Charlie Pisasale fit and set to fly in 2016 elections
CHARLIE Pisasale has put the rumours to bed.
No, he doesn't go by the alias of Clark Kent and change into a cape in a phone booth.
But he has no intention of retiring as a councillor and has every intention of standing again in Division 8 at the 2016 elections and working hard to secure a state-of-the-art Ipswich Performing Arts Centre for the city.
The rumour mill was rife that Cr Pisasale, the older brother of Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale, was set to pull the pin.
So what does the man himself say?
"Every second person I ran into at the Ipswich Cup asked me, 'Are you standing again?'" Cr Pisasale grinned.
"I'd love to know where the rumours started but I always answer, 'No, I am racing'.
"Yes, I am definitely standing again."
Cr Pisasale had a health scare late last year, but he has made a super recovery.
"I hit a bit of a speed bump and had peritonitis, which is inflammation of fluid around the outside of the heart," Cr Pisasale said.
"It is more common than you realise, but I have come good now. I have sprung right back."
Cr Pisasale has been a councillor since 1995 and is still passionate about his job.
"If there was no passion I wouldn't be there, but I still have the passion and fire," he said.
"I love my city."
The Mayor outlined in his budget speech how council was seeking $300,000 to conduct a detailed design stage feasibility study for a $90 million IPAC which would bring key social, cultural and economic benefits to Ipswich and the surrounding region.
Cr Pisasale is the city's arts boss and has seen the success of shows at Studio 188 and the Civic Centre. But increased demand and the limited space at those facilities means a bigger venue is needed.
"We deserve a decent performing arts centre," Cr Pisasale said.
"The diversity of the shows and the crowd numbers in Ipswich are going through the roof.
"While Studio 188 is an intimate space and you can only hold around 150-odd people, we have seen a standard of show that we have not seen before.
"But we can only seat about 200 people for dinner at the Civic Centre and we are losing business to Brisbane.
"We are looking for $300,000 from the state to do a proper study into IPAC and we will keep knocking on doors."
Ipswich MP Jennifer Howard supports council's push for funding and would welcome formal discussions with Cr Pisasale.
"I know a study needs to be done and I believe Ipswich needs a proper sized venue," she said.
"I would be very supportive of a study being done into the model that Charlie and Paul (Pisasale) have shown me.
"When I was a candidate, Paul met with Jim Madden and I to discuss IPAC and I am willing to approach the Treasurer and the Premier about it, because she is Minister for the Arts, to get the funding for a study."