Former Ipswich mayor Andrew Antoniolli is throwing his hat back into the ring in the upcoming council elections.
Last Thursday, Mr Antoniolli announced his plans to run for Councillor for Division 3 in the local government elections taking place on March 16.
“As a lifetime resident who has a passion for the city and its people, I am proud to put my hand up to represent the people again and take our city forward,” Mr Antoniolli said.
Mr Antoniolli is a former Queensland police senior constable and now real estate sales consultant in Ipswich.
He was first elected to Ipswich City Council in 2000, before running for mayor in 2017 following the resignation of Paul Pisasale.
Although not ready to disclose all his policies, Mr Antoniolli said his priorities were improving community connectivity and participation, as well as greater transparency, particularly pertaining to the Ipswich cinema redevelopment.
He also aims to help local community groups and services grow, and work towards solving the ongoing issue of stench from landfill and waste operations.
“What I intend to bring to council is my proven experience as an effective leader with an ability to take this city forward, while leaving no one behind.”
Although initially found guilty of fraud in 2019 following charges by the Queensland Crime and Corruption Commission (CCC) in 2018, he was cleared of charges on appeal in late 2020.
Along with 15 others, Mr Antoniolli had faced charges related to the purchase of charity auction items with council funds.
Following its investigation, the CCC dismissed the entire Ipswich City Council and installed a temporary administration leading up to the 2020 elections.
Mr Antoniolli maintained his innocence throughout his legal battle and said he struggled to survive the ordeal were it not for his family and his faith.
Despite this, the 53-year-old remains committed to public service by running for local office.
“True community leadership is needed to bring the community back to council, and the council back to community.”
“My passion for this city has never waned.