Monday 1 February 2010

FREEBODY: "They have an old piece of rail track that they store bins on."

Ginger Gorman on ABC Far North spoke with waterpark wonder kid, Paul Freebody this evening....

"It's been a steeple chase," Paul said.

"They [Mulgrave Sugar Mill] have objected because they have an old piece of rail track that they store bins on - use three weeks a year," Paul Freebody said.

"They're worried there could be a safety issue or could interfere in their harvesting, and a few other minor concerns," he said.

"It's not for the mill to lodge possible objections that doesn't impact on their land. The site has been zoned and rated for 25 years as a tourist attraction site and paid rates accordingly."

"The mill can object to things that impact on its sugar cane business. But this site has never had sugar cane on it, and doesn't impact on their harvesting."

"We've allocated $150,000 for the fight. The mill will have to spend $500,000-$600,000.

"I was on the phone to America this morning, to allay their fears, We can't do anything on the site until this matter is settled."

"[There's] 8 - 12 weeks of construction of underground pipes etc."

"You can understand why people just don't do projects anymore because of all the red tape and the bureaucracy is so intense, and the appealing process is so long and so costly. You only have to look at the construction that's happening around Cairns, or the non-construction and the amount of people leaving town. We really need to fast track some of these programmes."

"We've really got to make decisions much earlier in the piece so we don't get to a stage where everyones approved this, from the State Government to the State Government bodies to the Council, and then we have a mill that comes out of left field and lodged an objection and now we have another court case on our hands."


Al said...

You gotta hand it this bloke, the blinkers are on and he's running. However, the problem with such a blinkered approach is that he is blind to the problems that others - CRC planners included - can clearly see. You only have to look at past projects eg: the growing of sugarcane where the mangroves should be in East Trinity to see why the red tape and the bureaucracy is now so intense. When you get it wrong, the consequences can be very significant.
It's just a theme park, a dubious commercial project being driven by one very stubborn man's greed and vanity. To all the CRC councillors who voted for it: Surely it isn't worth all the angst that is has created so far - with more to come? What was wrong with just sticking to the plan?

Tommy said...

Good one Paul, so how was Bernie Madoff when you spoke to hin this morning?

Cairns Resident said...

No one plays "the victim" better than Paul Freebody. Look at his comments - he's just being victimised by the zoning laws, the planners, and now the sugar people.

There's a terrific story of how he got outmanoeuvred by US toy company Toys R Us - he sold Toyworld for 1/3 of what it was worth and found out later that Toys R Us would never have opened a shop without his sale.

Businessman? A good one doesn't call councillors "bitches and witches".

Jan from Kewarra said...

Freebody lives on the southside right, so why would he care or know what goes on on the northside?

Seems that Mulgrave Mill are concerned enough about motorist safety and their trains crossing CCH, that they have installed flashing lights and sound warnings (not far from his proposed UnderWater Park). Most of us daily commuters to the city get stopped between July and November and have to wait for the little locos with their 20 bins or so to cross the highway.

So just what part of this scenario does Paul Freebody not understand!

He is a total wanker, a liar and dangerous manipulator, just to get his own way!

Unknown said...

I actually agree with Paul that the red tape and the bureaucracy involved in getting anything off the ground these days is beyond ridiculous, and Cairns DOES need some good big projects happening to create jobs. However I'm not impressed with the group his wife joined late last year having a nasty dig at the current Cairns Mayor. Not the smartest of moves..especially given this latest development. Karma maybe?

- Dee.

Steve Brech said...

The problem with the location is very simple. The Barron will at some stage change course, and Thomatis Creek is a possible location for the the Barron's course change. Let's hope his insurer doesn't read or have access to any of Jon Knott's documents

nocturnal congress said...

..and those of us who are locals can well remember the vast lake caused by the 1979 floods.....

Factman said...

"Vast lake caused by the 1979 floods ..."

hahaha ... it wasn't the floods that caused the lake.

It was the 2-4 metre high dam that stradles the Barron delta from Stratford to Smithfield.

The dam that was built by our Fed and State Govts.

It's a dam because the crossflow culverts are far to small.

And what did they call the dam ...

They called it, the Cook Highway.

This dam causes the mill far more grief than Freebody's little pimple will.

Ask Conics.

Sue E said...

Mr Freebody might like to reflect on why there is now so much red tape and bureaucracy. Perhaps it has a lot to do with the carpetbaggers and cowboy developers that have plagued this city for yonks. You know the ones that walk off into the sunset laughing all the way to the bank leaving others to deal with the mess and consequences for years to come. You know the same ones that bewail to all and sundry their right to do what they want on their land but don't batter an eyelid when they completely expunge the rights of neighbouring property owners and others.

Dolly - Freebody Lover said...

Factman, you are being a little disengenious and mischieious to suggest that the Cpt.Cook Highway caused the back up of water that created the lake.
The water level was the same in height on both the upstream and downstream side of the Highway.
You seem to ovelook the fact that the Highway in 1979 had 2 meters of water over it in various place one of which was Freebody's Underwater Park location.
Factman, you need to be factual in your commentary otherwise you will have to apply for a name change...hahaha

Factman said...

Not being disingenuous and mischievous at all.
A fact's a fact.

The wall that the Cook highway is built upon impedes the natural flow of surface water.
That is, it acts as a dam.

The highway across the Florida Everglades is built on piers for that very reason.

Mulgrave Mill's two rusty sticks of rail is a pretty pathetic excuse to stop a park that will bring employment plus loads of enjoyment to visitors and locals alike.

Watch the Mill scream when they are forced to relocate their rail just north of the Forest Gardens entrance adjacent to the Bruce Highway.

Now there's a real death trap for kids on bikes.

And that's a fact !!!

Keith C said...

Mr. Freebody, as a former Councillor, is of course well aware that the red tape he complains about is in fact part of a democratic process under the former Integrated Planning Act. Every impact assessable decision is open to an appeals process, and I am sure that if Council had stuck by their original recommendation and refused the application, then Mr. Freebody would have been first in line to appeal.

The next stage will be interesting, for the Council planners will now have to defend their recommendations in court, and the most damning evidence against their argument will be a report they themselves had written just weeks earlier.