Bob Fredman at the first meeting of the newly elected council.
Bob Fredman at the first meeting of the newly elected council.

Fredman speaks: ‘New blood will lift council’

Letter to the editor by Cr Bob Fredman:

WE ARE at a point in time which is significant in the story of Gympie Regional Council.

Yesterday’s departure of CEO Bernard Smith, with the recent defeat of former mayor Mick Curran, marks the end of an era.

I have watched council politics closely over the years, from both the outside and more recently from the inside.

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Council CEO Smith resigns

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Hartwig: I wasn’t part of the meeting

Former CEO Bernard Smith at the first meeting of the new elected council.
Former CEO Bernard Smith at the first meeting of the new elected council.

My observation is that both men have been “in the trenches together” since their partnership started.

That the voters have spoken to Mr Curran with such a loud voice means it was fitting that Mr Smith should now seek alternative pastures.

It has been my observation that, to their credit, both men ruled from the heart. They really did have the best intentions for Gympie Region in mind, but they did it their way.

MORE: Ghost of CEO’s controversies caught up on election day

Their way didn’t please the majority of voters, and suffice to say we are now starting with a clean slate.

We have a broad board of mostly new people with differing skills, and that brings a great opportunity for change.

I know many good council staff have found the past few years difficult, but I hope everyone now lifts to the occasion.

Special Council Meeting – Mayor Glen Hartwig and Deputy Mayor Hilary Smerdon
Special Council Meeting – Mayor Glen Hartwig and Deputy Mayor Hilary Smerdon

We have appointed an interim CEO who I believe is well suited to the task. People will note it is a woman, someone who lives in Gympie, and someone with internal experience here and from other councils.

We are in a challenging situation now, with COVID-19 still in the air and a new budget due. There are also some “legacy” issues that we have to confront.

I look forward to working with Cr Hartwig, councillors, CEO, staff and ratepayers in making the future a solid one for us all.

Cr Bob Fredman, Division 8, Gympie Regional Council

MORE LETTERS BELOW:

May Day disaster recipe

WHY would the Queensland government ease the travel restrictions on the eve of a long weekend? Why can’t they wait until the long weekend is over?

It’s got to be a base for disaster.

Barry Winch, Glenwood

Mines should shut too

DOCTORS, nurses, politicians implore us to do the right thing. Stay at home.

That mines continue work is brazen. They are not special. We are making sacrifices to stay at home.

The mines should be stopping FIFO and DIDO and paying workers to stay at home.

Some of them have installed sanitisers, social distancing, thermometers etc, but really, these are token measures.

If they really cared about workers they would do the right thing: Stop work. Stay at home.

Protect our workers. Protect our communities.

Jennifer Wilson, Gold Coast

The rules apply to all

THE NRL boys are at it again!

Sporting team players know that everything works best in concert with the team.

Melbourne “Storm” members have been caught breaking social distancing rules. No apology will undo the damage to their reputations.

However, bringing the team, the NRL or football itself in disrepute for any reason, reflects on all the members and the code.

Not playing the game by the rules, as all players know, has consequences.

The Covid-19 rules are for everyone. The social isolation and distancing rules apply whatever our religion, our culture, our sporting affiliations and our personal needs. No one is exempt.

Those mature enough to understand that: “We are all in this together”, know that no excuse will be tolerated.

Hefty fines apply to get the message across.

E. Rowe, Marcoola

Gympie Times


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