Council attack shows Newman ‘is on way out’

THE Premier's extraordinary attacks on Sunshine Coast and Gympie councils were part of deliberate strategy typical of state governments in the twilight of their electoral cycles, Palmer United Party parliamentary leader Dr Alex Douglas claimed yesterday.

"Campbell Newman is only two years into his first term with a massive parliamentary majority and he is already blaming the councils - the Sunshine Coast Council is his main target at present,'' Dr Douglas said.

"He is quiet on the Federal Government for fear of antagonising Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey and the Liberal Party who may cut the state grants to Queensland in the forthcoming Budget.

"These contribute over 45% of Queensland state income revenue. It is no doubt it will not be long before the Federal Government, too, are threatened by Premier Campbell Newman.

"If the normal pattern is that this usually occurs at the end of the governance cycle is true, then Campbell Newman has used up all his lifelines, phone-a-friend or acts of charity.

"Probably it is just as well. After fighting all the professions and threatening anyone who stands up to him - who else is left?"

Dr Douglas said councils were not to blame for infrastructure failings in Queensland. He said their revenues had been severely affected by years of declining state assistance.

"This infrastructure gap is the responsibility of the tired LNP State Government,'' he said.

"Premier Campbell Newman, as a former Brisbane City Council mayor, knows it full well. His claims are hypocritical."

The Premier claimed this week he could not provide Sunshine Coast Council with assistance if he did not get a clear message about what the community wanted.

He and Local Government Minister David Crisafuli have taken shots at Gympie Council claiming it has failed to provide a flood-proofing solution.

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