10 QUESTIONS WITH TONY McNAMARA – Singleton Mayoral Candidate
August 29, 2012 at 12:30 pm
1. What led you to run for Mayor?
I was encouraged by several existing councillors and some community members to run for Mayor of Singleton as there was a degree of dissatisfaction with the current arrangement. It was felt that only a select few of the councillors were being kept informed of important information whilst others were unaware. The council meetings were being run poorly and not in the spirit of democracy.
2. There have been some conflicts and tensions between councillors, how would you address and resolve such issues?
I am not, have not and will not be part of any factions within the council. I shall remain independent at all times and treat all members of the council equally.
3. There are seven Mayoral candidates, why do you think there was so much interest in this election and how do you think it will effect the result given that preferences are likely to play a role?
There is much interest in this election as the community has witnessed Singleton Council deteriorate over the past years from a highly respected organisation to the laughing stock of the Hunter Valley. Anonymous Code of Conduct allegations have been proven to be false, General Managers and Directors have come and gone and there has been great deal of dissatisfaction within the staff ranks. The result of this election will be decided by preferences.
4. This will be the first time the Mayor has been popularly elected in Singleton, why do you think the change was needed and how will it effect your chances?
The people of Singleton voted for the popularly elected Mayor by a ratio of 2:1. I believe this was the wish of the people due to the factional nature of the council and the poor decision making they were witnessing on a regular basis. Only the election can judge a candidates chance of success.
5. Will it be beneficial to now have a four year term for council?
It will be beneficial to council and the community to have the Mayor elected for a four term year as it will provide for stability of leadership and eliminate the annual horse trading the went with the annual election concept.
6. What would be your main priority if elected?
To build a harmonious and progressive council to serve the community in an ethical and transparent manner.
7. What is your biggest challenge in winning this election?
Beating the incumbent Mayor
8. Why should rate payers have faith in you?
The community can have faith in that I am not part of any faction and never will be. I shall always remain as an independent regardless of the political atmosphere.
9. How would you rate the performance of the current council and what would you change?
The current council has stagnated and failed to progress Singleton. There has been more than one million dollars wasted on false anonymous code of conduct allegations and there is a general feeling of mistrust within the elected members. If elected I would strive to transform Singleton Council into a modern and progressive organisation serving Singleton and the surrounding villages and farmland by improving traffic and parking in the Central Business District and working with mining companies to reduce and control dust emissions from open cut operations.
10. How do you rate your chances of winning the election?
This is a difficult question. I would rate my chance of winning this election as better than even money on the grounds that the community is seeking change.
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