Further to your article ‘Dummy furore’ and ‘His face, their photo’ (pp1 and 10, Sentinel-Times, October 4), I wish to strongly protest the anonymous claim that I and several other candidates in the Tarwin Valley Ward are dummy candidates to benefit Cr Don Hill.
I can assure voters that I am not a dummy, nor a stooge, for anyone.
I am a genuine candidate who will work hard for the ward community if I am elected.
Value for money, customer service and fair rating are key issues that prompted me to stand as councillor.
I regard Cr Hill as hard working and committed. Through his newsletters to Tarwin Valley Ward ratepayers, he identified some critical concerns about whether South Gippsland Shire Council was wisely using our rate revenue.
He pointed to several long term commitments made on behalf of ratepayers that we cannot afford; and identified the potential skewing of community infrastructure funds to a small number of localities over a fairer distribution across shire townships.
When the Victorian Electoral Commission determined it wasn’t going to send out candidate How to Vote Cards in the official mail-out, I was faced with the prospect of further significant advertising, printing and postal costs.
As an independent council nominee, whose campaign is unsponsored, I agreed to join with Cr Hill and other candidates he had garnered who were of like mind.
Last election in Tarwin Valley Ward, three candidates were elected unopposed.
Now there are 13 candidates vying for the three positions.
That ten of us will fail is certain.
That voter choice and democracy is the winner from a contested election is also a certainty.
The insidious attacks now being made on me and other candidates smacks of the aggressive and inward looking behaviour that has dogged council over the last term and stimulated me to bring a fresh, forward thinking, strategic voice and perspective to the shire council.
Rosemary Cousin, Allambee South.
Independently on Hill ticket