Sheila Ireland says she is worried about the future role of the new council.
Sheila Ireland says she is worried about the future role of the new council.

Council front runner expects to be run down

THE FRONTRUNNER in the race for Division 1 was coy about her chances of victory Sunday morning.

Sheila Ireland, one of the former councillors infamously sacked by the State Government in 2018, said she took the positive result as a sign that the people of Ipswich maintained confidence in her, but said she did not think she would ultimately win a spot on the new council.

With 16.5 per cent of the votes counted, Mrs Ireland was ahead with 18.71 per cent of the votes, leading Jacob Madsen on 18.35 per cent, and Pye Augustine on 14.37 per cent.

“It was a pleasant surprise to wake up (Sunday morning) and see the early count,” she said.

“I don’t like checking the results because I get a bit nervous, but I think the younger ones will run me down as the day goes on.

“I am very grateful to those who gave me their vote.”

Ipswich City Council division 1 candidate forum at the Ipswich Showgrounds. Sheila Ireland.
Ipswich City Council division 1 candidate forum at the Ipswich Showgrounds. Sheila Ireland.

Mrs Ireland said she was uncertain how the new council would operate under the current coronavirus restrictions.

She also expressed concern over the appointment of council Adviser, Steve Greenwood, for the first year of its operation.

“I don’t know how the council is going to operate under this Adviser,” she said.

“Can council make decisions? How is it going to work?”

Mr Greenwood, who acted as interim administrator of Ipswich City Council in the final months prior to the election, was announced as the Adviser last week.

Local Government Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said Mr Greenwood’s role was to provide “a seamless transition” for the new council.

“This appointment will provide continuity to the significant work done under the interim administration in restoring good governance to Ipswich City Council and provide support to incoming councillors new to the role,” Mr Hinchliffe said.