'It's good to be back': Fredman romps in with 65% of votes
DIVISION 8 has thrown its weight behind Councillor Bob Fredman, with the former engineer closing the by-election with almost two-thirds of the final vote.
After preferences, Cr Fredman claimed the Mary Valley seat over Julie Walker in a split of 65.4 to 34.6 per cent.
More than 56 per cent of Tim Jerome's voters preferenced Cr Fredman, who finished the by-election with 1988 votes.
Many of Division 8's voters took their task seriously, too, with only 2 per cent of the electorate voting informally.
In contrast, the informal vote rate at the 2016 Gympie Regional Council election was 4.65 per cent.
- Gympie Regional Council has been sent a clear message
- Fredman: Women in politics and what I learned from voters
- 'Bring it on': Fredman takes Division Eight
Cr Fredman's biggest support in the by-election came at Jones Hill (59 per cent) and Amamoor (58.39 per cent).
He also received significant support among the 820 pre-poll voters, with 57.8 per cent backing him.
His most tenuous support came from Imbil, where he grabbed 37.6 per cent.
Mr Jerome was the second most popular there with 32.9 per cent, while Mrs Walker took home 29.4 per cent of the town's support.
Wednesday's special budget meeting was Cr Fredman's first day in the Division 8 seat, and after taking his oath he took the time to thank his supporters.
"Since I abruptly left the council some time ago, it has been a roller coaster ride for my family,” he said.
"The whole ride has been very, very hard on my family and I'm eternally grateful to them.”
And while he was now on the other side of the table, he said the passion to serve the community was still there.
"It's good to be back.”