MAYOR: Mark Bennett (IND)
NORTH WARD: Ben Collins (LIB), Elizabeth Krassoi (IND), Ross Williams (IND)
SOUTH WARD: Justine McLaughlin, (IND) Zac Miles (LIB), Jim Sanderson (IND)
Hunters Hill Trust asked the candidates a series of questions before the election. We applaud the new Mayor’s commitment to preserving our heritage, character and mature tree canopies. He said:
‘diligent and professional review of development proposals within the municipality needs to remain rigorous to ensure our streetscapes, environment and liveability is not compromised. The removal of trees in the name of progress simply must stop and we need to work harder to find better solutions.’
Here is the full response that Mark Bennett provided:
Mark Bennett’s biography
Mark Bennett has a Bachelor of Arts, Psychology Degree and a Master of Applied Psychology Degree. He has lived in Hunters Hill for 32 years. Mark is currently the deputy Mayor of Hunters Hill. Previously he was HR, Financial and later CEO of a large International Company however Mark is now retired and ready to commit to the position of Mayor full time. Over the past five years Mark has driven financial reform in council as well as playing a key role in the development of a community survey and he is looking forward to the opportunity to continue this work to ensure Hunters Hill Municipality remains strong and financially viable without compromising our independence, our heritage and natural environment, but also without losing connection with our residents and their needs.
What are your key goals and vision for Hunters Hill and how do you hope to achieve this?
Group A Independents stand for The protection of our heritage and natural environment
We will achieve this through:
- regular engagement with concerned community groups
- supporting excellence in urban design and planning for our villages and centres that respects our heritage, history and streetscapes
- scheduling council budget to address ongoing preservation of our community assets
- regular review and maintenance of our built and natural treasures
- support for community organisations to pass on our rich oral history and stories documenting the evolution of our suburb and the importance of preservation and sustainability
- by promoting and supporting sensitive and appropriate development within our greater municipality context.
Maintaining the independence and integrity of our council
- by improving our own financial viability as well as our relationships in NSROC
- by reviewing our strategic plans to ensure we optimise funding opportunities with input from the community and appropriate expertise
- by ensuring financial resilience through a long term strategy
- through a program of works towards safe streets (paths, roads, lights, parking) that is well managed and budgeted for
- by supporting community building activities and programs
- by working effectively with businesses and community groups that support our community and with State government and its relevant departments to optimise funding sources and support
- by ensuring our Council committees are appropriate for contemporary needs, run effectively and have the right representation and governance.
How will you respond to the increasing pressures of development in Hunters Hill so as to preserve its heritage and character, including its mature tree canopy?
We believe that some development pressure will ease with several key State government targets now being close to fulfilment. However, diligent and professional review of development proposals within the municipality needs to remain rigorous to ensure our streetscapes, environment and liveability is not compromised. The removal of trees in the name of progress simply must stop and we need to work harder to find better solutions.
We will work with community groups, professionals and the State government to ensure infrastructure and planning are appropriate.
Do you support an upgrade of the heritage listing in the LEP to include more buildings from the 20th century?
History and heritage is an ever-marching master and it would be remiss of any steward/custodian to overlook the fostering and protection of key examples of noteworthy architecture over the ages and the importance of maintaining this history as a record of the evolution of our suburb and its architecture.
We will support the Trust in any review of significant heritage in the municipality for consideration by Council and the broader community for additional listing inclusions.
What is your position on the Gladesville Shopping Village?
Gladesville village area is in dire need of a resolution that is appropriate for the location, needs and aspirations of our local community as well as the economic enhancement of the area so that businesses and residents can move forward with confidence.
However, even a development that ‘complies’ needs to have well planned infrastructure to support the development and the additional residents and cars that will come with such a project. There has been, and will continue to be community consultation on this project, including questioning of the process to ensure we achieve the best outcome.
If your Group is standing as Independent, please state if you or any of your team are also members of a political party.
Our group are all independent and not members of any political party.
Please list how your preferences will be distributed.
Preferences will only be shared with independents.