The elected council is made up of a Mayor and 10 councillors, which are elected by popular vote for a four year term. The last quadrennial elections were held on March 19, 2016.
Mackay Regional Council is an undivided council and therefore represent the whole council area.
Under the Local Government Act 2009, councillors are responsible for:
- Allocation of council's budget
- Participate in the review and creation of council policies and objectives
- Review council's performance of service delivery to the community
Cr Greg Williamson - Mayor of Mackay Regional Council
Profile: A fifth generation Mackay local, Mayor Greg Williamson has a genuine enthusiasm for the region. He has returned to the top job, having been mayor of the then Mackay City Council from 1991 to 1994 prior to amalgamation with the former Pioneer Shire Council. Since then he has gained vast management experience in large businesses and brings that skillset back to the role. Cr Williamson has a long history of service to the community, ranging from Rotary to the then Small Business Association and Mackay Tourism and more than 35 years of service with the Australian Air Force Cadets.
Cr Amanda Camm - Deputy Mayor of Mackay Regional Council
Phone: 0438 377 125
Profile: Deputy Mayor Amanda Camm was also chair of council’s Economic Development and Planning Committee before council moved to twice-monthly ordinary meetings in February, 2018. Key achievements during 2016-2017 ranged from signing off on a new, single planning scheme for the region to the success of economic stimulus measures, including the Facilitating Development in the Mackay Region Policy and Invest Mackay Events Attraction Program. Cr Camm also played a key role on the Mackay Local Disaster Management Group during Cyclone Debbie, providing back-up support for chair of the group, Mayor Greg Williamson. Prior to joining council, Cr Camm had a strong background in economic development and professional experience as an executive in roles across many not-for-profit and community organisations, including Mackay Whitsunday REDC, Mackay Regional Council and Local Government Association of Queensland. Throughout her career, she has worked for a diverse range of industries, including travel and tourism, business development workforce solutions for the mining and engineering sector, corporate and community philanthropic partnerships across Central Queensland. As a former primary producer, she is also committed to promoting opportunities for agriculture.
Cr Martin Bella
Phone: 0419 793 479
Profile: Cr Martin Bella, a former Queensland State of Origin and Australian representative in rugby league, has tackled his first term as a councillor with plenty of passion. He’s a keen advocate of a back to basics philosophy and takes a keen interest in issues facing rural landholders. His expertise in sugar and beef provides council with a good insight into these industries. The southern parts of our region, such as Sarina, Sarina Range and Koumala, were hard-hit by Cyclone Debbie. Cr Bella, as a resident of this area and one of two councillors appointed by council to look after the southern region, has been active in assisting with the cyclone recovery process. Cr Bella’s career has included a vast range of roles, such as cane farming, grazier, mining, retail agricultural sales, construction and maintenance, sales, hospitality and transport and freight. He is a physiotherapist and has owned and operated his own practice in Anzac Street, Sarina.
Cr Laurence Bonaventura
Phone: 0427 638 673
Profile: This is Cr Laurence Bonaventura’s second term on council. During his first term, he held the Waste, Health and Regulatory Services portfolio. His experience is valuable in his role on the current council. He was part of the Environment Recovery Sub Group post Cyclone Debbie and was also council’s representative on the Rural Safety Working Group. Cr Bonaventura’s rural experience is wide ranging. Raised at Habana and still a resident there today, his entire working life before local government had been in sugar cane farming, earthmoving and construction. That made him a good choice by council to be a go-to representative for North Coast and Beaches residents. Cr Bonaventura also has an extensive history of involvement in the community, ranging from Habana and District Progress Association to St Vincent de Paul. He has a passion for bringing people together and rallying behind worthy causes.
Cr Kevin Casey
Phone: 0417 168 730
Profile: This is Cr Kevin Casey’s fourth term of council, having been first elected to the then Mackay City Council in 2004. That local government experience is one of his strengths. Cr Casey was deputy mayor of the previous council and was responsible for the Roads and Drainage portfolio. Cr Casey played a key support role on the Mackay Local Disaster Management Group during Cyclone Debbie. He is also chair of council’s Sports Expo and Sign-on Day Working Group, as well as a member of the North Queensland Sports Foundation and North Queensland Local Government Association. The fourth-generation Mackay local has community roles ranging from patron and life member of Mackay Hockey and Mackay Surf Life Saving Club to member of Rotary and the Road Accident Action Group (RAAG).
Cr Justin Englert
Phone: 0439 611 580
Profile: This is Cr Justin Englert’s first term as a councillor but he brings a thorough understanding of the workings of council to the role, having previously been local controller for the State Emergency Service (SES). Cr Englert is a council representative on a variety of external working groups, including City Safe, the South Mackay Sporting Precinct Working Group and the Regional Arts Development Fund Advisory Committee. Cr Englert’s previous careers have been wide and varied, ranging from jobs as a labourer, scaffolder, sandblaster and spray painter to avionics fitter with the Air Force, an electrician and business manager. Much of his community involvement has been through the SES as a volunteer trainer and responder, co-founder and facilitator of the PCYC Emergency Service Cadets in Mackay and co-founder of the SES Association of Queensland.
Cr Ross Gee
Phone: 0438 549 002
Profile: Cr Ross Gee, serving his first term on council, has a keen interest in activating recreation. He is chair of council’s Sports and Recreation Advisory Committee. During 2016-2017, he was heavily involved in work to develop a Mackay Fishing Strategy and also drove a new skate park facility for the region. Outside of council, he’s also responsible for the Change the Game initiative between the Mackay Cutters and the Mackay Regional Suicide Prevention Network, driving this community initiative to “Tackle Mental Health Head On”. Cr Gee is an award-winning builder with more than 20 years’ experience and brings to council the skills of running a successful business. Cr Gee’s community involvement has ranged from founding club captain of Eimeo SLSC and junior soccer, netball and league coach to the founder of Facebook Group FINS (fun in natural sun). Raised in Eimeo and Blacks Beach he still lives in the Northern Beaches. Jobs, liveability, growth and sustainability are Cr Gee’s focus.
Cr Fran Mann
Phone: 0418 819 680
Profile: Cr Fran Mann may be a first-term councillor but she came into her new role with a strong understanding of the operations of council. She worked for council in its finance department for more than nine years before being elected as a councillor. Cr Mann actively participates in groups, including our Matsuura Sister Cities Committee and Slade Point Neighbourhood Watch. She also chairs the Community Grants and RADF Grants assessment committees and has a passion and interest in the region’s heritage as chair of council’s Character and Heritage Advisory Committee. Cr Mann assisted with recovery functions post TC Debbie as chair of the Economic Recovery sub-committee, assisted the Mackay Local Disaster Management Group during the event, and is involved with working towards the formulation of council’s RV & Caravan Park Strategy. She has a keen interest in community consultation and engagement, the heritage of our region, sustainable growth and employment opportunities and affordable housing.
Cr Karen May
Phone: 0419 669 134
Profile: Cr Karen May’s experience in local government, which now totals 13 years, has stood her in good stead during the first full year of the new council. That experience prompted fellow councillors to appoint her chair of the Infrastructure Services Committee and deputy chair of the Economic Development and Planning and Corporate Services committees before council moved to twice-monthly ordinary meetings in February, 2018. Her role heading up the Infrastructure Services Committee was particularly busy in 2016-2017, with State Government-funded Works For Queensland projects being added to council’s capital works program and cyclone recovery efforts post Cyclone Debbie. Cr May was a former councillor, deputy mayor and mayor of Sarina Shire Council. As mayor, she led the Sarina council through its amalgamation with Mackay City and Mirani Shire councils in 2008. She takes a particular interest in issues in our southern region.
Cr Ayril Paton
Phone: 0409 593 806
Profile: Cr Ayril Paton, a first-term councillor, has a strong interest in rates, finance, policies and governance. He’s a member of council’s audit committee, Transport and Drainage Advisory Committee, Water and Waste Advisory committee and council delegate for the Local Authority Waste Management Advisory Committee. Cr Paton was elected chair of the Human Social Disaster Recovery sub-committee, assisting with recovery functions after Cyclone Debbie. He also has many years of community service, holding committee roles in school P&C, sporting clubs and is passionate for the health and wellbeing of our community youth, being a committee member of the YIRS One Stop Youth Shop. Having a rural background, being based at Munbura and the family farm at Racecourse, made him an ideal choice by council to represent the Western Region locality. Cr Paton is an advocate for a whole of region approach to ensure all residents are represented in the Mackay Regional Council area.
Cr Ross Walker
Phone: 0429 615 711
Profile: Cr Ross Walker is a third-term councillor, making him one of the most experienced on Mackay Regional Council. First elected at a by-election in 2010, he was re-elected in 2012 and again in 2016. In his first two terms, he was responsible for the Parks, Environment and Sustainability portfolio and then the Finance, Asset Management and IT portfolio. A cane farmer for 35 years, Cr Walker was chairman of the Australian Cane Farmers Association and chairman of a diverse retail company before joining council. That rural experience made him an obvious choice by council to represent the Western Region locality. Cr Walker has been a dedicated member of Mackay West Rotary Club for more than 30 years, is currently president of Mackay West Rotary Club, and in 2003 was honoured with a Paul Harris Fellow award from Rotary for exceptional service to the sugar industry.