Re­gions need equal­ity

Townsville Bulletin - - OPINION -

THERE are, un­for­tu­nately, many low acts car­ried out ev­ery day in this city.

Break and en­ters, car thefts, as­saults... it is a sober­ing list.

The po­lice will tell you they oc­cur more com­monly than any of us would like.

They are all ter­ri­ble crimes and are con­demned by all right- minded peo­ple.

But there is one wrong that hits a nerve with just about ev­ery­body: steal­ing from a char­ity.

That was graph­i­cally demon­strated over the past two days when Mount Louisa Red Rooster fran­chisee Michael Jones posted on Face­book a video of two fe­males steal­ing from the char­ity tin in his restau­rant.

“It’s very dis­ap­point­ing that peo­ple would stoop that low,’’ he told the

last night. The video sparked wide­spread out­rage and prompted the mother of one of the al­leged thieves to come for­ward.

She did the right thing by apol­o­gis­ing on the phone to Mr Jones for this low act and promis­ing that her daugh­ter would do the same, and also do­nate to the char­ity, The Cure Starts Now.

This cause raises funds for re­search into child­hood can­cers. You’d be hard- pressed to find a more wor­thy cause.

Per­haps there is a happy end­ing to this sor­did tale.

The pub­lic­ity this story has gen­er­ated may iron­i­cally prompt a spike in do­na­tions to The Cure Starts Now.

We’re happy to get the ball rolling with a $ 100 do­na­tion. THE lat­est fig­ures for driv­ers caught over the le­gal drink­ing limit or on drugs are cause for grave con­cern.

When will these id­iots get it into their thick heads that drunk or drug driv­ing can kill? A SOUTH­ERN news­pa­per re­ported ear­lier in the year that in to­tal, board mem­bers of the North­ern Aus­tralia In­fra­struc­ture Fa­cil­ity ( NAIF) had earned more than $ 500,000 a year de­spite the NAIF still not is­su­ing a cent to job- cre­at­ing projects.

Here is who and what the board gets paid as of March 10. Sharon War­bur­ton: $ 146,960; Bill Shan­non: $ 71,250; Justin Man­no­lini: $ 63,840; Sally Pitkin: $ 63,840; Karla Way- McPhail: $ 56,150; Khory McCormick: $ 56,150; Barry Coul­ter: $ 43,825; Chair­woman bonus: $ 34,000; Au­dit chair bonus: $ 15,370; Au­dit com­mit­tee bonus: $ 7960.

While this se­lect NAIF Board has been given jobs and big money to look at pos­si­bly, maybe, not sure yet, $ 5.4 bil­lion worth of loans, the State’s Deputy Pre­mier’s job is safe if she can build a $ 5.4 bil­lion tun­nel that is not needed un­til 2036.

One Na­tion has com­mit­ted to ax­ing the $ 5.4 bil­lion Cross River Rail in favour of water se­cu­rity and low­er­ing elec­tric­ity costs, done so, I must say, with­out the need of high paid ex­ec­u­tives.

One Na­tion state leader Steve Dick­son an­nounced last week more key state pol­icy that is not about tun­nels and grand­stand­ing, rather it was about water se­cu­rity and cheaper en­ergy.

At the time Steve put the ques­tion to the old party run Fed­eral Govern­ment to match our com­mit­ment. It may be that their state coun­ter­parts in Op­po­si­tion, who I hope agree, are still ap­ply­ing pres­sure.

To date there has been no such com­mit­ment.

I sup­port Steve Dick­son’s stance that the Fed­eral Govern­ment needs to match these com­mit­ments in­stead of pay­ing lip ser­vice to NAIF loans and the De­vel­op­ment of North­ern Aus­tralia. Queens­lan­ders are telling them that water and en­ergy have been ne­glected for too long now.

The sleepy old par­ties just don’t get it that by low­er­ing the cost of liv­ing, help­ing to in­crease savings for in­di­vid­u­als and in­creas­ing the state’s rev­enue, is the best way for govern­ment to as­sist every­one.

With the bal­ance of power in Queens­land af­ter the next election One Na­tion can keep the old par­ties fo­cused on the job at hand which is to first and fore­most de­liver ser­vices equally to the re­gions and the big cities.

SAM COX, One Na­tion can­di­date Bur­dekin.

JOB SE­CU­RITY: Jackie Trad is back­ing the $ 5.4 bil­lion Bris­bane tun­nel. Pic­ture: ADAM ARM­STRONG

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