Cr Mick Curran
Cr Mick Curran Tanya Easterby

Petersen and Curran reject any conflict of interest

AS TENSIONS over the flood levee heightened in the council chambers yesterday, Cr Ian Petersen and Cr Mick Curran both moved to refute any perceived conflicts of interest.

Cr Curran's sister operates a business in Mary St and Cr Petersen is deputy chairman of the board of the Gympie Friendly Society Inc.

"It has been brought to my attention that due to my perceived conflict of interest statement at the previous general meeting in relation to flood mitigation options, I would like the minutes to reflect I was unaware of a possible perceived conflict at the time of the general meeting on 31st July, 2013... due to a sister's circumstances," Cr Curran said.

"I therefore declare I may have had a perceived conflict of interest in that matter, as defined by Sect. 173 of the Local Govt Act 2009 due to my sister's circumstances. I would have determined that this perceived personal interest was not of sufficient significance that it would have lead me to making a decision on this matter that would have been contrary to the public interest. I honestly believe that by having participating in that meeting that I was well placed to best perform my responsibility of serving the overall public interest of the whole of council's area by participating in this discussing and having voted on the matter."

Cr Petersen said: "(Friendly Society's) core business is a pharmacy which is well above the protect area. Neither is any opposition pharmacy situated in that area. We also operate a disability aids outlet in the subject area but the occupancy of that shop is of a very temporary nature on a month-to-month tenancy basis.

"With plans well in progress for the construction of new premises in Channon St, the business will be long gone before any levee is in place.

"Despite the fact that I have neither a material personal interest nor a conflict of interest, for the sake of transparency I wish to have my position placed on the record."