Council appoints Disaster Group Chair, Deputy Mayor

Noosa’s new council has unanimously endorsed Councillor Frank Wilkie in the role of Deputy Mayor.

At today’s post-election meeting, Mayor Clare Stewart said the appointment of Cr Wilkie was vital to providing stability for the council.

New Council, with CEO

Noosa’s new Mayor Clare Stewart (front right), with Cr Brian Stockwell, Cr Amelia Lorentson, Deputy Mayor Cr Frank Wilkie (back row), Cr Karen Finzel, Cr Joe Jurisevic, Cr Tom Wegener (middle row) and CEO Brett de Chastel (front).

“Councillor Wilkie has exceptional credentials and experience, having served in this role for the past four years,” the Mayor said.

“He has the confidence of Council and the community – as demonstrated by his strong polling in the recent election. With his long-standing experience he brings a lot to the table, making him the right person for the job.”

Cr Wilkie said he was looking forward to providing guidance where needed.

“I will work hard to earn the trust placed in me by Council and the community. I will take on board the professional advice of the CEO and Council staff to ensure this community is ably and responsibly represented in the Mayor’s absence. This is not a responsibility I take lightly,” he said.

Mayor Stewart has taken the reins as Chair of the Local Disaster Management Group (LDMG) to steer the region through difficult times, including the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I take this role incredibly seriously. These are trying and unprecedented times and I have every confidence in those around the LDMG table,” Cr Stewart said in accepting the nomination.

“Many skilled emergency services personnel, Council and government staff make up the Disaster Management Group and I will certainly draw on their support and guidance.”

Cr Joe Jurisevic will again take on the Deputy LDMG Chair role.

At its first meeting, Council also considered a report from CEO Brett de Chastel noting the actions taken during the caretaker period to support the community, and businesses, through the pandemic.

More than $1.9M was spent on fast-tracked payments to local and regional suppliers to assist them with cash flow.

Council waived $126,000 worth of outdoor dining permit fees, and provided more than $100,000 rent relief to tenants of Council-owned buildings such as the Sunrise Beach shops.

$141,000 in waste charges was refunded to businesses not operating during the pandemic.

Further funds have been spent, or set aside, to support businesses with expert help in areas such as continuity planning, finance, law, human resources, communications and marketing.

Council has refunded more than $27,000 worth of wedding and event permit booking fees, and almost $17,000 in commercial permit fees. Council has deferred infrastructure charges to the tune of more than $170,000.

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