By LEIGH GRAY*
IN this my first report as Mayor, I would like to start by thanking our residents and ratepayers for allowing me to lead Brighton Municipality. I am extremely honoured to have been successful at the recent by-election to replace long-standing Mayor Tony Foster. I can assure you I will work hard, listen to your comments and concerns, and do my very best to repay the faith you have shown in me.
I would also like to acknowledge the candidates who put their names forward for mayoral and councillor roles. It is not easy to do, and I thank them all for their efforts and continuing interest in our community. Please keep being involved, as without input from the community, we cannot fulfil our roles.
I must also congratulate Aaron De La Torre on his election as councillor. I am sure he will make an important contribution to our future deliberations.
Brighton is a great place to live, work and play. I am confident our Municipality can look forward to a very positive future. We see growth across the board in our population, development, infrastructure business and industry, and I know this will help us maintain our community’s positive direction.
We have some issues that are not necessarily under Council’s control but have an impact on our community. With our fellow Councillors, I will continue to advocate on your behalf to ensure every level of government is aware of the issues affecting us and that we gain appropriate assistance where required. For example, I am soon to meet with representatives of the Federal Government to seek assistance regarding current difficulties in securing and retaining general medical practitioners (GPs) in our region and have asked them to consider or discuss changes that could make it more attractive for GPs to come and work in our area.
I have a busy first few months ahead, with briefings and meetings with State, Federal and Local Government representatives to ensure the good work our Council has in place is continued and the promises made by State and Federal Governments over the past few years, as well as Council’s commitments, are implemented. The Bridgewater Bridge Project is moving closer to commencement, and planning for the Brighton High School is well underway. We want to see these projects progress over the next few years to improve community and commercial mobility across the region, increase investment and further enhance our region’s educational opportunities. The education of our young people is of great importance. The facilities at the new school and the Jordan River Learning Federation campuses can provide our Municipality with the necessary vibrant places of learning, now and in the future.
Council is progressing with our plans for this year. We have implemented a long-term plan for our assets, such as roads, bridges, and public facilities, tied to our long-term financial management plan. This ensures community infrastructure is provided and maintained as needed and our financial resources managed responsibly.
We are all working towards making our Municipality better for everyone. I highly recommend you keep in touch with Council by talking to your Councillors and keeping an eye on our Council website and social media channels to learn more about our exciting plans for “Our Place”. Check out our 2050 Vision and plans displayed at www.brighton.tas.gov.au to ensure you also are aware of where we are heading.
I am always available to discuss issues and concerns, as are all our Councillors. I look forward to serving you and continue to report our progress through Brighton Community News.