Thursday 19 August 2010

Councillor Alan Blake all set for his $2,800 Chinese honeymoon

You know it's the Year of the Naughty Tiger, when one of Cairns Regional Council's more oddball councillors, seeks permission to head to Pudong, China for some oriental sightseeing at the expense of the Cairns ratepayer.

Cairns Regional Council unanimously approved Councillor Blake's request to head off to China on 17th October for a study tour. The Local Government Remuneration Tribunal determined that all councillors are entitled to spend $5,000 each for "skills development."

In his submission, Blake said the trip would provide him with an understanding of "Chinese culture, traditions and social customs." He heads the Sister Cities committee, which includes Oyama (Japan), Sidney (Canada), Lae (PNG), Riga (Latvia), Zhanjiang (China), Minami (Japan), and Scottsdale (USA).

"The course will include language study, food cultures and etiquette and assist in the development of business relationships," Alan Blake said.

He said he would be a good boy and during this visit, will promote Cairns to the people of China. He will be busy as there's 1,324,655,000 of them. I hope takes plenty of his business cards.

Alan Blake was advised of the decision when he returned to the Council chamber during yesterday's Finance and Administration meeting.

"The good news is we approved your trip Alan," Councillor Robert Pyne informed Blake. "But it's only one way!" The chamber roared with laughter. Such mirth is rather close to the bone following Blake's court-martial last month, when he was found guilty of breaching the Code of Conduct.

Council's corporate performance manager Linda Kirchner, said that the trip would be a "significant professional development opportunity for Councillor Blake." Yeah, right.

Other councillors to enjoy an overseas junket since March 2008, are Val Schier, who travelled to Guam so her executive assistant could check out the army talent, and Diane Forsyth who visited my hometown of Christchurch for a community safety conference, and inspect Cathedral Square at 3am. Councilor Paul Gregory was touting to attend a water meeting in London last year, but failed to gain support.

Rumour has it that Alan's been on the hunt for an overseas freebie for some time, with Italy among his destinations of choice.

To make his trip a great success, I recommend he catches up at the Edge Hill Deli with former mayor Kevin Byrne, a frequent flyer when it comes to all things Chinese. China was on KB's itinerary every year whilst he was in office.

My scrutiny of Byrne's travel escapades was a bit too much and attracted CairnsBlog's first legal defamation threat in 2007, a tradition that Blake has kept alive following Kevin's departure from high office two years ago. Alan sent me a legal censure threat last year, after I transcribed and published what he suggested was a 'private' telephone conversation.

Don't worry good readers, CairnsBlog, in partnership with BlakeWatch, will keep you informed and educated at how your hard-earned rates are being spent. That's why I do what I do.

NB: A message just for Alan:
艾伦布莱克,享受您的旅行。确保你和你的特殊需要的人 而最重要的,寻找紫禁城内。


The girl on the beach said...

KB had 7 trips to China in 4 years from late 2003 to late 2007. Boom, boom!!

col said...

your chinese is crap mike your message is this hheeee
Aylen Blake, enjoys your travel.But guarantees you and your special need person most important, seeks in Forbidden City.

Thornton On Spence said...

This is an absolute disgrace subsidising any of the Councillors on Overseas Trips unless there is a genuine justification. There is absolutely no justification to send this culturally challenged failed businessman to China. What exactly will he learn other than to add more tacky statues and so called works of art to his Apartment. What exactly is his reasoning and rationale for this visit and location. Hopefully he will be open and respond to this Blog as we all know he reads it regularly and threatens defamation all the time.
If he is genuine he will let the Rate Payers know how he can justify this subsidised trip. Come on Cr Blake let us know as your silence will be an admission of guilt and I suspect a deliberate avoidance of scrutiny.

MaryO said...

Hi MM,
That threat was not a defamation threat, but a breach of privacy and some other criminal allegation (utterly implausible one at that) about intimidation or something like that.

City Worker said...

I wrote to Cr Blake via CRC web site 2 months ago regarding a problem in his 'patch'. I haven't event had a receipt of that letter let alone any written reply or phone call. Maybe attending to issues closer to home first would be a good idea before an Asian holiday! Not happy.

MaryO said...

In addition, a “defamation” threat is only made under the Defamation Act 2005 (Qld). Or under s 365 of the Criminal Code 1899 (Qld). Yet there do exist other grounds for liability for defamatory conduct e.g. the various economic torts causing economic loss. For more information as to how to mimimise exposure to such irritating and time wasting threats like these - and still make your points with your customary vigour - visit: and

I Am The Stig said...

I would have thought that knowing Blakeys ability to learn and absorb anything, his time would be better spent learning about Chinese Culture at Cafe China in the Casino. Of course he runs the risk of Harry poisoning him for being such an annoying little freeloader.

Thornton under Spence's lover said...

Welcome back Thornton!!!!!!!!!!

We've all misssed you so much!!

hieronymus bosch said...

Hey blakey, in shanghai look for the barber shop pole out the front of the shop that has an empty bottle of shampoo and a pair of rusty scissors.

Syd Walker said...

Why doesn't Council make these payments conditional on report-backs via a daily blog?

With Michael's agreement, Mr Blake could be a guest reporter for the CairnsBlog Travel Section.

Then we could all enjoy the overseas adventures of Councillor Blake - and generous Cairns ratepayers who foot his travel bills could better appreciate the public benefits of their largesse.

interested ratepayer said...

Obviously Interested Ratepayer:
Defamation eh?? Kiwi's eh? Locals putting up with such rubbish too!! Nothing better to do than rubbish people and all who actually try to do for the community..mmhhh! Only here due to gossip re this matter, LIKE: "have you heard about Moores Blog, Blakey's defamation' etc..thus, and only reason I'm here on this site..pathetic, costly, no winners, boring, not of public interest, men or mice?? Let's see!! Oh would the real men please stand up!!!!