There’s plenty on his agenda

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS -

Coun­cil­lor David Carey was one of the ar­chi­tects of dea­mal­ga­ma­tion of Dou­glas Shire from Cairns, and he says that in the years since then he has been noth­ing but vin­di­cated in his ef­forts.

He said that prov­ing the Queens­land Trea­sury Cor­po­ra­tion’s “dire pre­dic­tions” about the vi­a­bil­ity of the Dou­glas Shire wrong was im­mensely sat­is­fy­ing.

David, who has been a coun­cil­lor since dea­mal­ga­ma­tion, is one of three coun­cil­lors to be car­ried over in the last elec­tion. He said they were well past teething prob­lems with a re-es­tab­lished coun­cil.

“I think this coun­cil is an im­prove­ment on the pre­vi­ous coun­cil. This coun­cil has got five in­di­vid­u­als that are more pre­pared to work to­gether and share ideas and ex­press dif­fer­ent points of view with­out get­com­mu­nity ting pre­cious about it.”

In the year since the elec­tion a lot of projects have been on the boil – plans, projects, hopes and dreams for a Shire of the fu­ture – and David said the re­cent ap­proval of fund­ing for the Flagstaff Hill Walk­ing Trail was some­thing he was very proud of, and nom­i­nated it as one of his projects.

“It’s an im­por­tant com­po­nent of the Port Dou­glas wa­ter­front mas­ter­plan, and it’ll be an iconic project for the coun­cil and for tourism.

“It’s long over­due- con­nect­ing Four Mile to Rex Smeal Park and tak­ing ad­van­tage of that view around the point there.

“Port Dou­glas is on a bit of a high now with things pro­gress­ing, in par­tic­u­lar the Ma­rina, the Sher­a­ton, and the coun­cil for its part is in­vest­ing in this as an im­por­tant project.”

He also nom­i­nated the plan­ning scheme as a ma­jor mile­stone for the coun­cil, but there was more work to do.

“The En­ter­tain­ment Precinct is in­cluded in the draft at this stage, although the pro­vi­sions in the draft are a bit weak.”

He would be push­ing for the coun­cil to take on board re­spon­si­bil­ity for noise man­age­ment in venues.

“I want to give that power back to the com­mu­nity and not have it gov­erned by the Liquor Li­cens­ing Com­mis­sion. That’s im­por­tant be­cause the then takes con­trol of en­ter­tain­ment and the man­age­ment of en­ter­tain­ment in Macrossan St.”

David stressed he didn’t want to cre­ate a ‘free-for-all’ though, and the com­mu­nity could have faith in the coun­cil to know what is ac­cept­able and what isn’t when it came to live en­ter­tain­ment.

“We have to be cog­nisant of the fact we are a tourist town, and peo­ple come here of all ages and in­ter­ests to not only ex­pe­ri­ence the en­vi­ron­ment and re­lax but to be en­ter­tained, and I think we’re fall­ing down in that area sig­nif­i­cantly at the mo­ment.”

David has plenty more on his agenda –from push­ing for­ward with a fea­si­bil­ity as­sess­ment on a Moss­man-Port Dou­glas tourist train, to more recog­ni­tion of in­dige­nous cul­ture and needs in the re­gion and more im­prove­ments to the coun­cil’s re­spon­sive­ness to com­mu­nity con­cerns.

There’s plenty of work ahead, and David said the slew of coun­cil plans adopted over the past 12 months is just part of set­ting the agenda for the fore­see­able fu­ture.

“Fail to plan, plan to fail … we need to be now look­ing to the fu­ture and what we want for our com­mu­nity. That’s where my head’s at.”

Pic­ture: SCOTT TIB­BALLS

Dou­glas Shire Coun­cil­lor David Carey

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