Coun­cil­lors pledge co-op­er­a­tion

The Gazette (Derwent Valley) - - NEWS - DAMIAN BESTER

COUN­CIL­LORS have pledged to work to­gether for the ad­vance­ment of the mu­nic­i­pal­ity at last week’s cer­e­mo­nial first meet­ing of the new-look Der­went Val­ley Coun­cil.

Gen­eral man­ager Greg Win­ton opened the pro­ceed­ings at 6pm and said the gather­ing was not a for­mal coun­cil meet­ing but a cer­e­mo­nial swear­ing-in of new coun­cil­lors as re­quired by the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Act.

Seven of the eight in­com­ing coun­cil­lors were present, with Mr Win­ton ex­plain­ing that re­elected coun­cil­lor Anne Salt was an apol­ogy and had been pri­vately sworn-in ear­lier in the week.

This was a se­quel to ear­lier this year when Mrs Salt com­pleted her dec­la­ra­tion as a new coun­cil­lor be­hind closed doors after be­ing elected to the coun­cil on a re­count and was un­able to at­tend her first sched­uled meet­ing.

The cer­e­mo­nial meet­ing was the first of its kind for the coun­cil, which in the past has sworn-in its new mem­bers at a reg­u­lar monthly meet­ing.

The event was at­tended by a num­ber of fam­ily mem­bers and friends of the newly elected mem­bers.

“Es­sen­tially this process is re­quired un­der the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Act,” Mr Win­ton said.

“The in­di­vid­u­als that you see be­fore you tonight are ac­cept­ing the re­spon­si­bil­i­ties that come with be­ing a coun­cil­lor and they do so with lit­tle recog­ni­tion and lit­tle rec­om­pense,” he said.

“They do so in order to try to im­prove this mu­nic­i­pal­ity and move for­ward, and for me, cer­e­monies such as this are an im­por­tant re­minder of the be­gin­ning of that process,” Mr Win­ton said. He then in­vited each can­di­date to step for­ward in the order in which they were elected, with the ex­cep­tion of the deputy mayor and mayor, who were sworn in last.

Most can­di­dates spoke about their am­bi­tions for the next four years, con­grat­u­lated their fel­low coun­cil­lors on their elec­tion, and com­mis­er­ated with the un­suc­cess­ful can­di­dates and de­feated coun­cil­lors.

There were also a num­ber of com­ments about the need to work to­gether to for the ben­e­fit of the mu­nic­i­pal­ity, to ad­vance the var­i­ous pro­pos­als and projects al­ready in place, and to im­ple­ment the coun­cil’s new strate­gic plan.

Cr Cos­grove spoke about her pride in be­ing elected as the coun­cil’s first fe­male deputy mayor.

Cr Shaw, as the coun­cil’s youngest mayor, spoke about the great work­ing re­la­tion­ship en­joyed by the pre­vi­ous coun­cil and said he looked for­ward to work­ing with the new group.

“This is what I was hop­ing for in terms of a new, fresh coun­cil; a coun­cil that is very di­verse in its age, ex­pe­ri­ence and back­ground,” Cr Shaw said.

“So I re­ally think this is a fan­tas­tic coun­cil to move this com­mu­nity for­ward.”

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