Kwinana residents ready to vote

Sound Telegraph

With local government elections less than a month away, 17 hopefuls have put their hat in the ring to become City of Kwinana councillors.

Mayor Carol Adams is up for re-election, while councillors Ruth Alexander and Sandra Lee hope to have their terms extended.

In total there are four vacancies, with current councillor Bob Thompson standing down from his role.

Candidates Charles Coombs, Mark Ward and Ruth Alexander were contacted for comment - but did not reply.

For Kwinana residents, here are the options as postal ballots start to be sent out this week.

MERV KEARNEY

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

I am nominating as a councillor for Kwinana. I am very vocal on council issues - air buffer, waste to energy, debt. So, I thought it's time to stand up again for our residents and business owners.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

I was a councillor in Kwinana for 12 years, 1999 to 2012. I am not a novice this time. I know exactly what I am in for. I’ve had six years off to get refreshed and ready for the challenge again. Plus I just love it.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

My issues are Mandogalup vs Alcoa buffer, small business in Kwinana / Rockingham that have not got or had a fair go, Kwinana’s budget and debt - debt is far too high.

BARRY GREEN

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

I am running for council as I want to contribute and make a difference to our community. Kwinana has a strong community spirit, and as a parent, I want to see our children have opportunities to develop and grow. My professional background puts me in a good position to be able to make important informed decisions in relation to planning and infrastructure development. I support the continuation of initiatives for seniors including fitness and well-being programmes. I feel I can bring a fresh approach to representing the community and to ensuring that our community continues to be strong and vibrant for our future generations to grow and enjoy. I am an independent candidate and have no allegiance to any one political party.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

I am a chartered quantity surveyor with over 17 years industry experience and I am registered as an adjudicator with the WA Building Commission. My experience in delivering high-profile complex projects provides me with the necessary decision making and negotiation skills to undertake the role of councillor. If elected, I shall be efficient, consultative and a strong voice on council for the Kwinana community. I am an advocate of promoting openness, transparency, fiscal accountability and responsibility as these are all key requirements for good governance.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

I would like to see the City of Kwinana represented by younger councillors offering a fresh and vibrant approach to council. I would like to see better support and initiatives for local businesses and those looking for jobs. I believe initiatives at council level would assist in bridging the gap. I would also like to see our wealth of companies located within our industrial zone engaging more to contribute to tackling youth unemployment. This would include implementation of work experience schemes. I would like to see increased presence of the City Assist scheme. Currently, these patrols work around the clock however, increased numbers of patrols will cover more areas, assist in deterring criminal activity, noise and nuisance and above all, assist in providing a safer community. I support the WestPort Outer Harbour Project as this will bring local skilled and unskilled jobs to the City of Kwinana and much-needed economic stimulus.

JINS JAMES

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

I am an approachable person and I shall be available for your needs when you need me. I will raise your issues. My vision for a better Kwinana includes an accessible public transport system, which focuses mainly on the developing area and newly developed area for easy accessibility to the metro area. A safe and secure Kwinana, which includes more participation of neighbourhood watch services, more CCTV surveillance systems to prevent burglary and other crimes and also to provide attainable emergency contact numbers for everyone. I want to increase the amount of parking areas, especially for the schools and small retail shops to encourage more people shopping from small retailers and thereby promoting small businesses. Create more employment opportunities by welcoming corporates to Kwinana and promote local job opportunities for local people. Support nature and maintain a clean and hygienic environment for the next generation. Create and promote an affordable lifestyle programs for all age groups.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

I am a family oriented person, living in Bertram, married and have two kids. My wife is a registered nurse and our son is studying at Peter Carnley Anglican School and daughter attends day care centre. I am a postgraduate in Social Work and working as a community welfare worker for the last 10 years. My role as a community welfare worker includes mental health, disability, aged work, youth work, community work and working with indigenous people to accomplish their dreams. I am a member of the Events Planning Working Group and the Multicultural Advisory Group in City of Kwinana. As an active community member in Kwinana, I conduct a group blood donation program on a regular basis at Red Cross. I organise clean-up programs to serve and protect nature. I encourage people to participate in the planting program at the City of Kwinana. I conduct forest camping named Love the Nature to understand the need of preserving forest.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

Security issues in Kwinana. Need more infrastructural development and increasing facilities. Unemployment. Protection of environment and forest. More parking facilities. More recreation and sporting facilities. Lack of accessible public transport system in newly developed areas. More facilities in parks including toilets and barbecues.

MIHAEL MCCOY

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

As someone who grew up here, was schooled here and chooses to raise a family here, I have a vested interest in seeing Kwinana prosper and succeed. I believe my skillset will be a “value add” for Kwinana and that Council could benefit from my legal/advocacy skills and business acumen. I will be a strong advocate for Kwinana and apply sound community governance and stewardship principles to the role. I will bring a common sense approach to decision making and work to preserve and guard Australian values, traditions and institutions. As a true son of Kwinana, I am a product of its environment and rich community spirit. It’s a great honour and privilege to run for Council in my home city. Should I be given the opportunity I will use my broad skillset to advance the interests of the good people of Kwinana.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

I am a father of three amazing children and understand the privilege and responsibilities of fatherhood. After graduating from law school I went into commercial law practice for a time and then into ministry. I also work in strategic development and have acquired extensive experience in board governance, directorship, legal compliance and education law in the Independent Schools/NFP sector. In terms of business acumen, I have been chair of an organisation with an annual turnover of between $6-8 million. My work in this sector has seen me successfully secure capital grants for over $3 million. Qualifications include Bachelor of Laws (Murdoch); * BA – (Politics and International Studies) (Murdoch); * Grad Dip in Legal Practice, (College of Law, Sydney); * Grad. Cert. in Christian Min. (TKU L.A.); Marriage Celebrant * Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (MAICD) * Admitted to Supreme Court of New South Wales and Western Australia as a lawyer in 2006.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

My campaign motto is “Accountability, Transparency, Fairness”. I see great value in the process of “Appreciative Inquiry” as a means to organisational development and community improvement. Essentially, this is about respectful ‘conversations’ that are aimed at challenging institutional biases and mission “drift”. I believe as a community we should aspire to higher order thinking and intentionally plan for the future, building the level of community resilience and the capacity to respond to social crises. Other areas include sound community governance and financial stewardship, lower rates and better services for residents, supporting our sporting clubs and service organisations, building for a stronger more resilient community, sustainable development, preservation of natural bushland, supporting initiatives for youth engagement and preventive strategies for delinquency, and working for better quality and more appropriate planning outcomes in infill developments within the City.

KEVIN DESMOND

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

It is my belief that Kwinana must throw away its industrial image. We need to attract new jobs into Kwinana. We need to be the clean green city, full of new ideas. The present Council is lost in the past. I am worried about Kwinana’s debt levels. Spending $5 million more than you earn is not good and still rates increase higher than inflation. Kwinana Council was spending $120,000 of ratepayers money fighting amalgamation - they said rates would go up - they have above inflation. The Council said the Kwinana Festival would be cancelled, Kwinana Council have cancelled it, Kwinana Council went on to say amalgamation would cost jobs, they are now delaying employing people to use this money saved to help balance their reckless budget.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

I have new ideas, can think outside the box and not afraid to stand up against vested interest.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

Waste is a major issue. I am against the incinerator. I want a three-bin waste system, want more trees planted. I am also interested in community gardens, local power schemes and more community involvement in decisions made by Council.

SANDRA LEE

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

I have been a proud resident of Kwinana for 48 years and bought up my family here. I operate my own small business.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

I am committed to Kwinana and our future as a progressive sustainable and vibrant local government. I love serving the wonderful people in our community, listening to and representing your interests. Being actively involved in our community during the last 12 years as a councillor, I have contributed to decisions that bring the most beneficial results which are delivered cost effectively. I offer experience with proven leadership and have a history of dedicated service to Kwinana.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

My passion is to ensure our community spirit lives on, and our lovely parks and open spaces are maintained so everyone can enjoy them. I understand the balance between development and the environment. I am concerned with issues of health, community services, local sports groups, employment and support security for our citizens.

SHERI WOOD

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

I'm a retired teacher who has lived in Kwinana since 1970 and I'm a member of the RSL. As a councillor I worked hard and achieved much for our community, as reflected in the fact that I was only one of two Kwinana councillors ever awarded a Certificate of Merit from WALGA for services to our community. I still have a lot more that I need to do.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

My ongoing commitment is shown by my still being on a number of committees involved with Kwinana, including two which work with up to six local councils.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

I've a number of priorities that need attention, some of which are encouraging more businesses to relocate or start up in Kwinana, enticing more government services to move into our city, balancing development with environment and making Kwinana more secure and safe. I need your support to ensure Kwinana becomes an even better place to live.

CAROL ADAMS

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

If re-elected I bring 20 years of community service to the role. I have the background experience and knowledge needed for the myriad of issues that council deals with on a daily basis, whether it is political, operational or strategic. Kwinana is one of the nation’s fastest-growing communities and this brings significant challenges. Our growing and diverse community requires strong advocacy, a united strategic vision to plan, support and deliver what’s needed for Kwinana. This is one of the strengths I do bring to the role. I have an open door policy and listen to those who seek assistance, and I try to work with Council to resolve issues within the legislative framework it is required to operate within. I am thoughtful in my decision making, am a fair-minded, practical and a balanced person. I believe Kwinana will continue to benefit from my approach if re-elected.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

I have a legal background and a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Therefore I bring a strong governance background to council. I have gained significant experience in governance and risk management on past boards such as WA Super, Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority, WA Grants Commission, as well as voluntary community boards such as Gilmore College, Kwinana Early Years’ Service, Moorditj Koort and Citizens Advice Bureau. I currently chair the City’s Audit Committee and am a WA Local Government State Councillor. As the City’s current Mayor I have brought strong, clear and strategic leadership to the decisions we make. I have focus, drive and enthusiasm and above I bring two decades of commitment to the Kwinana community. I am aware of the community’s needs and key challenges, adding this to the professional and personal life experiences I have; had makes me a well-qualified candidate to represent this community of Kwinana.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

Kwinana has a recurrent high unemployment problem. Whilst a State Government issue, there are initiatives Council can proactively support, and advocate on, such as partnering with stakeholders to help address and improve the job readiness of those who seek employment. The Westport (“Outer Harbour”) is one such example of how strong advocacy has resulted in the commitment to the new port. This will build investor confidence in Kwinana, attracting many new businesses, which fosters economic development as well as creating thousands of new direct and indirect jobs that will be beneficial to our current businesses and our local economy. Building stronger family capacity, supporting parents via targeted early years intervention and support programs and tackling the issue of why many young people disengage with school are key areas which I would like to see Council continue to address in partnership with both government and the not for profit sector.

LAUREN RICKERT

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

By nominating for council I believe that I can create meaningful social change for all by influencing decision makers to attend to the needs of all people in our community. My educational background is what I feel sets me apart. Having a degree in Sociology, along with my Social Impact studies, enables me to be able to assist to tackle some of the challenges we face in the City of Kwinana by developing a sense of belonging; facilitating improved community safety and improving conservation and biodiversity in the area. I am passionate and personable and able to engage all stakeholders, at all levels, to assist in fixing the issues that lead to engrained social challenges. I bring a critical mind that can see how issues can affect both sides and believe that consultation is the only way to have real impact in the community.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

Having lived in Kwinana for 14 years, sending my child to school here and working as a youth worker in the local community, I know the community and the issues we face. I have a degree in Sociology and currently studying Social Impact at UWA. I am an associate member of the International Association of Impact Assessors; West Australian Association of Youth Workers and an ASIST Suicide Prevention Trainer. I also have a strong administration and finance background from years in the mining industry and have worked and travelled overseas. I am active in the community as a volunteer and promote sustainability; community connection and inclusion as being key to ensuring individuals do not feel rootless and disconnected from guiding norms and values, a common reason for suicide. I am an advocate for change, early prevention of social issues, the environment, resilience and preserving personal values.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

Community: Strengthen community belonging and safety and ensure we are an inclusive council that promotes connection to place and supports the arts, culture and heritage. Environment: Improve conservation and biodiversity and protect our future by being able to live sustainably. I would like to see sustainability, energy and water conservation promoted and for grass roots initiatives who have environmental aims to be supported and celebrated i.e. initiatives such as native council verges and sustainable living practices. Outer harbour: Ensuring we have an understanding about how the outer harbour will affect residents and what social impact it will have. So far, only economic and environmental impacts have been reported on with no mention of how residents may be affected by the outer harbour. Consultation with all stakeholders must take place to ensure we mitigate any risk or negative impacts to Kwinana residents.

LES EVANS

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

My motivation is to contribute a future that balances the authentic values of our community, assets and lifestyle with business, services and jobs growth. Through life’s adventures, community volunteering and employment I’ve gained qualifications and experience in social enterprise, committees, small business, local government and community safety. My reputation for honesty, integrity, empathy, solution focus and good humour, along with your vote, will give you a staunchly proactive councillor representing the diverse interests of businesses and residents.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

I have a Diploma of Legal Studies (Business) and Diploma in Project Management and affiliated studies. I have extensive experience in interpretation and application of State and Commonwealth legislation and policy in the corporate environment and I currently work in the governance field. My background is in community safety, project management and event management. I’m a confident researcher of fact, network across community and business sources and have a high standard of work output. Coupled with this I understand the mechanics of local and State government and have been involved as a community advocate in previous community forum leadership roles.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

I’d like to see local government continue to host the Australian Citizenship Ceremony because its visionary purpose recognises and encourages a common bond amongst all Australians. Local government is shouldering increased pressures on budget outputs due to higher levels of government devolving activities. A shift from from 'services to property' towards 'services to people' demands that local land taxes (rates) are not only applied in a refined manner to meets the electorate expectations but adequate grants are sourced from State and Commonwealth Governments to bridge any financial gap in funding service delivery. Managing the ‘loan book’, keeping rates at a level where ratepayers experience value for money, and ensuring the electorate is adequately informed on the rationale for decisions are important issues. I believe councillors should participate in an induction and education process that equips them with the necessary skills and ethical expectations of the position.

MATTHEW ROWSE

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

I have two children, a son (11) and daughter (8 going on 18!) and I am a stay-at-home Dad. They are my inspiration and the reason I want to make Kwinana all it can be. Nominating for council is also a natural progression from what I am involved with now. I’m the Chairman of the Village at Wellard Residents Association, Committee member of Kwinana Junior Knights FC, Vice President Peter Carnley School P&F, Member of the Future of Wellard Square working group and City of Kwinana Events Committee, coach of junior football, basketball and netball. All these roles are voluntary. I have not just appeared out of the woodwork to run for Council but have been actively involved in the Kwinana community for more than a decade. I am an independent candidate who is not running on a ticket.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

As a former WA police officer and small business owner, I can bring a range of professional experience to the role. However, I believe my commitment to the Kwinana community outweighs my formal qualifications. I have had close involvement with the City of Kwinana over the past decade, not only due to my participation with many Council & community committees and working groups, but also through my wife’s previous employment as the City’s director of city development (inc Council Governance), so I am well briefed on the role of local government and councillors. I’m healthy, energetic and have the time to devote to making Kwinana a more vibrant place to live. I won’t sit around and treat being a councillor as a privilege. I have a very good relationship with the existing councillors and I can hit the ground running.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

I want to improve Kwinana’s overall perception; aid businesses (particularly retailers) to invest and succeed in Kwinana; advocate for better bus services; help our youth finish school; ensure our seniors feel valued and people feel safe in their own homes and community. While some may argue these aren’t within local government jurisdiction, I strongly disagree. Councils can and should advocate for appropriate services on behalf of their community. Kwinana needs to refocus on looking forward. A lot has been achieved over the last decade but we need to continue to demonstrate confidence in our City by highlighting our strengths to others. This will bring with it investment, economic growth and help improve house prices. I also want to help make it easier for local clubs, community and sporting groups to achieve things in Kwinana, particularly organising events and occasions for our community to get together.

ASTI JORGENSEN

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

Well, this is my third time running for Kwinana Council. They do say third time lucky! So why, well I want the younger generation to be heard. Kwinana is a rapidly growing city and the median age of residents is 32, however, they are not represented as such on the Council. What you can expect from me as a councillor, I will not stand in front of you claiming promises that cannot be kept. I understand that I will be one of eight councillors, there are processes around being a councillor and that I will need time to learn these. What I can say is that I will be available to you. You can email, phone, social media, or talk to me at community events. I will listen to your concerns and voice them loudly to those around me who can help me make the greatest change for the better.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

I have worked in education for 12 years in various roles including being an education assistant, teacher, acting deputy, project manager and now as a primary program coordinator. I have experience in finance meetings, public speaking, setting protocols, updating and reviewing policy documents. I am flexible, reliable and honest.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

Safety and security. Sustainable and healthy lifestyles (includes mental health, community infrastructure and waste management). Heritage and bush conservation.

DOUG SCRAMBLER

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

I have nominated because I believe that the residents of Kwinana are not getting the representation that they deserve. I embrace change and I believe that Kwinana must move forward, but in doing so it should retain our rich cultural historical past, which makes Kwinana so unique. I will bring integrity and an extensive knowledge of our city to represent the residents openly and in an unbiased fashion, with no political interests.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

For a period of 16 years from 1984 until 2003 I was an elected member of the Kwinana Council, where I held the portfolios for just about all areas in local government. This helped me to gain a good understanding of council procedures. I had always made myself available to residents and considered all concerns to be important and worked towards resolving their issues and concerns to the best of my capability. On re-election I will continue to offer the same service to the community. Having lived here for 61 years, and previously been a Kwinana Councillor, plus years volunteering with many groups and organisations, I believe this gives me the necessary experience for the role of a councillor.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

I would like to see a transparency in Council’s expenditure. Retention of Kwinana’s historic events. Reduce the felling of trees in new developments. I would like to see fair, honest, open representation of Council. I do not support any adverse industries in Kwinana.

RICHARD PANNELL

Why have you nominated as a councillor and what would you bring to the role?

I wasn’t born in Australia but rather in Zimbabwe. This has coloured my Australian experience significantly. In my family, like many others in this lucky country, we were taught that we give, we serve and we look to help others. My desire to nominate springs from this upbringing. A desire to serve others. I am passionate about building community because I see that community helps everyone. Australia was a country where everyone knew everyone else. These days many of us don't know more than five families in a suburb. We need to build better communities in Australia and this, in my opinion, is one of the best places to start.

What qualifications/experience do you have that is suited for local government?

I believe that my experiences in business and in my travels make me uniquely qualified to serve the people of Kwinana on the council. I hold bachelor degrees in engineering and business from Murdoch University. But as most graduates discover, that is just the start. What I believe qualifies me for this role is that I have run multiple departments in a business operating in multiple countries. I have overseen and negotiated contracts worth in excess of $12 million. I have sat on a school board for four years. I have been involved in scouts, sporting clubs (swimming, basketball, cricket), not for profit organisations and student councils. In all this I believe the two most important qualifications are a desire to serve and an ear to listen.

What issues within local government jurisdiction would you like to see addressed?

There is always a large laundry list of issues that we want to address. People talk to me about dogs being stolen, disaffected youth on the street and other safety related issues. Part of the solution may involve things outside council control, such as increasing police presence. Initiatives such as better street lighting and more youth facilities are the purview of the council. We focus on what we can do no matter the issue. My desire to build community will benefit from others outside the local government sphere. But the council has the opportunity to contribute meaningfully to community. This can be achieved by supporting initiatives like Reach Kwinana, increasing the number and quality of bush walks, continuing to develop our resources and encouraging small business to grow and employ locals, ensuring that we stay financially sound. The main issue is to grow Kwinana towards the future.

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails