Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Russell Beer may contest Cairns seat for ALP

A senior partner with MacDonnells Law in Cairns, Russell Beer, is believed to be the preferred candidate for ALP pre-selection in the State seat of Cairns at the next Queensland election in 2012.

Russell Beer, who specialises in local government law, along with property, commercial, mining and energy infrastructure litigation, is seen as a credible candidate for the ALP, replacing Desly Boyle who is widely expected to retire.

Beer's experience includes mergers management for an electricity corporation and a North Queensland Primary Producers' Co-operative merger, and has also acted for local authorities on the privatisation of waste collection services. He has presented at conferences on a variety of areas including GST and succession and estate planning for cane farmers. His community work includes serving as chair of Advance Cairns, chair of AFL Cairns, and is on the board of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Cairns. He also serves on the Cairns Chapter of the Property Council of Australia, and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.

However, Beer told the Cairns Post last week that he isn't intending on running, and wants to know the source of the rumours. “I have had no discussions with anyone about it and I’d like to know where the rumours are coming from,” he told the Post.

The fight for Boyle's replacement following her widely predicted retirement at the next State election, is hotly debated within the party. It's a very desirable ticket to run, as the Cairns seat has been held by the Labor party for over 100 years - a record un-matched nationally.

It's no secret that first-time Cairns Regional Councillor Kirsten Lesina, is keen to put her hat in the ring, however Lesina's youth is seen by some as a negative factor, even though she has proven debating abilities around the council table and strong advocating for her constituents.

Lesina's election win was the surprise of the 2008 election as she pipped Paul Freebody by just 9 votes, to become the youngest ever elected Cairns Councillor at 22. Her win surpassed the previous record held by Ross Parisi, who was elected in the then Mulgrave Council at the age of 23 in 1976.

Fellow ALP member and RTB union representative, Richie Bates is expected to gain strong support for the Labor nomination. Bates has a long history of community involvement in the region, with a focus on cycling and getting young people involved in active outdoor sporting pursuits. He has been a vocal opponent of the State Government's asset sales, that will affect his own work colleagues in Queensland Rail.

The ALP's right faction may not back Bates' for pre-selection, following his public stance against the Asset sales. Bates ran in the 2008 local body election on the Cairns 1st / Val Schier's Alliance ticket, that he has since distanced himself from. Bates received 44.11% of the primary vote against incumbent Alan Blake's 55.89%.

Electrical Trades Union state organiser Stuart Traill, has told CairnsBlog that he has no intention of seeking nomination for the seat.

"A number of people has mentioned this to me, but I have no intention of running or seeking nomination," Traill said.

Former LNP candidate Wendy Richardson may again seek to run for Barron River, which would be her fourth election campaign for a council or State seat.

Former Cairns mayor Kevin Byrne is expected to focus on a return bid for the mayoralty in 2012. Byrne lost to Val Schier in 2008 by 1,780 votes (46.73% to Byrne's 44.80%. In 2004, Schier scored 41.04%, against Byrne's 51.47%).

In the 2006 State election, Desley Boyle gained 49.21% against then Liberal candidate Wendy Richardson with 33.71%. In 2009, the gap narrowed for Boyle with a reduced margin of 45.78% against LNP's Joel Harrop on 39.75%.


will never vote labor again said...

Who would vote for any labor person ?
Stuey trail is right to be upset like me people who dont write or say anything agree with him.

After their efforts in not helping their electors in bluewater earlville and palm cove.
And deserting blokes like col riddell who helped turnour and wettenhall get over the line .
yes turnour and wettenhall we read what they write.

And two faced turnour not stopping the kids funding for the youth mentoring scheme being withdrawn then making out he wants it put back you prick turnour.

No support for the bloke trying to build the waterpark.
Stuff the list is a mile long.
I have voted labor all my life but never again you bastards sell out the people who help you

Stuey Traill said...

Count me out. I did not enter the union movement to be a pollie.
I know the LNP stooges are spreading that rumour but there is still a heap more work to do stop electrical contractors in this region from eroding basic industry conditions.
I love working with my members to improve working conditions, why would I go into politics and have to rub shoulders with the current crop?

CBD Warrior said...

Stuey Turnour Trailmix sez: "I did not enter the union movement to be a pollie".

I almost burst a gasket laughing at the absurdity of this statement by Mr. Stu. Union management *IS* politics. And in Oz, it's the pollie training ground for further elected office.

Since Stu said earlier this week he wasn't a candidate, even a shitty politician has the decency to wait a couple weeks before back-flipping.

radarz said...

If that is indeed the case Stewy, I respect that... I know many union people who genuinely got into the union movement to protect workers rights.

Who would you throw yourself behind in a Cairns preselection though... Beer or Bates?

Paul said...

He can't lose in Cairns, he's named after Cairns favourite thing after oxygen: beer.

Stuey Traill said...

CBD Warrior,
Unions have a right to be involved in politics as do business and other lobby groups.
That does not automatically mean that all Union officials or all business persons will enter politics.
Obviously you cant stand me, which I don't care about but what annoys me is that you don't even have the guts to have crack at somebody without identifying yourself.
Thats as weak as piss in my book.

Mick said...

I've got no problem with Master Bates. He is nothing fancy but has done a good job for his colleges at QR. Can't see him running though, he is too busy racing pushbikes and coaching juniors.

Beer on the other hand, we are talking real quality here. I'd back him anyday against the rabble at LNP land. And he is a good Aussie rules boy to boot!