Jo raises her voice

COMMUNITY: Long-time resident Joanne Waters hopes to return to council in November.
COMMUNITY: Long-time resident Joanne Waters hopes to return to council in November.

Long-time resident Joanne Waters says she’ll be a voice for the people if elected as an area councillor in the 2018 local council elections.

A former councillor, Ms Waters is certainly no stranger to throwing her hat in the ring. She’s nominated for every council election since the late 90’s.

Ms Waters, who has been a caretaker at the Mount Laura Homestead since July last year, says not enough elected members are listening to the people of Whyalla

“I’ve been involved in quite a few community organisations who rely on council’s support, such as the Residents and Ratepayers Association,” she said.

“We continually email elected members, and there are very few that even acknowledge having received those emails. People need to be heard, they need their elected members to listen to them.”

If elected, Ms Waters said she would aim to keep council open and transparent.

“I don’t have an agenda except passion for Whyalla,” she said.

“I want the community to feel that they’ve been heard – even if they don’t get what they want they know they have participated and been listened to.”

Another issue Ms Waters hopes to address is the lack of audio recording for council meetings. She says she ‘doesn’t understand’ why council hasn’t voted to live streaming meetings.

“That would be educational for anyone involved in civics. It would be inclusive, so even people who can’t get out to attend meetings can see what’s going on,” she said.

Being an active volunteer in the community, Ms Waters has been involved in a host of community groups including Whyalla EcoLets, Advancing Whyalla, Whyalla Beach Wheelchair Association, and 5YYY.

“I’ve always volunteered, I’ve always taken the kids to National Tree Day and Clean-Up Australia Day to instill some community pride in them,” she said.

Ms Waters community buses should be available on weekends to allow members of the public without transport access to local events.

“Too many people are stuck at home,” she said.