What an achievement … 100 editions!

Trisha Avery

Firstly, thank you to Sean Car for his encouragement and foresight to include coverage of Montague (South Melbourne) and Fishermans Bend as part of Southbank News.

And secondly, and most importantly, thank you for supporting the Montague Community Alliance and its role in providing information and debate on how Montague is being developed, to and for the local businesses and residents.

Without the support we have received from Sean, and Shane before him, we would not have been as successful in engaging with the state government and local authorities.

And speaking of local authorities, the City of Port Phillip local government elections are coming up and new councillors and existing ones are vying for your votes and support.

If you want to get involved, there is still time for you to nominate as a candidate. Just check out the details on vec.vic.gov.au.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the election will be held via postal vote and all your votes will need to be returned by 6pm on Friday, October 23.

Please vote wisely as we need councillors who firstly read this paper!

Secondly, ones who engage and listen to the existing community of businesses and residents in the Montague Precinct.

And thirdly, act to ensure that during the next 20-plus years the existing community is front and centre of mind, while massive construction and development continue in this area.

We have been contacted by three candidates for the Gateway Ward and they have responded to questions put to them about Montague. We will cover the responses to these questions in this and next month’s edition.

Montague Community Alliance is not aligned to any political party, although individual members may be.

Heather Cunsolo – independent candidate

Heather has lived in Port Melbourne for eight years, she has worked in the Montague Precinct and knows the area well.

She started the very popular Facebook page Port Melbourne Focus (formerly Port Melbourne Families) and has been an active member of the community.

In talking to Heather, she seems energised by the opportunity to engage with the community and is clear about the challenges we face by living in a continual construction zone.

Heather was keen to hear from everyone: [email protected].

Marcus Pearl – current councillor and Liberal candidate

Marcus has been quite innovative and has posted a video to our Facebook Page @MontagueCommunity.

Marcus has been an outstanding local councillor; here are some examples …

When we had no distribution of the City of Port Phillip magazine Divercity, Marcus would personally come by and deliver them.

He has attended building sites working out of hours to see for himself the challenges we encounter, and he took up the mantle of having this area formally named Montague, something that most locals wanted at the time.

He is very popular locally and you can reach him at: [email protected]

Peter Martin – Labor candidate

Peter is well known to very many people in Port Melbourne, but perhaps a few less in Montague.

Peter is the recently retired principal of Port Melbourne Primary School and has proven to be a popular and effective leader of the community for many decades.

Peter has lived in the municipality for 30 years and is passionate about local community activities having been a long-time leader and supporter of the Port Colts Junior Footy Club among many other roles with local community organisations.

He is very interested in understanding our concerns and ensuring the community has a voice at council. [email protected]

There are two other candidates that we are aware of, but have had no contact from:

Earl James – Greens candidate greens.org.au/Vic/candidates/local

Sami Maher – Ratepayers of Port Phillip ropp.org.au/gateway-ward-candidate

And finally, a new organisation has been created in Progressive Port Phillip, which is providing a platform for the community to ask questions and influence the current candidates for the City of Port Phillip. They too would be happy to hear from you: progressiveportphillip.org.

We look forward to another 100 editions of Southbank News and once again congratulate Sean and his team for thoughtful and considered journalism that’s been binding the community together for 99 past editions! • 

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