Engaging the community in Council decisions will be the top priority for new City of Gosnells Mayor Terresa Lynes.

Mayor Lynes was elected to the position by Councillors at a Special Council Meeting this week, with Councillor Adam Hort elected Deputy Mayor.

“As Councillors, we are here to serve the community, to make informed decisions and set a strategic direction for the City’s future,” Mayor Lynes said.

“It is impossible to serve the community to full capacity without being actively and consciously engaged, and I’m keen to focus on reaching a wider range of people across the City.”

Following a two-year hiatus, Mayor Lynes was re-elected to Council this week. She previously served on Council from 2015 to 2019, and was Deputy Mayor from 2017 to 2019.

“During the recent campaign process and through closely interacting with our community, it became abundantly clear to me that our community wants to know who their Councillors are, they want to feel safe in their own homes and when they walk around their neighbourhood, they want a cleaner City and they want a City they can continue to be proud of,” she said.

“Continuing the great work the City already does in community safety is a key part of this, and I want to ensure community safety, passive surveillance and lighting are all considered when assessing developments.

“I believe we need to carefully consider the way we manage our natural environment, and continue to develop our parks and sports fields, such as Sutherlands Park, as identified in the City’s Sports Plan.”

Mayor Lynes thanked her fellow Councillors for their support in electing her as Mayor.

“I look forward to working together as a team to ensure we deliver what the community are asking for and need,” she said.

Deputy Mayor Hort agreed communication and consultation were key to running an effective Council.

“We want to be sure that when we deliver these bigger projects such as park redevelopments and road projects, they are done in a way that reflects what the community wants,” he said.

“It is a privilege to represent the residents of our City and I look forward to taking on this new role, fostering constructive and respectful debate in the Council Chambers, and working collaboratively with Councillors, community leaders and the broader community."

In addition to Cr Lynes’ return to Council, Councillors Peter Abetz and David Goode were re-elected, and former Councillor Serena Williamson was also returned to office. Kevin McDonald and Caren Baayens were elected to Council for the first time.

They join existing Councillors Aaron Adams, Glenn Dewhurst, Dave Griffiths, Adam Hort, Sarah Patterson and Emma Zhang.

A record number of ballot papers were returned in the City of Gosnells 2021 Ordinary Council Election, with a turnout rate of 29.26 per cent.

Mayor Lynes thanked former Councillors Julie Brown, Carey-Ann Harper, Julie Jones and Olwen Searle, who retired at this election, for their time and service.

“I’d also like to recognise the service of our former Mayor, Councillor David Goode, and Deputy Mayor, Councillor Peter Abetz, and thank them for all the work they have put in over the past two years,” she said.