Our first election report card is out
LGAQ President Mark Jamieson today officially launched the Association’s first State Election report card, ranking the political parties on their commitment to Queensland’s local communities and stronger councils, including their commitment to the LGAQ State Election priorities which are designed to help councils create and support 29,000 jobs as well as generate $4.6 billion in economic activity. The report card can be found on the LGAQ’s official #voteforlocal campaign site, also launched by the President today. Voters can head to www.voteforlocal.com.au, type in their suburb, choose an issue that is important to them – and view a scorecard rating the parties based on their commitment to their council’s priorities. The LNP is ahead on the initial rankings. All parties have a lot of ground to make up with seven weeks to go until polling day. We look forward to seeing some strong commitments to local communities from all sides as we edge close to October 31.
On the road again
The LGAQ continues to make the most of eased travel restrictions as we fan out across the state delivering Elected Member Updates (EMU) and meeting with member councils. This week, the LGAQ’s Media Executive Sarah Vogler and I spent four days on the road from Mt Isa to Townsville visiting seven councils along the way. We covered 1000km and 10 hours in the car but by God it was well worth it. Nothing beats meeting with members in their patch to really understand their concerns and how the LGAQ can work to address them. “Vogie” volunteered early on in her LGAQ career to visit as many rural, remote and indigenous councils as she could to round out the knowledge of Queensland she gained during her newspaper journalism career, including while State Political Editor of The Courier Mail. After trips to the Gulf, Cape, Central West and now North West she is fast ticking that box. Of course she and I were not the only LGAQ staff on the road this week with teams of EMU educators holding sessions with councils in various parts of the state including Hinchinbrook and Woorabinda. The EMU teams, led by Assist General Manager Glen Beckett, have now spent the last seven weeks delivering updates, this week reaching the halfway mark of the program. These trips and EMU sessions are conducted with COVID-19 safety in mind.
COVID safety a priority for Annual Conference
COVID-19 safety is also front of mind as we approach the LGAQ’s Annual Conference on the Gold Coast from October 19 to 21. As I have said in my video and written messages, those attending this year’s AGM will be subject to the most stringent personal safety measures. The Gold Coast Convention Centre have a strict, enforceable COVID-Safe plan in place. Overall conference attendance is limited to 500 and we have hired double the normal space for the plenary to ensure appropriate social distancing is enforced. Lunches will be a sit-down affair, individual room numbers will be counted, and temperature testing will be on hand. You name it, we are doing it. Your health and wellbeing while attending the conference is our primary concern.
Mutual Access Agreement signed
The Local Government Association of Queensland and the Queensland Parliament have officially entered into an agreement to give councils better access to Government on behalf of their communities. The Mutual Access Agreement (the Agreement), signed by Speaker of the Queensland Parliament, the Hon Curtis Pitt and myself yesterday on the final sitting day of the term, will allow councils to access facilities at the Queensland Parliament for meetings with State Government decision makers. The Agreement will also allow Members of Parliament to utilise facilities of participating councils to meet with constituents. Councils now have the opportunity to opt in with more information on the agreement to come your way next week.