FORMER Murray Shire mayor Tom Weyrich won’t just be standing at September’s election.
‘‘I will be there with silver bells on, front and centre,’’ he said.
Cr Weyrich threw his hat into the ring during the Campaspe Shire election last year but wasn’t successful.
Now he’s hoping to find a place in the new Murray River Council.
Mr Weyrich lives in Mathoura and owns a business in Moama, and was on Murray Shire council for 17 years, which included stints as deputy mayor and mayor.
‘‘Just because I’m standing doesn’t mean I’m going to get elected,’’ he conceded.
Mr Weyrich said he wanted to bring a ‘‘new outlook’’ to the table because in his mind, for the past 14 months, there had been a steady trail of residents and ratepayers who were ‘‘very disappointed’’ in the current council.
‘‘To the point where, before I was on council, and even in the early days, the level of discontent was never like this,’’ he said.
‘‘I say to the people who come to me, I can’t help you, there’s nothing I can do ... I’ve pretty much sat back and been pretty quiet but that needs to change.
‘‘If I’m fortunate to be elected we need to change a few things and we need to be more transparent — we need to be more open, we need to tell the people what’s going on.
‘‘We’ve had some senior staff members leave under ... very puzzling circumstances.’’
That aside, Mr Weyrich said the biggest challenge the new council would face would be the tyranny of distance.
‘‘I think what people from the old Murray Shire need to realise is ... it’s the third largest rural shire in NSW.’’
If elected Mr Weyrich said he wanted to see an administrative headquarters introduced to the new council.
‘‘We don’t have a headquarters — it’s like a chook with it’s head cut off, it doesn’t know where it’s going ... It’s like it’s lost. They tell me it’s 200kms from one end of the shire to the other. To get around the whole of the shire it takes at least one whole day.’’
Mr Weyrich said if he could have his time again on council he would change some things. One thing of which he is certain, however, is that he worked hard.
‘‘It cost me money to be the mayor ... but I was prepared to do that,’’ he said.
‘‘I’ve always felt that I was very approachable, it will just be up to the people now, I can’t do anything more than what I’ve done.’’