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Prospective councillors line up for Baw Baw Shire elections


Baw Baw Shire Council elections will occur in November and eligible voters get to decide who represents them for the next four years. 

There are three wards in Baw Baw Shire and each ward has three councillors. Traf District News understands that at least three current councillors across the shire will not recontest and any councillor hoping for another term must take their chances in the ballot, the same as any new prospective councillors. 

The prospective candidates in the picture below are Wayne Newton (East Ward), Suzanne Allen (Central Ward), Ric Nicolson (East), Paul Christian (East) and Leni Teng (East). Missing from this photo is Stephanie Mirams (East) and several other candidates will join shortly. 

Trafalgar, Yarragon and surrounds fall into East Ward which is currently represented by Councillors Peter Kostos, Michael Leaney and Darren Wallace. 

The group of potential councillors in the picture below are associated with Restore Baw Baw whose website states ‘Community First: Uniting For A Stronger Baw Baw Shire.’ So, what does that mean? Their opening statement reads: ‘Our mission is simple; to inform and engage residents about the upcoming local shire elections.’ 

To quote directly from the website; ‘At the heart of Restore Baw Baw is our commitment to restoring our shire to its core functions, community values and expectations. We believe in delivering essential local services, maintaining vital facilities and fostering a sense of community spirit. By working together, we can uphold these values and ensure that Baw Baw Shire remains a vibrant and thriving place to live.’ 

One of the creators of Restore Baw Baw is Wayne Newton, a long time resident and business owner based in Willow Grove and Wayne is one of the team hoping to be elected. Restore Baw Baw was developed to provide a platform for all candidates without discrimination and is not aligned to any political party or business interests. It is there as a resource for voters and prospective candidates. 

Wayne believes Baw Baw Shire, like many councils, has lost touch with its core purpose and become far too embroiled in areas beyond its purview. “Council’s core responsibilities are rates, roads and rubbish. It should not be the role of council to involve itself in contentious social issues. Arguing about street names and pronouns doesn’t achieve much, if anything and it certainly doesn’t get the potholes fixed. We need council to realign itself with its core functions and all of the prospective candidates who align with us are committed to that.” 

The elections will be via postal vote which will be mailed out from October 8 with voting closed on October 25. Results will be announced on November 15. If you are not on the roll and wish to be, you have until August 30 to enrol and be eligible to vote. 

Restore Baw Baw website will provide details of all of its prospective candidates and this paper will bring you more information on candidates in coming issues. The website also contains practical information on the election process. 

If you wish to find out how you might become a candidate or if you simply want to assist, visit the website ( for further information.