The Division recorded one of the narrowest in the 2008 Council election race with just 12 votes between the Hambledon and Edmonton polling booths. Local hardware store businessman Jeff Martinuzzi, who ran under Val Schier's Cairns 1st banner, after preferences recorded 2,500 or 49.45% against Lanskey's 2,556 or 50.55%, a 56 votes margin.
Kaye Kingham was the only other candidate to contest the last election with 26.98% of the vote.
This year's election has already attracted a strong line-up for the division 2 seat.
Jeff Martinuzzi will again throw his hat in the ring along with Piccones IGA assistant manager Paul Drabble, who is seeking more accountability from councillors, CEO and Council staff. Drabble is a former chef and has a diploma in retail management.
Mother of three who has worked in retail for 15 years, with strong Labor party links, Leigh Dall’Osto, will also contest the seat. She has also worked as Victorian State Manager of Street One and for Gold Coast Gas and the Marine Park Authority.
Recently Nancy Lanskey bequeathed all her election sign corflutes to Leigh Dall’Osto, a signal that she intended not to run again.
''Nancy would have been difficult to beat as she had done many things right in her term on Council," Leigh Dall’Osto said. “She was involved in getting many of the existing parks in this area re-furbished and she attended meetings of all sectors in the community so that she could stay abreast of any potential concerns. She also worked very hard on plans for the Edmonton town centre.''
Division 2 is one of the fastest-growing areas in North Queensland and will require a representative who will give the community the attention and time it needs. Dall’Osto says that person also has to have the ability to work with the rest of Council to get better outcomes for the entire region.
“Consultation and collaboration are extremely important facets of the job. The ability to work well with other tiers of Government is also important as there are many areas within the region where sectors of Government overlap,” Ms Dall’Osto says.
Dall’Osto said that both "Paul and Jeff are good candidates, so it's going to be difficult to win, even without Nancy."
"I just need to concentrate on doing what I do best, meeting people and listening to them, working on solutions and getting my messages across."
She said that the campaign was in danger of turning ugly, but ''that's not me.''
''I have a great deal of respect for anyone who decides to run for election. It's not an easy thing to do and the commitment required is quite extraordinary,'' Leigh Dall’Osto said. ''Nancy went into this for the right reasons initially and community minded people are our biggest assets.
Local Labor Party member Chris Rollason, says Dall’Osto is ready to be a councillor.
"Nancy knew she wouldn't get in, she didn't want to look like a sore loser," Rollason said today. ''Leigh [is] going to win this election, and I encourage all residents of Division 2 to get behind her."
Paul Drabble has been an outspoken critic of the Cairns Entertainment Precinct.
''We need a council of strong, results driven people who are willing to listen to our constituents, who thrive on feedback and are willing to take a stand for those they represent,'' Paul Drabble says. ''It is about being able to work with our CEO and Council officers to break through the red tape and constrictions. It is about putting in place the future policies and budgets that are sustainable for our growing region.''
''I want to work with all areas of Council and look at simplifying our practices and removing or replacing those that are cumbersome or inadequate for the future of this great city.''
Drabble also questioned Richie Bates, who is running again in the city-based Division 5 seat, who says that independents are to blame for the present dysfunction of Council.
Bates says that the approach most needed from our elected representatives is a collaborative and collegiate approach to governance.
'' I'm still hearing very little from the independents as to how they will work together and
build a collaborative and collegiate approach to running this city. 'The current councillors have failed dismally at this, and it is this issue above all that has laid the foundation for an under-performing and dysfunctional council," Richie Bates said. ''The recent misconduct allegations against councillors Blake and Bonneau are testimony to this. Unfortunately, we risk more of the same when we re-elect independents who have no strategy, enthusiasm or understanding of working in a diverse team.''
Paul Drabble says the truth is pseudo-ALP and LNP independents are at the core of the problem
''True independents like myself who have never had politic party affiliations and are self funding, with polices to remove party politics from local council, decrease red tape and the bureaucracy, listen to the majority and have the skills to succeed.''
Paul Drabble says he will not be taking any donations from any individual, business, developer or party toward his campaign.
''All candidates donation lists should be completed three days before an election and publicly posted,'' Drabble says. ''Then maybe people would really see who is pulling the strings. Many Council candidates say they are independent but really when you look back past the frontage you find many are now unwilling to present as candidates for parties who now have the ire of the voting public, often wonder why do those who purport to be so morally right yet are unwilling to present with the logo of their party allegiances in their media.''
''The deceptive nature of modern politics is itself a failure of the system to regulate properly. One must always remember there is a fine line between the truth and a good story in politics in North Queensland," Paul Drabble said.