East Gippsland Shire Council re-elected Cr Mark Reeves as Mayor, unopposed, for the next 12 months last night.
The position of Deputy Mayor was contested by Crs Arthur Allen and Tom Crook. It was not filled as a neither councillor received an absolute majority of five votes. The position will be reconsidered on 8 November.
In accepting the position for a second consecutive term, Cr Reeves thanked the Councillors for their support to continue in the position.
Quoting 19tcentury Danish existentialist philosopher Soren Kierkegaard, who said, in about 1800, ‘Life can only be understood backwards, but must be lived forwards’, Cr Reeves said understanding what we have all been through over the past 12-24 months is formative to who we are and how we are as a community.
“The experiences we have all endured help us understand the place we are at. It helps us form the direction of where we need to go in the next 12 months,” Cr Reeves said.
“Reflecting on past events, behaviours, situations, and actions enables us to process them and create new knowledge and better responses for the next time. We don’t want to do the same things and expect a different outcome.”
Cr Reeves said the future for our community, for our young people to be lived ingoing forward and our legacy as decision makers, is to provide an optimistic and happily anticipated place to be.
“I want to continue to be able to harness the power, the collective wisdom and decision-making capacity of the councillor group to focus on the positive future that I firmly believe we can all share in,” he said.
Cr Reeves said the councillor group takes a collaborative approach, with a diversity of opinion and unity of outcome.
“A good councillor has the needs and best interests of the community at heart and can only achieve those outcomes by collaboration. The collaborative approach this group has at its heart is fantastic,” he said.
“We are mid-term, and it is a good time to double-down and consolidate the great foundational work we have undertaken over the past 24 months.”
The Mayor acknowledged “the year of dedication and outstanding work” by Deputy Mayor, Cr Arthur Allen.
“Good people are magnetic, and Arthur seems to attract all the right people for all the right reasons. He is humble and gracious despite that fact so much is undertaken by him in his role in the community and as a councillor.”
The Mayor’s full speech and remarks by Councillors can be viewed on the live stream of the meeting.