Upcoming local government elections must bring change to the City of Ballarat, long-time council watcher and retiree Gary Fitzgerald says.
He is hoping it will be a case of “third time lucky” after he announced his intention to stand as a candidate in Ballarat’s central ward for the third time in eight years at the October 22 election. Mr Fitzgerald believed he brought one unique qualification to the field of candidates – he hadn’t missed a council meeting in a decade.
“I’ve seen more council meetings than most of the current councillors,” he said “I know how the council runs currently and I know how it should be running.”
Mr Fitzgerald said he was compelled to run for council following the release of results for a Victorian Local Government report last year.
“Ballarat had one of the lowest ratings for public consultations and lowest public expectations of consultations in the state,” he said.
Mr Fitzgerald said more transparency in decision making was needed, as was a tightening of council spending.
“The council go on about rate capping and have made an application to go above Consumer Prince Index,” he said. “That says to me the council can’t live within their means. They need to learn how cut down expenses without cutting down on services.”
Mr Fitzgerald is a Labor party member but vowed his political party affiliations would not influence his decision making.
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