Billy fixes the cross­ing

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - OPINION - SHANE NI­CHOLS

IF only we could print such a head­line!

I’m talk­ing about the school cross­ing near the Wildlife Habi­tat on Port Dou­glas Rd, a dis­as­ter wait­ing to hap­pen.

Six months ago we took a photo of lead­ing fig­ures in the shire such as the mayor, the of­fi­cer in charge of the Port Dou­glas po­lice sta­tion and fed­eral MP War­ren Entsch, along with mem­bers of the par­ents and cit­i­zens com­mit­tee from the state school – all up at the cross­ing and ex­press­ing their view that it was a dan­ger­ous cross­ing.

It prob­a­bly wasn’t Mr Entsch’s fight re­ally, given it’s a state mat­ter.

The state dept of roads did make some mi­nor al­ter­ations to the cross­ing but nowhere near what’s needed of course – which is the fund­ing of “lol­lipop” traf­fic man­agers who will con­trol the cross­ing site and safely con­duct the kids, some of whom are re­ally young, across this busy and haz­ardous bit of road.

The em­bat­tled state MP for Cook has a duty and an op­por­tu­nity here.

The op­por­tu­nity, given all of his tra­vails, is to ac­tu­ally do some good by bring­ing his “bal­ance of power” clout to bear on the school cross­ing is­sue.

Al­ready he is way be­hind the run­ning on this mat­ter. In sim­i­lar in­stance down in Cairns, Mem­ber for Bar­ron Craig Crawford is out in front cam­paign­ing for a safer cross­ing for a school in Car­avon­ica. He’s de­mand­ing around $1.5 mil­lion for the fix.

This week was fas­ci­nat­ing to see Mr Gor­don’s role in the House, break­ing ranks to vote against the ALP over the pub lock­outs. And the elec­toral re­dis­tri­bu­tion bill was sched­uled for late last night – a rock and a hard place, that one.

Mr Gor­don could earn the head­line above if he just gets down to it – even if it’s purely for his own rea­sons. Talk to the Pre­mier, get a true and last­ing so­lu­tion to the safety of the cross­ing.

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