Murray River Council election: Opinion

August 30, 2017

Election advice

I REFER to the upcoming council elections.

We are most fortunate to have five candidates for the Greater Murray Ward.

In particular we have three new aspirants without any baggage, wanting to serve their community.

They should have our full support.

The two past sacked councillors are also offering their services again.

As we make a fresh start in a brand new amalgamated council, it is not in our best interests to re-elect past councillors.

Instead let us move on with a fresh start.

My pick for the Greater Murray Ward candidates of Geoff Wise, Nicole Stenhouse and Tony Aquino will have my full support.

To our two past sacked councillors, retire gracefully; you have had your turn in local government.

In the Moama Ward we have four candidates, although I would have thought Moama could have had at least six candidates to contest the three seats.

However, you do have two excellent candidates in Chris Bilkey and Nikki Cohen and I hope Gen Campbell would embrace her responsibilities and move forward with the new amalgamated council.

Geoff Mackenzie should retire having had a turn in local government.

When casting our votes we must remember that we do not want a repeat of a dysfunctional council that was sacked.

We have a fresh start so let us elect where possible, fresh councillors who hold no grudges, no baggage who are focused on serving our community.

Donald Douglas

Murray River Council resident

Think before casting your vote

WE ARE about to elect a new council for our future which carries with it the selection of candidates of suitable standing which creates significant responsibility on those of us voting.

A danger will exist to continue with a council who failed to be effective at an interpersonal level.

This led to the Murray Shire being suspended by the NSW Government for most of the last year of its term of office.

We can help influence a new beginning.

We are investing in a public company and its board is elected to conduct the duties they are assigned to do.

If they cannot achieve the effective harmony to conduct their duties then eventually the shareholders, or in this case ratepayers, will respond by changing the board in considering the future of their investment.

We find ourselves being the investors or voting public, with the Murray River Council our company of choice to guide our investment.

Taking care in the way you vote on September 9 is a good start to creating a sound basis for better management.

Don and Libby Douglas

Peter and Sue Dowling

Kron and Jenny Nicholas

Jon and Joane Power

Brendon and Mandy Donchi

Murray and Betty Lanyon

Rob and Rita Freestone

Mental health support available

THIS Government is committed to supporting current and former members of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) who may have been physically or sexually abused.

The Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA) has introduced measures to make it easier for those affected to access compensation and to receive the mental health support they need.

The Department has broadened the acceptance of statutory declarations as part of compensation claims, making it possible for such declarations to constitute sufficient evidence to establish that abuse took place.

This change will benefit those who may not have reported abuse at the time it occurred or who have never previously spoken about it.

A dedicated team has also been established to manage all new claims relating to sexual andphysical abuse.

Treatment for all mental health conditions is now free for anyone who has served just one day in the full-time ADF.

The Veterans and Veterans’ Families Counselling Service also provides specialist free counselling and group programs.

This service is available by phoning 1800 011 046, or via their website: www.vvcs.gov.au.

I encourage anyone who may have suffered abuse in the ADF to contact DVA to access the support and benefits the Department provides.

Other information can be found on DVA’s website or by calling 1800 555 254.

Dan Tehan

Veterans’ Affairs Minister

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