Unfinished business remains for Rossiter

MICHAEL Rossiter stood for Latrobe City Council four years ago, because he thought Latrobe Valley residents were being deprived of opportunities for jobs and business development.

He believed this was due to council and government policies, and he also had issues with council’s community consultations and handling of complaints.

The Traralgon resident, who has lived in the Valley his entire life, was successful in the 2012 election and said Latrobe City had improved.

“I think Latrobe City Council has succeeded in the past four years to correct its past problems,” he said.

“There is still a little bit of work to be done with the organisation… some improvements still to happen. 

“But basically I can see a bright future for the city and I would like to be part of it.” 

Mr Rossiter said Latrobe City was “moving in the right direction” and pointed to substantial developments that have occurred across the municipality.

He highlighted the projects arising from the Moe Activity Centre Plan, a new synthetic bowling green in Churchill and Morwell’s pop-up park.

Mr Rossiter said there was still a lot of work to do in terms of infrastructure upgrades and replacements, acknowledging this could not be done all at once.

But he said Latrobe City’s accumulated cash surplus of $7.95 million at the end of the 2015/16 financial year was a positive amid future budget constraints.

“We have made a surplus – we’re definitely heading in the right direction,” he said.

The father-of-two loves where he lives and says the Valley’s residents are strong and determined.

He said the region had a lot to offer in areas such as tourism and mooted promoting the Valley as a “retirement-friendly” place, which could generate jobs in the health and aged care sectors.

Mr Rossiter said the biggest challenge was uncertainty around power generation and the coal industry, with employment working “hand in hand with that”.

He said council’s main role during this time was advocacy.

“I’d say we’ve come a long way, there is some work to be done, no question about that, but we can only do it if we all work together,” Mr Rossiter said.

“As united we can be a lot more successful and take the community along with us, that’s important as well.”