Community at the heart of council work: Noli
CONTINUING OUR WEEKLY SERIES, SAT DOWN WITH DEPUTY MAYOR ABIGAIL NOLI
WHILE council projects are a never-ending cycle, according to Councillor Abigail Noli the past 12 months have been positive not just because of the work done but because more projects are finally being completed.
“I think what we’ve had is we’ve had a little bit more of finalisation of projects. The first two years … we got a lot of things underway but not a lot of that finalisation,” she said.
There are plenty of projects to pick from – various successful Development Applications, the opening of the Scrap Shack, the Mossman River flood cam and the Zika and Dengue eradication trials, among others.
She wouldn’t claim a particular project she was proud of, because everything was important, and her role in the council team was equal.
“I like to believe that I have been important in every decision made and everything that we’ve achieved.
“Also, many ideas come from the public. What council does is refine these good ideas and then implement them.”
Being a part of the council is an invaluable way to work towards what she admitted was the impossible task of creating a “perfect community”.
“In trying to achieve this perfect community – which obviously can never be achieved – it doesn’t matter how big or how small the project is, it’s all important.”
One role she relishes is helping smooth the way for a healthy culture of clubs and societies – and with strong music, visual arts and performing arts scenes and plenty of sports clubs in the shire, her work is cut out for her, but as she said it’s part of the fun.
“These are the essential parts of a community, and if you can make people feel good in a community in where they live, then you’re going to be building the best shire in Australia.”
There is a special issue Abigail will pursue – homelessness. “We don’t run the housing business but I want to make sure if council can ever offer assistance or make things easier, I want to make sure we do that.”
Abigail said the realities of housing, and learning that some high school students went without shocked her.
“And I thought, how’s that in my community? How’s that allowed? What can we do to change that, how can we assist? We can advocate and we can facilitate.”
The same goes for domestic violence in the community.
“We have to look at domestic violence and homelessness in the community. Before I was a councillor I didn’t really realise the depth and perhaps many people wouldn’t. So I think it should be brought to the public’s attention.”
DSC Deputy Mayor Abigail Noli said she grew up on the Mossman River, a spot she said she knows and cares about, as indeed all of the shire