The Mirror News

Cr Davies to retire from SG Shire

SOUTH Gippsland Shire’s Coastal/Promontory Ward Councillor Mohya Davies will be retiring as a municipal representative, after deciding to not to seek re-election in the approaching Victorian local government polls in October 2024.

A South Gippslander through and through, Mohya grew up in Stony Creek and as an adult has lived in the Foster district for more than four decades, with three terms of service as a Shire councillor.

“My journey into local government was driven by my pride in this region and a passion for my community,” Mohya said.

“I have truly loved being a part of the South Gippsland Shire Council, and it has been a privilege to serve my community on the council,” she said.

“I was first elected in 2008 and, after 11 years, four elections, a period as Mayor, another as Deputy Mayor, and being on many committees, the moment is coming for me to make way for someone new on council and to devote more time to my family.”

Mohya said she stood for South Gippsland Shire Council in the 2021 election because “I felt it was very important to have stability on council after the previous council was dismissed in 2019, followed by more than two years of administration.

“It has been great to work with the new group of councillors elected alongside me in 2021, and all with a strong focus on good governance and community service to help restore the reputation of South Gippsland,” she said.

“In 2024 I have decided to step aside and to allow for fresh energy and new representation for the Coastal/Promontory Ward.

“The recent changes to South Gippsland Shire’s three ward boundaries in order to even up the number of electors in each have made Coastal Promontory Ward the largest, geographically speaking,” Mohya said.

“And, ironically, the area the Coastal/Promontory Ward now covers is very similar to the pre-amalgamation Shire of South Gippsland, with all of the Fish Creek district, Buffalo, Foster North and Woorarra returned, and Meeniyan and Dumbalk added.”

Mohya also noted that as a member of the Foster Community Association, how satisfying it has been to see many of the local projects identified by the Shire’s Planning for Real process “ticked off the list”.

“Some of the particular highlights for me include the Great Southern Rail Trail, the Foster streetscape project and the Foster Basketball Stadium.

“In other parts of the Shire, the development of the Korumburra Hub, and the construction of new kindergartens in both Korumburra and Leongatha, are wonderful achievements, too,” she said.

“I have had the real pleasure of working with some fabulous people in my role as a councillor.

“I have learnt a lot and been well supported and for that I would like to thank my fellow councillors, the Shire’s chief executive officers, and all of the members of the council’s staff,” Mohya said.

“A source of great pride for everyone on the council is the fact that South Gippsland Shire is in a very strong financial position, in comparison to other Victorian rural local government areas of a corresponding size.

“This Shire is unique in the State in that it has so many towns of differing sizes; there are 28 across the municipality, along with more than 50 public halls and dozens of recreation reserves.

“The Shire is also responsible for a 2,100-kilometre road network made up of 820 kilometres of sealed roads, and 1280 kilometres worth of unsealed,” she said.

“Councillors have got to make good, sound and considered decisions for the whole of the municipality.

“The council has to plan, prepare for and be ready to respond, to not only to the day-to-day requirements of the communities it serves, but to the unexpected as well, like the recent extreme weather emergencies that have had such a profound impact,” Mohya said.

“Local government is closest to the people and is arguably far more effective in delivering services that help to support the community than the other levels of government.

“While there are undoubted challenges ahead for local government, such as the Victorian Government’s rate capping, rising costs, climate change, and coastal issues for councils like South Gippsland, being a councillor certainly is worthwhile,” Mohya said.

“I commit to making myself available to support anyone interested in participating in the coming local government elections.

“I am more than happy to share my insights, knowledge and experience about the process, the policies and the realities of both the South Gippsland Shire Council and the role of councillor.

“I invite anyone interested to get in touch and I look forward to seeing a strong line-up of community-minded candidates for the South Gippsland Shire in the elections in October this year,” she said.

“I would like to thank my fellow councillors and the Shire officers for their support and commitment to South Gippsland, my local community for their ideas, and also my husband John for his genuine interest and help during my service as a councillor.” After facing four elections and serving for 11 years as a South Gippsland Shire councillor, Mohya Davies has chosen to retire and not seek re-election at the Victorian local government polls in October 2024.


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