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New Council for Golden Plains Shire


Members of a new look Council for Golden Plains Shire will take their Oath of Office on Tuesday 8 November following the Victorian Electoral Commission’s official declaration of the 2016 Local Government election results.

The make-up of Golden Plains Shire Council’s elected representatives will include three returning councillors and four new faces. The successful candidates are as follows:

Joanne Gilbert (new)
Joanne believes community consultation is paramount and is strongly committed to improving infrastructure and services whilst being financially responsible. Joanne was born and raised in Napoleons, and now lives in Cambrian Hill with her husband and three children. She is an active member of the Napoleons community.

Owen Sharkey (new)
Owen lives with his family in Batesford, where he is involved in the community, and works in Bannockburn. He would like to be seen as an approachable councillor whose decisions benefit the whole of the Shire. Owen’s priorities are to improve the survey rating, reduce spending, reduce borrowings and raise revenue by means other than increasing rates.

Helena Kirby (returning)
Helena is a longstanding Councillor of Golden Plains, living and working in Rokewood. She is, and has been, a voice for the whole of the Shire, helping achieve many positive outcomes for Golden Plains. Helena’s priorities this term are to improve roads, drainage and paths and keep rates a minimum.

David Evans (new)
David is a Bannockburn resident, passionate about making Golden Plains’ rates fair and equitable. He understands the issues facing the Shire, and is interested in making budgetary cost savings, wherever possible. He would like to be seen as approachable and is willing to hear new ideas.

Nathan Hansford (returning)
Nathan lives with his family in Bannockburn, owns a local business and returns to Golden Plains Shire Council for a second term. He is committed to being an approachable councillor, making the Shire an even greater place to work and live (through improved telecommunications and public transport – to name a few), and is focused on ensuring services are maintained or improved within the challenges associated with rate capping.

Des Phelan (returning)
This will be Des’ tenth year as a Golden Plains Shire Councillor, having represented the community as Mayor for the last two. Des, a farmer from Springdallah, is very proud of Council’s achievements over the years, including the development of four Early Years centres, amongst other projects. Des is committed to enhancing opportunities for community consultation and keeping rates at a minimum whilst maintaining roads at optimal levels. 

Les Rowe (new)
Les has lived in Golden Plains his whole life, owning and operating a business in Sutherlands Creek. He has been involved in the community for many years, and notably worked with Council and government departments lobbying for the new K-12 school in Bannockburn when he was Bannockburn Primary School President. His priorities are to support the residents, ratepayers and community organisations of Golden Plains, and make decisions that benefit the whole community. 

Golden Plains Shire CEO Rod Nicholls was quick to congratulate the successful Councillors and said the Council and the community held high expectations for the newly elected team.

“This is an exciting time for Golden Plains, and we look forward to working closely with Councillors and the community to continue to help shape Golden Plains into an even more vibrant and sustainable place to live,” said Mr Nicholls.

“It’s great to see some familiar faces return and to see some new ones emerge – there is a wealth of leadership experience, community passion and skill in the new Council, which will give Golden Plains good direction,” finished Mr Nicholls.

A post-election Special Meeting of the new Council will be held in the Bannockburn Shire Hall at 11am on Tuesday 8 November to swear in the new councillors and elect a Mayor.