Election forum

FOR the first time in decades Bayswater will stage a candidate forum ahead of the council elections.

The October 17 forum will be held at the Bayswater bowling club September 29, and so far nearly all the candidates, including mayor Sylvan Albert (seeking re-election to his ward seat) have confirmed attendance.

The format will include a brief address by candidates, followed by Q&A style questions submitted via social media and from the floor.

The forum was organised by community group Bayswater Collective, which has been covering the election build-up on its Facebook page.

• Bayswater Bowling Club: venue for the local government candidate forum. Photo by Matthew Dwyer

• Bayswater Bowling Club: venue for the local government candidate forum. Photo by Matthew Dwyer

“After posting mini-biographies of candidates we received a lot of interest and people asked about the possibility of an election forum,” says collective member Kylie Elsegood-Smith.

“In general, there seems to be a lot more interest in this election than previous ones.

“I think part of that is down to candidates using social media more and engaging with a large number of people online.”

The voter turnout for council elections is notoriously low, with the 2013 poll — held in the same year as federal and state elections — garnering a pathetic 27.8 per cent average turnout, down from 30.9 in 2011.

This year, many councils report an increase in the number of candidates applying for seats (in the past several seats were not contested).

The forum starts 6pm.

Confirmed attendees:
South ward: Cr Sylvan Albert, Catherine Ehrhardt
West ward:, Dan Bull, Paul Shanahan, Cr Martin Toldo
Central ward: Hadi Assanteh, Cr Chris Cornish, Sally Palmer
North ward: Cr Mike Anderton, Jacquie Kelly, Cr Michael Sabatino

by STEPHEN POLLOCK

Parliament House 8x2

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