Former Triple J host, media personality and author Alex Dyson is taking another tilt at politics, running as an independent candidate for the seat Wannon for this year's federal election.
This is the second time Mr Dyson has run for office, after his last-minute entry to the 2019 campaign, which saw him receive 10.35 per cent of the primary vote.
Mr Dyson visited Ararat last week to talk about issues which mattered to residents in the lead up to the election and said the town is "one of the best places to visit in the electorate".
"It is great to come back and see Ararat in all of its glory," he said.
"I would really love for all candidates to come here as well as a strong vibrant democracy involves the candidates being accessible to the people.
"It's going to be a big learning process for me and I want to listen to the experts of Ararat, the residents.
"The people need to hear from the candidates and I plan to do that as much as possible."
Mr Dyson said a grade six camp visit to Canberra sparked his interest in politics.
"Seeing the calibre of behaviour in parliament at that time and not really improving in the 20 years since that has stuck with me," he said.
"It made me want to try to get involved to get a more positive and constrictive member voted into parliament."
Mr Dyson said being an independent candidate would give him greater scope to be a public servant to the community, rather than of the other political parties.
"I felt this electorate needed a representative that could be super authentic, honest and fight for the region," he said.
"Being an independent candidate is a great way to do that because they are not beholden to the parties and the pork barrelling that we are seeing when it comes to distribution to funds.
"I am not the kind of person who likes to complain about things without stepping up and giving it a go myself.
"I am fighting for integrity in parliament, it is really interesting to have another political promise be broken with integrity commission."
Mr Dyson said he planned on addressing the lack of housing, affecting Ararat.
"From the conversation I have had, housing is a massive issue in Ararat," he said.
"There are jobs around the region that need to be filled and they are there but we need places for people to stay.
"It is similar across the whole electorate, a lack of a housing policy and a way to get rid of a bit of the red tape that is currently constraining some of the development and constraining the town.
"Also such things as build to rent schemes have been encouraged in the past so I think there are some ways to overcome what is a pretty big issue."
Improving the quality of the roads in the region was also a focus of Mr Dyson.
"Obviously investments in roads are paramount, making sure they are done properly," he said.
"It is vital that they are sustainable so they can last their full lifetime.
"We need to make sure they are structurally sound with the way they are torn up by the trucks that come through.
"The government should be doing things like that, people who drive their car need to get registered and roadworthy, but who is making that roads are car worthy."
During Mr Dyson's visit to Ararat he stopped by local manufacturer AME Systems, where he spoke to chief executive Nick Carthew about the issues facing workers in the region.
"They (AME Systems) have done an enormous amount of work in the private sector to grow to where they are to be trusted by so many manufacturers around and be so high in quality," he said.
"Some of the worker restrictions and red tape that the government puts up when it comes are really stifling business in the region.
"No one is asking for handouts here, they are just asking for a bit of assistance to continue to do what they do.
"I would really like to assist with that if I was lucky enough to become the local member."
Mr Dyson said he planned on entrenching himself in the community to get to know the residents of Ararat.
"If anyone needs a volunteer for anything whether it's Landcare, friends of J Ward i want to get my hands dirty," he said.
"If either the Rats or the Eagles need a boundary umpire, I will be there, I also really want run water for a footy team as well.
"In good news for both local teams I haven't picked my team yet, however I did get a nickname while broadcasting at Triple J, the Rat dog so maybe there is an affinity there."
If anyone has some questions or wants to get in touch with the campaign get in touch at email@example.com.
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