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Get Rid Of Graham Quirk – Open Letter To Brisbane Residents

Brisbane Residents, It’s Time For Quirk To Leave The BCC House…….

When my wife and I moved back to Brisbane, we were so excited to come back to our ‘city with a country feel’, where people talked to each other and where decisions were made locally to meet the needs of the locals. We were wrong. The BCC, with Quirk at the helm has done its best to quash our lovely city with traffic congestion, inadequate public transport, developments going up left, right and centre with little or no thought to the communities who live there. Some of my old stomping grounds are a mess now with no parking (once you can get through the overcrowded streets!) Something needs to change.

To everyone who is voting in Brisbane, I urge you that this is the most important election in decades, and I urge you not to vote for Quirk.

As I sit here in my lounge room and I wonder what Quirk has done in the last 4 years for Brisbane, I can’t think of a thing that has improved this city or managed its growing pains. On other hand we have had 2 children in that time – so my wife and I have been busy! But I look at Brisbane now and imagine what an extra 200,000 people in the next 4 years is going to do to this city if we continue in this reckless manner, and I am genuinely concerned. As a young kid my Dad told me to vote Labor, I said why and he said, “Because they look after the workers and families – you’ll always be better with Labor,” – so I did for a while. Then I voted LNP because I thought they had a better grip on what is happening in Australia. For a few years I voted for the Greens because I didn’t want to give my vote to either main party. So, I don’t want you to think that this article is political, it isn’t, it’s about the choices we have now for the future of Brisbane and the right person regardless of party!

I don’t believe he has achieved anything of merit for the people of Brisbane in his current term. I don’t believe that Quirk will change his spots and address the needs of the Brisbane community if re-elected. I don’t believe that he is equipped to guide Brisbane into the future with the significant growth forecasted.

I do believe that if re-elected, that the status quo will be maintained, for a short while, thanks to significant funding from rate rises, asset sales and closed-door development approvals – history repeats itself. This is not good enough for you, for me or for my community.

In my research I found a few things I was not aware of, and I thought you might like to be fully informed before going to the polls:

  • Quirk uses over $18m a year of your money on brochures to let us know that he has done nothing. That’s $76 million in 4 years – don’t you think that could be better spent?!
  • Quirk’s BCC has a debt to the tune of $1.7 Billion. Now, I know that most of us think, yeah we would expect BCC to have some debt. So, what’s the issue? In order for the Council to do major works that we need for a growing Brisbane, it’s likely that we will have to borrow lots of money due to its current debt position of $1.7 billion. Quirk is talking about a transport plan of over $1.2 billion. What this means is he will have to borrow over $600 million. That means that your rates will have to go up at least 6 – 8% to cover that expense; that’s an average of  (n) per household to pay for it. Even the RACQ have said that this single lane transit plan will be totally ineffective and therefore Brisbane residents will have to foot the bill to remedy it!

I have looked at the options. The Labor party has come up with a light rail plan that’s about $1.2 billion. Is this a better plan – it’s around the same money? I have not looked into detail of the bottle neck solutions but Harding has been clever from a debt point of view as he has used a precedence for what the Gold Coast City council has done and paid 10% of the cost and the State and Federal Government has put the bill for the rest – so this is a better result for all of us from a rates point of view and still getting infrastructure. Under Harding’s plan they will not have to borrow any money so our rates can maintain their current rate. Will it work? I don’t know and I don’t think either party has explained in enough detail how this transport plan will help us, but already it seems like a more community-responsive and proactive plan.

In relation to Quirk’s $650 million plan for Kingsford Smith Drive (paused for now),Harding has said that he could use that same amount on fixing the traffic bottlenecks in a heap more suburbs than just one area – I tend to agree. The flow-on effect from Quirk’s plan would be paralysing from day 1: imagine 4 – 6 years of development and trying to get to the airport or just onto the gateway and it taking hours. Forget about trying to take public transport as the network is hopeless and the train stations don’t have enough parks – so you can’t catch the train – what a mess! Imagine on world scale that we have tourists coming in and they take hours to get to the city because of the road works, imagine where all of that traffic has got to be rerouted to – Gympie / Lutwyche Road is already over capacity, Gateway already a disaster if there is an accident. That plan is a disaster waiting to happen. I think I’ll go with Harding on that one.

In regards to Quirk – he has a lot to answer for with the land sale debacle. In case you missed it, he was trying to sell a block of land to a LNP donator. I then read in the Courier Mail that he is using the same developer’s cars to promote his election. What else is he hiding that he is not telling us? Money first and the community of Brisbane second– that’s not a council I want to support.

Quirk is tired, out of ideas and I don’t expect any changes from him. It’s time for a change for Brisbane. We need a candidate who can manage the needs of people of Brisbane now and in the future. Who can manage our finances, our environment and our community responsibly? No more handing over your rates payments each quarter and getting nothing in return but a shiny brochure from some man in an ivory tower.

I’m giving Harding a go. I like his track record, he has a solid plan and he has the right energy and focus to get Brisbane back on track. I’m not asking you to vote for him, just please do not vote for Quirk make your vote count on a candidate that you believe will do the right thing for Brisbane – don’t let someone who has failed, get another 4 years to do nothing because we can’t afford that and as Brisbane resident you deserve so much better!

More than any other time you need to contact your candidate through Twitter, Facebook, email, phone or whatever it takes and demand that they give you a better deal on rates that they fix what is wrong with your suburb and get their commitment for you to vote for them. You need to make sure that they deserve your vote more than ever.

The latest Galaxy poll from the Courier Mail on page 16 on Saturday has Harding at 38%, Pennings at 9%, Other at 3% and Quirk at 50%.  On a two party preferred basis Harding is 47% and Quirk is 53%.

On the Courier Mail’s own poll at 7:37pm on the 6th of March here are the stats:

Harding 51.15%

Quirk 43.83%

Pennings 4.3%

Hodges 0.24%

Boele 0.24%

Eldridge 0.16%

Wirth 0.08%

You need to make difference and make Quirk go away – vote for a better candidate today!





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