Driving instructor Leyland Barnett is having a shot at politics.
Driving instructor Leyland Barnett is having a shot at politics. Allan Reinikka

Barnett drives hard for council seat

DRIVING instructor and road safety campaigner Leyland Barnett is the latest candidate for Rockhampton Regional Council to declare he'll be standing for the Regional Independents.

Leyland, who will contest Division 8 with sitting councillor Tony Williams, joins former city councillor Rod Green and ex-mayor Lea Taylor, but said there would be more declarations in coming days and weeks.

"We will field a comprehensive team from a variety of backgrounds, all with one sense of purpose - to reduce debt, control rates rises and get the region moving forward," he said yesterday.

A lifelong Rockhampton resident who has run his own driving school for 10 years, he said if he won a seat on the council he would address the problems caused by accident black spots.

"One of our team's policies is to review current road maintenance programs and prioritise works towards making the roads safer," he said.

"I have seen the rates climb continuously while our road infrastructure and other council services have declined.

"Our region should be progressing, not stagnating or declining, as we are the central hub for mining, farming, education and tourism.

"That is why I'm standing.

"Continuing rate rises cannot be sustained by our community while we amass excessive debt that definitely needs to be reined in so the finances of the region can go to improved infrastructure and services and not interest payments."

He said the region had been harmed by the infighting within the current crop of councillors, with investors and developers going elsewhere.

"The Rural Independents will work as a united team.

"We are like-minded people who are concerned about the future of our area and are not party-affiliated. United we will have a stronger voice," he said.



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