Greg Petty enters lord mayoral ring

Wollongong's latest nominee for lord mayor says it is what's missing from his political resume that makes him the best candidate for the city's top job.Helensburgh resident Greg Petty, 56, yesterday said unlike most of his rivals, he was not politically aligned and had no association with the previous council, labelling himself "a fresh piece of paper" for the city's first post-administration council."So far we've seen candidates from the previous council, people mentioned in the Independent Commission Against Corruption inquiry and nominees with party affiliations - I'm none of those," he said.

  • Our civic future: a Mercury debate"Wollongong needs to move forward, rid itself of past scandals and get new blood in the council to restore community faith in our elected officials."I offer that point of difference no other candidate has offered to date."Mr Petty, who ran unsuccessfully as an independent candidate for Heathcote in this year's state election, is at the forefront of the Illawarra campaign against coal seam gas mining and is heavily involved in the protection of environmentally sensitive land around Helensburgh and Otford.Most recently, he was a volunteer on the council's community reference panel forums, designed to enhance council consultation with the public.Mr Petty listed preserving the Illawarra escarpment and rejuvenating Crown St Mall as some of the region's priority issues, but said if elected, he would also vote to direct more funding to the often forgotten "outer suburbs"."Wollongong City Council residents will have in me a candidate who is skilled, experienced and prepared to represent the community, protect the environment and promote local business and employment," he said."I'm asking voters to judge me on my achievements in the Helensburgh area and know that I will transplant that achievement across the whole ... area."Mr Petty's decision to stand for lord mayor has been endorsed by Neighbourhood Forum 1 convener Pauline Lacelles-Smith.

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