Jokes about pork-barrelling aside, local butcher Peter Lindbeck is dead serious about his tilt for a seat on the Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council, joining the Team Winchester ticket, which also includes Tony "Victor the Viking" Wood.
"I'm just sick of not being heard," Mr Lindbeck said.
"My father always said, 'When you're a little business, don't ever get involved in local politics because you lose half your customers'.
"So I've always avoided it, but there just comes a time when you're sick of not being heard and there's a group of people on council who have a very solid block and they can push through basically whatever they want to push through and you get a bit tired of that."
QPRC councillor Kenrick Winchester finally lured "Butcher" Lindbeck to his team, which comprises residents from Queanbeyan, Bungendore and Braidwood, after an earlier overture to stand at the 2017 election turned out to be "not the right time".
A lifelong Queanbeyanite, Mr Lindbeck said he wanted to give back to the region which had been "unbelievably good" to him.
The NSW local government election on September 4 is likely to see a new-look Queanbeyan- Palerang council elected, with only three of the 11 incumbent councillors expected to re-contest. Included tentatively in the three is mayor Tim Overall who has yet to confirm if he is running, with pre-poll voting to start August 23. Confirmation is being sought from Mr Overall.
Mr Lindbeck, 61, a second-generation butcher, has often played the larrikin, but says he is deeply concerned about the direction council is taking, one of his chief worries how it is paying for infrastructure, including roundabouts for either end of the Ellerton Drive extension and a new $74 million "Civic and Cultural Precinct" , which includes a purpose-built council headquarters.
"I would be fascinated to know where council is at with its finances," he said, suggesting he was not going to be flippant with the future of the city and region.
His own butchery had been a fixture in Cooma Street, Mr Lindbeck and his wife Ruth taking over its ownership from his father in 1978.
"We've survived a lot in this little shop," he said. "You have to know how to run finance, you have to be conservative at times, you have to spend money at times.
"You certainly have a feel for business and for which way the town should go and it is going. This place is growing unbelievably so it would be good if we had a council where there could be proper debate."
Mr Lindbeck said he was also concerned about the CBD of Queanbeyan, saying "a lot of parking had gone and strangely a lot of businesses had gone too".
"I'd like the main street to return to being the thriving hub it once was," he said.
Mr Winchester, 38, was glad to have Butcher on board, saying his team was not party-political.
"He would be a great person to have on the council, not just his small business background, but the person and leader that he is," he said.
Mr Lindbeck said he wasn't interested in party politics at a local government level.
"We're all from different ideas, different works of life, different parties and as far as I'm concerned, on a council, it shouldn't be anything about parties, it should be about the people," he said.
And despite his snag mayoral chains, Mr Lindbeck would be gunning for deputy mayor if elected and Mr Winchester the mayor.
"He's an energetic, vigorous young man with great ideas for the town and he need support from the community, and I'm part of that community," Mr Lindbeck said.
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