This week has been bookended by two very important meetings.
The Australian Local Government Association's (ALGA) strategic planning meeting – which I foreshadowed in my last wrap – started the week and today, the LGAQ’s first Policy Executive meeting for the year ended it. Much of the work of the ALGA Board and LGAQ Policy Executive goes unheralded. Sometimes we gloss over the role these bodies play but it is significant. The Mayors and Councillors who serve on these bodies come from all parts of Queensland and Australia and meet six times a year to discuss, debate and respectively decide ALGA and LGAQ policy.
The agenda papers are voluminous and the reading onerous. Notwithstanding, these men and women are dedicated to the local government cause and to taking your voices forward. They serve on these bodies after being elected by you. Every four years, straight after the quadrennial council elections, you elect 15 LGAQ Policy Executive members to represent your patch, and then in October, you elect a President at the LGAQ AGM to head both the board and Policy Executive. The Policy Executive then chooses two of its number to sit on the ALGA Board as directors.
For this term they are Mayor Matt Burnett and Mayor Jack Dempsey with Mayor Karen Williams serving as an alternate. Mayor Burnett has also been elected vice-president of ALGA, further enhancing Queensland’s voice on the national stage. By the numbers, South East Queensland currently has five representatives including the President, Mayor Mark Jamieson. Rural and remote councils have five representatives, provincial cities have four representatives and First Nations communities have two. Eleven of the Policy Executive’s 16 members come from outside the southeast corner of the state including from such remote councils as Diamantina Shire (Mayor Robbie Dare), Cook Shire (Mayor Peter Scott), and Lockhart River Aboriginal Shire (Mayor Wayne Butcher).
The membership of the Policy Executive is designed to ensure the views of all 77 councils across this state are represented.
It was designed that way to ensure your LGAQ is focussed on what is most important to you. We exist for one reason and that is to serve and look after your interests.
As always, I would encourage you to make good use of your Policy Executive by raising any issues you would like placed on the agenda at coming meetings.