Division 4 has a varied mix of residents, from more upscale areas of Bayview Heights to large areas of social housing and elderly residential housing. While mostly an older area of the city, this division requires a councillor with good "on the ground" skills with people who quite often are hesitant or unknowledgable on how to access council resources.
This is the Division that Kirstin Lesina resigned to run for state MP. Lesina was often criticised by residents of this division for her lack of attention and "people skills". This would be supported by the polling results in the state election - Lesina did the worst at booths in her own council division, where one would normally expect a "home team" advantage. In one case, polling only 21%. With this good knowledge of what the voters found lacking in Lesina we went on a search for a candidate to properly represent this division.
Many know candidate Matt Bolton only with a big phony snake head attached. As the Cairns Taipans mascot and marketing assistant. However we've come to view his candidacy as a joke, or a lark. Bolton isn't interested in either "talking policies" or "self-promoting". As a result the community knows little about him and would be taking an enormous risk electing him. The CRC is the major business in Cairns that needs committed professionals involved, not some guy in a costume.
Speaking of snakes, Terry James is Kevin Byrne's "man on the ground" in Cairns. No thanks.
Sam Marino is an apt businessman from a family with a long history in Cairns. He's got solid retail experience, running a lighting company as well as the popular "Loot" stores. Some of his views are known to be in conflict with team leader Marge Cochrane which we regard as a plus. However he hasn't responded to queries about his directorships on various family businesses, which could easily pose a conflict on development projects in the city. He would have been a great candidate for Division 5, which includes the CBD, but we can't support him in Division 4 where so much of the population is people at the bottom of the economic ladder.
We therefore give Nick Thompson the nod for Division 4. A division of this type benefits strongly from a councillor with such a depth of experience in a community with this kind of profile. Thompson has been working with the community for several years, and his campaigning for this seat is just an extension of his already good rapport with the community.
Residents are entitled to select the representation that is best positioned and capable to understand their needs and deliver on them.