PUSHING the state government to regulate barges and build a university in Redlands are two projects Lance Hewlett hopes to pursue if he wins the Division 4 seat in next year’s Redland City Council election.
Division 4, currently held by councillor John Burns, covers Victoria Point and Coochiemudlo Island.
Mr Hewlett, 50, who has lived in Division 4 for 19 years with wife Sheena, stepped down from his job as state manager of 3M Distribution to concentrate on the election campaign.
He said he decided to run for council to share his expertise gleaned working for 10 years as a purchasing manager with the state government and 20 years in the private sector.
He got his first taste of politics helping out with the 2001 state election, when the Beattie Labor government was returned after defeating the Liberal National coalition with a massive 66 seats out of the parliament’s 89.
Mr Hewlett is no longer a member of any political party.
“Whether the current council believes it or not, people are struggling with massive cost-of-living pressures,” Mr Hewlett said.
“These are heightened by increased dump fees, rates and levies, expensive water and metered parking being introduced.
“Massive increases to the council’s wages bill, failed projects, unrealistic environmental regulation, lost education and employment opportunities and increased pressure on business all make for a very sad state of affairs.
“The feedback I am getting is that people have had enough and are tired of being treated with contempt and apathy,” Mr Hewlett said.
A solution to high rates, according to Mr Hewlett, was to follow the example of Ipswich City Council and freeze rates for four years.
If elected, Mr Hewlett also said he would “apply balance and commonsense” when implementing strategies to protect the natural landscape that makes Redlands special.
He also said he would work to “rationalise water management”, remove dump fees, improve road maintenance and street lighting and push to introduce a kerbside pickup.
“I believe the Coochie barge service needs to be regulated in line with the ferries services and I want the council to move faster on dredging the channel there,” Mr Hewlett said.
Victoria Point businesswoman and Point Halloran Neighbourhood Watch deputy coordinator Louise Denisenko will also contest the seat.
Cr Burns has not declared whether he will recontest Division 4, which he won in a 2008 by-election called when Peter Dowling vacated the seat to run as a Liberal Party candidate in the 2009 state election.
Cr Burns had also held the division from 1994 to 2000.
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