The right skills for the job

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - FRONT PAGE -

The new coun­cil needs a mayor and coun­cil­lors with the right mix of busi­ness acu­men, ne­go­ti­at­ing skills, lack of po­lit­i­cal al­le­giances, and life ex­pe­ri­ence. That is why I am back­ing James Dormer for mayor. I call James ‘‘friend’’, and do so proudly; more so, though, I know James Dormer as a busi­ness­man, who, with his busi­ness part­ner, has built a suc­cess­ful build­ing com­pany over many years, and who is re­spon­si­ble for the con­struc­tion of many of the won­der­ful, ar­chi­tect-de­signed homes in the area. The Moss­man Mill will sus­tain the large farm­ing com­mu­nity and lo­cal busi­nesses will be given a boost with the in­evitable in­crease in ex­pend­able in­come and the de­mand for goods and ser­vices. The Moss­man Mill and the Far North Queens­land tourism sec­tor have suc­cess­fully co-ex­isted for many years. In fact, the mill was ac­tu­ally a pop­u­lar tourist at­trac­tion, pro­vid­ing reg­u­lar mill tours un­til only a few years ago and there is ev­ery pos­si­bil­ity that this ser­vice could be rein­tro­duced un­der Mackay Su­gar’s own­er­ship in the fu­ture. Mackay Su­gar is also in­volved with the Port Dou­glas Cham­ber of Com­merce: Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment Group, with the in­ten­tion of sup­port­ing strate­gies that will drive growth within the re­gion’s tourism and in­dus­try sec­tors. Fur­ther­more, through its Com­mu­nity Sup­port Pro­gram, Mackay Su­gar pro­vides fi­nan­cial and in-kind sup­port to var­i­ous com­mu­nity groups and or­gan­i­sa­tions, such as the Moss­man Com­mu­nity Cen­tre, Moss­man State High School and Moss­man Show. The trucks from the Table­lands will be de­liv­er­ing cane to a trans­fer sta­tion (Cas­sowary Ramps) lo­cated ap­prox­i­mately six kilo­me­tres south of Moss­man, with the cane then trans­ported to the Moss­man Mill via the rail net­work. The trucks from the Table­lands will not be cart­ing cane on the Cap­tain Cook High­way, nor will they drive through Moss­man. In fact there will be re­duced road traf­fic through Moss­man in a 24-hour pe­riod as all road de­liv­er­ies of cane will be de­liv­ered to rail hubs and not di­rectly to the mill. Fi­nally, I would like to pro­vide a brief out­line of Mackay Su­gar’s stake­holder en­gage­ment ac­tiv­i­ties cor­re­lated with the Table­lands cane sup­ply agree­ment. Over the past six months, Mackay Su­gar has met with key stake­hold­ers (in­clud­ing gov­ern­ment rep­re­sen­ta­tives); pro­vided me­dia re­leases and in­ter­views/ com­ments to the Moss­man, Table­lands and Cairns me­dia; had face-to-face meet­ings with Mt Mol­loy and Ju­lat­ten res­i­dents con­cerned with the cane trucks trav­el­ling on the Rex Range; con­ducted a com­mu­nity in­for­ma­tion ses­sion in Mt Mol­loy, and formed a Com­mu­nity Work­ing Group (in­volv­ing lo­cal and state rep­re­sen­ta­tives) to fa­cil­i­tate a col­lab­o­ra­tive plan­ning process for the trans­porta­tion of Table­lands cane to Moss­man Mill. The Com­mu­nity Work­ing Group was dis­con­tin­ued due to the res­ig­na­tion of the group’s chair­man and the ev­i­dent ag­gres­sive and en­trenched at­ti­tude of cer­tain mem­bers. How­ever, Mackay Su­gar re­mains com­mit­ted to fos­ter­ing a col­lab­o­ra­tive plan­ning process to en­sure its cane trans­porta­tion is safe and ef­fi­cient and con­ducted in a man­ner that re­duces im­pact on the Mt Mol­loy and Ju­lat­ten com­mu­ni­ties.

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