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The Beast’s Election Rundown

By Siriol Dafydd (sirioldafyddwriter) on February 27, 2019 in News

Can Gladys cling to power? by Mike Baird

The state election is looming, and aside from hitting up the sausage sizzle, it’s also your opportunity to have your say on who will be running your neighbourhood. If you’re undecided about how to vote on March 23, here’s a quick rundown of the candidates…

Coogee

Bruce Notley-Smith is hoping to hold this seat for the Liberals but he’ll have to fend off Waverley Councillor Marjorie O’Neill and former Randwick mayor Lindsay Shurey, who are running for Labor and the Greens respectively.

Mr Notley-Smith told The Beast that among his proudest achievements so far are his improvements to healthcare.

“The fantastic Nelune Comprehensive Cancer Centre opened two years ago, as did the hospital’s first hybrid operating theatre,” he said.

“Right now we are constructing a brand new $720 million Emergency and Acute Services Building and the Health Translation Hub building next to it, which will make the Prince of Wales Australia’s leading hospital and clinical research facility.”

Given that Mr Notley-Smith has been elected twice before, some consider the seat a slam dunk for the Liberals. But Marjorie O’Neill is keen for change.

“I want to be part of a government with ambitious renewable energy targets and one that is creating jobs for the future,” she said.

“In a context where our schools are at capacity, children are being taught in demountables and our nurses are over-worked, we do not need to splurge $2.2 billion on stadiums.”

Greens candidate Lindsay Shurey said she will endeavour to end violence against women.

“There is so much work that the state government can do to end violence against women and I will fight to increase the Family Violence Prevention Legal Services and fund shelters and crisis accommodation,” she said.

All three candidates are partaking in The Great Debate on March 11 at Coogee Diggers. Entry is free but you’ll need a ticket, which you can reserve via eventbrite.com.au.

Vaucluse

Gabrielle Upton is hoping to be re-elected for the third time.

“For the last eight years I have proudly represented my local area as the Member for Vaucluse in the NSW Parliament,” she told The Beast.

“I’ve worked hard to make our community an even better place to live, work and raise a family.”

Labor’s Lenore Kulakauskas disagrees.

“It is astonishing that Gabrielle Upton is the chosen candidate with her abysmal track record and even more frightening is the damage she has done as the Minister for Environment,” she said.

“I stand for real action on climate change, a halt to runaway development and proper funding of our infrastructure, and I’m firmly against the privatisation of public assets.”

Greens Candidate Megan McEwin is “calling for pill testing and an end to the war on drugs”. She will also aim to “breathe new life into our local music scene, which is suffering from the failed lock-out laws”.

Maroubra

Voted in thrice already, Labor incumbent Michael Daley is expected to be re-elected, and as Leader of the Opposition he will serve as premier should Labor win overall.

Hoping to give Daley a run for his money is Liberal candidate Pat Farmer. The famous ultra-marathon runner and former federal MP is pledging “to be a strong voice to get things done locally”.

Meanwhile, Greens candidate James Cruz told The Beast: “I’ve put my hand up to help elevate the voices of those marginalised by rampant neoliberalism, to push out those looking at politics for a career and challenge the vested interests who are harming our community. It’s time we put people first and build a fairer future for all of us.”

And there you have your who’s who of local politics. Whatever your beliefs, go forth, exercise your democratic rights and enjoy your free snag!