Our city needs a leader who will make responsible decisions in the public interest, always. As we face COVID-19, the most serious public health crisis in Australian history you a need a leader you can trust. You want people in authority who are making decisions on the community’s behalf to communicate clearly and regularly. The wellbeing of our community and economy are under threat. More than ever, the Gold Coast needs a Mayor who has the judgement and ability to manage the impact of this crisis and coordinate the public response.
I will ensure that our local response and recovery teams include people with expertise in public health and wellbeing. I will assure the highest level of coordination and with state and federal authorities.
Swift and synchronised local action is essential for the welfare of our community – especially our parents and grandparents, and our immune-compromised and socially disadvantaged residents. We must continue and extend community services to keep people safe and confident.
We also need substantial and strategic support for local businesses and the tens of thousands of people who have instantly become unemployed and under-employed.
As the second biggest council in Australia with a $1.7 billion annual operating budget, Gold Coast City Council has capacity to offer generous financial assistance to our residents and businesses.
To KEEP THE GOLD COAST WORKING, I will introduce economic support packages:
- A Financial Assistance Program including waiver of various fees and charges for residents, discounts and deferral of general rates, grants and incentives for local business owners and operators; and
- An Economic Stimulus Portfolio to speed-up digital infrastructure delivery, to bring forward capital works projects, to buy local trades and supplies, and deliver stimulus projects that create new jobs and diversify our economy.
The Economic Stimulus Portfolio will continue beyond COVID-19, because over the next four years we must diversify and develop a more robust and sustainable local economy. We need progressive leadership with fresh perspectives and sustainable development goals. We cannot afford to revert to business as usual.
Even before COVID-19 happened, we were heading towards a tipping point. Our roads are choking, our lifestyle is under threat by poorly managed urban design and inadequate infrastructure, and our economy has not diversified fast enough or far enough.
The Gold Coast needs a Mayor who can see the bigger picture.
The Gold Coast has been my home for nearly 50 years. I have deep local knowledge of the city and the region, and a strong commitment to our future. My vision for the Gold Coast does not include massively expensive, irresponsible projects such as a giant Cruise Ship Port, a Cableway, or another Casino. Instead, I will promote sustainable tourism projects which build on our natural and cultural economic strengths that will bring higher returns on investment.
I will support establishment of creative, digital, and sustainable enterprises which will provide employment for new school leavers, trade and university graduates – our next generation of working Gold Coasters.
I am vehemently pro-development: pro well-planned, well- designed, sustainable development. Therefore, in the course of normal council business, I will support the development industry and help it to flourish. Development stimulates an economy by creating local jobs and improving the quality of a city. I fundamentally believe that if we make our city the best it can be for locals, it will also be attractive to visitors and other investors.
In my vision for the Gold Coast, Everybody Matters. As your Mayor, I will foster the things that keep us active and healthy outdoors – parks, footpaths and cycleways. I will not ignore social matters of domestic violence, homelessness, aged-care accommodation and affordable housing. Although these are primarily State Government responsibilities, our council should, and under my leadership will do more to support local service providers who are under strain in achieving their aims.
I am standing for election because our city needs a new and inclusive style of leadership that puts the people of the Gold Coast first.
- We need to do everything possible to minimise the health impacts of COVID-19
- We need to support local business and diversify our economy
- We need to fix our road traffic problems
- We need to manage our growth better
Despite the need to isolate and keep distance between us, we can still work together to adapt and respond to these challenges. We are in for a rough year ahead, but with kind hearts, new leadership, and deliberate action, we will make the Gold Coast shine again.
Please Vote 1 for me, Mona Hecke for Mayor.