Forum put it out there
DOUGLAS Shire Council should be commended for instigating its business forum, held in Port Douglas last week.
The ballroom at the QT Resort was packed, testament of course to the interest in the event and the fact that it was timely, as confidence in the area grows and there are plenty of economic songbirds singing at the moment – they just might add up to an economic spring or summer.
The consistent theme was the need for collaboration – between business and council, and the businesses among themselves. Join the chamber of commerce, was a passionate cry.
And they’re right. A unified voice of course is much stronger than many disparate ones. I read a federal politician the other day who said infrastructure for the Far North would not be delivered until the region made it perfectly clear what the vision was and demanded action.
The state of the nbn here is a perfect and pressing example of the infrastructure failings of the region.
It’s getting here too slowly and we need to be unified in our opinion and stating it. It’s collaboration time again. Other speakers extolled the environmental values and uniqueness of our region. Again it raises the question of how to develop, so that the economy ticks over, without ruining the very thing we live here for and the tourists come to experience. Ross Garnaut painted a picture of sugar and tourism making a magic formula for success, with energy at the core.
In line with that, the mayor reminded everyone that the draft town plan is with the state government and the time will come when public discussion and feedback will be called for.
I gather the idea is to hold the forum again in 12 months. The test of this one will be to recognise what’s changed between now and then.