The Maranoa region will go to the polls at the end of March.
The Maranoa region will go to the polls at the end of March.

Staunch town advocate puts hand up for election

BEING involved in her local community has been a lifelong commitment for Maranoa Regional councillor Puddy Chandler.

About to wrap up her first term as a councillor, she has announced she will stand again in the upcoming local government elections.

A staunch advocate for Injune, Cr Chandler first moved to the Maranoa region in 1979, and since the early school days of her children, has been involved in various community groups.

“I started out that journey when my kids went to school and got involved with the P & C, so that’s how I started my volunteering journey,” she said.

Having served stints as president of various Injune organisations in the past 40 years, it was a no-brainer for Cr Chandler to put her hand up in 2016.

“In my role as councillor, I’m not divisional. So I will always defend Injune, stick up for it and fight for it, I also have to do that for the whole region,” she said.

“In my tourism portfolio, I think we’ve made some great progress. We’re working on rebranding, which is about to be launch.

“My other aim has to have a Maranoa collective in tourism, we’re all together in the one board. We’re working on a lot of projects across the region.”

Cr Chandler said she had also been proud of the work carried out under her other portfolios – arts and culture and community safety.

“The dog control program, a lot has changed with that. We have a fantastic team, and we’ve made some great progress with that,” she said.

“We’re now trying to get on top of our cat control program, unfortunately a lot of them don’t have owners so we have to deal with that.”

Over the next four years, Cr Chandler said she wanted to see an increased amount of funding from state and federal governments.

“The only revenue local government gets is from rates, and we have to walk this double edged sword where we’re trying to keep rates cheap, but everything goes up,” she said.

“It’s a hard line to balance.”

Cr Chandler said her husband had been instrumental to the last four years, during which time he has had the “lions share” of running her business.

“While I’m doing this job as councillor, which I put my hand up for, I have a business as well, and he has stepped in and done a lot for it,” she said.

The local government election will be held on March 28.