Fines more about dol­lars than sense

Townsville Bulletin - - Voice Of The North -

EV­ERY­ONE who re­ceived park­ing tick­ets dur­ing Satur­day night’s Nitro Cir­cus should feel ag­grieved. This pa­per staunchly de­fends law and or­der and sup­ports our po­lice by pub­lish­ing in­ci­dents which need the pub­lic’s help. But this case of fin­ing peo­ple for il­le­gal park­ing smacks of bla­tant rev­enue rais­ing and ques­tion­able man­age­ment of po­lice re­sources. The ev­i­dence of this can be seen in traf­fic cops fran­ti­cally call­ing for ‘‘ re­in­force­ments’’ to make sure they is­sued as many fines as pos­si­ble. If the po­lice were in a riot sit­u­a­tion or felt threat­ened, that would war­rant the need for backup, not merely hand­ing out park­ing fines. The fact po­lice re­sources were pulled off ac­tive duty to hand out fines must also be ques­tioned. Even if they weren’t busy, surely po­lice could be bet­ter used mak­ing our parks and Strand safe or pa­trolling for hoons. This would be far more ben­e­fi­cial – al­beit not as lu­cra­tive – for our city. Those who park across peo­ple’s drive­ways or whose park­ing im­pedes traf­fic should be fined or have their cars towed, but if authorities are se­ri­ous about en­forc­ing park­ing re­stric­tions more so than mak­ing money, they should make the fine $ 4000. Then no-one would park il­le­gally ... and the coun­cil would miss out on mil­lions of dol­lars in rev­enue. The same could be said for all fines which seek to raise money rather than try to stamp out cer­tain be­hav­iours. Would any­one drink-drive or steal a car if the penalty was $ 20,000 or manda­tory jail? No. But the gov­ern­ments would be broke. Iron­i­cally, it seems our ad­min­is­tra­tors not only want us to break the law but they need us to in or­der to bal­ance the books. Deal­ing with park­ing is­sues this way is rev­enue rais­ing, plain and sim­ple, not to men­tion a kick in the guts to those who sup­ported a lo­cal event.

Solid ba­sics are the key

THE Cow­boys went a long way to restor­ing their fans’ faith last night in what hope­fully is a sign of things to come. Af­ter be­ing em­bar­rassed by New­cas­tle last week­end, an­other home loss last night would have been a sav­age blow for sup­port­ers. What the Cow­boys did wasn’t spec­tac­u­lar and nor was it fancy. That win was built on the ba­sics. Solid, sti­fling and dis­ci­plined de­fence, in­tel­li­gent at­tack­ing and, above all, ball con­trol. It’s been said time and again that teams which com­plete the most sets win more games. There is no doubt the Cow­boys were un­der­dogs last night but they showed that beat­ing the top teams isn’t so much about pulling off freak plays as it is do­ing the lit­tle things right. If Matty Bowen, Ash Graham and Johnathan Thurston keep fin­ish­ing off the for­wards’ strong work, the Cow­boys will win many more.

Dear letter writers

Let­ters to the edi­tor must in­clude your full name, ad­dress and day­time tele­phone num­ber. Names will be with­held only un­der ex­cep­tional cir­cum­stances or at the edi­tor’s dis­cre­tion. Pref­er­ence will be given to emailed let­ters of less than 350 words.

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