Sunshine Coast and Noosa residents will have a chance to vote on a new local government in the council elections on Saturday 28 March but with that comes a huge responsibility according to Sunshine Coast Business Council Chair Sandy Zubrinich.
Ms Zubrinich said the Sunshine Coast Business Council isn’t usually in the business of endorsing mayoral candidates but stability is going to be crucial during this turbulent economic time.
“We want to see a mayor of the Sunshine Coast and Noosa who has experience in running big organisations and budgets, can remain level-headed during a crisis, has the vision and demonstrated ability to think and act on their feet and steer our economy in a strong and sustainable direction,” Ms Zubrinich said.
In Sunshine Coast LGA we have two experienced Sunshine Coast mayoral candidates in incumbent Mayor Mark Jamieson and former Deputy-Mayor Chris Thompson, who are both experienced in local government and in a stronger position, we believe, to take on the task of leading our regional economy through this crisis.
“In the Noosa LGA – where there are two candidates — incumbent Mayor Tony Wellington has substantial experience in local government. So we ask voters to reflect on their choices and consider what experience will best serve their region at this time.
“Our region has already felt the dramatic impact of Covid-19 with the cancellation of major events, hospitality and retail at a standstill and now the Sunshine Coast Airport is effectively closing and facing major cutbacks – each of our industries will be grappling to survive in this climate over the next few months.
“The importance for experience, leadership and continuity at this time cannot be underestimated and we implore voters to keep this in mind when they head to the polls.
“The Sunshine Coast Council will see at least 40 per cent turnover of councilors due to existing councilors standing down. We therefore will potentially have a number of inexperienced candidates having to make crucial decisions regarding our economy, protecting jobs and managing significant budgets in a responsible manner.
“Where possible we should therefore be voting for those who have local government experience or a significant business track record.
“We commend the stimulus packages and assistance that is coming from the federal and state governments and local councils during this time, and it is essential that our new councils can work collaboratively with each tier of government and act in the best interest of the Sunshine Coast.
“So we implore voters to think very carefully about who they put into power, as those people will be crucial to ensuring our economy can bounce back when the pandemic subsides.
“The role of mayor specifically will be tough in the coming months, if not years, and we need someone to be able to hit the ground running to provide good governance and stability to the Sunshine Coast during a time of uncertainty.”
The Sunshine Coast Business Council is the leading regional business advocacy group on the Sunshine Coast. It represents approximately 4,000 businesses through its membership, which includes key national and regional industry groups and their members as well as national and regional businesses.
For more information please visit www.scbusinesscouncil.com.au.
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