Local government elections this September represent a chance for people to guide our community to an exciting future, according to former Deniliquin Council councillor Jeff Shand.
Mr Shand, who was in his first term as a councillor when Deni Council was merged with Conargo Shire last year, has confirmed he will be standing for election and is encouraging anyone interested to attend candidate information sessions being hosted next week.
An evening session will be held Monday, July 17 and a daytime session will be held on Tuesday, July 18.
‘‘The best part of being a councillor is the community engagement, collectively gathering our community’s thoughts and ambitions in building our future,’’ Mr Shand said.
‘‘It’s important we get good, strong candidates, and I would encourage anyone who can work collaboratively for the betterment of our community to attend the sessions and find out more.’’
Former Conargo Shire mayor Norm Brennan said he was personally hoping to see a mix of new and former councillors make up the first elected council for ERC.
‘‘If we can get a blend of old and new we can move forward with the new council, and the older councillors can help leave the new council in good hands,’’ said Mr Brennan, who has also confirmed his candidacy for the election.
‘‘I have spoken to a few younger people and I am encouraging them to stand; those in their late 30s and 40s can particularly help guide a bright future in local government.
‘‘One of the most basic questions is what amount of time will it take (to be a councillor) and I believe the answer is as much as you can spare — some are able to fully immerse themselves while others can only offer limited time, but it’s all worthwhile.’’
The candidate sessions are designed to help attendees gain a better understanding of the roles and responsibilities of an elected member of council.
They are free to attend and will be facilitated by Local Government NSW.
Topics covered are to include challenges of being a councillor, council meeting procedures and rules of debate, local government ‘jargon’ and managing conflicts of interest.
Both sessions will be held at the Council Chambers — at 180 Cressy Street, Deniliquin — with the July 17 session from 6pm to 8.30pm and the July 18 session from 9am to 11.30am.
Attendees can confirm their attendance by contacting executive assistant Belinda Perrett on 58983040 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nominations for the inaugural Edward River Council election open on Monday, July 31 and close on Wednesday, August 9. Election day is September 9.
Further information on how to nominate is available from the NSW Electoral Commission at www.votensw.info.