Greens candidate Peter Marshall will contest Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council election

"In some ways I was probably bred for politics." Greens candidate Peter Marshall wants to bring reform to QPRC.
"In some ways I was probably bred for politics." Greens candidate Peter Marshall wants to bring reform to QPRC.

It will be a case of seeing to some unfinished business for Greens candidate Peter Marshall in the upcoming council election.

Mr Marshall was elected as a member of Palerang council in 2012 before being “dumped” prior to last year’s merger.

“There’s a sense of unfinished business,” he said.

“There’s the feeling of being dumped with most of the other councillors when we were still trying to do things.”

Should he be successful in September Mr Marshall has promised to continue to push for reforms in the community and has outlined a number of key platforms.

While on Palerang council he was successful in introducing more solar panels on council buildings, something he would like to bring across to Queanbeyan. Renewable energy is something that he believes in strongly, not only for its environmental benefits but also economic.

Like many candidates he referenced rates, but rather than promising to lower them he sees helping the less fortunate manage expenses as a more useful tactic.

Pensioners receive a rebate on council rates but it is currently capped so if rates increase there is no increase in the rebate, Mr Marshall has committed to trying to change this.

“We’re spending money on trees, we’re spending money on roads and parks but we aren’t doing anything for our poorest,” he said.

“Good government means you know how you’re spending every dollar and ensure you’re spending it wisely and transparently.

“I don’t think councils have been very good at either of those over the years.”

Mr Marshall has worked at every level of government in Australia. Twelve years as a research criminologist with state and federal organisations and four years with the Queanbeyan community mental health team allowed him to see the breadth of many of Australia’s social issues. He completed the trio of government levels spending one summer as the lifeguard at Captain’s Flat pool.

“In some ways I was probably bred for politics,” he said.

“I grew up in Northern Ireland and you can’t ignore politics over there.”

Considering his grandfather was a Westminster MP for 15 years who refused to take the oath to the Queen in protest, it seems apt that his descendant has gone on to antagonise the establishment and fight for reforms for those he represents.

For Mr Marshall, who does not have any family in Australia, there’s no doubt who he is committed to.

“I’m not focused on my own family, where my kids go to school, I’m focused on the community,” he said.

“If it doesn’t sound too corny, the community is my family.”