WITH sitting councillor Rod Willox retiring after 25 years, there’s a big field of nominees for Stirling’s Lawley ward.
Lawley Ward (1 vacancy):
SUZANNE MIGDALE works in marketing for Fairfax and wants rates frozen for two years and compensation for seniors who lost their rates concession. She opposes any increase to the height of highrise developments currently proposed in Menora, and says Nollamara and Yokine are areas that need improved security measures for citizens.
JEREMY QUINN works as a recruitment consultant and had a tilt at federal politics running for the Liberal party at the last election. But he’s long had an interest in local government (having considered running back in 2013) and says if elected he’ll be in it for the full four years. He’s been in the area all his life and his priorities are cost of living (he wants rates kept low given how big a surplus Stirling is sitting on), heritage protection for the area’s character homes and buildings, and he wants improved home support services for seniors
CHRIS HARGREAVES says “the core reason of my decision [to nominate] is: I was unhappy with the level of attention the council put on my local area, Yokine, and I thought we needed somebody in my area to actually represent them on council…and I personally feel that small business is underrepresented on council” and suffering from steep rates. He says Yokine and the northern part of Beaufort Street need improvements to bring in more foot traffic, and says with Stirling sitting on such massive surpluses they need to ease up on rates next year.
PAUL COLLINS is current president of pro-heritage group the Mount Lawley Society, and was a councillor from 2007 to 2013 and says “the timing is right, because Rod Willox is not re-contesting. He decided to stand down, he’s endorsed me and said he’d sleep a lot better if I was elected”. Mr Collins wants new sports club facilities for Hamer Park and Inglewood oval (the facilities there were installed decades ago by the Shire of Perth) and more open space when new developments go up because fitting so much on every block is “turning Perth into one big heatsink”.
GAVIN WATTS has lived in the area for 20 years and having raised two kids in local schools says he’s running for council to give something back. He now works in government in a regulatory role, but has experience at the City of Stirling working with rangers, and resident security is a big issue for him, along with keeping rates low and maintaining environmental and financial sustainability.
IT’S a two-horse race in Stirling’s Inglewood ward, with newcomer Bianca Sandri running against veteran councillor Terry Tyzack.
Inglewood Ward (1 vacancy):
TERRY TYZACK has had two previous spells as mayor (1984-1986 and 2005-2007). “Restraint in spending” is a key focus and he says “Stirling’s debt free status resulted from a strategy initiated during my first mayoral term”. He says he’s renominated because “my passion for local government is strong as ever. I get great satisfaction from using my experience in architecture and planning to help individual ratepayers, community groups an sporting clubs navigate through council regulations to obtain the desired outcomes”.
BIANCA SANDRI runs a boutique town planning firm and has previously worked in local government. She wants to bring a sensible planner’s perspective to some of the city’s current policies. “Theres’s definitely room for improvement at every local government. At Stirling, I think they could offer some flexibility to get some better design outcomes.” She says it’s a bureaucratic obstacle course to try and get approval for multi-generational suitable housing (like two touching houses on one block, which would suit a lot of families living with parents as the area’s population ages), because the current laws classifies them as “group dwellings” and there needs to be more flexibility. She says “I would like to honour my family’s 50-year history with the Inglewood Ward by ensuring that any proposed changes don’t come at the expense of the uniqueness of Inglewood and Dianella”. She also wants more bicycle paths saying “the fact we don’t have them in Inglewood and Dianella is absurd” and wants incentives for owners of long-term vacant blocks to allow them to be used for public means, like community gardens.
THERE are three people in the race to replace Bayswater South ward councillor John Rifici, who after one term has decided not to re-contest his seat.
South Ward (1 vacancy):
ELLI PETERSEN-PIK is the current president of the Maylands Residents and Ratepayers Association, and has been involved in previous community campaigns to get Coles to clean up their derelict vacant lot on Guildford Road that was attracting garbage and graffiti. If elected he wants the city to explore options to get Coles to do something with the site or charge Coles higher rates for leaving it as a tip. He has a background drafting policy for government, he was also involved with the efforts to keep Maylands Waterland open and urged the council to go for the community’s favoured option of costly repairs. He wants a greener Guildford Road and better bike and pedestrian facilities.
ROBYN WALSH works in child protection and says “I’m a social justice advocate and I’m passionate about the environment”. She’s lived in the area for 17 years, is 53 years old and a Greens party member, and has been working on the “Yes” to equal marriage campaign lately (she has a female partner of 15 years but “we wouldn’t be entitled to the same legal protections should anything happen to one of us”). She says she’d like to bring some diversity to council, from the perspective of being a woman, a lesbian, and someone not involved in the business or development world. She was involved in the local “No Houses in Wetlands” campaign to save the land around Eric Singleton bird sanctuary, and that’s partly what spurred her to run. And also wants the city to pursue stronger links with Indigenous people and set up a formal “Reconciliation Action Plan”, as Perth and Vincent have done. She says fixing Maylands’ antisocial problems requires a long-term solution, based around early intervention to stop young people from getting into offending behaviour. “The problem isn’t the people, the problem is homelessness, that we have people who need to come here for food”.
KATE THOMSON wanted to run for council after getting involved in the campaign against the widening of Guildford Road, proposed by the previous state government, and is now chair of the Guildford Road Revival group pushing for improvements to the strip. An environmental scientist by trade and a newish Labor party member (getting involved after seeing Lisa Baker’s efforts to halt the Guildford Road widening), she’s also big on place activation to liven up the town centres and is chair of the Creative Maylands community group. The increase in crime in Maylands town centre lately is also a big issue for Ms Thomson and she’s said she’ll push for more security patrols, quicker police response times and for the guidelines of the “Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design” findings to be rolled out, which recommended measures like having more open shopfronts since having that passive surveillance helps discourage crime.
THERE’S a large cast of characters for Bayswater’s West ward, with some familiar faces who’ve graced our pages before and some new names popping up.
West Ward (2 vacancies):
TERRY KENYON’S renomination is an odd one given he hasn’t been able to go to a council meeting for almost a year (but still got paid the sitting fee). He was declared bankrupt by the federal court in January after an expensive legal case against two former councillors which would normally mean he’s ineligible to run, but he’s in the midst of a lengthy appeal leaving him in councillor limbo, and his spot in the chamber has been empty for the past eight months. We asked via email why he was running given he can’t sit in the chamber at the moment (and may never be able to if the appeal fails) but he didn’t respond.
GIORGIA JOHNSON runs Cool Breeze Cafe, known for top coffee and its waste-reducing innovations that have seen them cut their garbage down to one bag a weekend. Given that background (plus she’s an accountant), she’s keen on supporting the local economy and the environment.
GREG SMITH is a town planner and guerrilla gardener who’s been in our pages plenty of times, passionately defending trees and heritage buildings—even dressing up as the Lorax during the campaign to save the Carters’ Wetland block—and wants “good town planning” to retain the garden city’s amenity.
LORNA CLARKE’S a Coode Street resident who loves the town for its open green spaces, its history and sense of community, and she wants more trees on verges and a “no empty shops” policy to encourage landlords to use unleased spaces for events.
BEN DELLAR says his experience leading complex hospital projects at St John of God Healthcare and his finance background give him plenty of experience to run for council and he wants a responsible reduction in rate rises.
MARTIN TOLDO’S back for another tilt having previously served on council 2011-2015. He’s a volunteer transport driver for People Who Care and says he has “good financial management” and will be “keeping rates low as possible and be fare [sic] and equal with everybody”.
by DAVID BELL