Geraldton locals have a crack at council race
A proud gay Aboriginal man, a female barrister and a school bus driver are among this year’s candidates in the City of Greater Geraldton council race.
Nominations for the 2021 City of Greater Geraldton council election closed last Thursday, with five newcomers, four current councillors, two ex-councillors and two past nominees all having a crack at landing one of the seven positions up for grabs this year.
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Ex-councillor Zain Laudehr has put his hand up after last being elected to the council in 2009.
He served for about three months before resigning when he missed three meetings in contravention of the role’s requirements.
The youth worker said as a local Aboriginal and LGBTQIA+ community member he believed it was time for the voices and views of the whole community to be heard and acknowledged.
“As a local born and raised Geraldton Aboriginal gay man, I would love the opportunity to represent and work with my community to voice their concerns,” he said.
“I endeavour to work with my community and council to enhance our cultural and community consultation processes, to work towards a future together with our reconciliation action plan, and to also provide a voice for minorities within our community.”
He said extended local government training in Perth which he was required to undertake “wasn't supported” by the council at the time, prompting his resignation.
“I was a lot younger but this time I am more well-versed in what it means to be a councillor and a lot more educated now, so ready to hit the ground running and make positive changes for our whole community,” he said.
Former councillor, retiree and justice of the peace Mike Reymond, elected in 2015, has also nominated this year, after surviving a plane crash near Lancelin late last year.
Barrister Eva Svanberg, retired Geraldton TAFE director Steve Cooper, business consultant and community board member Michael Librizzi, school bus driver Peter Morton and former defence force member Mal Kelly have all nominated for the first time.
Schoolteacher Derek Goforth and community services worker Ron Bertelsen have nominated again after unsuccessfully running in the 2019 election, with returning councillors Victor Tanti, Natasha Colliver, Jennifer Critch and Jerry Clune hoping to keep their seats.
Local government elections are on October 16.
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