OPINION: I'm not sure Hartwig did himself any favours
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Candidates need to reveal 'meat and bones'
IT'S A sad situation when Cr Glen Hartwig feels the need to explain, chapter and verse, what led to him leaving the police force and it does nothing for the credibility of those, whoever they are, who apparently drove him to it.
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Cr Hartwig's time in council has demonstrated that he's one of few there who are forthright enough to speak out when he sees wrong and as that record speaks for itself.
I'm not sure that he did himself any favours by taking the bait and making it personal to the degree he did.
I know we live in a society enthralled by and prone to "victimhood” - to me it's one of the worst elements of our media and society in general and personally I'd prefer anybody who seeks a leadership role give it a miss.
What I found most interesting in Cr Hartwig's comments was his mention of having a vision for our area and that he intends to create "jobs, jobs, and more jobs” , with no clues yet as to how he intends to do that, or what his vision is.
The only other so-far confirmed candidate for the Mayoral position, Tim Jerome, reckoned in his announcing his running that he's going to make Gympie the city (town really) which serves a thriving agricultural sector, as it once did, and that under him small business will grow and prosper, but he also gives no clues as to how.
Such broad statements are essentially meaningless and tend to show a lack of facing up to modern realities and the changes we not only face but those we're already victims of.
Locally many have been sucked into the mantras of being against "the elites” while completely ignoring that every community has its own such "elites” who, at a smaller level, help themselves more than they help the majority, just as "elites” everywhere do.
There's a strong tendency locally to blame any others too, the easy targets who are of a different colour, religion or social class, all habits which are commonly, but poorly, denied while often practised in reality.
I don't believe in victimhood as a starting point, or as anything other than a cop out. I don't believe in just saying "jobs, jobs, jobs” or in pretending that the past can be revisited.
Without any meat on the bones they chuck out for voters I'm yet to hear or read anything that really suggests either mayoral candidate offers anything other than a dislike of everything council now.
I don't much like council now but will need some convincing to support those who make only vague and hollow general comments of vision when none has been explained, so far.
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We Don't Want To Be A Mecca For Motorbikes
I'VE been considering last week's article which supported Gympie council 's planning amendment proposal to allow two motorcycling events a year anywhere, any time in the shire within a rural zone.
Despite the stated constraints it appears there will be no requirement to seek approval from or even to notify council of such events, council will undertake no investigation of the location's suitability, whether access roads are safe for increased traffic numbers, or whether danger from bushfire and flooding will be exacerbated; the rural amenity of neighbours will certainly be greatly disturbed, but that doesn't appear to be of great concern to the people who proposed this amendment.
Councillors will be abrogating their responsibility to protect the safety and amenity of their constituents if they support such an amendment.
On my gravel dead-end road there are 26 rural blocks, on the lead-in road there are nine; that's a total of 35 in the immediate vicinity.
Potentially, they could all host events - that's 70 events a year.
Realistically, not everyone would want to, but what if half the population decided it was a good idea? That's 35 events; again, that's probably more than would occur - but what if, say 5-10 blocks were involved and 10-20 events were held per year in our small neighbourhood?
What a nightmare scenario that would be - and it wouldn't only happen here, it could be shire wide.
Council surveys over the past 10 years have consistently found the majority of residents in, and visitors to, our rural areas highly value their peace and natural beauty, how can it imagine allowing unregulated use of land for what are officially designated 'noisy and hard to locate sports' is a rational proposal?
All rural zones will be affected by the proposal and could turn our region into a 'mecca' for noisy motorcycle sports.
If anyone reading hates the idea, council's submission process closes on August 2.