A push by Goomeri grazier John Cotter to get Gympie Regional council to scrap divisions for the next election ended after no councillors supported opening the idea up to public consultation.
A push by Goomeri grazier John Cotter to get Gympie Regional council to scrap divisions for the next election ended after no councillors supported opening the idea up to public consultation. The Gympie Times

Gympie's division debate over, some changes on the cards

GYMPIE'S electorate is to remain divided into pieces of eight after a notified motion seeking to open public consultation did not garner any support.

The motion, brought by Councillor Mal Gear and left on the table at the Gympie Regional Council meeting on November 28, was left to lapse at last week's meeting after the cost of a public survey was revealed.

To canvass 1000 residents would cost $14,000-$16,000, council staff said, while a mail-out survey to every resident would cost about $40,000-$50,000.

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Staff said further advice from the Law, Justice and Safety committee - which was also recommended when the last survey was done in 2011 - was that electorates with more than 30,000 voters should be divided.

Gympie Regional Council Division 4
Gympie Regional Council Division 4 in 2016. it could have new boundaries in 2020. Electoral Commission of Queensla

Cr Gear said he would be "happy” to cancel it with these details in mind, but as this was not possible councillors instead let the motion lapse.

The decision does not mean everything will stay the same, though. The growing Divisions 4 and 7 could be in for a redraw.

Gympie Regional Council Division 7
Gympie Regional Council Division 7 in 2016. Like Division 4, it could also have newly redrawn boundaries thanks to growth. Electoral Commissionof Queenslan

At end of October, Division 4 was 114 voters short of the lower limit of 4114-5028 voters allowed, while Division 7 was only six voters away from breaking the upper barrier.