There’s plenty on his agenda
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.”
Douglas Shire Councillor David Carey