Christian Shepherd on his run for Division 3 councillor
Rockhampton voters can expect to see a familiar name on their Division 3 ballots on March 13.
Not for the first time, Christian Shepherd is running for public office, but now with a more local tinge to his platform - having grown up in Koongal and currently living in Berserker, he said he was in touch with the unique culture of the area.
"Everyone goes through a learning curve and it's good to be on your second or third time round," Mr Shepherd said about this by-election run.
"You know where to put energy into and where not to, what yields results and what's effective.
"I do have a lot of history in Koongal. My family's got a lot of history in Koongal."
"I've spoken about this before that Koongal and Berserker … there's a lot of history and culture and soul, and a lot of people don't really get it."
Mr Shepherd is focused on the cost of living and quality of life.
He said that meant reducing rates and focusing on outdoor spaces, including parks and sporting grounds.
"All Blacks Park on Lakes Creek Road is good example of an underused public space," Mr Shepherd said.
"It'd be good to have something like All Blacks become a bit more of a community centre."
The council could use its current resources more efficiently, he suggested, and after reducing rates, make up the funds by building up the fee-paying base - by encouraging people with large blocks of land to divide and build, for instance.
"The building approvals and rates from them would be income for the council," Mr Shepherd said.
"One ratepayer becomes two.
"There's a bit of a rental crisis and we can't just keep developing all the northern suburbs and eating up all the good farmland on the river. We've got to look at increasing our inner suburb density a little."
Something similar could be said for water rates, Mr Shepherd said, which would help to boost the economy of the region overall.
"I would encourage people to look for other revenue streams, other than charging what they do for water rates," he said.
"By expanding water services, you're getting more customers.
"Rockhampton needs to prepare itself for growth and I don't think that we're currently really doing that."