Arm­strong to con­tinue on Ararat coun­cil

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - News -

Cr Mclean fin­ished her first may­oral ad­dress on a per­sonal note, touch­ing on her ex­pe­ri­ence as a fam­ily-vi­o­lence sur­vivor.

“I lived with this fam­ily vi­o­lence on a farm for 40 years and I dealt with the out­comes and the reper­cus­sions of that and the dam­age to my fam­ily, my neigh­bours and other peo­ple in my life,” she said.

“It has caused dam­age for me that means I’m feisty, that I’m gun-shy, that I’ll of­ten say things and get jumpy about what’s ahead for me.

“But what it’s given me is a pas­sion­ate de­sire to look af­ter the un­der­dog and a clear de­sire to speak up for those who can­not speak.”

Cr Mclean said mov­ing for­ward, she ac­cepted the mu­nic­i­pal­ity’s rat­ing strat­egy was out of her con­trol and would be de­ter­mined by a panel of ex­perts and an in­de­pen­dent chair­per­son.

She said the mu­nic­i­pal­ity’s res­i­dents were con­cerned with a wide range of is­sues, in­clud­ing road main­te­nance and ser­vices.

“I won’t be sin­gle is­sue and I’m re­ally grate­ful for the sup­port of coun­cil­lors who have had a dif­fi­cult time this year,” she said. “Peo­ple didn’t sign on for these dif­fi­cul­ties as a new coun­cil­lor, but we have to work to­gether and I’m keen to do so.”

Cr All­good was elected deputy mayor un­op­posed.

Ac­count­able

Mr Hooper said his core val­ues pro­hib­ited him from serv­ing with the ma­jor­ity of coun­cil­lors, par­tic­u­larly with Crs Mclean and All­good ‘still fac­ing sig­nif­i­cant code of con­duct charges’.

“I’ve taken the view that I’m not pre­pared to be as­so­ci­ated with peo­ple whom I don’t trust and peo­ple I don’t hold in any re­gard,” he said.

“In say­ing that, Cr Beale and Cr Arm­strong have served this com­mu­nity with dis­tinc­tion.

“They’ve worked in­cred­i­bly hard in their du­ties, so let’s not con­fuse those two with the ma­jor­ity.

“I’ve lit­er­ally had dozens and dozens of phone calls and mes­sages and I’m ob­vi­ously very grate­ful for the sup­port I have re­ceived right across the com­mu­nity.”

Mr Hooper called on Ararat Ru­ral City res­i­dents to ‘hold the mayor ac­count­able for her ac­tions’.

“I wish the new chief ex­ec­u­tive and of course the mon­i­tor, who are peo­ple I hold in the high­est re­gard, the best of luck deal­ing with the ma­jor­ity of coun­cil.”

Ser­vice

Mr Baw­den said he ac­cepted Cr Hooper’s res­ig­na­tion yes­ter­day morn­ing.

He said Cr Hooper was to be ap­plauded for his ser­vice to the mu­nic­i­pal­ity, in­clud­ing six terms as mayor.

“Al­though I have only known Cr Hooper for a short pe­riod of time, he has proven to be a very dig­ni­fied and well-re­spected mem­ber of this or­gan­i­sa­tion and it is un­for­tu­nate that he will no longer be a part of coun­cil,” he said.

“He has worked closely with many peo­ple across Ararat Ru­ral City and speak­ing with col­leagues about the work Cr Hooper achieved, par­tic­u­larly dur­ing his time as mayor, it is clear what a fan­tas­tic ad­vo­cate he was for this re­gion.”

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