Green looks to restore ‘voice’ through a Noosa Shire council
COUNCILLOR Russell Green told a Cooroy de-amalgamation debate on Tuesday that under amalgamation Noosa had lost its ability to voice its concerns to local councillors.
Cr Green, who intends to run for mayor if the de-amalgamation vote gets up, said councillors no longer had the time to "move into our community when we buy our paper of a morning to have time to have a conversation" and find out what voters really want.
"We've got this incredible roll- up of people here. They've got this strong, committed passion to get back to having that conversation," Cr Green said.
"In an amalgamated council - work as hard as professional staff do, work as hard as our councillors do - those opportunities have been lost."
As for the official cost claims associated with de-amalgamation, Cr Green said the boundaries commissioner's report data could be interpreted in four or five ways.
He said the Queensland Treasury Corporation had just six weeks to put together the costings for five areas that wanted to de-amalgamate, including Noosa Council, whereas the costings for the handover of water services from council to Unitywater had taken nine months.
"All those (Noosa) localities will be electing people to make those (spending) decisions as we drive our region forward."
He believed the Noosa hinterland would not lose out on a voice in an interim council that had no local area divisions and that the next 2016 council could choose to reintroduce divisions.
"The representation that this community... Noosa region... may receive as we move forward is going to be strong and diverse, because look at the people who are here this evening. We have people who are not only Cooroy residents, we have people from the coast, we have people from other parts of the hinterland," he said.
Cr Green said the major projects claimed to have been delivered by the regional council in Noosa such as the Noosa Transit Centre and the Girraween Sports Complex, were delivered by a five-year capital works program put together and partly funded via the Noosa Council prior to amalgamation with the aid of state funding and asset sales.
Read the Noosa News on Tuesday for Cr Green's argument about how a new Noosa council will deal with the Coast council.