VETERAN councillor Glenn Milne has been returned to Mildura Rural City Council, topping the count with more than 16 per cent of the vote.
Cr Milne received 4887 votes, almost double any of the other 17 candidates.
Victorian Electoral Commission at midday yesterday announced the election result that brings five new faces to the council table.
Retiring councillor Gavin Sedgmen was defeated. He had filled a mid-term vacancy in 2018 following the death of Max Thorburn.
Cr Milne was first elected followed by Werrimull farmer Ian Arney who finished second in the primary vote count and finished just short of a quota in his own right. Cr Arney will be the only councillor from the rural areas of Victoria’s largest local government area.
The quota for election was 2881 votes. Just under 77 per cent of the city’s 40720 electors voted and 7.94 of votes were informal.
Mildura publican Liam Wood was third elected.
The fourth spot was claimed by Jason Modica who was seeking re-election, followed by Stefano de Pieri, another Mildura council veteran Mark Eckel and Helen Healy.
Cr Healy had filled a mid-term vacancy following the election of Ali Cupper to State Parliament.
The final two places at the council table have gone to election newcomers Cyndi Power and Jodi Reynolds.
The poll will be formally declared on November 13 and the new council will have its first meeting on November 17 where the mayor and deputy mayor will be elected.
The new civic leaders will succeed Simon Clemence and Min Poole who did not contest the council election. Greg Brown and Anthony Cirillo also stepped down from council.
Glenn Milne: “The result has stunned me. I have increased my vote by almost 50 per cent and so I am extremely happy with that.
I think people were looking for stability and experience and your Council and your leadership has to be stable and you also have to stick to the issues that the community is concerned about. I campaigned on issue like the rail and rates and we need to change the system in regard to rates.
The fact is the rate system in the state has to change because it isn’t fair on our community. We need to work hard together with the other councils particularly country councils to affect a change.
The rail is a big issue with our farmers and so we have to look after them on that and we do have to get back to basics there are concerns about rubbish collection and so I think we need to look at some aspects of that.
The other important issue is addressing how we as a community emerge from the COVID crisis and how we can move our community forward looking at development planning and how Council can work more closely with the community and be easier to get a long with, be more accessible and streamline the system to be easier to navigate. We all have to work together because we need to build a better community and reduce the negativity toward council and look at how we achieve that.”
Jodi Reynolds: “The campaign itself was fantastic and I thank everybody who was involved with running the campaign. The result shows that people were willing to take a chance and wanted to see a change in Mildura and they want to see a different direction and I think that is what has played out in this election.
Now it is up to me to do a good job for those people and support and represent them over the next four years and I am look forward to that opportunity.”
Jason Modica: “I think having four Councillors stand down at the election opened up opportunities to see new blood join council.
We now have a good mix of people who have experience and the new blood gives the opportunity to have a connection with their new council and express what they think are the concerns in the community and build trust between each of us.
It is a chamber that makes difficult decisions and so our ability to trust each other even when we disagree and to work for the community the best way that we can is important.
We now have three talented ladies on council and given we are a conservative region I think that is a great achievement and brings equity to the chamber.”
WOOD, Liam Andrew 2321 8.06%
CLEMENTS, Katie 1417 4.92%
BAILEY, Troy 1037 3.60%
POWER, Cyndi 1740 6.04%
MILNE, Glenn 4887 16.97%
FIKARIS, Angy 398 1.38%
WATERS, Julie 943 3.27%
HEALY, Helen 1642 5.70%
WICKHAM, Dean 899 3.12%
REYNOLDS, Jodi 1617 5.61%
ARNEY, Ian Richard 2662 9.24%
KINGDON, Kym 951 3.30%
ECKEL, Mark 1780 6.18%
O’NEILL, Paul 479 1.66%
MODICA, Jason 2239 7.77%
CAPOGRECO, Domenico 793 2.75%
DE PIERI, Stefano 2220 7.71%
SEDGMEN, Gavin 780 2.71%