The Yass Valley Council election results were finalised Monday after over two weeks of vote counting. The next step for the new Council will be electing a Mayor and Deputy Mayor from their ranks.

The nine candidates-elect in sequence of election were Allan McGrath, Adrian Cameron, Jasmin Jones, Kim Turner, Jim Abbey, Cayla Pothan, Cecil Burgess, Mike Reid and Kristin Butler.

Some of the top picks for leadership positions are experienced councillors Allan McGrath, Jasmin Jones and Kim Turner.

Allan said he was thrilled to be elected to council not to mention topping the polling pile.

“To be honest when I nominated for council, I was planning to get a seat at the table,” he said. But since the results rolled in over the last fortnight Allan said he’s had many residents suggest he run for the top job.

“I’m giving serious consideration to that at the moment.”

Allan served two terms previously with the Yass Valley Council and 21 years with Queanbeyan (now Palerang) Council.

“I would imagine that it would have to be someone with council experience,” he said. “One of the four former councillors that have been re-elected – Kim Turner, Jasmin Jones, Cecil Burgess and Mike Reid.”

Allan said he thinks anyone contemplating throwing their hat in the ring for a Mayor or Deputy Mayoral role will need a couple years at council under the belt to understand the ins and outs first.

“I’m looking forward to bringing in some changes and some improvements this term in the way we do things.”

Jasmin Jones is stepping up to the plate for her third term sitting on Council and said if the new Council choose, she’s ready to lead and would hope to build on the legacy of former Mayors and lift the bar on community engagement.

“Firstly, I’d like to say a huge thank you to the people of Yass Valley who have elected me for a third term and congratulations to all councillors elected,” she said. “We’re a growing region and with that comes growing pains for infrastructure and services, so our feet will have to hit the ground running as soon as we’re sworn in come January.”

The 47-year-old mother of five said she believes she represents the typical Yass Valley family.

“I am hands-on in the community and have a track record of advocacy – working with state and federal leaders to assist our community whenever they can.”

“The Mayoral role is about building relationships and the Deputy supports this position. Either would be an honour.”

But regardless of who is Mayor, Jasmin said she’s ready to support all Councillors to do their best for our community.

Jasmin noted the new Council was a great mix with young families, senior citizens and small businesses well represented.

Kim Turner was delighted with the election result, expecting the majority of those running again to be re-elected.

“It has the makings of, I think, a very good Council,” he said. “Well it’s a good mix with a few with more experience floating around and a bunch of youthful exuberance, which is fantastic.”

Sitting for his third term with Yass Valley Council Kim said he thinks Allan, Jasmin or himself would all make a good Mayor and Deputy Mayor.

“It’s a strong feel for a good management team,” he said. “I think any combination of two out of those three will make a great leadership team.”

“I’m going to throw my hat in the ring, and we’ll see who jumps on it.”

Kim said the next three years will be a critically important period for the community.

“It’s a really important time we’ve got to come out of post-coronavirus,” he said. “We’ve got to try and get the economy up and running.”

“If I am chosen, I will continue to do what I have always done, which is to put the community of Yass first.”

“Yass is first, second, third and last,” Kim said. “I’ve been here for 56 years, and I want to see it emerge in its rightful place as the best place in the world to live.”

By Brianna O’Rourke