Councillor Hans Hietbrink has been re-elected as Mayor of Guyra Shire for the next 12 months. It will be his sixth term as Mayor since he was first elected to Council in 2008. The position of Deputy Mayor was put to a vote after two nominations were received. Incumbent Cr Audrey McArdle faced a challenge from Cr Dean Heagney with a 4-2 vote recorded in Mrs McArdle’s favour.
Cr HIetbrink said that his main priority for the next twelve months was to see the proposed construction of the new aged care facility in Guyra become a reality.
He is also looking forward to welcoming new General Manager Peter Stewart to the team at Guyra Shire. Mr Stewart will begin work in October and Cr Hietbrink said he is looking forward to introducing him to the wider community and neighbouring councils to ensure he is up to speed with local issues.
Cr Hietbrink said that council’s financial position remains a top priority and that they would continue to actively seek grant funding which will allow a backlog of infrastructure and road projects to go ahead. He lists the long awaited upgrade of the Guyra Rd near Ebor, which will commence in the next 12 months, as a win for council.
Reflecting on the year just past he said that the Healthy Highlanders program has been a highlight for the community.
“The program has generated a great deal of enthusiasm in the community with high levels of participation,” he said. “We will be looking at ways of keeping the momentum going when the current funding runs out and hope to retain some elements going forward.
He said that Claret Ash Estate continues to sell well and he anticipates that all blocks will be sold within the coming 12 months, well ahead of schedule.
“The projected increase in population for Guyra has meant that council’s decision to take out a loan to get the development up and running has proven to be the right one,” he said.
However probably the main highlight for Cr Hietbrink is the fact that another 12 months have passed and Guyra Shire remains a stand alone council.
“It remains a priority for myself and all councillors to continue the fight to remain autonomous and retain local knowledge and identity for Guyra Shire,” Cr Hietbrink concluded.