After 37 years in the political spotlight, Mareeba Shire Mayor Tom Gilmore will retire from public life at the next Local Government election.
Councillor Gilmore made the announcement at today’s Council meeting after tabling the 2018/19 Mareeba Shire Council Annual Report, which he said was to be his last, that he will not seek re-election in the coming March 2020 Local Government election.
“What a privilege it has been to have had the opportunity to serve my community in various ways since first elected to the Council in 1982. Since that time, I have had the wonderful experience of filling the roles of Councillor and Mayor for almost twenty years, and I have enjoyed every minute of it,” Cr Gilmore said.
“However, there comes a time for renewal, and Sally and I have decided that this is the time for me to step aside and to make way for others to take over.
“New minds bring renewed vigour and new ideas to build on the sound foundations now firmly in place for a growing, confident and sustainable Shire,” he said.
Councillor Gilmore was elected to the Mareeba Shire Council in March of 1982 and served as a Councillor until May of 1987 after being elected to the Queensland Parliament as Member for Tablelands in 1986. He then returned to Local Government as a Councillor of Mareeba Shire in 2000.
“Local Government has changed dramatically since 1982, and the role of a Councillor is a complex and sophisticated one, having evolved over time and much for the better,” Cr Gilmore said.
“It has been an interesting time and I hope that in some way I have been part of a team which has made a difference in the betterment of the Shire and community at large.”
Councillor Gilmore leaves a legacy for the Shire of sound financial reserves and critical infrastructure projects which have created a solid foundation for the future of a growing community.
The Shire’s town beautification scheme, financial sustainability and the completion of upgrade of the Mareeba Waste Water Treatment Plant and the Mareeba Airport Upgrade project are just some of the myriad of projects and advances of which Councillor Gilmore is most proud.
“Mareeba Shire right now is in a sound financial position and this is a testament to the Councillors and staff who had to make some tough decisions early on following de-amalgamation, to ensure sustainability and continued service delivery for the community,” Cr Gilmore said.
Figures suggest that the Shire is growing at an annual growth rate of 1.4%, the highest in the region and Councillor Gilmore said there is always more that needs to be done.
“As the Shire grows there will be demand for more water, road access and services. These will be things for others to work their way through,” Cr Gilmore said.
“I am proud of the position the Shire is in and I think now is the time for someone else to take my place as Mayor.
“Thank you for the opportunity and privilege to serve this wonderful community.
“Lastly, I pay tribute to my wife Sally and my daughters Elisa and Catherine who have been part of the journey from the beginning. Without their unwavering support none of this would – or could have happened,” Cr Gilmore concluded.