Open letter to Gympie Mayor Mick Curran
Open letter to Gympie Mayor Mick Curran

Gympie businesses fear retribution for criticising council

A FULL PAGE OPEN LETTER HAS BEEN PUBLISHED IN THE GYMPIE TIMES TODAY AS A PAID ADVERTISEMENT. IT HAS BEEN WRITTEN BY A GROUP OF LOCAL BUSINESS PEOPLE WHO SAY THEY WANT TO REMAIN ANONYMOUS IN THEIR CRITICISMS OF THE COUNCIL FOR FEAR OF RETRIBUTION

Dear Mr Mayor,

We were at the Economic Development Meeting held June 12, 2019.

From memory there was approximately 120 business people there, and roughly we would say 90 per cent have stated that the Planning and Development section of the council, Mr Mayor, is a major problem for existing business and new business coming to this Shire.

Open letter to Gympie Mayor Mick Curran
Open letter to Gympie Mayor Mick Curran

And your attempted response was in The Gympie Times, June 19, 2019.

Quite frankly, we are not interested in what workshops your staff get sent to, common sense is free.

This shire was not built on a train and it won't survive on a train.

Gympie five ways  town hall
Town Hall, where council meetings take place.

Make this shire attractive for industry to want to come here, listen to them, work with them, not against them, and that is what is happening within your Planning Department right now.

We are not stupid people, we know how to run our businesses, some of us have been doing it for 50 years + unlike your Planning Department gurus. I would lay odds on that a high percentage of the people in the Planning Department have never run a business in their life.

We have established businesses in this Shire that are going through absolute hell at the moment all because of one of your Departments, and I'm sure you know who we are talking about.

We know of new businesses that wanted to come to this Shire, and establish themselves, they have approached the Planning Department to talk through their ideas and plans and just walk away shaking their heads in pure frustration, where did they go?

Up the highway to the next shire.

Gympie Regional Council CEO Bernard Smith and Mayor Mick Curran at the budget meeting.
Gympie Regional Council CEO Bernard Smith and Mayor Mick Curran Phil Coquerand

Mayor Curran, we gave you a job nearly four years ago to take our Shire forward, economic growth etc, we didn't vote in the CEO, Director of Planning or any other department head for that matter, we trusted you to do your job.

Council is a business, it needs to be run as a business, and last time we looked you were "head honcho” in charge of this business, but certain people within your council seem to have their own agenda.

Do you even know what goes on in these departments?

Gympie Council CEO Bernard Smith and Mayor Mick Curran. Gympie Regional Council
Gympie Council CEO Bernard Smith and Mayor Mick Curran. Renee Albrecht

We'll explain it to you again, you encourage business in this community to expand and grow, they employ people, our youth get jobs, hopefully apprenticeships, these people stay on in the Shire, build homes, buy furniture, send their kids to our schools etc, wages get channelled back into the community every week or fortnight.

Councilor Dan Stewart at the Chambers. Gympie Regional Council
Councillor Dan Stewart and other councillors. Renee Albrecht

It's not rocket science Mick, but you need to understand what is happening in your Planning Department, because frankly they are running the show, and not in a good way and it is hurting this town immensely.

Get out and talk to the business community, not just the ones that employ over 100 people, go to the Mums and Dads business, they matter just as much as the bigger businesses.

Go for a drive to our industrial estates, Mary Street, and don't forget our smaller towns of this Shire, they matter too, talk and more important LISTEN to them and act on it, because it's not happening now.

Gympie Regional Council mayor Mick Curran said they're doing their best to help with the clean up.
Gympie Regional Council Mayor Mick Curran Philippe Coquerand

In all your time as Mayor, majority in the business community have never had you walk in their front door, and ask them "how is it going, can we help you in any way”?

It's not hard, but be prepared for their frustration and negative feedback against your council, are you up for the challenge?

We are a group of businesses in this town, basically we have had enough, our comments and views won't be appreciated by this council, as such we will not reveal our names in fear of retribution by Council.

A GROUP OF GYMPIE BUSINESS OWNERS