‘No’ to ax­ing di­vi­sions

Childers, Gin Gin vote to keep elec­toral bound­aries amid in­ves­ti­ga­tion

Isis Town and Country - - News - By MIKE DERRY JIM ALOUAT

THE com­mu­ni­ties of Childers and Gin Gin have come out strongly against a Bund­aberg Re­gional Coun­cil pro­posal to abol­ish elec­toral di­vi­sions.

The coun­cil asked the State Gov­ern­ment to abol­ish di­vi­sions, and Elec­toral Com­mis­sion Queens­land is now ex­am­in­ing the pro­posal.

Mem­bers of the com­mis­sion held public meet­ings in Bund­aberg and in­vited sub­mis­sions.

A spokesman for the Elec­toral Com­mis­sion Queens­land, which is act­ing as the Change Com­mis­sion, said it re­ceived com­ments from more than 700 in­di­vid­u­als in the form of sub­mis­sions from in­di­vid­u­als, or­gan­i­sa­tions and pe­ti­tion signatures.

He said a de­ci­sion would be made within two weeks.

Isis Dis­trict Res­i­dents and Ratepay­ers As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent John van Barn­eveld said the coun­cil would lose the ben­e­fit of lo­cal knowl­edge when it came to de­ci­sions re­gard­ing zon­ing, roads and com­mu­nity is­sues.

“The point is we won’t have a lo­cal per­son we can talk to and see in the street,” he said.

“It would also act as an ex­tra layer of bu­reau­cracy for peo­ple in coun­cil to deal with re­quests.”

Gin Gin res­i­dent Ge­orge Ablett felt so strongly about the is­sue he spent three days get­ting signatures on a sub­mis­sion against the pro­posal and col­lected 660 in the area.

Mr Ablett said there was a lot of anger at the pro­posal in Gin Gin, par­tic­u­larly among lo­cal busi­ness­peo­ple.

“Peo­ple are very bit­ter about it,” he said.

Gin Gin di­vi­sional rep­re­sen­ta­tive Wayne Honor said he was against abol­ish­ing di­vi­sions.

“Peo­ple from places like Gaeta al­ways say they need to have some­body who un­der­stands the needs of the com­mu­nity,” he said.

Childers di­vi­sional rep­re­sen­ta­tive Tony Ricciardi said he had made his po­si­tion clear.

“I sup­ported coun­cil’s sub­mis­sion for a re­view of the vot­ing pro­ce­dure sim­ply be­cause I be­lieve peo­ple have a demo­cratic right to ex­press a view on the is­sue of di­vi­sions,” he said.

“I have ad­dressed both the Isis Dis­trict Cham­ber of Com­merce and Res­i­dents & Ratepay­ers As­so­ci­a­tion on this mat­ter.

“Coun­cil dur­ing its sur­veys on the fu­ture of di­vi­sions can­vassed 500 re­sponses and the com­mu­nity view was far from clear cut.”

John van Barn­eveld The point is we won’t have a lo­cal per­son we can talk to and see in the street.

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