintenance, more grading for roads during the dry season, an off-leash dog area, as well as an investigation and reduction of waste charges. 

“Most importantly, rates need to stay low and be brought to the table for review and consideration.”

Paul Toogood

“The biggest challenge facing Council is to get back to basics and core services and reign in expenditure – $80 million is budgeted to be spent this year.”

“Money needs to be spent on things that matter in the region, including sealing roads and providing community assets for the benefit of all.”

Mr Toogood said he will pursue the repayment of millions of ratepayers’ dollars in personal legal fees.”

Some of the community issues for which he would be fighting, include a two-year freeze on rates (0% increase), double the pensioner rates discount, a review of executive wages, costs, commissions, and LGAQ fees, monthly financial reporting, public question time at CCRC meetings, CCTV cameras in crime hotspots, and a riverfront splash pad/water park.

Harry Tenni 

Mr Tenni will work full-time and co-operatively with all the current elected Councillors, and the new CEO, to achieve reform within Council and build our community.

“I have and will continue to stand up for what is right, challenging senior management’s bad behaviour, and financial waste, within this Council.” 

Wayne Kimberley

Wayne Kimberley outlined his previous Council experience and said it is important for Council to ‘get back to business.’

“The CCRC must remain focused on the wellbeing of our community and supporting our businesses and industries through effective planning for economic growth.”

Community, business, and experience have long been his guiding principles. 

“I am acutely aware of the challenges of running a small business, and a strong believer that the Cassowary Coast harbours a great deal of untapped potential to support its economy.”

Barry Anderson

As a local police officer in Mourilyan, Mr Anderson’s passion is working with youth throughout the region. 

“I am a good listener and if elected I will assist residents to resolve their problems by providing appropriate strategies.”

The last opportunity for early voting is today, Friday, July 16 from 9.00am to 6.00pm at the Johnstone Shire Hall foyer.

Election Day is this Saturday, July 17, with two polling booth locations operating from 8.00am to 6.00pm, at Mourilyan State School, 34 Mourilyan Harbour Rd, Mourilyan and Innisfail East State School, 92 Mourilyan Road, Innisfail.

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