Manning's position keeps shifting because he knows really bugger all about the issues, other than the misleading "save the port" cry. Misleading because the port isn't in any danger, and misleading because the same people pushing for dredging of the channel for more and larger cruise ships will need to park them at the port, in front of the Entertainment Precinct!
Currently there's only room for one cruise ship at the terminal, with light (meaning crane-less) loading and unloading of cargo in the balance of the area. This loading area will obviously need to shift up the inlet a few hundred meters to allow a second cruise ship access to the cruise ship terminal. Look at the port photo - we're protecting this "vital port area" for these pissant boats? Even HMAS Cairns pulls its ships further up the inlet, away from town. This is a city, not an industrial area.
The only thought-thru position on the port is coming from Cairns Ports and Mayor Schier. That's why the EP site isn't needed for cargo - it's needed for cruise liners! Community drum-beater, Elvis Ashwell, has claimed we could have two ships at once if we had the inlet dredged. This is why the cruise ship terminal was enlarged and reopened by Mayor Schier. This "critical port land" isn't for heavy industry, it's for expanding our cruise ship capabilities!
Even the odd man out, Unity Team "member" Richie Bates has already indicated he won't support Manning's position - whatever it is, we don't really know yet.
Manning grudgingly agreed that two of the options he suggested on Friday were bullshit. Can't build at Munro Martin Park, and can't go 2 years without a theater by tearing down the old one. He also again said we can build a satisfactory theater for $85M - $90M, the same cost as Kevin Byrne's council estimated some six years ago. There's no inflation in Bob Manning's fairy world, apparently. And this doesn't include a stick of parking.
After aurally pleasuring Manning, Cueball then called for a poll. To no one's surprise, Manning won. Keep in mind Kevin Byrne was winning these polls by huge margins prior to his shattering defeat four years ago. John MacKenzie has perfected the corrupt "Meaningless Hillbilly Poll".
This was followed with an apoplectic Ian Thomas, who was obviously livid that he's getting hammered in the useless poll. Thomas then started shoveling mud - saying Manning doesn't know what he's talking about, the party system is useless, Manning hasn't done his homework, and he, as a contractor, is the only one who can get the council out of signed contracts for the Entertainment Precinct. He also again made the statement that he can "easily cut $20M to $30M out of the council budget", but claims his plans are "secret" so they can't be stolen by his competitors.
There are widespread reports that Ian Thomas is deleting discussions and cutting off critics on his webpage and Facebook site. Ian's not coping well with the campaigning. . . and it hasn't even started yet!