We must get our message across, says Tully
STRONG communication with the public is set to be front of centre of how Ipswich councillors operate in the next four years.
Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale has told the QT that he is determined to operate more of an "open book" with the public in the coming term, partly to negate the scuttlebutt that pervades social media about council activities.
New Deputy Mayor Paul Tully is also of the view that clear communication is vital.
"We need to sell our message and let the public know what we are doing, when we are doing it and why we are doing it," he said.
"It is no good 11 councillors sitting around with a plan for the city and not communicating that to the community.
"We can use the mainstream media, social media, newsletters, community groups and forums.
"I just think it is important to work with the community to let people know what we are doing - whether we are buying 500 hectares of environmentally sensitive land, putting up koala signs or assisting with the cleanup of the Bremer River.
"People need to know what we are doing as a council, and that is more difficult even with social media. A lot of people don't want to hear good messages. All they see is negativity in everything that elected members, at any level of government, do. So we need to use every opportunity to get our message out."
Cr Tully said it was also important not to underestimate the import the environment had to the Ipswich public.
"Environmental issues are important to most voters," he said.
"Some people are extremely passionate about it but most people know it is important - whether it is acquiring land for preservation of environmental parks or cleaning our rivers and parks.
"We have been doing that but we need to sell to the community and invite feedback from the community about what we can do.
Council has many projects it will be working on - whether that be the CBD lagoon, creation of the cultural precinct at the Woollen Mills or Willowbank Motorsport upgrades.
"Not all funding will be available in the first four years but I think we will make big leaps towards securing the funding, even if it doesn't come until later in the term," Cr Tully said.