Mayor candidate opens up about why she’s ready for role
LATER this month South Burnett residents will take to the polls to have their say on who they want to sit on the next council.
Ahead of the upcoming local government election on March 28, we spoke with Abigail Andersson about why she is running for mayor.
1.Why do you want to be a SBRC councillor?
This campaign is my offer to my community of four years of my life dedicated to service, specifically this area that I was born in. Although I respect the levels of government, my attitude is that we need to get it right at home/ground level. Sustainable quality of life should be always at the forefront of any public service role.
2. What relevant experience have you had that qualifies you to guide the council forward?
I have had my fair share of curve balls from life but I am resilient and want to ensure all members of the local community have access to services and opportunity and being able to manage that against my responsibility to act in the interest of the wider community means using my existing skills in public speaking, leadership, policy formulation, corporate planning, advocacy, budgeting and networking. I've written several successful grants for community groups and as rural ambassador used my bursary to become a qualified justice of the peace.
3.If elected, what are your top three priorities?
Water security, cultural tourism, rate stabilisation.
4.In your opinion, in what areas is the South Burnett leading the way?
Rates, pretty sure no other regional area has higher ones.
5.What challenges do you see impacting the region in the next four years?
Innovation, cost of living and miscommunication.
6.What business, residential and investment interests do you have locally and beyond?
My family operates Anderssons Fruit Market. My husband and I have our home and an investment property here in the South Burnett. My father's farm in Inverlaw and my original childhood home in Blackbutt also make up part of my investment ladder.
7.What's more important - supporting small businesses in the region, or attracting big businesses to the South Burnett?
I don't think one is more important than the other, they need to work congruently, however, if you don't take care of small businesses you haven't got a hope in hell at sustaining the population growth you need for big business.
8.What is the first thing council should do to improve health services across the South Burnett?
Work with the state to make sure our 'new hospital' actually provides what we need. Create a plan to entice new GPs to live and love the South Burnett as we do.
9.What community and volunteer activities have you engaged in prior to the current election campaign?
President of Kumbia Kindergarten, president of Kingaroy Dance Supporters, president of South Burnett Toastmasters, treasurer of KCCG, Life Member of Nanango Little Theatre, QCWA, South Nanango Rural Fire Brigade, SBMCS, Kingaroy Local Ambulance Committee, Kingaroy Bowls Club, South Burnett Show Society, Big Peanut Committee BaconFest (2018), KAT Member. RSPCA, South Burnett VIC, Red Cross, Mates with Gates, Kingaroy Tennis Club, Kingaroy Eisteddfod, Go Getta Girls Mother's Day Fun Run Volunteer.
Apologies if I've forgotten anyone in this list, you know I love you all equally.
10. As councillor/if elected, how do you plan to involve residents in the decision-making process for our region?
Making sure they feel they have a touchstone in myself and their division councillors so they can personally express their ideas and opinions.
11.If you received a $1 million grant to use for the region any way you wanted, what would you do with it and why?
I'd pave the way for roadside recycling because that is going to become a requirement regardless of our views on it.
12.Tell us something about yourself that others may be surprised to know about you.
I'm one of the strongest people I know. I'd want me on your team in a fight.