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Brownbill ward mapBrownbill Ward

Area:

Central Geelong - including Geelong North, South, East and West, as well as the suburbs of Herne Hill, Hamlyn Heights, Bell Park, and Newtown in the west and the suburbs of Newcomb, Whittington, St Albans Park and Breakwater in the east. Coppards Road down to the Barwon River represents this ward's eastern boundary, while the Geelong Ring Road represents the ward's western boundary. Despite being the smallest of Geelong's four wards, it has a large variation in terms of its demographic, with no two neighbouring suburbs being the same.

Newcomb is a traditional working class suburb that is transforming due to both the closure of Alcoa as well as shifting demographics - with older permanent residents passing the batten on to younger generations of both investors seeking opportunity, and families seeking affordable housing attracted to the area due to relatively cheap house and rental prices and for its convenience in terms of services. St Albans Park has a similar, albeit more middle-class aspirational profile, while Whittington was a former commission housing area and remains very firmly working class, and one of the more disadvantaged suburbs in the ward, and in Geelong generally.

The central suburbs surrounding the CBD, particularly Geelong West, once a traditionally working class suburb, is gentrifying rapidly with young professionals with money to spend buying up in the area; while the residential portions of the CBD are solidly middle-class, becoming more blue ribbon closer to the waterfront. East Geelong has always had a more blue-ribbon feel in-between the Bellarine and Portarlington Highways - which gives way to a gentrifying middle class south of the Bellarine Highway. Thomson and Breakwater remain firmly working to middle-class areas, with Breakwater itself being mostly light industrial.

Newtown is the largest, most populous, and one of the most wealthy suburbs in the ward and in Geelong generally, and is one of the only areas in the ward that has favoured the Liberal Party in recent State and Federal Elections. Drumcondra, due to its position overlooking the Geelong waterfront, is also extremely wealthy. Both suburbs have some of the largest and most expensive residences in Geelong.

The suburbs of Manifold Heights and Herne Hill are generally middle class, which gives way to working class areas in Bell Park and Bell Post Hill - with Hamlyn Heights and North Geelong, and a lesser extent Rippleside, serving as a transition between the two.

Previously, this ward consisted the entirety of the Brownbill single-member ward, as well as most of Kildare Ward and Austin Ward, as well as the southern part of Cowie Ward.

To view the suburb boundaries of this ward, click the ward map thumbnail on the right of this page.

 

Declared Candidates

Quick Navigation:

Mik Aidt | George Ballas | Nicole Brown | Sue Bull | Melissa Cadwell | Ellen Csar | Freya Fidge | Terry Gillard | Sarah Hathway | John Irvine (withdrawn) | Michael King | Eddy Kontelj | Sarah Mansfield | Peter Mitchell | Peter Murrihy | Charles Neal

 

Mik AidtMik Aidt
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Independent
Political Alignment: Centre-left

'Green' with a small 'g', Mik Aidt is co-host of The Sustainable Hour on 94.7 The Pulse, and also has a background in graphic design, publishing, photography and other related media fields. He is running as an independent candidate and is pushing initiatives that align with the ‘Clever and Creative Future’ vision and the One Planet Living principles. If elected, he will aim to work with Councillors of all political colours to achieve desired outcomes, while also ensuring outcomes are fair and that decision making is transparent.

Key Issues: Environmental sustainability, renewable energy, community advocacy and well-being, music and arts, safe streets for walking and cycling, affordable housing

Related media:

Mik Aidt - Candidate for Brownbill ward - Mitchell's Front Page, August 22, 2017.
Field for Council election grows - Geelong Advertiser, August 26, 2017.

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George BallasGeorge Ballas
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Independent.
Political Alignment: Centre-left

George Ballas is a long-time community advocate, who received an Order of Australia for his work. He served as Chairman of the Pako Festa for about a decade, as well as worked with Barwon Health and the old Geelong West Council on other projects. Declaring that he has no political ties, George Ballas has stated that his heart is with the community, would represent it without fear or favour, and that he would bring true independence to City Hall.

Key Issues: CBD car parking including lower parking fees, elderly services, public art, public transport, ownership review of public assets, centralising council offices.

Related media:

Geelong Council election 2017: George Ballas declares as a candidate - Geelong Advertiser, June 21, 2017
Peter Moore: I would much prefer candidates to be upfront about their political affiliations - Geelong Advertiser, June 30, 2017
Candidate's plan to save $100m - Geelong Advertiser, September 18, 2017.
George Ballas - Candidate for Brownbill - Mitchell's Front Page, September 20, 2017.

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Nicole BrownNicole Brown
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation:
Political Alignment:

 

Key Issues:

Related media:

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Sue BullSue Bull
Website | Facebook (Socialist Alliance Geelong) | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Socialist Alliance (endorsed candidate)
Political Alignment: Left-wing

Sue Bull is a Health and Safety Teacher, a lifelong trade unionist and has been a socialist activist for most of her adult life. Sue stood as the Socialist Alliance endorsed candidate for Mayor during the 2012 Geelong council elections and received over 10,000 votes and also stood for the seat of Corio at the 2016 Federal Election. She is running on a common platform with Sarah Hathway.

Key Issues: defending/creating jobs and community services, transparency and democracy in local government, no outsourcing and privatisation/public ownership of services, community advocacy, increased subsidies for low-income earners, public housing, sustainability/climate change, youth employment, rates reform, more open/cycling spaces.

Related media:

Geelong Council election 2017: Sue Bull, Sarah Hathway and Ellen Csar announce as candidates - Geelong Advertiser, August 4, 2017.
Socialist Alliance nominates women for Geelong Council - Green Left Weekly, August 4, 2017.
Geelong candidates call for waste investigation - Green Left Weekly, August 12, 2017.
Brownbill Socialist Alliance candidates Sue Bull and Sarah Hathway - Mitchell's Front Page, September 4, 2017.

Jude and Pete don't come cheap - Geelong Advertiser, September 13, 2017.
Double Take - Geelong Independent, September 15, 2017.

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Melissa CadwellMelissa Cadwell
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Labor
Political Alignment: Centre-left

Melissa Cadwell works as a public health ethics manager and lives in St Albans Park, and also has involvement in the local trade union movement. A lack of council funding for the eastern suburbs over many years, despite being an area of high need, motivated her to stand for council. She is a member of the Labor Party.

Key Issues: better services for the eastern suburbs, elderly services.

Related media:

True believers in City Hall quest - Geelong Advertiser, September 20, 2017.

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Ellen CsarEllen Csar
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Labor
Political Alignment: Centre-left

Ellen Csar ran as a candidate in the Kildare Ward by-election in 2015. She is active in a number of community groups, including with the Geelong Trades Hall choir. She is aiming to be a voice for the grassroots. She is a member of the Labor Party, who has indicated that members of the ALP in Geelong will be helping her campaign.

Key Issues: arts and culture, affordable living, affordable pet registrations, youth and community services, elderly services.

Related media:

Geelong Council election 2017: Sue Bull, Sarah Hathway and Ellen Csar announce as candidates - Geelong Advertiser, August 4, 2017.
Ellen Csar - candidate for Brownbill - Mitchell's Front Page, August 17, 2017.

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Freya FidgeFreya Fidge
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Independent [note]
Political Alignment: Centre

Freya Fidge's candidacy was announced by Jim Fidge on 94.7 The Pulse on August 4. An HR manager, her father, Jim Fidge, was a long-serving Councillor and Mayor; while her grandfather, Sir Roy Fidge, served six terms as Mayor over the 1950's and 1960's. She hopes to continue her family traditions of positive community involvement with a focus on social advocacy for all members of our community, and is a supporter of the Clever & Creative Future, and wants Geelong to be a city that values diversity, community and opportunity.

Key Issues: community advocacy.

Field for Council election grows - Geelong Advertiser, August 26, 2017.

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Terry GillardTerry Gillard
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Independent.
Political Alignment: Centre-left

 

Key issues: better public transport, revitalization of city and waterfront, better waste management, public safety, the building of a livestock sales centre.

Related media:

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Sarah HathwaySarah Hathway
Website | Facebook (Socialist Alliance Geelong) | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Socialist Alliance (endorsed candidate)
Political Alignment: Left-wing

Sarah is a social work student at Deakin University and a local campaigner for marriage equality. She is a student member of the Australian Services Union (ASU) and is organising with the Retail and Fast Food Workers Union (RaFFWU) to defend penalty rates, and previously stood as the Socialist Alliance candidate for the state seat of Geelong at the 2014 State Election. Sarah is running on a common platform with Sue Bull.

Key Issues: defending/creating jobs and community services, transparency and democracy in local government, no outsourcing and privatisation/public ownership of services, community advocacy, increased subsidies for low-income earners, public housing, sustainability/climate change, youth employment, rates reform, more open/cycling spaces.

Related media:

Geelong Council election 2017: Sue Bull, Sarah Hathway and Ellen Csar announce as candidates - Geelong Advertiser, August 4, 2017.
Socialist Alliance nominates women for Geelong Council - Green Left Weekly, August 4, 2017.
Geelong candidates call for waste investigation - Green Left Weekly, August 12, 2017.
Brownbill Socialist Alliance candidates Sue Bull and Sarah Hathway - Mitchell's Front Page, September 4, 2017.
Double Take - Geelong Independent, September 15, 2017.

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John IrvineJohn Irvine
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Labor (former) / Country Party (current)
Political Alignment: Centre-right

John Irvine ran for the state electorate of Bellarine at the 2014 State Election, representing the Country Alliance (now the Country Party). He served as a Councillor, representing Austin Ward, from the 2012 Council Elections up until the Council was sacked in 2016, and also ran for Mayor in the 2013 Mayoral by-election.

Key Issues:

Withdrawn his candidacy as of September 20, 2017.

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Michael KingMichael King
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Liberal
Political Alignment: Centre-right

Michael King is currently a member of the Liberal Party, G21, and Committee For Geelong; but has stated that he is running as an independent candidate, and as such would sever his ties with the aforementioned organisations should he be elected. He was formerly Deputy Mayor of the old City of Geelong in the early 1990's, and also stood as a candidate for the Liberal Party in the state seat of South Barwon at the 2006 State Election. He is the former chairman of Barwon Water and co-owner of King Funerals.

Key Issues: Business investment, cutting red tape, big money and lobbyists out of local government.

Related media:

Candidate takes on lobby groups - Geelong Independent, June 6, 2017
Geelong Council election 2017: Businessman Michael King nominate for central Geelong ward - Geelong Advertiser, June 22, 2017.
Geelong Council election 2017: Candidate Michael King targets lobby group cash - Geelong Advertiser, June 29, 2017.
Peter Moore: I would much prefer candidates to be upfront about their political affiliations - Geelong Advertiser, June 30, 2017
Shane Fowles: Unease growing in tangled city - Geelong Advertiser, August 20, 2017.
Daryl McLure: What I'm looking for in a Councillor - Geelong Advertiser, August 21, 2017

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Eddy KonteljEddy Kontelj
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Liberal
Political Alignment: Centre-right

Eddy Kontelj is the brother of fellow former Councillor Stretch Kontelj and is also a prominent businessman and a member of the Liberal Party. 

Key Issues: crime prevention, CCTV installation, increased police presence.

Former Councillor, Cowie Ward, 2012-2016

Related media:

I’m ready to serve again, says ‘sacked’ councillor - Geelong Independent, July 7, 2017
Geelong Council election 2017: Eddy Kontelj announces comeback - Geelong Advertiser, July 7, 2017

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Sarah MansfieldSarah Mansfield
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Greens (endorsed candidate)
Political Alignment: Centre-left

Sarah Mansfield is a local GP, living in East Geelong. She studied health financing at the London School of Economics and is also a Senior Lecturer at Deakin University. Sarah was the Greens candidate for Corio at the 2016 Federal Election.

Key Issues: Cycling, support for local libraries, protection of environmental assets, sustainable and transparent local planning, childcare services, better sporting facilities with a focus on female participation, arts, support for local business, climate change.

Related media:

Municipal election turns shade of green - Geelong Advertiser, September 7, 2017.
Greens to stand in all four wards covering the City of Greater Geelong - Geelong Advertiser, September 19, 2017.

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Peter MitchellPeter Mitchell
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation:
Political Alignment:

Peter Mitchell has lived in Geelong for over 20 years, and commutes to Melbourne for work; where he works as a consultant and solution architect (designing technology solutions for corporate customers - he also comes up with strategies and plans to direct their IT budgets over the short and medium term). He contends that this experience would be useful as a Councilor and would like to give something back to the community he lives in.

Key Issues:

Related media:

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Peter MurrihyPeter Murrihy
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: Independent
Political Alignment: Centre-right

Peter Murrihy is a former police prosecutor, and was elected as a Councillor for the then-single member Kildare ward at the 2015 Kildare Ward by-election, before being sacked along with the rest of the Council in 2016. He believes that party politics has no place in local government. He lives in Newtown, and has lived in the area for the last 30 years.

Key Issues: Low rates, maintenance of footpaths and services.

Related media:

Candidate for Brownbill, Peter Murrihy - Mitchell's Front Page, August 13, 2017.

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Charles NealCharles Neal
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Political Affiliation: National Party
Political Alignment: Centre-right

Charles Neal ran as a Nationals candidate for the state seat of Polwarth at the 2006 State Election, and despite living in Geelong for more than 30 years, is running for Council for the first time. He is a boat operator who has a keen interest in seeing Western Beach transformed and more utilised.

Key Issues: increasing tourist activity, transforming Western Beach.

Related media:

Field for Council election grows - Geelong Advertiser, August 26, 2017.

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Possible Candidates:

Possible outcome:

Most of Brownbill Ward leans very firmly towards Labor in both state and federal elections, with very little variation. There are strong pockets of growing Greens support around Geelong West, but this is by no means consistent, and consistently strong Liberal support in Newtown.

On the Left, The Socialist Alliance, as well as the Greens, will be paying this ward good attention as it represents the best chance of both parties getting a Councillor elected. Though it is possible that either one of the Greens or Socialist Alliance will be successful in getting one of the three seats, it is unlikely that both will get a Councillor each. This means that the two parties will be in competition with each other for one of the seats.

On the Right, Liberal aligned candidates have also performed well in this area in local government elections. A lot of Right-leaning candidates may dilute their voting power as a block. If Darryn Lyons was to stand in this ward, he'd very likely get well over a quota in his own right, with enough of a surplus to get a second Liberal aligned candidate up on preferences or to knock the Left-wing parties out of contention for a seat. It is hard to know who a good chunk of notional Lyons voters would swing to in his absence, though many will no doubt swing behind Liberal aligned candidate Michael King.

Furthermore, three former Right-leaning Councillors will be standing in this ward, who would also have a profile in their corresponding communities - Irvine on the eastern side of the ward, Murrihy on the western part of this ward, and Kontelj, which is a name that would also be well known on the western side of the ward.

Being the central ward, it will be hotly contested.

Footnotes:

1. ^ Freya Fidge has stated that she hasn't recently been a member of a political party. Her father, Jim Fidge, was at least in the past a member of the Liberal Party, and stood as a Liberal candidate for the now abolished state seat of North Geelong at the 1992 State Election, so it can be assumed that Freya also had prior involvement with the Liberal Party.
2. ^ Darryn Lyons has contradicted himself a number of times by completely ruling himself out as a potential candidate in this election, only to subsequently say that he hasn't ruled out standing.