Deputy mayor stands against Blundell for mayor
DEPUTY Mayor Ross Bartley has confirmed he will stand for Mayor of the Southern Downs Regional Council at the local government elections in March 2016.
"After 4 terms on Council, it is time to roll up my sleeves and take on the top job" he said.
"I have a long and close association with communities throughout the Southern Downs Region, from Allora to Wallangarra, Leyburn to Killarney & all areas in-between.
I have gained a good working knowledge of the former Warwick & Stanthorpe Shire's history, geography and needs of the locals."
Cr Bartley was born in Warwick, and is involved in a successful family farming business at the Hermitage just outside Warwick.
He is the 4th generation to raise a family there, previously working as a Telstra technician across Southern Queensland
"The farm environment helps me to remain level-headed, fit and aware of the needs of rural producers," he said.
"I like to think I represent the issues concerning both the residents and business people of the Southern Downs
"Almost on a daily basis, I am out somewhere in the region gathering the sentiment of the electorate, where people continue to express their concerns regarding the way that SDRC is currently operating."
Cr Bartley said if elected Mayor he would look forward to unifying Council with better, regular communication between councillors and staff.
"Over the years, we have not always had the numbers to positively reform the way Council operates, but ratepayers from Warwick to Wallangarra are demanding a back-to-basics approach to operations," he said.
"With a hands-on approach, there are many times that we have stepped in on behalf of local groups and communities.
"Saving mobile libraries, rectifying cemetery fees, cutting excessive charges to community groups like senior citizens and sporting clubs and co-ordinating help to flood-affected residence, are examples in this term."
"We already have a great place to live. It is time for some hard work to get Council and the Southern Downs economy up and running again."
"We need a Mayor who is continually amongst the people consulting sincerely and regularly at events" Cr Bartley said.
"In this term, we seem to have lost many business opportunities by not following through with assistance from higher levels of government. This needs to change."
"We need a Mayor with passion, drive and experience on Council"