Much like a black hole, when it comes to the Rattler information seems to go in never to return.
Much like a black hole, when it comes to the Rattler information seems to go in never to return.

Gympie ratepayers' faith not being earned by Rattler review

IT'S amazing what can happen in a year.

Australia was whipped by devastating fires and floods. Only one prime minister was knifed, a new record.

And, phenomenally, scientists photographed a black hole 26,000 light years away.

Of course, one can argue they could've achieved the same result much closer by snapping a pic of the council's Rattler process.

To be clear, that's not criticism of the train, volunteers or the service itself, which sounds very enjoyable.

Work on the Rattler's Deep Creek bridge.
Work on the Rattler's Deep Creek bridge. Scott Kovacevic

It's just a lot of things disappear into the project never to be seen again.

Call it an information event horizon.

Let's start with the blowouts and delays. Why did they happen? We don't know.

We do know there is a possible legal issue at play - but to be perfectly blunt we knew that at least 15 months ago, so our knowledge has moved a grand total of zero feet forwards.

Rattler's First Run - Saturday October 6, 2018.
The Rattler in action - not to be confused with the Rattler review's inaction. Donna Jones

We also know there's a review under way into the train's rebirthing issues.

But we don't know when it'll appear; only that in one month the $25,000 report will have been delayed longer than an $18.1million train was.

One can't help but wonder why July 2018 was ever promised as a delivery date given the work is, as per the council, "inherently linked and subservient” to that legal issue.

With this track record we should be grateful the council doesn't run a "30minutes or it's free” pizza joint, but then I guess at least the poor would never go hungry - provided one enjoys year-old pizza, that is.

Autumn pizza.
Pizza.

We also know Aurizon disputes its council-advertised involvement in the project.

But we don't know to what extent councillors or council were told that involvement would be before they signed off on the work.

Of course, we are told often the Rattler is steaming along glowingly. I hope it is, and it'd be great to have financial proof of that.

Mary Valley Rattler C17 974 and heritage carriages from the air.
The Rattler steams across Deep Creek..

Unfortunately, the charity's government-required financial reports are AWOL. This at least is being looked into.

It seems all we do know is how little we actually know.

So can you blame the community if they do lack, as per the council's own words, "confidence in the way council manages future projects”?