Public meetings to hold Council to account
THE Bowen-based Whitsunday Regional Residents Association (WRRA) has called a series of public meetings to discuss Whitsunday Regional Council’s performance.
WRRA president Ross Newell said the association’s recently launched petition, calling for an administrator to be appointed to Council, had received an exceptional level of community support and would continue to run for some time yet.
He said Council’s financial accountability continued to be questioned, with the WRRA repeating its calls for Council to renegotiate the Queensland Treasury loans and lose the recently imposed levy.
Mr Newell also said his association felt the mayor’s “blame game” had reached an unprecedented low.
“The motion by Council to investigate legal action against those involved in the production of the 20112012 audited financials, pre-empting the outcome of the CMC investiga- tion, is nothing short of farcical,” Mr Newell said.
“Mayor Whitney must have forgotten that she was part of that Council that accepted these audited financials and that the Council’s audit committee approved these financials in the first place.”
However, Whitsunday mayor Jennifer Whitney has remained steadfast in her resolve that those responsible for the financial woes of both Council and the community should definitely be held to account.
“At the end of the day our community wants closure... and even if we don’t re-coup the money they want to know who’s responsible and I think Council’s got a duty to try and provide that information to them,” she said.
As for the petition, Cr Whitney advised residents to think very carefully before signing.
“And if it’s about bringing about administration, do a little bit of research and find out what that will mean to each and everyone,” she said.
Cr Whitney said Council had tried on numerous occasions to answer questions posed by the WRRA. “But they will not let us,” she said. The WRRA’s first meeting will be held at Bowen’s McKenna Hall on Monday February 24 at 5.30pm, with further meetings planned for Proserpine, Airlie Beach and Collinsville, at dates, times and venues not yet announced.