General News

19 April, 2024

Bilney takes Deputy role

DIVISION 3 Cr Dave Bilney has become the Deputy Mayor of Tablelands Regional Council in a close, secret vote last week.

Cr Dave Bilney has been elected as Deputy Mayor by the new Tablelands Regional Council.
Cr Dave Bilney has been elected as Deputy Mayor by the new Tablelands Regional Council.

Cr Bilney and Cr Annette Haydon were the only ones to put their hands up for the position, with Cr Kevin Cardew electing not to seek re-election for the Deputy Mayor role.

Later in the meeting, the council also decided to dissolve the monthly Planning Committee meeting because it was no longer considered to be necessary given that any development or planning matters could be managed at ordinary monthly meetings.

Before councillors voted in a secret ballot, both Crs Haydon and Bilney were given an opportunity to tell the others why they should be chosen as Deputy Mayor, with prepared speeches outlining their credentials.

Cr Haydon, who has had 19 years in local government having also served on the former Herberton Shire, said she had the passion, knowledge and experience to take on the deputy role and listed off the numerous organisations she has been involved with over the years.

She also promoted her knowledge of good governance and business acumen as well as her support to work through asset management plans now in place and the service level review of the organisation.

In his presentation, Cr Bilney touted his communication and leadership skills as good reasons why he should get the position.

“Key to my success as a divisional councillor, I believe, has been specifically due to these factors – effective communication, leadership, and good management,” he said.

“Not only do I find my role an immensely rewarding one, but was overwhelmed when I discovered I was re-elected unopposed. I am incredibly grateful to the community for its continued trust and faith in me, in representing their needs on council.”

In his pitch, Cr Bilney proposed that the Mayor and Deputy Mayor hold “organised” meetings in different towns on a monthly rotational basis.

“This would provide a more focused face-to-face approach to leadership within our community,” he said.

“This would occur monthly on a rotational basis and be not negotiable in my view, the intent being providing elevated access to the council decision makers.”

He also hinted at a number of projects he would like to see progress over the term of council.

“I have many little projects and initiatives that I would like to progress through the coming years, all of which can have the ability to unlock the Tablelands true potential, be that through agriculture, tourism or emerging opportunities that present themselves,” he said, noting that the expansion of the Atherton Forrest Mountain Bike Park was “an exciting example of this”.

“My vision for the coming term is also to restore this organisation as an Employer of Choice. 

“One that values its staff and empowers them to strive for improvement, rewards them through career opportunities and is renowned for ‘growing its own’ – a place where community will see the currency in council and its workforce which can be achieved through targeted improvement to organisational culture and its values.”

Councillors voted 4-3 in favour of Cr Bilney who accepted the role.

Later in the meeting he was also named the Deputy Chair of the Tablelands Local Disaster Management Group, which is chaired by Mayor Rod Marti.

The meeting also decided that Mayor Marti would continue to be the council’s representative on FNQ Regional Organisation of Councils (FNQROC) and that he would provide the council with briefings after each meeting of that group.


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