ROADS and footpaths have emerged as the key issues for voters in the Orange City Council election overtaking the controversial Macquarie pipeline by a mile.
Results from a Central Western Daily readers’ online poll* suggest the back to basics approach touted by many election candidates may attract votes come Saturday.
Of the 415 responses, 60 per cent of people identified roads and footpaths as the most important election issue while only 22 per cent singled out the pipeline.
Dual occupancy and planning, and parking were the next thing on voters’ minds, but each only attracted interest from around five per cent of poll participants.
The new museum and youth facilities also barely rated a mention only interesting around 4 per cent of voters.
But residents aren’t the only ones concerned about the city’s roads.
In their answers to the CWD’s election questions, road maintenance was identified as one of the failures of the previous council by 39 of the 44 candidates including all six groups - led by John Davis, Glenn Taylor, Russell Turner, Ron Gander, Brian Wood and the Greens and individual candidates Kevin Duffy and Troy Sweeting.
Cr Davis and Aaron Wright both singled out the road surface of the Northern Distributor as a failure.
Despite the almost universal agreement, only 21 candidates identified road funding or maintenance as a priority if elected - Cr Taylor’s group, the Greens’ group, Mr Wood’s group, and individuals Reg Kidd, Mr Sweeting and Mr Duffy.
Programs to roll-out hot mix asphalt in the city’s streets was suggested as a major capital works project by Mr Wright and was also raised by Cr Davis’ team along with upgrades to footpaths.
Cr Taylor’s group went one further suggesting the city needs its own hot mix plant to repair and build roads to higher standards.
Road maintenance was also a works priority for Gail Copping, Mr Sweeting, Mr Turner’s team and Mr Gander’s team.
Mr Wood’s team agreed and also mentioned footpaths.
But not everyone is on the same page.
Sam Romano, Derek Johns, and independent Rob Williamson appear to be out of step with voters with roads and footpaths not even rating a mention in their candidate profiles.
Independent candidate Chris Gryllis did not answer the CWD’s election questionnaire.
The key issues
#1 - Roads and footpaths
#2 - Macquarie Pipeline
#3 - Dual occupancy and planning
#4 - Parking
#5 - The new museum
#6 - Youth facilities
Other top reader issues:
n High rates
n Other water security options
n Honesty from councillors and staff
n Community services
n Saving the showground
n Crime prevention
n Sports facilities
n Southern Distributor
* An online poll does not rely on a random sample and may only represent the views of those people who voted.