The numbers do count
IN August last year there was a public meeting at Stanthorpe’s Sullivan Oval where 200 people passed a vote of no confidence in the Southern Downs CEO and mayor.
In her TV interview straight after the meeting the mayor famously said “I don’t know what it means”.
A week after the meeting she wrote to the meeting organisers saying attendees only represented 0.8% of ratepayers and 0.4% of residents and, as such, didn’t represent the “whole community”.
Oh dear, madame mayor, what a misjudgement. If 20,000 people rallied in King George Square would the Premier dismiss it as just 0.4% of Queensland residents?
Those 200 people were the vanguard and council should have listened to their concerns and built some bridges.
In May 2018 some 6000-plus people signed a petition to support de-amalgamation.
I didn’t see any reports from the mayor saying this was just 17% of residents.
When people rallied at CF White Oval to support de-amalgamation, I didn’t see reports saying this was just 3.5% of residents.
When the Granite Belt Community Association raised more than $62,000 to do a professional study into de-amalgamation I didn’t hear anyone from council commenting that it was nearly $2 from every resident or $4 from every ratepayer in the Southern Downs.
In all likelihood, the money was probably drawn from just the one-third of the population which lives south of the rabbit fence, so more like $6 and $12 a person. Numbers matter. Especially for politicians. The State Government has read the water correctly and is taking de-amalgamation seriously.
Will the newspaper canvass councillors for their thoughts? Because the silence is deafening.
Will the mayor’s legacy be a split shire?
Will we remember Mayor Dobie as the mayor who lost Stanthorpe?
Aerial shots of a public de-amalgamation rally earlier in the year.