Bonanni quits: Mum's illness needs my full time care.


Town Council elected member and Deputy Mayor, Kylie Bonanni (at left), who resigned today, says “it is with a heavy heart that I made this decision.
“My mother’s illness needs my full time care and attention at this moment in my life.
“My husband and family have supported me in my decision to take time away from Alice Springs to care for my mum who is my priority at this moment,” says Ms Bonanni.
“I feel by not being able to attend to my council commitments it is in the best interest of the Alice Springs community that I step down.
“I’m not the sort of person who could continue to be on a payroll and not feel that I was doing my duty and service for the people who elected me into this position.
“I have made some wonderful new friends and thoroughly enjoyed my time whilst being on the council.
“I’m sorry if I’ve let anyone down by this decision. It’s been an incredibly hard one to make.
“I wish anybody who is thinking about running for Council great success. It’s been a fantastic experience for me and I thank the staff and executive team members for their support.”
Meanwhile Ms Bonanni’s resignation may may trigger others.
Cr Liz Martin, who is currently four months into a six months leave, says her preference would have been to resign, but she wanted to avoid the cost of about $90,000 to the council of a by-election.
Now that one will be held in any case, she may put in her notice as well.
p1913lizmartinvolvookCr Martin (at right), the manager of the National Road Transport Hall of Fame, which will soon host a massive convention to be attended by an expected 12,000 truckies, friends and families, says she will make up her mind after a medical appointment in three weeks’ time.
All the other councillors will no doubt weigh up that their term is now a year and a half longer than they had bartered for, as a result of changes to the Local Government Act earlier this year.
They were elected in March 2012 for a four year term. Now the term will in fact run for five and a half years, ending in August 2017.
After that there will again be four year terms, but with scheduled elections always in August.
Casual vacancies, if they occur within 18 months of the due date of an election, can be filled by council “co-opting” people as councillors. For this to have been possible, Ms Bonanni would have had to stay on till March next year to avoid a by-election.
Council CEO Rex Mooney says he will be negotiating a price with the NT Electoral Commission which, subject to council’s approval, will run the by-election.
Mr Mooney says the council may be able to lower the cost by providing some staff and locations for polling booths, but his preference is for the commission to supply the required “key personnel and expertise”.
No date has yet been set for the by-election.
[This report was updated at 3pm. An earlier speculation that Ms Bonanni may be seeking preselection for the the CLP has been removed. ]


  1. Sad to see two competent women may be bowing out. Hopefully some strong candidates will be putting up their hands, people who will participate and have the best interests of the community at heart.
    And none who just want to run the Giles agenda please.
    This could be a great opportunity to get more indigenous representation on Council, so think about it.
    If I was a bit younger I’d be putting up my hand but there’s enough fossils there now.

  2. This is a great opportunity to abolish this totally un-necessary level of government and save the rate payers a fortune.

  3. Steve: This level of Government has tremendous potential to serve the electorate as they are the closest connected to the people. Unfortunately, Alice Springs Town Council at times limit themselves to “Roads and Rubbish” and often forget the equally important responsibility; “Representation.” The council needs to look deeply at how they can effectively lobby for the benefit of their electorate to higher levels of Governments.

  4. @ Melanie Ross: “A man is not old until regrets take the place of dreams.” So follow your dream.

  5. I wish I could have given up my day job to care for my aged parents, as do many people no doubt – but few of us can.
    Quite frankly, this is a cop out. Ms Bonanni is costing us tax payers more money for another election.
    In future, don’t take on jobs you can’t finish – regardless of the reason.

  6. Terri: What a sad and uncompassionate point of view. I, along with most of the community I suspect, surely hope that her vacancy is filled by someone with a little more humanity then what you display.

  7. No doubt Kylie will have more spare time on her hands come August 2016. As a voter, once bitten twice shy, Kylie. Don’t bother standing, you weren’t much chop, it turns out.

  8. I am Terri’s sister and a nurse and quite frankly appalled by Joel Olzomer’s self-righteous reply.
    What do you think would happen to the country if everyone took time off because of sick parents?
    I was nursing other people’s sick parents when our mother was old and ill. Both Terri and I spent as much time as we could with her and still feel sad we couldn’t have more time with our loved mum.
    But by your rigid rules Joel, we would have to give up our jobs, our responsibility to our families and the community just to demonstrate our “humanity”. But is that really likely to happen in this day and age of mortgages, kids’ school fees and endless bills?
    Kylie could have taken leave but she didn’t. I’m sorry I voted for her.

  9. Judy, please don’t confuse empathy with self righteousness. I was simply stating there is no need to begrudge someone who is fortunate enough to be able to prioritise a personal matter over the every day trappings of 9-5 life.
    And to be fair, I suspect many councillors are a little disillusioned in Alice Springs Town Council.
    It’s a thankless role, and one that quite undemocratically was extended out by 18 months by the powers that be.

  10. Kylie Bonanni needs to clearly state whether she has plans to run in the 2016 Territory elections or not.
    It really is that simple. Alice Springs voters deserve at least that much.

  11. Good On you Terri. It’s a total cop out. Liz Martin is on a leave of absence so why couldn’t Kylie.
    I suspect council was buying into her social life too much. What has she delivered on?

  12. Maybe with the new councillors election coming up, we should ask if they really intend to represent the rates-payers, or if they will be sheep following the “leaders” without consulting Alice’s residents.
    We had no consultation for the Diano oval 400m track, it was a done deal, so I was lied to by the council representative when I was told in writing that it was just a project on the drawing board with nothing concrete yet.
    Without the rates payers, Alice will not exists however we are treated with contempt. Are we under a democratic system or under a dictatorship?


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