Builder, businessman wants to fix Bendigo council

BALANCING ACT: Geoff Stephens says he will run for Eppalock Ward to try and bring cohesion to council and oversight to contract control and expenses.

BALANCING ACT: Geoff Stephens says he will run for Eppalock Ward to try and bring cohesion to council and oversight to contract control and expenses.

A local builder who runs a family business says he has the skills to bring cohesion and oversight to a divided council. 

Geoff Stephens plans to run for Eppalock Ward at this year’s election after several years of sitting in the public gallery at City of Greater Bendigo meetings. 

"I've seen disharmony within the group and I don't believe that they're functioning fully focused on the community," Mr Stephens said. 

But the Kennington-based building consultant and trainer said he couldn’t promise peace and harmony if he were elected in October. 

"You could only guarantee that if you knew the nine people who were going to be there,” he said. 

"I don't for a moment believe I can bring the council to all be harmonious and going along in sync, because we don't know whose going to get in – and there's a big field.

“But you can certainly work towards a cohesive group and continually try and bring them back on track to what the community is after and the best results for the community."

So what does Mr Stephens believe the community after?

"Decent projects, well run, careful with money and careful use of their rates, contract control and wise use of funds," he said.

"And I think that is best effected by a cohesive council with a good mix of skills," Mr Stephens said. 

And Mr Stephens said his 25-years experience running a family business in the building industry and years of work in government agencies has equipped him with the skills to do just that. 

"Contract control, supervision of contracts, a serious look at the business-case policies and whatever else is necessary to undertake the role,” he said. 

“I've got the skills to undertake the role quite easily.” 

Mr Stephens cites 25-years of work with local “rotary, school, church, community groups, organisations and boards” as his evidence of his commitment to the community. 

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