Residents in the Bungalow area are lucky to have a true community activist working for them - one who shuns the limelight, so we won't be mentioning names. Standing up for what's perceived as right for the community, we saw the arrest of this leader protesting the Yacht Club removal (unlike "phony" activists like Bryan Law, who swam like a beached dugong when the police approached). Lately working hard to organise a community garden in the wake of the successful Edmonton Community Garden project. In partnership with council and their community-garden policy, public-owned land that's been an eyesore was identified, and with Council and other permissions to use it this Bungalow group looked good to go. Then on the eve of the garden groundbreaking Gavin King stepped in and snatched it away from this community group. In what was by described by insiders as "badgering and pestering" of the Minister for Main Roads (who own this strip of land), King had the permissions for the community garden revoked so - get this - so that a business across the street with only street parking available could continue to use this public land for an illegal car park!
And while some of the businesses along Spence Street have, over the years, made written agreements to use this land for parking (and paid for the privilege), this "Pots & Ponds" has apparently not done so - instead using this site not just for customer parking, but the occasional shipping container that they drop there, and unload at their leisure. Nothing like the hypocrisy of a garden shop opposing a community garden!
Well actually, this is only one part of the hypocrisy in this story. This action amounts to another 180 degree shift of position by Gavin King. In a Cairns Post column he wrote just a mere 12 months before his election, he says in his lead "WOULDN'T IT BE FANTASTIC TO SEE COMMUNITY GARDENS IN CAIRNS?" He goes on to wax poetic about the joys of gardening, and the great community we'd have if only we'd all take up community gardens!
Sure it would Mr. Two-Face, but apparently not when a mate wants to continue to use this public land to park cars! King goes on to say "a quiet revolution of communal gardens across the Far North would be a step forward for our community". Wonder if Joh Bjelke Newman knows of King's "communal" tendencies? Sounds a little "red" to me, and I don't mean tomato.
But this isn't the only gift of public land from the LNP to business mates. There's the Jonsson Farm Market along the Cook Highway and Johnston Street. The building of this market in a gazetted industrial area was suspect from the beginning, with the then Development Manager (now acting CEO) issuing a Development Approval despite the fact that this market clearly did not meet the guidelines of the industrial-area zoning. With so little available industrial land adjacent to the airport, many questioned how this retail business could be allowed in this precinct. And the predicted parking and traffic disruptions have been onerous to the adjacent businesses.
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LNP MATES! MORE DOSH FOR YOU!
(The archiving of Gavin King's Cairns Post diatribes have been treasure trove since his election. Action by action, he contradicts himself so freely and so effortlessly it should be a snap for him to be unseated at the next election. He's a fraud - as the voluminous written record confirms)