From the edi­tor's desk

Whitsunday Times - - WHITSUNDAY NEWS AND VIEWS - Leanne Aber­nethy

FOR sev­eral months now, we have been reporting on the chaos at the Whit­sun­day Re­gional Coun­cil. Yes­ter­day, the chaos got worse.

Three coun­cil­lors walked out of the coun­cil meet­ing in Bowen de­mand­ing a meet­ing with the Min­is­ter for Lo­cal Govern­ment David Crisa­fulli.

The Min­is­ter says he will meet with them but he says they have to sort out their dif­fer­ences and get on with the job. He is right. The mayor Jennifer Whit­ney is cur­rently on an­nual leave but yes­ter­day’s meet­ing, which lasted about five min­utes, was not chaired by the Deputy Mayor Andrew Will­cox.

It was chaired in­stead by Cr Jan Clif­ford who was ap­pointed to take on this role by the mayor. Why do we have a Deputy Mayor if they are not in charge when the mayor is away?

It was a very un­usual move and even the Min­is­ter was sur­prised.

Some people don’t like to ad­mit that the coun­cil is di­vided but it is very ob­vi­ous – and it’s not good for the fu­ture of our re­gion. It was the three north­ern coun­cil­lors who walked out yes­ter­day.

It was a tac­ti­cal move to en­sure they get to speak to the Min­is­ter.

The coun­cil meet­ing had to be ad­journed be­cause there was no quo­rum.

Whether or not you sup­port Cr Whit­ney; whether you live in the south or the north; and whether or not you agree with what the coun­cil­lors did yes­ter­day to pre­vent the meet­ing from go­ing ahead – you must ad­mit that this is a coun­cil in trou­ble and some­thing needs to be done.

If they can’t have meet­ings then de­ci­sions can’t be made and that only leads to hold­ing this re­gion back.

We live in a beau­ti­ful part of the world and a great com­mu­nity. It’s an ab­so­lute shame that lo­cal govern­ment has got to this level. Now we just have to wait and see what hap­pens when the Min­is­ter meets the coun­cil­lors.

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