As part of our lead up to Brimbank Voting in October 2016 we've asked mayors from neighbouring councils about their experience in local government. Part 3 is Mayor Adele Hegedich of Wyndham City Council
Fast Facts: Wyndham City Council, Mayor Adele Hegedich
What advice would you give to individuals thinking of running for Council for the first time in 2016?
Be Honest. If you are genuine in thinking about running for Council, then make your campaign about you and your qualities and what you have to offer to the community.
Can you tell us one thing that you are responsible for in your role as Mayor that people might not expect?
Conferring Australian Citizenships on non-citizens. In Wyndham City, we will confer citizenship to more than 2500 individuals in 2016 which is a great honour.
What was the most surprising thing about you discovered about local government and/or the role of a Councillor after being elected to Council for the first time?
The grass is always greener on the other side. It’s easy to judge people, especially councillors about what they do/do not do, or why they make a certain decision. Councillors engage in a fair bit of ‘behind the scenes’ information gathering before reaching a decision and decisions are often made on long term thinking, which sometimes gets blurred when there’s public pressure against the decision.
What first motivated you to enter local government?
At the time I first entered local government I was studying to be a lawyer and was working at a community legal centre - having always strived to promote social justice in my life. When I entered local government I felt it was an opportunity for me to bring an aspect of social justice to government.
One key message as to why everyone eligible should vote…
The right to vote in Australia is a right we may take for granted, but the right to vote in the Australian democratic system of government allows each and every one of us to have a say in the type of place we want to live. Voting in Council elections means that everyone has the opportunity to play a part in local decision making which is really important.