Thursday 28 February 2008

Port Douglas divided

The Port Douglas Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a candidates' and mayoral luncheon from 12:30 on Tuesday March 11th at the Sea Temple Golf Club, Old Port Rd, Port Douglas.

However, 13 days out from the event, it appears they are dictating who they want to include.

I made mention yesterday how two Mayoral candidates were shunned from the joint Cairns Business Woman's Club, and the Chamber of Commerce mayoral debate on Friday. Although Peter Sandercock turned up, he was not welcome at the mayoral table, nor on the stage. Attempts from Selwyn Johnston to attend and participate in the Cairns event, meet with a "No thank you."

Yesterday, I heard Ken Dobbs, the President of the Port Douglas chamber, on Port Douglas radio. He stated that he would only be inviting Val Schier and Kevin Byrne, and not the other two mayoral candidates. They have, however, extended an invitation to all eight of the Division 10 candidates, that encompass Douglas Shire and as far south as Clifton Beach.

Here's the interview with Ken Hobbs on Port Douglas Radio. His interview starts at 25min. Simply slide the marker across.

Like the Cairns Chamber, I feel this is a very poor stance to take.

I understand that Peter Sandercock and Selwyn Johnston are requesting that they also participate in the event.

The forum will also not allow any questions from the floor, rather, they will be posed set questions.

As the Port Chamber strongly supports the Icon legislation, which Mayor Byrne labeled a waste of time and 'adding another layer of bureaucracy', this is bound to be a hot subject.

"If a Council has an effective and robust [CairnsPlan] planning scheme," Mayor Byrne says, "then there is no need for additional protection." The Cairns Council did not support Icon protection at their last meeting, and advised the Minister accordingly.
Douglas Shire Mayor, Mike Berwick, laid out his case here on CairnsBlog.

The Divisional candidates will have to address the following questions in a seven
minute speech:
  • Drawing on your background and experience, what makes you the best person
    to represent Division 10 and will this be a full time job for you?
  • How would you propose to effectively represent the interests of such a large
    and diverse community as Division 10?
  • How do you propose to allocate your preferences?
  • What key infrastructure projects will you pursue for Division 10?
  • How do you see Cairns Regional Council supporting business and tourism in
    Division 10?

On the other hand, the Mayoral candidates will get 10 minutes to address:

  • What measures would you take to preserve the integrity of the existing Douglas
    Shire planning scheme?
  • Do you support the community engagement process currently being
    undertaken for the Port Douglas Waterfront re-development?
  • Do you support maintaining the current level of council funding for marketing
    tourism in the Port Douglas and Daintree areas, and if so, how would you
    allocate it?
  • Division 10 will have a high proportion of ratepayers compared to population
    due to the high number of strata title units used for holiday letting. On what
    basis would you allocate funding for capital works and maintenance?
  • How will you give the Division 10 councilor assistance to represent the largest
    geographical area with the most diverse issues in the Cairns Regional Council?

Should your name not be Selwyn or Peter, and you'd like to attend, you can book a ticket ($25 for members / $35 for non-members). Tickets available at Port's Stationary and Supplies, Owen Street, or via the website. You can also contact the Secretary, Stacey Kibble on 4040 6555.

NB: Councillor Rod Davis also appears on yesterday's radio show. He discuss the last Council meeting of Douglas Shire, that will be on Tuesday 4th March. Rod's interview commences at 12 mins into the tape.


Anonymous said...

It amazes me that these people are holding a Mayoral luncheon, but only inviting half the candidates. It is a bit unfair that this can happen. Maybe Kev and Val should decide not to turn up until Selwyn and Peter are invited.
Well,,,, I know Kev wont do that, he has no respect for the people he is supposed to represent, but, I thought Val was better than that. Come on Val, I know you are better than that. You should demand that they be invited.

Anonymous said...

As for your headline "PORT DOUGLAS DIVIDED" let me pass on some wise words from our experienced leader, Kevin Bryne.

“There is an enormous challenge ahead in terms of bringing these two very distinct communities together, but people need to be aware that nothing will change in the short to medium term in relation to Local Laws and Planning Schemes,” Cr Byrne said.

“It may take quite some time before the Local Laws are amended, and possibly a couple of years before the planning schemes come together,” he said.

“For example, when Cairns and Mulgrave amalgamated in 1995, it took more than five years for a new planning scheme – CairnsPlan – to go through extensive community consultation and state interest checks before finally being adopted.

Cr Byrne said that as chair of the LTC he was proud of the efforts the committee and staff had put in to ensuring the continuation of service delivery occurs right throughout the new Council area.

“I have nothing but admiration for the way staff from both councils have gone about the job behind the scenes. What they have achieved is highly commendable,” Cr Byrne said.

“Soon the people of Douglas can put the dark days behind them and start to enjoy the same high levels of good governance the people of greater Cairns have enjoyed for eight years,” he said.

Anonymous said...

Dikwad alert! Dikwad alert! Factaman aka kbcumbreath has made another moronically biased post so please disreagrd and remember Factman is a f**king dikwad.

Anonymous said...

God help us!

If Kev gets hold of the Daintree or other pristeen areas he'll be like a kid in a candy store, and if pocket Rod is along side him they can be called the D&D team.
Design and destroy!