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The Magpie

Saturday, June 29th, 2024   |   415 comments

As Political Suicide Notes Go, At Least TCC’s Was Brief: ‘We Will Introduce Paid Parking On The Strand’

The city’s budget was a long time in the making, so it’s clear that Jenny Hill had a strong hand in it, but now with her ,malignant presence no longer spooking them, what excuse do the new councillors have for not opposing one of the most uncalled for measures imagainable … parking meters on The Strand.  The petition opposing this lofty arrogance is already on the go with over 7000 signatures it in first 72 hours. You can click and sign below.

On the rates themselves, we have two startling insights on the actual size of the annual  ratepayer  pineapple for the coming financial year … and it’s not anything like the selective official version which is spun harder than the fairy floss at this week’s Townsville show.  Acting mayor Paul Jacob calls ‘a bold budget’ … but a more familiar B word would be appropriate.  We are due  transparency from the council by right, but aren’t getting it.  Allow The Magpie to offer the findings of an informed couple of folks – one who says he is a council insider and certainly seems to be  –  who tell you the facts that the council buries.

Our bludging exiled mayor Sir Blogalot TwoNames Thompson has spent the week showing us that Townsville needs him as mayor as much as Dolly Parton needs air bags in her car.

The alleged Bulletin is up to its alleged tricks again, allegedly telling us to doubt what we can allegedly actually see – allegedly.  The latest from the Ninnyville  Daily.

And was there a debate in the US during the week? It’s debatable.  But that embarrassing all-round fumblefest brought closer a forecast The Magpie made four years ago, and so The ‘Pie offers his advance congratulations to the first female president of the United States.

The Nest keeps on keeping on, but it never get any easier meeting costs, so if you can lend a helping hand, it would be genuinely appreciated.  The button to click for donations is at the bottom of the blog

From Barking Mad To Parking Mad

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Paid parking on The Strand. What a money spinning bright idea, eh?

Talk about a tin ear for the prevailing public sentiment.  And that of business organisations. And of local residents who now face streets clogged with Strand visitors vehicles. And families and young folk having a picnic or a healthy walk (thousands do).

The neverending wackiness of Walker Street was in full swing during budget week, but it was rarely funny.

With a droning background static of  Troy Thompson’s  demented caterwauling  and equally that of his ‘ legal’ chihuahua Stephen Lane (spare me!!), the councillors swiftly went back into the opaque mode of the past, waving through a city budget that was largely fashioned by the repudiated ex-mayor Jenny Hill and some of the current councillors who survived the election.  It was no surprise that there was a swingeing rate rise, and a lot of obscure word salads about things like the Haughton Pipeline and Lansdown.

The self-tugging acting mayor Paul Jacob called it ‘bold’,  much in the same manner same as Yes Minister’s Sir Humphrey Appleby’s ‘courageous’.

But it was the planned introduction of parking meters on The Strand which instantly exploded into popular public outrage … .  The much loved landmark and recreational magnet – justly dbbed the pride of Townsville – was among the slew of locations earmarked for a cash grab by a council,  the others being the food precincts of Palmer Street and Gregory Street in North Ward, ,  and Fulham Road and streets around the Mater Hospital,.

With new blood in the council chamber and the egregious accidental mayor off the scene pro tem, our hopes of a new attitude in Walker Street were quickly dashed by a council bereft of fair and imaginative ideas to handling a city economy that has been plagued with bad management and selfish grandstanding for more than a decade. And a council that refused to openly debate that most contentious item sneaked into the budget of Strand parking meters. All councillors were so insensitive that none of them could perceive the inevitable reaction. They hid behind the highly questionable bullshit excuse that there had been widespread online public consultation on the issue by the council last year.

So you are telling us, councillors, that a majority of those ‘consulted’ thought paid parking on The Strand was a good and acceptable idea?  Yet you offer no transparency with a report, or a summary of findings, apparently it was just the ‘vibe’, eh?  Any such report including proof of the outcome of the ‘consultation;, or how the question was put to respondents, has NOT been offered. Nor can it be found by a Google search (at least not by The ‘Pie).

We are back to the same old same old lack of transparency and middle finger to the electorate., but you were also full of yourselves, you were blind to the almost universal anger and utter rejection of the idea by the public.

The pile-on was instant, starting with The Magpie’s adamant statement on the day of the budget that it is never going to happen.  The very night of the budget, a petition was starting to circulate calling for the Strand part of the parking plan to be scrapped. Within 72 hours, it has shot past 7000 signatures …. you can add yours here and check how the numbers are going. Just in case there is a snafu with that, here’s the link to copy and paste … and please,  it pass on to your own social network.

https://www.change.org/p/maintain-free-parking-at-strand-townsville-qld?recruiter=560113124&recruited_by_id=257a7ae0-3803-11e6-b8bb-db2bde6d5590&utm_source=share_petition&utm_campaign=share_for_starters_page&utm_medium=facebook&fbclid=IwZXh0bgNhZW0CMTAAAR2V_dgns4k-SkTFZzEJEOtyV8qbsc4K_We7587IVGGZYZbZVWfaAxkxgBQ_aem_lQnc4xEkiNeaTLUPadIZ1A

Then, what in a normal city would sound the death knell of the such an unpopular idea, the Chamber of Commerce weighed in , and it wasn’t subtle – the Bulletin highlighted a no longer timid Chamber of Commerce, with its president Miranda Mears describing the move as a ‘slap in the face’ to Townsville businesses. The paper ran hard on the issue, online and in print. Readers went thermonuclear.

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A side note to reporters Chris Burns and Caitlin Charles: it is the townsville City Council, there is no such thing as the Townsville Regional council. 

Screenshot 2024-06-27 at 10.28.39 am

The Chamber is so pissed off, it has started its own separate petition directly to the council, wanting to add the weight of its 400 business owning members to the drive to have the parking plans amended.

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And like a wrestler doing a spread eagle flop on an prostrate opponent from the top ropes of the ring, Labor’s MP for Townsville Scott Stewart came down on the council with a thud that was unthinkable just a few short months ago.

Screenshot 2024-06-27 at 6.38.17 pm.

Readers of the Nest were likewise incandescent with rage. This was among most succinct (and printable) of the many comments on the issue.

\ Ducks Nuts
1,172 approved
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180.216.117.189

Young families often go to the strand water park for free entertainment on school holidays. No longer free
St Patrick’s College and St Joseph School parents, teachers and students must now pay for parking
Anyone going for a walk on the strand, or a swim must now pay for parking.
Getting married, pay for parking.
ANZAC day? Pay for parking
Festival? Pay for parking
Going for coffee, fish and chips or an ice cream, pay for parking.
Going for a drink with mates or a meal, pay for parking. Going to visit who live on the strand, pay for parking.

Or instead, you could park 3 streets back in front of someone’s house, like 3000 other cars and piss off the residents. Or not go at all so businesses lose business.

This is stupid policy at the best of times. And in times of economic hardship only a fucking idiot would suggest it or introduce it.

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The Magpie sticks by his initial prediction  that it is never going to happen.

But Hey, There Were Lots Else In The Budget – And A Lot Not.

Acting mayor Paul The Angry Any Jacob regrettably decided to call this dog’s dinner of a budget ‘bold’, which immediately put us in mind of Sir Humphrey Appleby, who described the latest policy idiocy as ‘courageous’.

It also puts The ‘{Pie in mind of the TCC’s new floral emblem, adopted a s reminder to ratepayers of their appropriate posture each budget.

TCC flotal emblem Screenshot 2024-06-25 at 6.45.45 pm

The details of the budget have been adequately recorded elsewhere, but according to some analysis, it is largely spin, trying to minimise the real effect. This was highlighted in two  comments from readers during the week.

Disgruntled TCC employee and ratepayer
1 approved
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60.241.103.102

Here is what the Townsville City Council didn’t tell you, but can be seen as plain as day in their budget papers: https://www.townsville.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0025/238408/BudgetOperationalPlan_24-25.pdf

1. The rate rise of 5.1% is much greater, when you take into account the halving of the early payment discount. (page 46)

2. The Council will only have around $25,254M in its bank account at the 30th June this year. Given that their average spend per month is around $70M, they have less than 2 weeks cash left to pay bills. This means that they will have to get a short term loan (not declared) of between $50M and $100M to pay the bills until the rates payments start flowing in. (page 43)

3. At the end of the 2024/25 financial year the Council is planning on having only $83M in unrestricted cash and cash receivables and around $161,1M in current liabilities (short-term bills to be paid) – in the private sector this would require a declaration of insolvency. The next two years after that are much the same! (page 42)

4. The total new borrowings for the next three years is $230.8M which will be a doubling of its total debt to around $468M. (pages 42 & 43)

5. The Council is planning an operating loss of around $24.8M next financial year and operating losses for the next 3 years after. Operating profits beyond that are only made possible by a mysterious $25M increase in “Other Revenue”. starting in 2026/27 (page 46) – what is this other revenue that they are going to get and why hasn’t it be made public?

Why isn’t our local paper reporting this?

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Why indeed. And then there was this startling conclusion from the regular Nester, the ever-reliable Phil Batty.

Phil Batty
12 approved
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211.30.141.79

Morning Magpie
Hard to argue with most of Disgruntled’s summary other than point 4 which while borrowings (Long term) are rising over the coming years, doubling it may be a stretch however I have only had a cursory look at this stage. In very simplistic terms the council is increasing its revenue expectation by around $32 million over the 23/24 budget, with around 200,000 people living in Townsville area then this means an EXTRA $160 per person, not per household, $160 for every man woman and child so an average household of 2 adults 2 children would be $640 EXTRA this year on last year. Incidentally the same simple maths for the Whitsundays is $342 per person.

One positive change is that individual councillors are now happy to reply to constituents who email them, and not have to have regimented, sanitised and heavily spunn responses, approved from above.  The problem is of course that a lot of the replies say nothing at all.

Is it time for an administrator to be appointed? Hard pill to swallow, but this situation is slowly devolving into the intolerable. This council needs to be more open about the problems they’ve inherited, and tell us the truth about the council’s real position. In plain language.

 Meanwhile,  On Planet TwoNames

Screenshot 2024-06-27 at 10.11.56 am

Our shortly-not-to-be-our-mayor Troy Thompson has been posting some weird, desperate shit on social media, aided and abetted apparently by legal wannabee and pest-about-town Stephen Lane. One started out this way:

6 AM today – Thursday 27/6

MEDIA RELEASE – COUNCIL SUSPEND UNLAWFUL DECISIONS FROM 05 JUNE 2024
In a major development, at the Special Meeting held on Wednesday 26 June 2024, all Councillors supported a motion to suspend the unlawful resolutions implemented on 05 June 2024. Resolutions which removed the Mayor from the Chairperson role and replaced the Mayor with someone of the Councillors choosing.
The Mayor maintains that the resolutions on 05 June 2024 were unsound, and unlawful in accordance with the Local Government Act and it is good to see Councillors now complying with the laws.
The ‘Pie has no idea what that is all about, but one clue might be found in another subsequent post – it is possible that council has secretly reversed their rulings on the grounds that it would be seen as unreasonable treatment of a mentally unfit person.  This Friday post might support that theory.
MEDIA RELEASE – DISCRIMINATION:
To date, I have been ready, fit, and willing to work. My Medical Doctor does not believe I require a referral to any specialists and asserts that I am fit and healthy.
Since 12 June 2024, I have been banned from entering the Council building on Walker Street. Locked out of my office with security guards keeping me from entering.
The reason given to me is that the Acting CEO and Council consider my condition of Epilepsy to be a safety concern, and that by letting me in to do my job, the Acting CEO considers I would place staff and myself at risk.
Keeping me from attending my office is a violation of my human rights under the Queensland Anti-Discrimination Act. No one deserves to have their human rights violated by this Council.
I am demanding that Council and the Acting CEO stop discriminating against me, and simply let me in to work.
I will pursue this matter further should Council not comply.
Thank you to all the residents and supporters who email and text me on a daily basis to reaffirm their support.
Mayor Troy Thompson
The ‘Pie replied:
The Magpie 

That’s what your medical doctor says, what does your mental doctor say? And that’s not a cheap shot, when you look at this research.

Sometimes people with epilepsy may have changes in their behavior. They also may have symptoms of psychosis. Most people with epilepsy tend to have the same type of seizure each time. Symptoms are usually similar from episode to episode.

Aggressive and violent behaviors have also been associated with epilepsy, especially temporal or frontal lobe seizures.

So, old chum, allowing you back into the council chambers may be a violation of the right to a safe workplace for all those who work there.
The Problem With The Following Is That They really Don’t Understand What Fuckwits They Make Of Themselves.
There’s that old saying that  when someone is dead, they don’t know they’re dead: and it’s the same with stupid.
This appeared on the Bulletin FB page.

 

Screenshot 2024-06-28 at 11.05.00 pm

So to whomsoever wrote this little gem, let me get this straight. Some bloke may or may not have run onto the stadium field, it is only alleged he did – meaning that if it may subsequently turn out not to be the case. News Corpse journos are instructed to throw in ‘alleged’ as a defence should some ‘unalleged’ person decide to sue their boss. (It’s a fun and lucrative pastime for some, more should try it). So you write alleged in the headline and your arse is covered, right? (It’s not but that for another time.)

But … but … but you then go on to caption the pic (which itself tends to knock alleged on the head) saying the bloke ‘stormed the field’.  So was. there ‘actually’, not “allegedly’?

But the cherry on top of this idiocy came in the Saturday paper, with this.Screenshot 2024-06-29 at 9.57.52 amAgain, at the risk of labouring the point,  you say the fella allegedly ran on to the field , before two security ‘took him from the field’. Very clever of the security blokes to collar an apparent shape shifting man who is maybe there one minute,  then a moment later IS there.  This is definitely one for Penn and Teller.

You bloody children really are insulting sometimes. And here’s a tip from an old dinosaur – the purpose of covering small-time remand matters like this IS TO GET THE BLOKE’S FUCKING NAME!!! . Which you didn’t  … if he’s been remanded and is 24, you can name him, it’s part of the media deal viz ‘fuck up and when you appear in court., we’ll name you.’  It is one of the main reasons journalists attend court.

Those Lads From The Shovel Nail It Again

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Does Australia Have Its Own MAGA Problem?

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Some people are starting to think so.

In 2020, The Magpie Made A Bold Prediction – Could It Becoming True?

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Screenshot 2024-06-28 at 4.38.11 pm

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To use Macron’s now famous saying, The ‘Pie does not theenk, he knows that if Kamala Harris had debated Trump this week instead of Biden, it finally would be the Republicans looking for a new candidate,  because she would’ve forensically shredded this clear and present danger to democracy.  And if Joe has the decency that he is so much touted to have, and the Democratic Party has the guts for the challenge,  it is surely a woman’s best chance at the Oval Office, with the heinous attack on female rights across the board in the Republican US stirring up the sisterhood almost more than the heady days of 60 years ago. Probably a stretch for Harris to get the nom, , but we’ll see.

Now to the debate that never really was. It turned out so predictably in some ways,  and when Biden managed to stay with the moment, the debate quickly devolved into nothing more a fact-lite mud-slinging slanging match, with free character readings from each being hurled across the stage.   Virtually nothing enlightening came from it. Much of the week for the American cartoonists was contemplating what might happen, the general public’s attitude to the gabmumblefest, and the aftermath.

Screenshot 2024-06-29 at 9.40.19 am Screenshot 2024-06-29 at 9.39.25 am Screenshot 2024-06-29 at 9.40.00 am Screenshot 2024-06-29 at 9.38.46 am

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mmScreenshot 2024-06-28 at 9.20.14 am Screenshot 2024-06-28 at 9.20.32 am Screenshot 2024-06-28 at 9.21.05 am Screenshot 2024-06-26 at 10.39.25 pm Screenshot 2024-06-26 at 10.54.45 am Screenshot 2024-06-26 at 10.52.05 am Screenshot 2024-06-26 at 10.52.21 am Screenshot 2024-06-26 at 10.52.35 am Screenshot 2024-06-26 at 10.53.07 am Screenshot 2024-06-25 at 10.03.51 am Screenshot 2024-06-25 at 10.04.06 am Screenshot 2024-06-25 at 10.04.21 am Screenshot 2024-06-25 at 10.04.37 am Screenshot 2024-06-25 at 10.04.47 am Screenshot 2024-06-22 at 11.12.36 am

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And Let’s End With One More From The Shovel

God stopped play … as he has so often before, thus helping to make Mr Duckworth a household name.

Screenshot 2024-06-26 at 10.59.01 am………….

That’s it for another week. Hey, a shout out to all those Nesters who send in such valuable information, they add an invaluable dimension to The Nest. Comments run 24/7, get in there and have your say, it’s free and if you so choose, anonymous.

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The Magpie's Nest is now more than five years old, and remains an independent alternative voice for Townsville. The weekly warble is a labour of love and takes a lot of time to put together. So if you like your weekly load of old cobblers, you can help keep it aloft with a donation, or even a regular voluntary subscription. Paypal is at the ready, it's as easy as ... well, easy as pie. Limited advertising space is also available.

415 Comments

  1. Meter maid says:

    Everywhere you go in cairns around there CBD and waterfront is paid parking. Even on weekends. Sorry but the strand upkeep has been subsidised ever since it was built. How long did we think it was going to last. There are a lot of man hours spent, mowing lawns, collecting leaves and trimming trees, rubbish bin collection twice a day, all the upkeep at the rock pool and waterpark. I’ve been in council for 25 years and this one charge has been a long time coming. It wouldn’t be as bad as reported if the TCC budget over the last 10 years wasn’t redirected towards pipelines and football stadiums.

    • The Magpie says:

      Then what’s so special about The Strand, by your logic, we should have parking meters lining every single street in Townsville to cover the cost of street sweeping and pot-hole filling and line marking and grass snipping.

      • Phil Batty says:

        Council already charge the ratepayers of Townsville the princely sum of $211,313,000.00 just for general rates, not for water, not for sewerage, not for refuse collection and disposal, JUST FOR GENERAL RATES which is to be used to provide services to the community, the definitely includes providing amenity like the Strand. The Townsville residents pay for this now, 200,000 people paying $1,056.00 each (Household of 2adults 2 children $4,226,00) Get a bloody grip on yourselves and start looking at where TCC spend this two hundred and odd million dollars before letting them start asking for more money which is effectively an increase in rates disguised so the councillors cash say we only increased rates by this much. Surely its time to stop this crap.

        • Dave Nth says:

          Hear hear. Maybe a look at council entitlements also is in order at all levels as well. Not suggesting cutting pay cut, if we were to have a look at perks especially among management I reckon there would be savings to be made there.

          Comparing Cairns too, who has the CBD on the esplanade with our Strand dislocated up to 2km is like comparing apples & and oranges.

          This is a lazy shiny bum accounting way of raising revenue rather than the more difficult cutting costs elsewhere, say like the black hole that is the CBD.

    • Doug K says:

      So, Meter Maid, The Strand is subsidised?
      Just like the V8 Superpests, only The Stand is enjoyed by the whole Townsville community whereas the V8s attract more participants than punters.

      • $17 a minute says:

        I wonder if the Meter Maid could tell me how many Grey Nomads and camping vans that camp on the Strand 24/7 for days on end have ever been booked or moved on? Additionally, how many have been fined for parking in the Loading Zones at Tobruk Pool and Watermark? I’ve even seen a couple cooking breakfast at the back of their van in Watermark’s Loading Zone. If the council’s overzealous City Only Parking Meter attendants did their job, there would be no need for paid parking on the Strand, but they would rather book me $17 a minute for stopping in a bus zone for less that 5 minutes to drop off a 150kg order as the Loading Zone had a private car parked in there for over an hour as the drivers where in having coffee, Parking Meter guy said can’t book them as he hadn’t chalked their tyre

        • The Magpie says:

          He is lying … if they are not the appropriate vehicle in a loading zone, they can fined without any reference to time.

        • Motorist says:

          $ You are full of shit!
          You would not recognize a grey nomad if one was to kick you in the arse. Nore would you appreciate our rigs, none of which could be parked on the Strand.
          $17 you fucking ignoramus, the vans you see parked on the Strand are known as wiz-bangs from the sound of the sliding door. $17 Are you still with me?
          Usually Asian or European youth, staying in free camp sites, not self contained, shitting in the adjacent bush, leaving dunny paper all around the place.
          And so 17 Cents, you are bitter and twisted at grey nomads, those who have managed their affairs to have a happy adventurous retirement, and ignorant of the difference of the rental wiz-bang camper.
          Schmuck!

    • Ducks Nuts says:

      A few points:

      There’s nothing inherently wrong with the upkeep of a public asset, used by the public, being subsidised by rates, or even parking meters. What is wrong, is the underhanded way consultation was conducted and the decision made. I believe the phrase is “lack of transparency ”

      A few streets back from the water front in Cairns all maintenance goes to shit, there’s no gutters and curb, it looks scruffy. Please don’t use Cairns as an exemplary model.

      And *yawn* if you’ve been in council 20 years you’re one of those rusted on $%$@# who need to move on and experience the real world. Especially if you’re trying to justify decisions like this.

    • wollo says:

      Metermaid..,So under your logic the council should put a fence around the rockpool and charge you to have a swim and use the toilets and showers and to use the bbq”s and picnic tables and if you just want to walk your dog along the strand a fee by the hour.Gees that will help to cover the costs to keep thepiace clean and tidy !!!

      • Critical says:

        Also note that the proposed parking metering on the Strand for the entire Strand from the Rock pool to ANZAC Park whereas on the Cairns Esplanade there is free parking from the Cairns Hospital (not certain where this zone starts) north including the two off street car parks built on the Esplanade.

        I’m wondering if the off street car park on the left as you turn from Howlett Street into Jezzine Barricks will also be metered. I wouldn’t be surprised if the TCC bureaucracy sneaks this car park into the parking metered zone.

        • The Magpie says:

          Hey, everybody, fuck what they do in Cairns, it is totally irrelevant, as is the general trope that ‘everyone’s doin’ it, so we have to as well, perish the thought we should think for ourselves and tailor our cloth accordingly.’

          Fossilized bureaucrats in Walker Street are emerging as a bigger part of the problem than first thought, especially with many inexperienced councillors feeling their way and needing guidance.

    • Kenny Kennett says:

      There lies the problem. It seems that when you join the Council, you feel you own the city and the cash cow is the ratepayers. Tunnel vision is the most contagious disease in the TCC and unlike us mere plebs, you get to plough through the tunnel without paying a toll.

    • Weary Dave says:

      To Meter Maid … Subsidised?? … so how much do the residents of Riverside Gardens pay for the upkeep of their nice parks and gardens areas? Quite a lot of council resources busy there every other day … are there parking meters over there?

      • wollo says:

        Old weary Dave the ratepayers in Riverside Gardens Douglas pay a special levy on their rates to cover the cost of the council crew who only look after that estate.They have their own little depot there on the river.

        • The Magpie says:

          Was this the patch that involved allegations about Kid Crisafulli?

        • Weary Dave says:

          Cheers wollo, didn’t know that

        • Ducks Nuts says:

          Can you show me where this is special charge for Riverside Gardens is declared in the rates and charges schedule Wollo? Because this sounds like a load of shite to me.

        • The Wulguru Wonder says:

          Wollo, out of interest, where does the special levy appear in the TCC schedule of rates and charges?

          The only special rate levies I can see relate to the Nelly Bay Harbour development, Rural Water Supply Schemes, and areas serviced by a rural fire brigade.

          • wollo says:

            I rented a house and commented to the landlord about the team of council workers who kept the gardens and parks nice and he said that they paid an extra levy on their rates..thats all I know.

  2. Ipecac says:

    Team Hill have well and truly loaded up our city with crippling debt and are passing the costs onto rate payers. Enough is enough, off with their heads. Pie I think you’re 100% right about bringing in an administrator (unfortunately)…how about starting up a new petition to bring in an administrator to save us all?

    • The Magpie says:

      Sorry, things don’t work that way, it would have no effect, and ultimately, it is a decision made not just on the facts, but on political risk and reward considerations.

  3. Mangrove Jack says:

    Morning Mr Magpie, comment from Disgruntled TCC employee and ratepayer, just before Phil Batty’s comment, looks like it has been trimmed on the right side to make it unreadable. No need to publish.

    Keep up the great work.

    • The Magpie says:

      Thanks for the heads up, Jack, but a check this end doesn’t show a problem. That doesn’t mean there isn’t one, but if there is, the full text can be read in comments.

      • Kenny Kennett says:

        There’s the same prob with mine too

        • The Magpie says:

          Sorry, The ‘Pie has checked and can’t find anything wrong his end, but might be something he’s accidentally done with formatting. Apologies. But so those having a problem know what was said, here are the texts of the original comments.

          Disgruntled
          Here is what the Townsville City Council didn’t tell you, but can be seen as plain as day in their budget papers: https://www.townsville.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0025/238408/BudgetOperationalPlan_24-25.pdf

          1. The rate rise of 5.1% is much greater, when you take into account the halving of the early payment discount. (page 46)

          2. The Council will only have around $25,254M in its bank account at the 30th June this year. Given that their average spend per month is around $70M, they have less than 2 weeks cash left to pay bills. This means that they will have to get a short term loan (not declared) of between $50M and $100M to pay the bills until the rates payments start flowing in. (page 43)

          3. At the end of the 2024/25 financial year the Council is planning on having only $83M in unrestricted cash and cash receivables and around $161,1M in current liabilities (short-term bills to be paid) – in the private sector this would require a declaration of insolvency. The next two years after that are much the same! (page 42)

          4. The total new borrowings for the next three years is $230.8M which will be a doubling of its total debt to around $468M. (pages 42 & 43)

          5. The Council is planning an operating loss of around $24.8M next financial year and operating losses for the next 3 years after. Operating profits beyond that are only made possible by a mysterious $25M increase in “Other Revenue”. starting in 2026/27 (page 46) – what is this other revenue that they are going to get and why hasn’t it be made public?

          Why isn’t our local paper reporting this?

          Phil Batty
          Morning Magpie
          Hard to argue with most of Disgruntled’s summary other than point 4 which while borrowings (Long term) are rising over the coming years, doubling it may be a stretch however I have only had a cursory look at this stage. In very simplistic terms the council is increasing its revenue expectation by around $32 million over the 23/24 budget, with around 200,000 people living in Townsville area then this means an EXTRA $160 per person, not per household, $160 for every man woman and child so an average household of 2 adults 2 children would be $640 EXTRA this year on last year. Incidentally the same simple maths for the Whitsundays is $342 per person.

  4. Anti-Flog says:

    So many who got into Council promised us transparency and accountability, only for them to turn around and become the very thing they swore to destroy. Part of why things changed was because we were over the Hill and would vote for anyone else. But we didn’t have enough sensible candidates put their hands up. Those who were sensible couldn’t actually get in. It really does go to show that if we want good councillors, we need to actually do our homework and find out who are crooked and who aren’t. Protip: the crooked ones tend to get in with larger margins.

  5. Mike Douglas says:

    The bank of Townsville ratepayers have had enough of Townsville Council / executives chasing rainbows and putting the City $600 mil in debt before 2024/25 budget . A few Councillors claim 1,000 hrs was put into the budget yet there will not be a surplus in their 4 yr term . 2024/25 $24.8 loss , 25/26 $20 mil loss , 26/27 $13.5 mil loss . Acting Mayor Jacobs claimed it was a ” back to basics ” budget but when questioned on the blowouts he doesn’t know how much . Councillors need to re-visit the budget and make hard decisions on Council duplication + entities and at least get a surplus 25/26 onwards as well as disclose unbudgeted Team Hill blow outs . No paid parking on the Strand and no increase cbd , Gregory , Palmer .

  6. Contributor says:

    Agree with meter maid. It was just a matter of when, not if, for paid parking in high traffic areas where Council has to cover these costs. All modern Councils do this; it means the user pays rather than all ratepayers subsidising it. Time for Townsville and you to be dragged into the 21st century, Magpie.

    • The Magpie says:

      Using the trope of inevitability – ‘a matter of when, not if” – is the standard bureaucratic attempt at governing being guided by an unseen destiny, because everything is pre-destined and unavoidable. That we have no power over what’s going to happen anyway.

      Ever thought of joining a religion, where they have bright shiny collection plates instead of expensive parking meters?

      But you accidentally hit on a core point, Non-Contributor …the users are a majority of Townsville residents (think, who hasn’t ever been to The Strand?) and they’ve already paid towards the upkeep through their rates. This is a malodorous attempt at double dipping. And you can rest assured that if The Hermit Kingdom continues on its present path with obfuscating financial reporting, we will never know if that parking money was used for Strand upkeep, or to send councillors on a Sister City knees-up. There’s a lot of cleaning of Augean stables in Walker Street, and Strand paid parking is just one indication of the amount of manure we have to dispose of.

      Time we dragged drones like you into reality. More and more and more people are fed up with the lack of real consultation and real transparency by financial incompetents. We’re getting sick of the little joys of life being stiff armed by the likes of you.

      • Bob Roberts says:

        I think we’d need some evidence that a majority of Townsville residents are using the Strand. If it costs $6 million a year as reported that’s $30 a year for every man, woman and child in the city.

        • The Magpie says:

          Understand your maths, Bob, but there areliterally thousands of businesses and staff across Townsville who benefit from the very attractive existence of The Strand, and they don’t necessarily have to use it in the way you mean.

          • Damn tailings says:

            Talking to any tourist; the strand and Maggie are all TSV has going for it.

          • Bob Roberts says:

            I’d question that any businesses not fronting the Strand get any benefit from it too. No one comes to Townsville to see it.

    • Mike Douglas says:

      Note to meter maid + contributor . If you want to benchmark what other Councils do it’s important other Council rates + charges are considered . Townsville would be the only Council increasing rates ( includ reduction early discount payment ) 24 % in 3 yrs . Is Townsville Council the only Qld Council using differential rates on long term rental owners meaning renters at North Ward + other suburbs are funding Council $50 extra a week to cover . Blow outs by Team Hill on projects , deals has pushed Council budget deficit $60 mil next 3 yrs and do they really need to borrow another $230 mil ? .

  7. Dazza says:

    Mr Pie, I wonder what will happen to the free parking at the North Ward shopping centre if paid strand parking occurs.

    As a non driver I know there are taxi drivers who won’t pick up jobs at certain times from there when it is totally crowded and the 2 minute drop off zone is full of parked cars.

    If more people park there to enjoy the Strand and not stress about time management on how quickly they have to relax, and not be using it for shopping then I can not see Coles as the major tenant being pleased. I have seen some days a full car park and a light on amount of people in the shops.

    If this were to occur all the time then paid parking would be set up there and like dominoes extend to other now free area’s.

    I will stop shopping at Coles North Ward and the newsagent etc, so this stupid money grab will have negative affects to a lot more than just Strand businesses.

  8. Dumper says:

    Interesting conversation at the Stuart landfill revealed that a massive 1 July price increase was revealed to staff and then shortly after rolled. The staff there were girding their loins for abuse following 25% plus increase in fees, only for a last minute repeal and replacement with a circa 5% increase (no early discount on dump fees for them to plunder). So looks like some caving in already.

    • The Magpie says:

      Or someone may have one their sums with a risk and reward exercise …. the income from increased dump fees versus the cost of increased clean-up and policing of illegal dumping.

  9. Vladimir P, 4814 says:

    Pie, I agree with your point that the introduction of paid parking on the Strand is political lunacy. After all, if you want to discourage people from using something, put a tax or a fee on it! However, I don’t think that any amount of concerted campaign from the community will change the mind of Council. It’s the first few months of the term, and they’ll be betting that people will have forgotten about it in the fog of Two Names’ escapades in the intervening years between now and 2028. I hope I’m wrong.

  10. Vladimir P, 4814 says:

    Speaking of political suicide notes, your brief mention of Emmanuel “Oedipus” Macron brought to mind another act of “courageous” political decision-making. In the wake of getting flogged at European elections to the far-right, he called a parliamentary election to try and renew his ability to get some pretty unpopular reforms through the French Assembly. By tomorrow morning (our time), I’m pretty confident this gamble will have paid off less than an hour at the Bohle Barn pokies, and Macron will have to appoint a far-right Prime Minister. Truly a decision that backfired, more than my old Lada in Leningrad.

  11. Alahazbin says:

    Re the Chamber of Commerce letter. Who is Steven?
    Forgive my ignorance. If it’s Smiles, it’s a bit formal.

    • The Magpie says:

      That would depend if the writer knows the Premier personally, Heidi Turner may well have met him, likely in fact. If so, to address him as Dear Premier Miles would set a an stiff unfriendly tone for the letter. I’d just put it down to diplomatic square dancing.

      Anyway, it fits in with The ‘Pie’s wish for plain language communications from those who make decisions on our behalf. Of course, lawyers, guardians of all that is arcane, would argue against this, cautioning that one incorrect word from which a damaging inference could be drawn could cost millions in court … so best to keep them as the chief interpreters of expression, at $5000 an hour.

  12. Critical says:

    Exciting reading on youth justice by the Queensland Audit Office. I wonder how many of the recommendations this government will start to implement or will they put it aside for the new government to implement.

    https://www.qao.qld.gov.au/reports-resources/reports-parliament

    • Ducks Nuts says:

      Staff shortages seem to be a big issue. However, after speaking to ex employees, staff incompetencies, and poor culture and a lack of accountability is a more prevalent issue. It was recently reported that a teacher fell asleep in one of the classes. Apparently a regular occurrence. Social workers draw straws as to who gets to work with another teacher as she creates such a toxic and dangerous work environment. Yet management do nothing and we on the outside wonder why people get assaulted.

  13. Alahazbin says:

    I remember the first year that the ‘new Strand’ opened, the estimated cost of upkeep and maintenance was $1 million. Imagine the costs now.

    • The Magpie says:

      Well, it is 25 years later. Everything is dearer. So your point is?

      • Alahazbin says:

        Pie, As others have pointed out, we are already paying for upkeep & maintenance in the general rate, so parking meters are double dipping. But for councils money doesn’t grow on trees. I am in two minds on this issue, but there should have been more transparency. It has the ‘mullets’ dirty fingers all over this.

        • The Magpie says:

          There are two issues here, Ala, and The ‘Pie can understand people saying why not, it’s a legitimate way for council’s to get income.

          Issue one is the murky, easily manipulated online consulting process. Simply put, it’s bullshit which, as we know, is such a malleable substance, it can be moulded into any desired result. Add to this the complete absence of any report on the purported consulting. And there hasn’t been any hint in the budget papers just what the faux survey revealed… a majority calling for parking meters on the Strand? Pull the other one, it yodels.

          Issue two is the box ticking one-size-fits-all rule so beloved of shiny bum drones everywhere DEFINITELY DOES NOT apply here. The Strand is unique, unique in all north Queensland, a man-made testament to the possibility of tirning adversity to advantage, making an ugly duckling into the pride of a city. It’s role within this community and for the visitors TEL vainly try to attract, should be reasonably treated as a special exception to the usual box ticking bureaucratic process.

          But that would take some imaginative thinking.

    • Ducks Nuts says:

      Be like my rates. They used to be cheap too.

    • Kirwan local says:

      I’m sure that most people living in Townsville would be more than happy to have the poor level of maintenance and cleaning that the Strand gets. We have potholes open year on year, abandoned cars left for months, overgrown public places, rubbish strewn streets and graffiti everywhere yet we pay the same rates as the burgers of North Ward. The luxury of bins emptied every day, crews power washing the footpaths, daily graffiti removal and immediate road repairs is something that most of Townsville can only dream about. Some might say that the Strand belongs to all and should be protected well my street is also owned by everyone and we would welcome anyone who wants to visit and see their rates at work.

      • The Magpie says:

        Hear what you say, and the situation you describe is to be deplored … but that is a false equivalence on a mega scale. The role the Strand plays throughout the city’s business and amenity for all cannot be compared or linked in any way to the problems you are experiencing in a suburban residential area.

        Znd while it certainly appears that Clr Ma Greaney has been cropping a good paddock, and Macca’s does a roaring business it is ‘burghers’.

      • Alahazbin says:

        KL, Ph 4727 9000 and go through the menu and report the issue, just as I did. The issue was fallen trees from cyclone Kirrilli. The person at customer service decided to make it two issues. One issue was done & dusted in two days as the area was in public view. The other area, still waiting. Not in the public view. Coming up to a month since making the initial report.

      • Vladimir P, 4814 says:

        Sorry Kirwan local, unless you’re both on the minimum rate, you do NOT pay the same rates. Generally, property values are higher in North Ward and as such they will pay higher rates than the mighty 4817.

  14. Jenny says:

    What a bunch of whining, anonymous blowhards. We have just elected this council and mostly got the councillors we wanted, except for one, and he has conveniently sidelined himself. Now we have decided we don’t like any of them, collectively, and we won’t elect them again, because they aren’t being transparent like we think they should be. As if we would be more transparent if only we could be a councillor. Well, put up your hand and nominate yourself. Cop some of your own flak. Talk about a peanut gallery.

    • The Magpie says:

      You’re an idiot – as usual.

      We started disliking them when the exhibited behaviour we had hoped their election would eradicate. And do enlighten us on how the Jenny-O-Meter is used to measure what level of ‘transparency’ is recommended from your ivory tower. With the history of our misgovernance over the past decade, for this council’s transparency is an absolute and no shades of grey, if we are to stop the festering rot that is Jenny hill’s legacy.

      Devil’s advocacy is one thing, Jenny, but you are becoming a malignant poisoned dwarf advocating chaos of a different nature for this poor bloody city.

    • Achilles says:

      Kettles and Pots comes to mind Jenny, when you remain as anonymous as we “bunch of whining, anonymous blowhards” sic.

  15. BAR FLY says:

    I believe there may be a toxic culture of fear, bullying and corruption within the organisation at Walker St. An employee probably has to adapt or leave.
    It appears from reading the views of other ratepayers, the stench of corruption radiates from within the organisation and seems to have some similarities with the former Ipswich City Council where corruption and maladministration had become normalised.
    This would have continued if wasn’t for the COURAGE of the former Labour member Jo-Ann Miller, who spoke out against her own party and persevered until the council was dissolved.
    I couldn’t agree more with your comments to bring in an administrator,
    I suspect that our current Labour puppets here in Townsville lack the same integrity and courage of Jo-Ann Miller though.

    • The Magpie says:

      You suspect? Crikey, mate, take it as fact, jellybacked hacks, one and all.

      • Amanda Reen says:

        I am sure I am giving the Council too much credit, but what a great distraction the Strand Parking brainfart has been. Nearly a week has passed and only a very small few (no media) have focused on why the council have decided to float such a politically unpopular idea.

        If the council was not irretrievably insolvent, it would not be messing with the sacred cow of the Strand. But we aren’t even asking about the why.

        Taking my tin foil hat to the next level, what a great political distraction appointing an Administrator under the LGA in say early September will be from the State knuckleheads. It’s not inconceivable that the CCC enquiry will comeback- more headlines about Two Names means less headlines about crime.

        I am not going to give the Casino pill popper the credit for this but perhaps, someone in the Labor camp has given this more thought than we may suspect.

  16. Rebecca says:

    Apparently TCC won’t accept petitions from anywhere other than their own site! The Townsville Chamber has set this one up, in accordance with TCC petition rules, so please sign.
    https://epetitions.townsville.qld.gov.au/petition/view/pid/60

    • The Magpie says:

      Depending on the numbers, it will be a brave council that ignores ANY petition.

      If The ‘Pie’s recall is right, Pete Newey marched into the council and presented a petition regarding the Adandi airfield rort by Jenny Hill.

      It got turfed. So this idiocy can be reversed too.

  17. The Dildo man says:

    Just a quick request.
    Does anyone have a link to the Chamber of Mirrors, Parking petition?
    It would be greatly appreciated.

    I gave up trying to join years ago, when my biz was repeatedly deemed not worthy and rejected due to “moral” impotence and their uncontrolable gag reflux.
    I still support much of what they do and still try to help where l can.
    But its usually, vigorously, from under the doona with an old sock and the Townsville Enterprise manifesto of incompotence (vol 46).
    Thanks in advance.

    • The Magpie says:

      Whatever about that, but please don’t anybody forget to sign the public petition, splitting the numbers will not be helpful.

  18. Burnt Brows says:

    I am starting to feel bad for Birnbrauer being locked out of his office. It’s disgraceful and breaches the Magna Carta so we are told. Could the King of England not step in with a Royal pardon or even a corgi? As an alternative, why can’t Council build him an office out of a shipping container and place it at the Townsville Dump? If it is positioned high up on the sludge I believe it will have sea views. If successful, more shipping container offices could be built and placed there for all Councillors (along with parking meters).

  19. Critical says:

    If TCC wants to demonstrate accountability and transparency then let them publicly release the entire business case for the parking meter installation on the Strand, Palmer Street precinct and the Fulham Road/Mater Hospital precinct.

    If researched and written in accordance with good business and financial principles it should show the financial implications and evidence of community consultation methodology used and the results of this consultation

    What implications, long term and short term and positive and negative were identified and how are any negative implications going to be addressed

    Come on Councillors have some guts and publicly release this document on the front page of your website. If council claims its commercial and in in confidence then the city’s residents have good reason to be concerned about this whole issue.

    • The Magpie says:

      In short, give us transparency.

    • Burnt Brows says:

      Statisticians and Accountants can provide financial projections to accomodate whatever outcome you want. I think the business case as far as $$$$ is concerned would stack up when you factor in parking fines which are likely to be quite substantial. However, the business case for community benefit and engagement would be a major fail.

      • Not running for mayor says:

        Agree completely Burnt Brows. The business case would look like this-
        Strand costs $x to maintain
        Options to make it self-sustaining?
        Install parking meters?
        #cars x #hours x #days x #$ = maintenance cost

        All that being said, the pretend consultation was another insult to the people of Townsville.

    • Grand Master says:

      Parking meters on the Strand are a great idea. Stops the ‘riffraff’ and freeloaders using it to park and live as free accommodation on the beachfront allowing more spaces to be available to those that actually want to use the Strand and beach for legitimate activities. Not a popular opinion I’m sure. Also stops surrounding area residents using it as extra parking.

      • The Magpie says:

        Don’t know whether your opinion is unpopular, but from the anecdotal evidence from The ‘Pie’s daily drive along The Strand, it is completely wrong. There has never been a time when many, many car parks have been available … well, maybe the odd weekend day, but even then, not much trouble. The real unpolicable hazard are spaces being vacated by homicidal maniacs who back large camper vehicles and monster $WDs straight back in to traffic without a retirees care in the world.

  20. Guy says:

    Act 1 Scene 1

    Cheer up magpie

    I’ve been out and about with my own petition to get rid of parking meters – today !

    I am revitalised and re-energised to sally forth on a steed with a sword in my hand to do battle with the dark forces of hate and spite, as ever eternal as the north star so that neither sirens song nor rocky may lead me astray.

    • The Magpie says:

      Amazing how you can energised when you have bourbon for breakfast.

      • Burnt Brows says:

        “ Amazing how you can energised when you have bourbon for breakfast.”. Not much more to say really …..

    • Anti-Flog says:

      Something tells me Guy would have been the right choice for Division 8

      • Ducks Nuts says:

        Perhaps you should check the ballot results. Guy was definitely not considered an option by the majority of Div 8 voters. And rightly so. However, its unfortunate that Robinson got in as he’s not been seen or heard of since. He wasnt seen or heard or prior and only got in because he wasn’t Guy or Team Hill.
        Robinson is a waste of my rates.

        • The Magpie says:

          What’s his background? Not none of the cooker’s mob, one hopes.

          • Ducks Nuts says:

            Apparently ex Army, and ex Dept TMR.
            Has vague associations with cookers.
            But it’s not like anyone would know because no one has seen or heard of him. However this is his campaign page complete with Che Guevara style posters who as we all know (and if we don’t we should) is an idol for wannabe revolutionaries who don’t understand history or who Che really was.

            https://www.facebook.com/share/PspemV32ZEgrK39b/?mibextid=qi2Omg

        • Guy says:

          I think it’s a failing in the human psyche when it comes to “politics”. From a historical perspective this bad behaviour litters commentary and retrospective. It always leads me to thoughts of the tragic hero.

          Shakespearean tragedy makes its own fictional assessment within that framework of the natural order : God, King,lord, peasant. The tragic personality has a deep flaw that’s exposed as the person moves to a position of power / responsibility. The ambition that drives them to the top becomes a malignant liability – one stupid decision after the other as the woods close upon the castle walls at the fall of night, storms are short, showers are long and all that.

          But let’s come back to that idea of the Elizabethan order of the world, the idea was that in normal situations the natural order was of a well oiled clockwork machine of the planets taking a preordained and approved path in the sky, the skies of stars were ordained in their rightful place. The king, his advisors and the “system” was necessary and rightful.

          Now to my mind tragedy is where the normal / natural order is disrupted. Macbeth is pushed to accelerate the situation by the supernatural by the witches and suddenly there’s a upending of the natural order. There’s one event preceding the eventual demise of the tragic hero or “heroes” . But one thing that strikes me is that the system they dominate and control becomes corrupted – something smells rotten in Denmark. The flaw within the tragic hero is often a blind spot to the natural consequences of their actions .
          What you are seeing at the moment is perhaps not so much something going wrong in the brain of councillors but the existing flaw made large and noticeable in the same way as the tragic hero ie its always been there, the ego just hasn’t been fed with money, power and hubris. It’s been bubbling under the surface all along ?

          The best anyone can do is let this play continue along its natural path. The parking meters and 10% rates increase was a litmus test of their character and they failed or rather exposed their true nature?

          Anyway , I’m off to get some more signatures and rally the troops.

          • The Magpie says:

            Good god, you really have fallen of the edge, haven’t you?

          • Ducks Nuts says:

            Normally I’d feel a bit sorry for him with all that door knocking and signature collecting, he could have had a bit too much sun. But it’s been overcast and raining.

          • Al says:

            Guy. It seems you are educated in the English language, and can express yourself with good spelling, but the ramblings don’t make much sense to this geriatric prick on his 80th birthday. I tried a puff on a joint about 60 years ago, but you must have some good shit at your disposal. Do you snort, inject, or whatever ?

          • Grand Master says:

            Reads and sounds like a high school student generated an AI essay.

          • Guy says:

            Its true – it is high school thoughts. But you see if you remember some of this stuff you can look back and get a deeper understanding of the human condition. The nuance and big picture reveals itself over time.

            On a further thought on macbeth – Shakespeare was wrong, King Duncan was trying to overthrow the natural order , strictly speaking macbeth was restoring the order in his own mind. Scottish kings were ELECTED. In reality it was Duncan that was disturbing the force by trying to install his son on the throne rather than by the consensus of the Scottish lords. Macbeth was a natural knee jerk reaction. Macbeth was there for at least a decade in reality.

            Drugs, not my bag baby, I did try LSD and crystal meth but it just made me a bit sleepy.
            ( see – that’s a joke)

          • The Magpie says:

            You’re a lonely bloke, aren’t you, Guy?

  21. Burgher of North Ward says:

    Thank god we now have a council that makes good, considered decisions.

    It was getting a little too crowded on the waterfront. I actually had to line up for my last coffee – on a Friday! It’s even hard to get a midweek table at my favourite diner. Gads it’s getting to resemble a Hong Kong market street down there. Dogs, kids, scooters, walkers, runners, prams, pensioners and their confounded walking contraptions. And markets! Eeeeek!

    Let them pay for the privilege or find their own patch to pollute and leave The Strand to the locals. People only value what they pay for. So this is common sense in action.

    To borrow from Paul Keating … if you’re not living in North Ward … you’re slumming it (and paying for it).

  22. Cool Hand Luke says:

    You can’t even take out the meters like the old days. Stoopid ticket machines have screwed it up for everyone

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UBeHbMzyG7A&pp=ygUiY29vbCBoYW5kIGx1a2UgcGFya2luZyBtZXRlciBzY2VuZQ%3D%3D

    • The Magpie says:

      That reminds me, I have to hard boil some eggs for the fridge.

    • Amanda Reen says:

      Well played. We actually do have a failure to communicate. Council have decided to continue with the idea that transparent and open communication leads to too many pesky questions.

  23. Pat Coleman says:

    Here is a way of adding to the council coffers without more parking metres.

    1. Amend the law so that there is no time limit for prosecution of electoral and donations offences.

    2. Amend the law to say that all political wages and property paid for or derived from those wages after the date of electoral offences are proceeds of crime .

    3.Expropriate all such property to be auctioned off by the state and funds be redistributed back to councils.

    4. Expropriate the profits of the people who benifted from the date of the offences onwards in line with point 3 above.

    • Grand Master says:

      I would hardly think parking meters on the Strand would add much revenue to the coffers my friend.

      • Not standing for Mayor says:

        Master, here’s a little bit of maths for you. The Enterprise House carpark has 123 carparks generating $2 per hour from 0900 to 1700, yielding $2,214 per working day. Each year that one carpark generates almost $450,000.

        I haven’t counted, but the entire strand might approach 1,000 parks so if the parking is only run on the same hours but at $3 per hour the Strand would generate $3.3m per year. If the parking runs all day and night, 7 days a week the figure is 1,000 x 3 x 24 x 7 x 52 = $26.2m every year.

        • The Magpie says:

          Providing they are at capacity.

          And soon doi we forget …, when the somewhat dense Frothy Molochino had to be the lead on turning the free Eyre Street carpark into paid parking, overnight, it became deserted, as repirted in this blig. It took about six months or of tumbleweeds blowing through the space the council to wake up.

          And guess what Molachino has said ‘We made the move to paid parking after public consultation’.

        • Water Water Everywhere says:

          Not sure that maths checks out.

          The max cost for parking all day is $6 (thats without any increase recently allowed). The car park is half empty apart from after 5pm Friday and over the weekend with, what I assume, Maggie visitors.

          So its more likely 0.5*123*6= $369 per day (although there would be $300 in fines there most days, too!) or $75k per year and so on.

          • Not standing for Mayor says:

            An excellent point and I did not take into account the daily maximum as I made the assumption that the Strand would not allow all day parking. I definitely concede your numbers are more accurate than mine.

        • Alahazbin says:

          NRfM,
          Have heard it will be 9 to 5, 7 days a week.

  24. Molly9 says:

    Just read through the comments on the Strand parking proposal, and interestingly, no one has mentioned the big problem in Townsville – beggar all Public Transport, and there is definitely no way anyone can travel from 99% of the City and get to the Strand by bus. I can’t even get to my local shopping centre without catching 2 buses and walking at least a kilometre each way. And i live 10 mins drive away. As far as Cairns goes, their waterfront feature is part of the CBD and they have an excellent bus hub within 2 short blocks. Unlike the bus hub we used to have next to the Cowboys that was reduced to a back street bus stop, a long walk from anywhere.

    • The Magpie says:

      You mention the old bus huub. Its removal was another box ticking raw data decision, with traffic flow a major factor. And it has been a monumental misjudgement (read fuck-up) socially as much as socially. It went a long way towards further eroding the viability of the CBD.

  25. Doug K says:

    Hold on a sec Jenny.
    That “peanut gallery” comment was famously used by Astonisher editor Cas Garvey recently to describe people who made negative comments about her most influential advertiser in the lead up to the LG election.
    So time to fess up Jenny – are you Cas, or do you just sing from the same hymn book?

  26. Polisher says:

    I’m happy to pay to park at The Strand. The backpackers are a great perve. I once got a blowie from a backpacker in the waterpark after dark. Parking is a small price to pay.

  27. Prince Rollmop says:

    Another great blog Pie. In regards to TCC’s overall deficit, as I have mentioned previously, exactly what is Council doing to reduce debt? This is not fucking America where the idiots just print more money which creates further problems. Our debt is not being reduced. That means that as each year rolls by, the total amount increases. This puts a burden on the ratepayers of today and the ratepayers of the future as TCC will struggle to remain financial. This new Council really needs to get its shit together and start addressing this issue. It ain’t going away.

    • The Magpie says:

      If nothing else, it needs a strong, permanent CEO. Joe McCabe might be the goods but right now he is hampered by the ‘acting’ part of the title.

      The ‘Pie must say as an aside, he did like the way Joe handled the boot to TwoNames bum. He doesn’t seem to be the sort of bloke to be fazed by a two-bit wife bashing con man’s rantings.

      • wollo says:

        Pie I agree with you about Joe Mcabe .He had over 20 tears at the Gold Coast Council and I am pretty sure that he has had to deal with bigger dramas than 2names/2dicks.They even had a councillor who “allegedly” murdered his father but stayed on and stood again at the last election but lost.

  28. Circus fan says:

    Who is the Council Acting CFO? Their treasury report from the council meeting on 19 June is shoddy as. The Tangerine Trump would be happy with such made-up figures.
    The report states the council has $44M unrestricted cash and this equals 4.78 months of the council’s cash expense cover ratio. The cash council needs to meet their operating expenses like employee costs and materials and services.
    In the Budget Variance report of the same meeting, the annual operating expenses are $464.8M for the financial year. This equals a monthly total of $38.7M.
    This means, at the end of May when the treasury report was drafted, the council had about 35 days of cash on hand to pay their bills.
    There is no significant revenue stream for council until rates are due in mid September.
    What this means is that council is only a few days before they become insolvent…unless they intend to draw on the $100M working capital facility to pay their bills until the rates come in.
    This is serious shit! I won’t be holding my breath for council to announce this or the Bulletin to ask for more information.

  29. Circus fan says:

    Take a look at the Debt Policy of the last 2 budgets – aka planned borrowings.
    2023/24 Budget planned borrowings:
    Year ending 30/6/2026 = $20M
    Year ending 30/6/2029 = $20M
    Year ending 30/6/2032 = $20M
    A grand total of $60M in borrowings for the 10 years plan.

    Now the 2024/25 Budget planned borrowings:
    Year ending 30/6/2025 = $100M
    Year ending 30/6/2026 = $93M
    Year ending 30/6/2027 = $36M
    Year ending 30/6/2028 = $1M
    Year ending 30/6/2030 = $20M
    A grand total of $252M in borrowings for the 10 years plan.

    A variance of $192M or 320% in increased borrowings in the space of 12 months.
    The council has been leaderless and incompetent for too long.
    I hope a special administrator is being arranged.

    • Prince Rollmop says:

      And once again we see why the CEO and CFO decided to abandon ship. Once the election was finalised and the new and unqualified idiot Mayor Twonames was voted in, the writing was definitely on the wall. Yet again Prins Ralston’s actions leave a stain on Townsville.

    • Guy says:

      Well it’s why I’m sure I’ve pointed out to anyone who cares to listen – council borrowing and budgets vary like the weather. The tyrell council used to do the same thing. It’s why I just gave up looking at the book of “budgets” and borrowing figures and threw it in the bin.

      Its all lies

  30. Bentley says:

    If the administrators moved on TCC would we be any the wiser re the distribution of our rates. The figures quoted in this blog are staggering!

    • The Magpie says:

      Good question, but one upside to an administrator is that he/she is not under the pressure of the ballot box. But that is the old double edged bit of cutlery.

      And while The ‘Pie thinks the time for an administrator may not far off, we have to be realistic about any such move. Not being under popular pressure, an administrator may well go ahead with existing budget measures if they are somehow tweaked to be feasible. And that may include the installation of parking meters. Everywhere. Because one imagines an administrator would be a nuts and bolts, 2 = 2, person, not given to local sentiment or wishes of the community or petitions, just dollars and cents.

      And therein lies the one inescapable positive of an administrator … the books would be opened. Any attempt to continue secrecy under whatever spurious quasi-legal reason would have major repercussions for the state government of the day. Besides, an administrator would have no reason to hide figures not of his/her making.

  31. winni says:

    Time for community action on the Strand meters.

    Spray paint the bastard meters to disable them.

    Any parking meter enforcer do the same to his windscreen.

    Civil Disobedience Action.

    • The Magpie says:

      Winni, thought it worth pointing out that there aren’t any meters there to vandalise, the whole idea is to stop them being installed in the first place. Paint and chewing gum options are a long way off, and not a good idea anyway. It tiresome, we know, but the ballot box is the only resort left if this idiocy goes ahead.

    • Bob Roberts says:

      Do you vandalise parking meters in other parts of Townsville?

      Or when you visit other cities?

    • Grand Master says:

      Yes we definitely need more vandalism in the city. Exactly why parking meters on the Strand are a good idea. Keeps idiots that suggest vandalism of our city less likely to visit it.

      • The Magpie says:

        You suggesting vandals don’t travel?

        That will be news to Gaiseric, King of the Vandals, who loved nothing like a continental jaunt when he needed a refreshing break from his lair in Spain. Big G managed to conquer a large part of Roman Africa and in 455 sacked Rome.

        And Africa and Rome were a helluva lot further away than The Strand is from Vincent.

        • Grand Master says:

          Well if they’d installed parking meters they wouldn’t have had a problem!

        • Guy says:

          The gauls sacked Rome in 390 BC carrying off a heap of gold – it’s how Caesar KNEW that they had gold to plunder in his campaigns much later. This was the one where the sacred geese alerted the defenders of the capitol that they were being infiltrated and were able to fight them.

          Funny enough Rome ended up being sacked by the Carthaginians much much later at the fall of the empire.

  32. Prickster says:

    I wonder why our Mayor who is banished from Council Chambers is not appearing at Cotter’s Markets to meet the people understand community issues firsthand, after all he is still getting paid.

    He could even set up his stall on the Strand and use his salary to be Mayoral Meter Maid…….?

    • The Magpie says:

      Yes, strange that he hasn’t been out in public, whipping up the moral outrage of the masses towards his treatment. After all, as he keeps telling us, we all love him and want to see him safely back in the mayoral chair, he is our security blanket.

      • Not standing for Mayor says:

        All the people that TwoDogs needs to talk to already live inside his head. No need to leave the house.

      • Little Miss Muffet says:

        I bumped into him and the First Lady at the Mundingburra Markets a couple of week ago. He didn’t have a stall there, but was talking at the poor coffee van person while waving his arms around. Such a charmer. I didn’t see a write up later from Michelle about the coffee though, so maybe the vendor finally told him where to go!

        • The Magpie says:

          The Magpie in no instance ever has or ever will encourage law breaking, so he urges people encountering outright tugger in public places to politely, without bad language, firmly tell him what you think of him and his fraudlent past and current scamming actions. Absolutely nothing physical, but he really must get an unmistakable taste of this community’s sentiment.

          And holding the office of mayor, he cannot claim harassment if it is all civil and lawful – the theory is he serves us (ha!! – helps himself more like) and not the other way around. Anyway, he sets himself up to talk to people in public, so he cannot dictate what opinion or subject punters want to discuss.

          And do not involve his home where his mother lives … any disruption or protest action there would not only be unfair to her, but would also turn public opinion slightly in his favour. He’s a turd for using his mother as a shield in this way, but she’s not fair game under the circumstances.

  33. Blue singlet says:

    As a weekly driver of the Bruce Shitway between the Gold Coast and Weipa, I can assure you that the road is fucked. It has declined even more during the past 12 months. Yes, there are some fuckwits driving on the highway, but the amount of potholes, road subsidence and drop-off’s are getting worse. I have no doubt that some lives are being lost due to poor road condition. Dear government, your ‘speed kills’ mantra and use of mobile speed cameras is bullshit. The poor state of the road is the number one killer. How about sinking billions into our critical Bruce Highway infrastructure instead of the Olympics ya morons.

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2024-07-01/bus-car-crash-north-queensland-investigation-underway/104041456

    • Prickster says:

      You may not have noticed the Department of Transport and Main Roads publishes the Queensland Transport and Roads Investment Program (QTRIP) annually now with a convenient map showing a huge cluster of work programs in South East Queensland and fuck all on the Bruce Highway, or in Townsville.
       
      https://www.tmr.qld.gov.au/QTRIPonline

      • The Magpie says:

        Exactly.

        • Jatzcrackers says:

          And highlighted/fast tracked now due to the Palachook Olympic Games we had to have. Don’t even start me on mining royalties scooped up by Qld Gov to build another bikeway, walkway, six lane road to the Botanic Gardens cafe’s for the woke.

          Meanwhile ongoing major road accidents and near misses on the North of Noosa goat track masquerading as The Bruce Highway.

      • Bob Roberts says:

        You mean where all the people and traffic are? No shit.

        • Motorist says:

          Robert Roberts,
          Too simplistic.
          Wealth generation in Queensland occurs in the North and West. North of Gympie and West of Toowoomba.
          SE Qld is populated be baristas, hairdressers, and shopping center toenail artists. None generate wealth. It is the same dollar that is endlessly circulated.
          That productive part of Queensland, and the communities that support that production need infrastructure to maximize efficiency and profitability all round.
          And so simplistic RR, there are compelling reasons why the Bruce Cattle Track should be maintained to best industry standard, as well as other rural development roads.
          But I doubt that you would understand any of this.

          • Bob Roberts says:

            Even in a world where they’re being maintained to best industry standard, most jobs will still be done where there are more roads and more users.

          • Grumpy says:

            Bobby – and more votes

    • Dave Nth says:

      Avoid the Gregory Developmental rd south of Charters Towers then. Trust me it’s way worse…

      • Lord Of The Fries says:

        Driving between Charters Towers and Clermont, my FitBit watch reckons I make about 6,000 steps without ever leaving the car. Make of that what you will.

  34. I’ll be plucked says:

    MESSAGE FOR FOOD TRUCKS GREANEY;

    Where the pluck is the data from the public consultations regarding installation of parking meters along The Strand? AND, where is the business ‘case’ paperwork to support such a proposal?

    PS: I’ve been a North Ward resident for over 20 years. And I vote.

  35. The Magpie says:

    Surprise of the day.

    In a frank admission that is to be admired, Les Messagebank Walker admits what we have all known for a long time … that he hasn’t got a clue.

    The use of the word ‘claims’ here shows even The Bulletin doesn’t believe him. That was the teaser to click through to this story in today’s Astonisher.

    The MP, a former deputy mayor of the city he professed to love (what’s not to love he’s made a good grifting living out of it for decades) says he hasn’t heard anything about a possibe blow-out in pipeline funding … which leads one to wonder what planet he’s been visiting for the past few months … even Thompson has lamely addressed the issue.

    But then, The ‘Pie had a second read through. Aha!! Maybe Messagebank was being smart after all. Here’s the clue.

    Note the words ’at a state level’.

    That suggests this is Walker’s ‘clever’ shot at the new-look council (and the old look Jenny Hill regime), making it clear that the government has stumped up its share and it is the TCC’s responsibility to finish the job, actually and financially. He’s lying when he says he hasn’t heard the credible rumours (virtually admitted by TwoNames, and by Paul Jacob) but decided to make merry with a little wordplay with a council that ‘dun his party wrong.’

    So he knocked himself out with a bit of a wet lettuce leaf … which makes a change from some weedy random bozo doing it in a late-night pub.

    • Amanda Reen says:

      Walker is at least being transparent by virtue of his sheer ineptitude. Finally an honest admission about Cameron Dick’s GST lie.

      “According to Mr Walker, the LNP-led federal government under Scott Morrison initially promised funds for the first stage of the project, but after the 2019 election, there were “strings attached”, which complicated funding delivery for the Jenny Hill-led council.”

      Those pesky strings like a business case and making sure that the pre-investigation work was done before fully committing to the project timeline.

      So much for the GST ate the funding commitment so the State had to fund it. Hill and Dick lied to try to sandbag the Townsville seats two months before the 2020 election, and Walker just admitted it.

  36. The Magpie says:

    Christ!! We’re not the only ones with doubtful council characters. Amber Alert for Mackay parents, particularly those of Asian descent: lock up your daughters (and sons too probably).

    What a wonderfully diverse choice we have for local government in Queensland. Led by Paul Pisali and the crew of grifters in Ipswich, the ranks of choice were swollen by Mackay voters, who opted for an Asian sex traveller with exotic predilections.

    But then again, The ‘Pie supposes that is better than a wife abusing, valour stealing, serial lying fraudster who is proven financial incompetent.

    • T-1000 says:

      Once a politician always a politician. I’ve lost count of how many state or federal politicians have ended up in local government in Councillor roles. They just can’t help but quit politics, miss having their snouts in the trough, then return as a Mayor or Councillor. Fucking grubs.

      • The Magpie says:

        The voyage is usally txhe other way, isn’t it?

        • T-1000 says:

          No mate. They work for state or federal government, pull the pin and leave and then within a few years come back working for local government. Look at Lawrence Sgringborg as an example. Was state opposition leader, now Mayor of Goondiwindi. Jack Dempsey is another one. Plenty of them do this around Australia. Parasites that just love to come back and stick their snouts in the trough.

          • The Magpie says:

            Well, they’re only parasites depending on their performance. In some experience is a valuable asset at the LG level.

        • Achilles says:

          Never heard a bludge on the gravy train called a voyage B4!

  37. Doug K says:

    If those TCC Budget Planned Borrowings figures quoted by Circus Fan are correct – and I’ve got no reason to doubt them – the entire council should be sacked and an administrator appointed immediately.
    Meanwhile the Townsville Bulletin seems to think serious questions about the acquisition of the Hilton Garden Inn land aren’t worth investigating.
    Never mind, we’ll find out what the CCC thinks of the secret deal.

  38. Peckerwood says:

    Is it just me, or have TCC’s finances suddenly become very concerning? I for one didn’t know that our finances were this bad, and I’m a fairly astute individual who pays attention to Council papers and releases. This is very concerning.

    • The Magpie says:

      But You haven’t been paying attention to the concerns and accurate information landing here in The Nest for some time now … years in fact. So much just hadn’t been adding up under Hill

  39. Absolute pest says:

    I am thrilled that the Superpests will be racing this weekend in Townsville. It’s our signature event and one that brings in the big dollars for our region. The event is proudly supported by TCC and worth every penny that TCC has paid to bring them here. TCC gets my vote.

  40. Jatzcrackers says:

    Pie, I seem to recall that when the new ‘electronic’ style parking metres were introduced to the CBD back circa 2012, they were French built and cost aprox $30k a unit installed. Be a shitload more today !

    While I know they’re not required for every vehicle that parks, council still wouldn’t have several pallets of them sitting out the back in a shed.
    I also see that the new era of them have an electronic monitor embedded into the road parking space to read when a vehicle arrives and or overstays the paid fee.

    Either way, the whole acquire/install/maintain these monsters today won’t be cheap so it’s wishful thinking from councils if theythink there’ll be instant income
    from their ill thought out brain fart.

    Others here with more knowledge on matter will know more.

  41. The Magpie says:

    emo Astonisher reporter Chris Burns:

    Forget something, Chris?

    As recently as, oh, let’s say 175 years ago, it has been accepted journalistic practice when writing about any subject, to include the relevant subjects at the outset, preferably in the opening paragraph, but if you have a clever dick opening bon mot or two, certainly in the second par.

    Chris, you’ve apparently decided to add a tantalising element to your report in today’s Astonisher …. we haven’t a clue which company you are talking about until the very last of 14 paragraphs.

    Curious enough in itself, but even more so when it was a evidently straight re-write of a company media release.

    Looking forward to you using the same technique in your next stab at political reporting.

    • Bullshit says:

      Even I heard of the five Ws and a H.

      https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_Ws

      How is Chris Burns so bad at journalism and his editor so bad at editing that no one picked this up?

      • OED says:

        Snrub Sirhc the backwards story writer has done it again today on page 2: “A well-respected former Townsville mayor says” … not named until paragraph 12.

        Then page 5: “Efforts by a lone councillor” … not named until the fifth paragraph.

        • The Magpie says:

          While dopey and an unmerited arrogance towards the reader, it is easy to see where this style has come from … which is by no means exclusive to Burns. It is an extension of the click bait teaser dictum, a paragraph that deliberately omits one or two salient facts – place, name, or location etc -so readers are curious enough to click through to online stories. That many – like The ‘Pie – snort in derision when they get to the ‘facts’ is of no concern to the platform …. because it is all about the clicks, the metric on which advertising is sold.

          Mr Burns is either too lazy, too dopey, or too conniving to alter a story for print/online. The age old newspaper rule that the first paragraph should informa reader in a nutshell what it is about, so should contain ‘who, what, where and why’ is out the window, but Mr Burns has taken it to a ridiculous and thoughtless extreme.

          • The Magpie says:

            BTW criticising looks and dress sense of females gets all the gals out with tin snips and nipple clips on the perpetrator, but one supposes making appearance comments on blokes is not so heinous, so The ‘Pie has a question for Mr Burns: Do you ever wash that greasy hair of yours, mate?

            But at least you’ve got an authentic trademark look of journos through the ages, two-day stubble and those ‘hard night last night’ eyes.

          • The Magpie says:

            But today, he’s done it a-fucking-gain.

            Opening paragraph:
            A well-respected former Townsville mayor says city councillors “need to find their voice” amid concerns the city’s progress has stalled while a cloud hangs over its new controversial leader.

            So that is the nub of the story, an authoritative comment from a respected former mayor (only Tyrell and Mooney qualify).

            But what does our Christoper Robin reporter do … he writes the opinion of the Chamber of Commerce CEO Heidi Turner, the already reported spray from Kattonic Nick Dametto, , and then (for god’s fucking sake!) TEL chair Kevin ‘Rhymes With’ Gill – why you would ask the opinion the chairman of the most ineffective and leeching organisation is a question in itself. And calling Gill a civic leader is an insult all round.

            UNTIL, 10 long paragraphs later, at the very end of the story, we find out that he was initially talking about His Radiance, former mayor Tony Mooney.

            Who said EXACTLY nothing, except his abdication from caring about the city that made him a wealthy man.

            Wimps all round.

          • OED says:

            That’s a good point, he’s writing click bait. We’ll see him move over to the Daily Mail sometime in the future.

            Contrast that with Natasha Emeck’s adjacent story:

            “Whistleblowers from inside Townsville council have blown the lid on the ballooning budget blowout for stage 2 of the Haughton Pipeline, which is now expected to cost more than $420m, says federal MP Phil Thompson.

            Mr Thompson’s comments were made in a statement to Parliament on Thursday.

            It comes as the cost of stage 2 of the Haughton Pipeline project has been shrouded in speculation in recent weeks.”

            Fairly succinctly explaining who, what, why, where, when and how.

            They put a professional on the job for the more important story rather than Clickbait Burns.

          • The Magpie says:

            And you too make a good point. ( And it appears Ms Emeck shares The ‘Pie’s weakness for alliteration with her ‘ballooning budget blowout’. Bravo!

  42. Local Bloke says:

    If the council require more revenue and insist on paid parking, they should look at updating their parking app to recognise local registration plates and provide a cost savings for local. Here is how the system should work. Lets say I head to the strand for a few hours to have a walk or some lunch etc. I register my numberplate through the online app and the app automatically allows me 3 hours of free parking because my numberplate shows I am a local. If i exceed the 3 hours, I am required to pay by the hour. If I am a local that lives in the area or requires the parking for daily work, the app recognises that I require 8-10 hours parking free and accepts this. Any visitors to our town would then be required to pay for any parking they do at these places (which is pretty common) and the locals would probably accept having a exemption from paying over a 3 hour period.

    • The Magpie says:

      Kerrrist!!! How about we look at a simpler solution,one that doesn’t involve fucking around with apps, hours and bureaucratic bullshit. Oh, I know … how about we don’t havwe parking meters installed along the Strand?

      This is a great example of a Hegelian Dialect … create a non-existant problem, then offer a solkution to it for your own ends. So instead of saying they want the cash, the TCC says the want to free up spaces that mostly turned over regularly anyway … then offer the solution of parking meters.

      How’s that for transparency?

      If the council and councillors think characterise us as an mob of whingers, let’s face it, you give us plenty of things to ‘whinge’ about. (For whinge, read exercise democratic right to oppose and comp[lain about overbearing arrogant decisions.)

      • The Ghost says:

        I once worked for central highlands regional council. They underwent a project where they looked at what fees and charges they could apply to the ratepayers for services that cost nothing to maintain. In other words, how can we charge for something that costs us nothing to maintain or administer. Not sure how that panned out, but as an example they charged rubbish collection services to ALL ratepayers including those who live on farm properties where there is no rubbish bin collection, even though the ratepayer/farmer is being slugged for it. Grubs.

      • Achilles says:

        Dead right ‘Pie; shades of the IT year 2000, debacle, read con!

      • Local Bloke says:

        You do know that the existing parking meters in the city can be paid for by card or on the App. The App already exists so they are going to use it when they install the new meters at the strand. All i am saying is update the app to give locals free parking when they use the strand.

        • The Magpie says:

          Now you’ve explained that, that is logicxal … but creating classes of users would overwhelmly make the whole Strand exercise a massively losing proposition, local outnumbering visitors probably (guess only) 9 to 1.

          let’s just not put the fucking things in in the first place.

    • Circus fan says:

      I would like to see the council release statistics on the total costs of parking and measure it against the revenue from the parking.

      Costs: enforcement staff and equipment, parking meter repairs and maintenance, smart phone app security, maintenance and updates, parking surface/road maintenance and repairs.

      Revenue: parking fees, parking fines.

      Does the parking revenue manage to pay for its costs??

      • Burnt Brows says:

        It would, easily. As a Banker I looked at business cases for parking metres and would love if they were ever available to the public to purchase ! They make a s..tload of money and then you add another s..tload of money on top for fines.

      • Toy Thompstain says:

        Carparking is money for jam. If you take the example of regional airports they derive their huge profits from aircraft landing fees and Carparking. That is their two main revenue sources, and it pays well. Even the big airports make a killing from carpark fees. The infrastructure costs and human resource costs pale to insignificance compared to the revenue they bring in.

        • Airline says:

          It’s not just the regional Airports that make a Motza out of Car Parking Fees . For Example Tullamarine Airport and State and Federal authorities cannot agree if a train Line from Melbourne City to the Airport at the Airport end should be above ground or below ground is Station .The State Government say above Ground cheaper while the Airport Owners say the Station must be Underground due to the decrease in Parking Revenue lost by taking existing parking space… This dispute has been going on over 5 Years … Yes i would be pleased as a airline passenger Domestic or International to have to get my baggage from an Under ground Train Station to a International or a Domestic check in area. (The airport owners say put check in areas at each Train Station on the Train Line..)

      • Circus fan says:

        There is information contained in these FAQs that council released: https://www.townsville.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0016/172303/TSV-Parking-FAQs-08032023.pdf

        The council spent $5M just on maintenance over the 10 year life of the old meters. No mention of wages, time spent on refutals of fines – example if a $70 parking fine was refuted that took 2 hours to investigate – that revenue turns to zero as that is the cost of the staff. And a 2 hour investigation is a pipe-dream, they all take far longer.
        Also no mention of the street/road maintenance that the council said the parking meter revenue was to be used to pay for.
        The parking meter revenue cash-cow is a myth for the Townsville council.

        The new parking meters cost $6,000 per machine (not including installation, electricity, maintenance). That is 1,000 $6 all-day passes per machine before the purchase alone starts to pay for itself.

        I am just not a fan of parking meters in the areas of the city that have more Available For Lease signs than operating businesses. If money could be made from parking in Townsville, the private sector would be investing, and council could make its money from the development fees.

  43. The Ghost says:

    It’s like how some countries charge a ‘congestion tax’. You pay by the kilometre that you drive. Easy money for the grubby governments.

    • The Magpie says:

      And DOES NOT apply to Townsville. Using New York as a reason to do anything in Townsville … or any regional city … is just craven opportunism.

  44. The Magpie says:



    Yes, like a lightweight turd that won’t flush, Thompson has somehow got the nod to slime his way back into Walker Street. And his crowning moment will be if he scams a whole city into giving him compensation for imagined slights to his human rights.

    Tell us, you turdball, what human rights did you consider when you abused and terrorised your wife, what human rights did you consider for those against whom you committed fraud and for which were hauled into court (which you can’t remember, you lying scum), and what human rights did you consider when you stole the valour of real heros in the armed forces.

    It’s going to be interesting to see how councillors react to this unwelcome reappearance. Wonder if there’s a few turn-coat slime balls amongst the councillor who will facilitate this, Thompson greatest con yet. Or has he plans to bully them into compliance with some of his policies, or he will otherwise include them in any defamation action.

    And least we’ll soon see the fibre of our elected represenatives.

    • Toy Thompstain says:

      Thompson is an egotistical deadbeat without a humble bone in his body. A true grifter – he is only Mayor because he wants his ego tickled and a $250k job. His drum is beating for a compensation payout. Again, he is a grifter and shyster. I also suspect he is a borderline sociopath/psycopath, a bit of both. He won’t hesitate in dragging the Council and the ratepayer down the shitter in his quest to fulfill his own desires. His motto is ‘fuck everybody else’. We’ll fuck you Troy, I hope the local newspapers go for your jugular.

    • Achilles says:

      Wonder if he’ll arrive at 05:00? I trust that the security guards have been advised!!!!

    • Ball Bag says:

      Maybe he’s come back to save the day and reverse the extra parking fees.

      Honesty our town is a joke when it comes to politics. Sick and tired of this absolute cock head scamming people.

      • The Magpie says:

        Don’t laugh, that’s possibly one thing he will do … as well as seek a back investigation of the Hilton matter.

        So why is that a worry? Because he will only be doing for cynical reasons, typical cooker/MyPlace MO, do some reasonable and generally popular things and then start using the goodwill capital to insert less palatable items on to the agenda.

        And there’s enough deadheads out there to be fooled.

        • Grumpy says:

          Can he do that without the support of the councillors?

          • Ducks Nuts says:

            He’s the all seeing, all knowing, never forgetting, Mayor. He doesn’t need approval from anyone.

          • The Magpie says:

            And he’s basically said exactly that in one of his posts. As appalling as it is for Townsville, The ‘Pie has to admit it will be fascinating watching it all unravel in this mongoose v snake melodrama.

          • Ball Bag says:

            Good point, probably not. But I probably wouldn’t expect him to reverse it anyway. He would be the type of jerk to claim he’s against it to curry favour and then go ahead and implement it anyway.

        • Ball Bag says:

          I honestly don’t think he’s smart enough to pull all that off, and he’s now got everyone offside. I think they only let him back so get him away from the budge. They just passed it so now he’s back. He is a herpes virus that’s for sure.

        • Achilles says:

          Pie, that is exactly the same formula used by religions!

    • Alfred E Neuman says:

      An ordinary council meeting is planned for today. It should be a hoot!

  45. Jenny says:

    Magpie, if all this is true and a happening thang . . . . elected councillors cannot be expected to act in any way contrary to regular meeting procedure and the standing orders. Whether Troy Thompson knows what these are, or cares, does not mean councillors can just boycott proceedings. We have to hope that the CEO and other officers together with the 10 councillors, including the Deputy Mayor, act with decorum and professionalism to accommodate the (apparently, for the time being) legally elected Mayor until such a time as this becomes untenable – which may not be instantaneous. The councillors can’t chuck out the mayor. Although if they all resigned at once, surely that would stun the minister and government into action?

    • The Magpie says:

      Who was suggesting/recommending that councillors do nything other than maintain a dignified attitude, in favt, LG rules demand that they do. That was only your suggestion, and thank Christ such dimwittery will not sway councillors, if for no other reason but self interest.

      But what they can do is vote as a bloc to simply reject any foolhardy motions this damaged man puts forward.

      Teetering times for Townsville are ahead.

    • Mike Douglas says:

      Jenny ,, decorum and professionalism from Councillors . 4 remaining team Hill were part of a culture and cover up who reported independent Councillor O’Callaghan to the OIA on numerous occasions for asking questions on projects which now will further impact the Councils budget for years . If the Councillors want respect they need to come clean on the project blow outs left by Mayor Hill and her limited circle . How can acting Mayor Jacobs claim its a ” back to basics budget ” then claim he doesnt know how much projects like the Haughton / Lansdown have suddenly blown out . Concert Hall update ? , $2 mil was spent on a study for the best site .

      • Jenny says:

        Mike, excuse me but I did not say anything about councillors wanting respect. I was responding to the Magpie’s observation that we would soon see whether any councillors, some of whom are likely “turn-coat slime balls”, had sufficient “fibre” to take on the Mayor if he tries to “bully them into compliance”. There are 10 of them and one of him. The councillors won’t need to try very hard to outvote him. If they do it with decorum and professionalism they will earn public respect on the way.

        • Guy says:

          Are these the same councillors that brought the plague of parking meters and hundreds of millions in extra debt.

  46. Prince Rollmop says:

    King fuckwit and Batman wannabe Aaron Harpic has been posting more anti-Crisafulli posts on his Facebook page again. I guess Harpic has nothing better to do, you know, like servicing the community and earning earning his keep. Instead the emotional drop kick spends his days criticising Crisafulli. What a tosser.

  47. Surprise says:

    With the new parking system, you only know if you overstayed when an infringement notice arrives in the mail.
    A council vehicle is fitted with an onboard scanner to check if you payment is valid at the time.

  48. Ducks Nuts says:

    This sounds like a forward thinking policy from a party running a campaign on let’s get tough on crime and there’s a cost of living crisis.

    WTF are they thinking?

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2024-07-02/pokies-cap-on-queensland-clubs-lnp-policy/104043318

    • Ben Rumson says:

      I am dead against poker machines but I have to admit they are a most efficient way of collecting the Stupidity Tax.

      • The Magpie says:

        Yep, long ago, it was a smart student of human nature whom worked out the various systems for ‘involuntary taxation’.

    • ABS says:

      Anything that expands the number of pokies is a bad move. The benefit of propping up a small failing venue by merging with a larger one will be outweighed by the many downsides.

      • The Magpie says:

        Are you sitting, ABS? The ‘Pie agrees with you!! Poker machines are one of the greatest social ills in this country, exponentially exacerbated when greedy government allowed them into pubs. Two things that should happen to start a windback of this scourge – pokies shoiuld be for club’s only, at least they plough much of the revenue back into member benefits, and the payout percentage that machines can set at should be, if not reversed, at least altered frpm the current (92%/8% lose-win ratio).

        Publicans are clawing it in from these operations with no social obligations except paying the appropriate tax.

        That is one reason why we all need to keep a close eye on Thompson using his supposed influence (fortunately at the moment in minus territory) to promote the Illich Park ‘community centre’ project – which included pokies.

        You know, the facility that a few years ago he predicted would make $12million profit – after just one year of operation FFS!!.

        “Conservatively, after its first year, we expect a net profit of $12 million,” Mr Thompson said.

        Letting this fraudulent scammer anywhere near a poker machine entity would be like telling the tax paying public ‘Open your wallets, and repeat after me … help yourself’.

        And this is the bloke who thinks he can run a billion dollar outfit like the TCC.

        He has to go, and much more quickly than he undoubtedly will.

        • Kenny Kennett says:

          Wrong way around, Pie. It’s 92/8 win/lose ratio…BUT…all credits are calculated into the 92% ie Put a dollar in the machine and get a $2 win. Very few pokie players will cash in for $2 but so far the player is up 100%. Of course they’ll put it back in and get the occasional credit which they’ll pop back in the machine again. So somebody might only lose $20 that they walked in with but the figures show they actually were credited on average about $38 which they put back into the machine. And these figures are reflected on average spends and payouts so the high rollers credits that they return to the machines have a big effect on the smaller punters. Happy to be corrected by pokie managers or mathematicians but I’m confident that this is the case.

          • The Magpie says:

            Yep, sorry, that’s basically what The ‘Pie meant to say. But didn’t. He’s entitled to the occasional idiocy. Thanks for the correct maths.

  49. Democrat Dave says:

    Just heard twonames is coming back today, medical and mental signed off, should make for an interesting time ahead. I did see he had stated he signed the chamber petition against parking, bodes well for some chilling conversation in the chamber. Given all councillors are reported to OIA and CCC is there anyway to out the lot. It’s been suggest with less cash than needed, insolvency is circling, we may not need to go to a by-election, bring in the administrators, sack the executive and all councillors, that’s the strand revenue covered, no meters needed!

    • The Magpie says:

      That insolvency issue has raised its head before a few years back,and the answer then was … borrow!

      Hill and her crew didn’t understand the difference between debt and deficit.

      • Democrat Dave says:

        It’s not rocket science, $20M cash in bank, less than a month of income, more going out than coming in, and assets being written down, Townsville bleeding, remove the lot and go back 4-5 terms, this needs proper investigation

    • The Magpie says:

      So there’s another lie and if allowed to stand, is the death knell of any transparency. Because if he can do it once, he can do it every time.

      The ‘Pie is checking and is pretty sure the mayor cannot unilaterally make a decision to close an advertised open meeting, he would surely need to take a vote on it. This bloke is going to ensure we get an administrator is asap. This action is classical MyPlace self-defeating braggadocio.

      • The Magpie says:

        Watching the live stream, and The ‘Pie continues to ask himself, what did Troy Thompson expect the media to do if journalists were allowed into the chamber to personally attend proceedings? Media are not allowed to take any active role, by word or action, in council proceedings unless addressed by the chair on a point of order or ruling.

        Vindictive, childish behaviour that further makes this city the national target for risible and damaging profiling of our governance and social profile.

        • The Magpie says:

          At 10.23, Clr Liam Mooney has made a suggestion that the public holiday for the annual Townsville Show be rescinded and allocated to another unspecified event. It was a comment only and not a motion, and just why that would be suggested is anyone’s gues at what’s behind it. But sounded like seed sowing to The Magpie.
          And it’s a suggestion that would make any request for comment from show boss Chris Condon pointless … you can bet any comment Chris would make would be unprintable..

          • The Magpie says:

            Meeting was closed for council consideration of an undisclosed subject, reopened six minutes later.

          • The Magpie says:

            Clr Rehbein suggested that given the number of objections received to the plan to install parking meters on the Strand, which was decided in budget discussions behind closed doors, be an agenda item for open (public) discussion at the next council meeting in a fortnight’s time. The audio was a bit muffled but it appears that the matter may be up for open discussion at the next meeting.

            Anybody else watching live streaming (which ended at 10.33am) accurately hear what was said in an exchange with Rehbein and a council officer?

          • Alfred E Neuman says:

            I have just re-watched that segment. At 1.08.04 a council officer sitting in back row named Emma advised that the motion was not a General Business item. The councillor said words to the effect, Thanks Emma, we will leave that one there, I just wanted to bring this to Council’s attention.

            From that I do not know if the councillor was successful in having the issue of Strand parking meters revisited.

          • The Magpie says:

            It can be requested as a matter for the next council meeting, surely.

          • Hee Haw says:

            He was effectively shut down by the legal officer stating that it was not general business.
            FYI you can always now review the whole live stream and skip to the bits you really want to see.

          • The Magpie says:

            Son will the Strand parking be on the next meeting’s agenda?

          • nicolae ceausescu says:

            He gave notice of his intention to move a motion at the next Council calling for all of the confidential matters pertaining to the paid parking budget deliberations to be made public. This will include the costs associated with implementation and projected revenue from the proposal. He will then seek to move an amendment to the budget removing the decision to introduce it.

            While Council looks to areas that it can increase revenue, very little has been discussed about the savings side of the budget. From my reading the council have found no savings which is the real story here. A significant portion of the $30 plus million deficit in the 23/24 year was caused by a massive blowout in employee costs. That is because they built in a projected vacancy rate of 12% when in fact the actual figure was 1%. Many factors contributed to this not least of all is that the executive had no idea what they were doing.

            Employee costs are slated to grow by more than $10 million per year over the next 3 years, part of which will be caused by the negotiation of the 3 Council certified agreements, set to commence later this year. Unless they seriously start to look at how they reduce operational costs, we are looking at higher costs for the community across the board into the future.

          • The Magpie says:

            Excellent info and better ears than The Magpie. The motion is to be applauded, even if it does offer our fraudulent accidental mayor the opportunity of hopping on the bandwagon of a popular decision (if it reached) in which had absolutely no say previously.

          • Hee Haw says:

            https://www.townsville.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0007/6010/Code-of-Meeting-Practice-Policy.pdf

            Section 6.6.7

            6.6.7. ATTENDANCE BY THE MEDIA
            a) Representatives of the press, radio and television may attend meetings in the area set aside for the media.
            b) A copy of the agenda will be furnished to media representatives at or immediately prior to the opening of the
            meeting.
            6

          • The Magpie says:

            This then can surely be another behavioural complaint. because banning the media of a meeting that was life streamed to the public can be nothing else than personal vindictiveness. What a dignified chap he is.

          • Jenny says:

            Magpie, according to the Townsville Bulletin in the last half hour, “Residents have condemned the Townsville mayor’s return to work and booting out the media as he took over today’s meeting, saying the controversial leader under a CCC investigation “should have stayed banned”. Is it correct to say Thompson was “banned”? Didn’t he take himself out on leave? Wasn’t he free to return at any time regardless of the CCC involvement?

          • The Magpie says:

            No he was not, there was nothing voluntary about this fraudster’s absence. He was barred on CEO’s legal advice from the building on a technicality. He lied about a health break to disguise the fact that he was exiled. That has now been overturned, apparently on legal advice.

            This cannot last, it is untenable.

          • ABS says:

            Re Mooney Jr’s suggestion to rescind the public holiday from the Townsville Show: The prominent political advertising at the show might have been an issue.

          • The Magpie says:

            Good point, hadn’t thought of thsta.

            Not going to hapopen anyway, just Junior showing off his Labor creds to daddy.

      • Vladimir P, 4814 says:

        The Chair technically does have the right to exclude a person from the chamber, including media representatives. He didn’t close the meeting per se. Probably not a bad call to exclude ocean-going fuckwit and wannabe warrior poet Chris Burns. I wouldn’t want to be near him either.

        Still, what a great look from our transparency king mayor!

        • The Magpie says:

          Not to sure that’s right. Have you got a link to that part of the legislation, the only one The ‘Pie saw in the LG Act he has already published in a previous comment, which says the media is allowed in to public sessions of council meetings.

          Several questions remain outstanding about this spireful, juvenile decision – especially since the media are mute observers in council meetings, so what was the problem?.

          The first is that Thompson offered no reason that The ‘Pie can find for the decision. Seems like it was an arbitrary ‘off with their heads’ from a Queen of Hearts wannabe. And neither can The Magpie find even one councillor questioning this highly personal, apparently unilateral decision. Surely there must be a council vote on such a decision, because, despite the streaming, a live presence can pick up nuances that are noteworthy, and councillor are therefore being denied the right to be reported in a traditional and accepted manner, not just the mayor.

          Or in fact, were members of the media barred before council started, which meant it was an order by fiat from the mayor?

          The ‘Pie came in about 10 minutes late to the live stream, was there anything about it in the stream? In fact, if it was Thompson’s decision to security BEFORE the meeting, were the councillors even aware of the directive?

      • Hee Haw says:

        Surely as per the minutes of the TCC meeting 5/6/24 where it states “ AbsenceThe Acting Chief Executive Officer advised that he had received an email from the Mayor, Councillor Troy Thompson, advising that he is seeking a leave of absence pending the outcome of all investigations relating to him.” then as the outcome of all investigations are not yet concluded this leave of absence is still in effect?
        I have not seen any resolution of council to change this request from the Mayor.

        • Hee Haw says:

          One hour and seventeen minutes after my last comment and the Townsville Bulletin is online stating exactly the same statement from the Mayor, seem the Magpie is widely read and groundbreaking all the facts in this debacle

  50. Prickster says:

    Nice work Premier Miles a $700m bridge to island with 19,000 people and no business case, just a desperate political move. https://statements.qld.gov.au/statements/100736

    Meanwhile Townsville has to beg for simple things like completion of pipelines for water security and other essential infrastructure.

    Another example of the clear division in Queensland and the failure of our local members getting out maneuvered by a first term ALP member in SEQ,

    • Prince Rollmop says:

      Well it will never happen as the Miles government are going to have their asses handed to them at the October election. And let’s just say the project did go ahead, $700m is a guesstimate. Projects like that always run way above budget so you could probably double that amount to $1.4b. Bribie Island isn’t integral to Queenslands economy as it’s mostly inhabited by retirees and weekenders doing a spot of fishing and then buying fish and chips. Team Miles need to spend those amounts of money on FNQ.

    • Ducks Nuts says:

      Prick, I believe your local representatives decided a stadium would be a better investment than a pipeline. We definitely got our fair share. It just wasn’t spent on essential infrastructure. It was spent on beer and skittles.

    • Burnt Brows says:

      Bridge to Maggie = 1. Ferries close down their business overnight, 2. Townsville gets to share its crime statistics with another suburb, 3. Anyone owning property on the Island licking their chops for huge valuation increases, 4. Many businesses on the Island close down because people can drive 10 mins to get groceries at mainland prices, 5. TCC can install parking meters to make money out of the backpackers, 6. State Government can make big $$$ by putting a toll on the bridge, 7. I can go fishing off the bridge and catch dinner, maybe, 8. Island hippies will be pushed out and forced to move to Balgal Beach, 9. Birnbrauer will be able to eat at Maggie twice a day and post food pics from his favourite place the RSL (while he reminisces of the glory days cooking for the SAS).

      • Alahazbin says:

        BB, How did a post about Smiles stumping up $700 mil for a bridge to Bribie Island turn to a bridge to Maggie Is?. Are you trying to stay relevant?

        • The Magpie says:

          Actually, The ‘Pie wondered what that was all about, too. It’s an old issue that’s been batted about intermittently for at least 30 years now,, often when the Astonisher is having a slow week, with the Pallarenda-West Point link trotted out for some more bloviating.

        • Burnt Brows says:

          Alahazbin, I was just getting in with Maggie Island bridge before Birnbrauer thought of it and claimed it as another one of his master pieces.

          • The Magpie says:

            One can guess that TwoNames doesn’t go in for masterpieces, more masterstrokes, and many of them.

  51. Prickster says:

    After nearly 10 years in Parliament what can Scott Stewart and Aaron Harper point to as their legacies?

    One term wonder Les Walker has achieved as much on one term as he did in 16 yrs at TCC = fuck all.

  52. Prince Rollmop says:

    The LGAQ will be holding its Coastal Leaders Forum in Townsville August 5 and 6. I wonder if Twonames will be permitted to attend? Will he be able to bypass security arrangements? I can only imagine how much he has to offer. I’m sure Elusive Butterflog will be there scooping up crumbs that spill from the members tables.

    • Jenny says:

      Exhaling Butterfly will be under the desks polishing its masters boots. Anything to do with the LGAQ is a money grab. The weasel Mayors and Councillors will be besides themselves and eager to pay to attend. They enjoy these lovein’s because they get their ego’s massaged as they pretend they are some sort of Hollywood royalty. Fucking clowns.

  53. Democrat Dave says:

    Just saw Dametto’s comment on TwoNames, pot, black lol. It might be time for our friend from Hinchinbrook to come clean and tell people he is Labor lite! He has a loud mouth and a house invader, really…. I’m hearing his orders are to keep his WHS in order, so removed the media for stress, first day. Interesting, one things for sure, he’s had more front pages then any other QLD pollie!

    • The Magpie says:

      ‘Removed the media for stress’? Thta’s like asking for some honey when you’re stretched out on an ant’s nest.

  54. Democrat Dave says:

    Dametto’s a media tramp, we all know that, just bitter because he’s not getting media time. Just an FYI Nick, the live stream works and is up as recorded almost immediately, imagine that, no one missed out, and it was the CEO who gave TwoNames the license to use the WHS act to protect himself.

    • Dave Nth says:

      Dem Dave have to disagree, he’s me local member and I have no issues with him.

      His office is generally good with communication, I conversed with a few issues and on one of the bones of contention they were very helpful getting info for me that I’d been haranguing the Council and State Government about who paid me off till then.

      When we were in Thuringowa electorate the ALP members or offices never answered anything.

      • Democrat Dave says:

        Fair enough. I’ve heard a lot about Katter recently, and I think for self preservation they need to get away from ALP, pick a side and stick, otherwise they’ll get even less. I don’t think Pugh or Ryder are good picks, a violent offender and a tossed out local loud mouth not the look Katter should be going with. Ben Fusco should be their Thuringowa man, he’d get up, good bloke, well liked lost to another mouth in Ellis, who’s mascarading as LNP, we can see who he sits with,, his mate Liam reporting back to TJH.

  55. The Casino Kid says:

    Lovely to see the Mayor back in his rightful seat. Like him or hate him, due process must be followed, and by his returning to the Mayoral role we see democracy in action. Well played.

    • The Magpie says:

      Will you say the sam thing when sometime in the near future when he is turfed out?

      • Democrat Dave says:

        I’m hearing the OIA found TwoNames has had nothing to answer for, and the CCC is of the same opinion, that makes it interesting, TwoNames has definitely got some balls to stand up against those trying to influence the decisions, the media is brutal. As much as I think they all should go, I’d prefer it by administrators being appointed, and the whole council executive, councillors be dissolved. That saves at least the strand revenue from parking meters. A novel idea would be to take all meters away, put 4 hour limits in play, employ more foot soldiers. And while I’m at it, why do the TCC still not employ enough traffic controllers and vehicles for their jobs!

        • The Magpie says:

          Talk is cheap, and like fibre-dense turds, keep floating around aimlessly. ‘I’m hearing ….’ is a cheap way to set up a comment to express a point of view. But such comment is fair enough if you are more specific about where you are getting what sounds like phantasmagorical information.

          • Democrat Dave says:

            TwoNames is said to be in receipt of documents, timing is everything. Sleepy Jacob’s must be hurting, knowingly lying to the public, this will be a CCC matter for sure. And Team Hillbilly members will definitely face CCC from knowingly withholding information from the project. Looks like the building is burning down, but should Prins also be brought into these matters, he ran away very quickly, I think a full investigation needs to be had, sack the lot, mayor, councillors and executive. Looks like Rehbien is trying to run from the fire, wasn’t he a fireman… stinks of corruption

          • The Magpie says:

            Yes, yes, all well and good, you’ve had your vent, DD, but for fuck’s sake, stop with the ‘is said to be’ stuff. Put up or shut up, what documents, implying what?

    • Grumpy says:

      If he had a shred of decency he would resign. He has been found out to be without honesty, honour or conscience. A despicable individual.

    • Burnt Brows says:

      “Due Process” – tell a bunch of lies to Voters and get elected Mayor. If Birnbrauer had any integrity he would just resign.

  56. J jones says:

    What’s the point of kicking the media out of an open meeting which they can watch outside the room online?
    Why TwoNames?

  57. Droopy draws says:

    This place is like watching afternoon telly…
    From the Bulletin FB page:

    A ground-breaking ceremony for the proposed development was scheduled to feature Mayor Troy Thompson before he went on leave, but Townsville City Council have now confirmed the project won’t go ahead. ???? LATEST: https://bit.ly/4btk0mj

    You called it again, Pie. ????

    • The Magpie says:

      Nope, The ‘Pie just provided a platform for a respected lobby group to air their legitimate concerns and have data (i.e facts) that had been discussed publicly about the project. Other media outlets had refused to report the problems, because they were compromised by commercial pressures and a misunderstanding of their role in the community.

      Big question: was this the matter discussed and voted on in the six or seven minute closed session this morning? If so, why a closed session, the fact that a time frame had run it is not CinC or sensitive to council?

      The stench is not going away.

  58. Prince Rollmop says:

    Jenny Hill went to war with Qantas and anybody else who didn’t do as she said. It left a toxic legacy on Townsville. Along comes Twonames and he goes to war against his fellow Councillors and the local media. He is further enshrining an environment where enemies are made rather than friends. What Townsville desperately needs is collaboration, consideration, and partnerships. It’s a decade or more overdue. Thompson is another dictator, narcissist, and arseclown. For Townsville that’s two in a row! How long we have to endure him is anybody’s guess.

  59. The Magpie says:

    Many a truth spoken in jest.

  60. The Magpie says:

    It would appear that the aforementioned opening minutes of the live stream of the council meeting, which, as The Magpie has noted earlier in comments, he unavoidably missed for personal reasons, holds the key to what this abomination of a mayor can expect in the future. It is clear councillors have found their independence from the chair and Thompson is not welcome. Here’s the live stream link.
    https://townsville.civicclerk.com.au/web/Player.aspx?id=1647&key=-1&mod=-1&mk=-1&nov=0
    First go to the 12 minute mark, and listen to Clr Robinson’s remarks regarding Thompson’s return (although he doesn’t say that directly). Robinson makes it clear – and it is clear he is speaking for the whole council … that the only reason Thompson is back is because of legal reasons.

    Start watching the live stream at 14.35.

    After all the bureaucratic palaver of Thompson regaining the chair, Thompson sits in the chair and his very first words after thanking Paul Jacob are: “I might ask the CEO if it is now possible for the press to leave the room now, if that is possible?’ CEO Joe McCabe replies” That is up to you, chair.’ ‘Thompson: ‘It’s transparent because. we get it recorded, they may watch it at any time.’ And then a cameraman and reporter are seen to dismantle equipment and leave.

    But this bargain basement little Caesar declined to have the courtesy to explain to either the press – or the councillors for that matter – the reasons for his order by fiat. And no councillor asked why Thompson found this necessary, they appeared under the impression that the meeting was about to be closed.

    It wasn’t..

    But, although somewhat ponderous as these things are, bear with it and keep watching, for the next few minutes give us an indication of the future under this fraudulent mayor.
    Because when Thompson tried to get seconders for the first couple of motions, there was confusion caused by the convoluted language of regulations, and councillors clearly thought they were being asked to vote to agree to Thompson’s return … and not one councillor raised their hand. raised their hand.

    Suzy Batkovic then clarified that that was not what the vote was about, it was just a pro forma move to basically re-set things as they were just before Thompson was given a unanimous no confidence vote. The motion was then passed.

    This is an intolerable situation, and Brisbane must step in quickly, and stop the usual foot-dragging by the CCC.

    • Jenny says:

      “This is an intolerable situation, and Brisbane must step in quickly, and stop the usual foot-dragging by the CCC.”

      Magpie, good luck with pressing the government (“Brisbane”) to intervene in the processes of the INDEPENDENT Crime and Corruption Commission. All the more so because they have just completed (May 2024) a review of the CCC’s reporting functions:

      “The Queensland Government established an independent review into the Crime and Corruption Commission’s (CCC) reporting on the performance of its corruption functions (the Review).

      In establishing the Review, the Government referred to the need to legislate new reporting powers for the CCC, while recognising that the publishing of reports relating to individual corruption matters raised complex legal, ethical and human rights issues. The Government stated that it had initiated the Review to ensure that any legislative amendments struck a proper balance between the right of the individual and the broader public interest.

      The Honourable Catherine Holmes AC SC, the former Chief Justice of Queensland, was appointed as the Reviewer. Read more information about the Reviewer.

      The Review commenced on 19 February 2024 and provided a report on the Review to the Attorney-General and Minister for Justice and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence on 20 May 2024.”

      It’s hard to imagine the minister lifting a legal finger until they know exactly what the CCC is going to uncover and recommend.

      • The Magpie says:

        Yes, but The’Pie’s comment was about the speed of the CCC investigations, which does not seem to be a focus of your comment.

        • Jenny says:

          I acknowledge that all of us want something to be done “quickly”. What is probably a bridge too far is for the government to “step in” to a CCC investigation. Let’s keep politicians’ grubby fingers out of it.

          • Alahazbin says:

            Oh Jenny! You are a comedian. “A bridge to far”. You been talking to your mate ‘SMiles’

      • Not standing for Mayor says:

        Jenny you do know that the word INDEPENDENT is added to the name of every organisation or official that the ALP has created or appointed to be in their pocket don’t you? It is a kind of code to make sure they know who they own and can rely on either to do their bidding or turn a blind eye..

  61. Ben Rumson says:

    I find myself a little more confused than usual.

    The fraudulent Mayor Two Names is back in the chair.

    Dear ‘Pie, can you recap? Who or what agencies, if any, are investigating MTN and for what, and when should we anticipate a result. And, after the result, what then for Townsville?

  62. Doug K says:

    Did threats to send the Hilton Garden Inn land deal to the CCC for investigation cause panic in local Labor political ranks, leading to the Blue Hills development being scrapped?
    If you ready the TB story carefully, you’ll get a few hints as to what actually caused the demise of one of Jenny Hill’s two pet projects (hopefully the Landsdown black hole will be next to get the chop).
    For example, was the hotel proponent, Focus Pacific Australia, really so slack that it allowed the approval to lapse?
    If so, why not apply for an extension?
    I’m glad I don’t have shares in that company.
    And why no comment from the developers on such a game changing announcement. Strange days indeed.
    And, most importantly, what does council now do with the vacant land?
    Here’s a suggestion: scrap the Concert Hall idea and build a new Entertainment Centre that is capable of hosting all performing arts and visiting concerts, events, and conventions.
    Who knows, we might even be able to put together bid to bring back the Townsville Crocodiles.
    Ah, the memories of magic nights at The Swamp.

    • The Magpie says:

      You may be right, Doug, and you ask some good questions, but perhaps it’s not productive to twist this too much in the political area just yet… one assumes that the matter was decided by council behind closed doors, where councillors were told that Dolan’s mate at Focus Pacific was advised to let the approval lapse rather than have the project voted down in open council. The new councillors, not all of whom are dummies, no doubt are anxious to steady the ship, and first work out a way of dealing with Thompson until he’s finally turfed. Perhaps it was a matter of priorities, because the record of the process during Mayor Mullet’s regime remain for later examination.

      Oh, wait…. or do they?

    • Jenny says:

      Doug, you propose that a new entertainment centre should be “capable of hosting all performing arts”. One “art” that is already well catered for at the Civic Theatre is live plays that require overhead machinery for sets and props. It would be unnecessary and expensive to duplicate functions already available in existing facilities – quite apart from compromising the flexibility of the ‘convention centre’ or ‘concert hall’ function which does not need any such infrastructure. In any case, the funding case for a brand new, stand alone, all-inclusive ‘entertainment centre’ would require a very agile, adept and politically savvy local government, something we are having great difficulty finding at the moment, at least in Townsville. Whatever happened to TPAC?

      • Alahazbin says:

        Jenny, TPAC should be part of Civic Theatre Stg2 which never went ahead. Just like all things Stg2. Eg BFD2 Haugton Pipeline 2 is on shaky ground now costing $420 million as exposed by a TCC whistleblower. Doug’s suggestion of a new entertainment centre is a ‘no brainer’

  63. Digger Dan says:

    Recently released data shows that Mackay, Mt Isa, and Gladstone contribute to 90% of Queensland’s economy, totalling $40b. Wonderful figures. My guess is that 99% of that money goes to the southeast. Our infrastructure is shit and the Bruce Highway is a fucking embarrassment. It’s time to really put pressure on the state government to pump more money back into regional Queensland.

  64. Burnt Brows says:

    I think Birnbrauer is well equipped to Lead council even though most (all) of the Councillors object to him being there. I can only imagine the intense training he received cooking at a cafe where SAS soldiers walked past within as close as 100m. People’s lives depended on him ensuring toasted sandwiches were toasted evenly on both sides, not just one, and every hamburger was issued the correct amount of beetroot. I can almost still hear the echos of his valiant achievements – ‘order number 15 !’.

    • The Magpie says:

      Our think Clr Ma Greaney might seek his advice and perhaps suggest the TCC’s own food truck, TwoNames cooking (how apt!), Ma G doing the spruiking, enticing people with special items of the day (‘Cooked books on special’, ‘… surprise yourself with our Closed Meeting Pie with secret ingredients – we”ll never give away the recipe … and all customers get a free sample of our patented CCC Chewing Gum, it lasts forever).

  65. Maggie Moggie says:

    FYI

    Documents Reveal Major Haughton Pipeline Cost Blowout

    Herbert MP Phillip Thompson has revealed the cost of the Haughton Pipeline Stage 2 project has blown out from an initial budget of $179.6M to more than $420M.

    In a speech to Federal Parliament this morning, Phillip Thompson also revealed the documents confirmed the blowout was due to delays as a result of political games from Labor.

    “Two weeks ago, I wrote to Townsville’s Acting Mayor and former Team Hill Councillor Paul Jacob to provide me an urgent briefing on the project,” he told the House.

    “The silence has been deafening – with not even a mention in the Council Budget last week.

    “Several whistle-blowers from Townsville City Council have now taken matters in their own hands and contacted me with information.

    “It includes evidence of a Council document which shows our community has been lied to.

    “The information provided to me shows a project cost increase from $179.6M to over $420M – more than 133 per cent – as well as a project completion blowout of more than four years.”

    Phillip Thompson said savings weren’t realised because of the Labor-led council and State Labor Government’s refusal to accept the federal funding.

    “One of the key commitments I made before being elected to this House was $200 million in funding for the Haughton Pipeline Stage 2,” he said.

    “That funding was contingent on a business case- something that was publicly ridiculed by then Mayor Jenny Hill, her Labor Team Hill Councillors, the three Townsville based State Labor MPs and the Labor State Government.

    “Building Stage 2 immediately after Stage 1 was supposed to save tens of millions of dollars.

    “Unfortunately, Labor Mayor Jenny Hill and the State Labor Government decided to politick and refused to accept the Federal funding – based on a lie about the funding’s potential effect on Queensland’s GST allocation.

    “They had a bells and whistles press conference to announce they’d fund the project without the Federal funds.

    “12 months later it was announced that disastrous decision had led to lengthy delays and a $79 million cost blowout – to be footed by Townsville ratepayers.

    “The key reason for this disgrace is identified as the refusal from Team Labor to accept the Federal funding when it was offered.

    “Adding further insult to injury, I also understand a costly consultant has now been on the books for almost a year to identify ways to mop up Labor’s disastrous mess – which includes putting out the begging bowl to the Queensland and Federal Governments for an additional $146 million.

    “I urgently call on the Townsville City Councillors, State Labor MPs and State Labor Government to explain to the people of Townsville why they should not resign immediately, and a full investigation be conducted.”

    Project Timeline:

    2015 – Water restrictions begin in Townsville after Ross River Dam drops dangerously low
    2016 – water security taskforce recommends new pipeline from Ross River Dam to Burdekin Dam
    2017 – Haughton Pipeline Stage 1 receives State funding support (completed in 2020 but unused to this day)
    2018 – Coalition Government commits $200M for Haughton Pipeline Stage 2 subject to business case
    2020 – State Labor Government rejects federal funding and funds $195M itself.
    2021 – Announcement of $79M cost blowout to be borne by Townsville ratepayers
    2024 – Council document reveals cost blowout of $179.6M to over $420M – more than 133 per cent – as well as a project completion blowout of more than four years

    • The Magpie says:

      Succinct, accurate and a call to action.

      And one wonders if Mr Thompson (the good one) would care to name the consultant.

      • Alahazbin says:

        Pie, If it was a consultant hired by the last administration, it probably be AECOM. A friend of past Mayors.

    • Ducks Nuts says:

      I’d be interested to know how much inflation on materials has affected this cost blow out.

      • The Magpie says:

        See what you mean, but that would be irrelevant if the project had been done to the original schedule, instead of Dick By Name fucking up the whole process for lying political point scoring.

  66. Destiny Townsville says:

    I think that this entire saga pertaining to Mayor Troy Golden’shower is hilarious. The relationship between the Mayor and Councillors has been parlous from the outset. And each week that goes by the Council becomes more dysfunctional. What a joke. However, it is somewhat funny and entertaining. For the sake of the Councillors they need to hope that Troy departs sooner than later because the newspapers are going to continue to print n native articles about our mentally challenged Mayor as he picked a huge fight with them. I never thought I would utter these words but bring back Jenny Hill.

    • The Magpie says:

      ‘Bring back Jenny Hill!?!” Wash your mouth out with soap … Christ Almighty, Jenny Hill … back??? Make it Solvol.

      And you’re wrong, the Townsville City Council is anything but dysfunctional at the moment, it is united in a new attitude of open debate and they are united in their repudiation of our wife-abusing, valor-stealing compulsively lying fraudster mayor. He has been reluctantly accepted back into the chamber pro tem purely for legal reasons that could otherwise cost the ratepayers tens of thousands in legal costs.

      If TwoNames comes up with a good idea and puts it to the vote, this council will not display any of his trademark pettiness and or the vindictiveness of his predecessor and vote on the matter with the priority of community benefit paramount. If Thompson tries to slip in some MyPlace cooker crap, The ‘Pie is confident the councillors will knock that on the head pronto, they now realise the shackles of the past decade are behind them.

      So this council can operate without any ‘leadership’ from this cunt in the chair, and there is no way the day to day operations and decision making of councillors is effected. They already have and will no doubt continue to make Thompson a hole in the air.

      And a tip: keep an eye on the calm and measured performance of Suzy Batkovic, her life experience, leadership knowledge and evident gumption mark her down for a greater political role sometime if she so chooses.

      • Charlie Wulguru says:

        Magpie…Where was her ‘life experience, leadership knowledge and evident gumption’ during the previous four years while a member of the Yoga Class? Couldn’t get a squeak out of her.

        • The Magpie says:

          You could be generous and suggest as a new councillor, she was observing and playing the long game. Which would make her smart, no?

  67. The Wulguru Wonder says:

    Big day earning his taxpayer funded salary for Les today. The most work he has done for years. He will need to go home for a good lay down and a Bex after this.

    Be better watch out, after signing all those letters he may get a case of severe wrist strain and he won’t be able to swing any punches at the Mad Cow tonight.

    • Rotten Luck Willie says:

      It is called electioneering with taxpayer’s funds.

    • I’ll be plucked says:

      What a pluck-wit you are Messsage Bank! This is bread and butter and a very, very minor part of your role. Have you given up on the ‘big stuff’ and this is all you’ve got, you plucking peanut!

      • The Magpie says:

        Yup, and anyway, why would we care that you’ve written welcome letters to anybody. What a vain, stupid boast.

        • The Wulguru Wonder says:

          Can you imagine how excited the recipients will be?

          “Geez, a personally signed letter from Les Walker! This is going straight in the pool room!”

    • Peckerwood says:

      Messagebank sitting there like a cardboard cutout. Signing letters repetitively would be just about spot on for this endeavour foundation worker. Or was he signing CIC documents and trying to hide stuff?

      • The Magpie says:

        This is not a cheap shot zat a cheap shit, but Les isn';t looking well. He is looking … well, haggard.

    • Jatzcrackers says:

      You’re kidding ? This bloke can actually write ?

  68. Dread Pirate Roberts says:

    The decision of Council to do away with committee chairs at the first meeting was a serious mistake that the Councillors would be well served by reversing. This was a silly decision which gives the bureaucracy much more power and much less scrutiny (hence why they pushed so hard to make it happen). You only have to look at how short Council meetings have become. committees used to run for the majority of the day and ordinary Council was well over three hours per meeting.

    I’m am not suggesting that they revert to the previous structure. It would be sensible for the committees to mirror the organisational structure with 4 committees being, Business Services and Finance, Infrastructure and Operations, Community and Lifestyle and Planning. Given the state of the joint the only way out is for Councillors to pick up the cudgels and drive the strategic direction.

    Selection of Committee Chairs is another thing, but I could see someone like Robinson as Business Services and Finance Chair given he actually has some financial acumen.

    With the current situation the old saying of common property being nobody’s property comes to mind.

    DPR

    • The Magpie says:

      Maybe an extra committee: Culinary Accountancy.

      • Prince Rollmop says:

        Oh Jenny, oh Prins, you two naughty souls. And obviously the CFO was complicit in ‘burying’ the hard detail nobody wanted to be mad known. Good work Phil, you go for the jugular mate. There are a lot of questions that need to be answered regarding this monumental fuckup. And with Mayor Twonames back in the drivers seat, he may have some explaining to do as the current Mayor of Townsville.

      • Rotten Luck Willie says:

        Can ExMayor Mulett be referred to the CCC over this matter and if so, who should do it?

      • Three amigos says:

        The trio of Labor fuckheads – Harpic, Messagebank, and Cupcake should’ve known about the costs blowout. I suspect that they did, but were hoping it would remain under wraps until after the October election. Obviously Harpic is busy on Facebook, Cupcake has been busy posing with TEL for photos, and the drunkard Messagebank busy playing with himself and barroom brawling, but when they get time maybe they can answer some questions around did they know about the cost blowouts and if they knew, when did they find out?

        • The Magpie says:

          Of course they knew, they really aren’t that stupid, in fact, their Brisbane betters wouldn’t allow them to be.

          that’s why we got all that upside down pledge about a new Bowen Road bridge at the associated road extensions to Uni Drive.

      • The third eye says:

        What I like about this article, if it is 100% factual, is that TCC staff feel comfortable enough to blow the whistle on dodgy accounting practises taking place within the bowels of Wanker Street. Well played! Firstly, it’s exposing the former Mayor and CEO for their sneakiness and crooked accounting. Secondly, it gives a new look Council the opportunity to expose the lies and deception and it provides them with the opportunity to start afresh and be transparent. Either way, I bet the acting CEO wishes he stuck to working on the Gold Coast. This is beer and popcorn viewing folks.

      • Island Voice says:

        Yes,
        TCC leaking like a sieve. Moral seems low in Walker St? No wonder the push for parking meters came out of the darkness of council chambers. Years of spending on ‘Feel Good Projects’ that achieved nothing.
        Any comment from ‘I’ll get back to you’ Greaney or the former Mayor Mullet?
        The silence is deafening.
        And the 3 labor state pollies are taking a united stand of ‘I know nothing’.
        The upcoming election should sort them out.
        As for the council it’s time to call in the administrators.

        What a miserable state of affairs.

        • The Magpie says:

          Again, The ‘Pie disagrees that we should wish for an administrator just yet. Apologists and cookers for Thompson kept posting here to ‘give him a go’ and so forth, but that dropped off when the full scope of his unsavoury history became apparent.

          But what perhaps we should do is offer ‘a go’ to our new look council, a mix of old and new, and one that is united on at least on matter – getting rid of our fraudster mayor. He’s effectively sidelined but he has be put off the scene entirely.

          And now that the dead hand of Jenny Hill has gone, there are signs that even the Team hill members who survived her debacle are freeing up and warming to idea that they can make their own personal contributions without looking over their shoulder at her office. And if they remain united, they will be able to make the necessary governance decisions without any overbearing presence of past or present arsesoles.

          If comeuppances are merited, they will happen in due time, but we shouldn’t manufacture some sort of limbo period while we wait for that to happen … dissing this whole council because of one past and one present fuckwit is a position that, in the words of Buddha and others down the ages, like drinking poison and hoping the other person dies.

          So maybe it is we, the community, who should give ourselves a go.

          Now is the time for robust open exchanges but not acrimonious point scoring barbs and commentary. Or unnecessary closed door meetings.

          • GST SHAM says:

            The council and Scott Stewart have made comments in the Mulletin confirming the $420m price tag and that council knew in early 2023! They also confirmed a consultant has been hired to view any cost savings. Scott Stewart has also said more or less the QLD govt will not be contributing anymore $$$ and the remainder remains with us the ratepayers of Townsville! So nope I will not be as forgiving as you pie to the remaining Team Jenny Hill councillors who remain at Walker Street. They have been harping on about transparency the last couple of weeks while sitting on this since well before the election, if Jenny Hill was re-elected would we even be privy to this information??? I think not! And why is my first instinct to ask when did the Mulletin find out and how long have they been sitting on this? We are supposed to believe Jenny Hill knew in early 2023 and her state Labor colleagues didn’t as per the comments of Les Walker this week in the Mulletin C’monnnnnnn

          • The Magpie says:

            So your saying Jenny Hill’s team members who were councillors back then all knew what Jenny hill knew. And understood that she was deliberately hiding electorally damaging information from the public? Big call, but irrelevant what The ‘Pie has suggested, if you read the old bird’s comment a bit more closely … that anyone who needs to face censure and/or penalty will do so at some stage, but right now, cohesion of the council is vital for this city. No one is asking you to forgive, let alone forget, certainly not The ‘Pie, but none of the retribution is going to happen for many months, possibly years, and until investigations are complete, no one is guilty of anything. it’s a matter for you if you want to disrupt the situation.

          • Kenny Kennett says:

            I’m not convinced with any of these freeloading Councillors. I like that they had the guts to take on the lying turd Thompson but then they all voted for the Strand parking fiasco that grub Hill and her leeches secretly set up….WITHOUT COMMUNITY CONSULTATION. Someone else is still pulling the strings and it still pongs of Hill, Mooney and Labor. One step forward, two steps back.

  69. Outsider says:

    I reckon the “”cunt in the chair”will be there for the full 4 year term. If lying was a sackable offence for a politician, they’d haver all have gotten the sack.
    My tip; the investigations will find that he lied but didnt commit an offence that warrants dismissal. There’s sure to be commentary about his loathsome character etc but he will be entitled to stay until he resigns or is voted out.

  70. Strand Ghost says:

    I’m no Lawyer and do know a real lot of legal jargon but if the information is correct on the water pipeline budget blowout is correct surely there would have to be some legal recourse of the last Council councillors and the present ones that are still there.?

    • The Magpie says:

      doubt it. Successive governments making legislation of all specialised in arse covering. And being complicit in what amounts to simply bad and ignorant decision making isn’t necessarily illegal.

  71. FUCK YOU, TROY THOMPSON! says:

    As a frustrated Townsville local, I am beyond fed up with Troy Thompson (The absolute dog) and his reckless actions which are dragging our town through the mud. His complete disregard for the needs and opinions of the residents is abhorrent. Troy’s self-serving decisions are causing chaos within the council, undermining any hope for sensible and fair governance. His desperate attempts to cling to power, even amid widespread public outrage, are a testament to his arrogance and inability to lead effectively. Troy Thompson’s actions are not just disappointing, they are a direct threat to the well-being and reputation of our beloved Town. It’s time for him to step down and let someone who truly cares about our community take the reins. FUCK YOU, TROY!

  72. The third eye says:

    Is the democratically elected Twonames still arriving at work at 5:00am? Does he still do his daily blog on Facebook? I couldn’t be bothered looking, there were to many stupid photos of food and his ugly plastic head on there. Even that Dickhead Batman has a more interesting Facebook page, and that is saying something.

  73. GST SHAM says:

    And the Townsville Mulletin is back to its normal programming folks! Smoke and mirrors and protecting Labor in this town. The biggest story is the HAUGHTON PIPELINE COST BLOWOUT and should be front page because the only reason Townsville residents are getting rate increases and paid parking on the strand (probably a suggestion from the paid consultant TCC brought in) is because of TCCs maladministration with delivering this project. Scott Stewart’s comments ruling out anymore money from the state government means at this stage without any federal or state funds we the ratepayer are going to foot this bill during a cost of living crisis UNBELIEVABLE! Where is the Mulletin in holding all the Labor politicians in this town to account for this shocking revelation on behalf of the community?? They have been proudly highlighting each week in the paper and editorials when it comes to the Troy Thompson debacle that it is their job to investigate this and hold him to account on behalf of us the community (as they should scumbag). But lack at doing the same when it comes to their LABOR politician MATES! This is why I said the community will drag their feet at holding Troy Thompson’s feet to the fire many blogs ago because the hypocrisy in this town is rife when it comes to Labor’s dealings. And you can say I was right with many residents defending Troy Thompson’s unjustifiable behaviour. I suspect because they are fed up with Labor’s unbelievable behaviour/decisions not being held to the same standards. The Bulletin printing comments from city leaders/ Team Jenny Hill councillors condemning paid parking on the strand without highlighting the reason for this or even asking the right questions (the mismanagement and cost blowout of the Haughton Pipeline) is deliberate, misleading and TOWNSVILLE DESERVES BETTER! The Mulletin has not learnt its lesson they defended Jenny Hill all the way up to her dying days of being outed at Walker street printing on the day Jenny had it in the bag , defending her poor decisions relentlessly and they have been playing catch up ever since! Thought they too like Walker street had changed and learnt their lesson but it is clear they have not. Same old, same old.

  74. Nostradamus says:

    It’s now obvious to most, including my seeing ball, that twonames/two bit is staying. The matter will fizzle out in due course and we’re stuck with the lying loser until the next local government elections. He will be sanctioned but not dismissed.

    As The Pie has noted, it is now up to the Councillors to keep him in line and thwart any attempts by him to push through any self-interest agendas.

    • The Magpie says:

      A seer who can see out of one ball and is blind in the other!! As often said, The Nest is a broad church, open top all.

      But on a more serious note, if what you say is correct (The ‘Pie will bet that it isn’t), that would say volumes about not just the goivernment, the Local Government Act, the CCC, and above all, about a citizenry willing – in the name of a false peace of mind – tolerate a wife abusing, valor stealing, proven serial liar and fraudster as their mayor.

  75. Inspector Clouseau says:

    Re Strand Parking: Cr Ribena is noted on the TB online site as requesting a pause on this one, I am wondering where Cr ‘Food Trucks’ Greaney, our wanna be Deputy Mayor is? This is her division/area and we ‘hear’ nothing from her??

    Are her paw prints all over the original proposal/decision?

    • The Magpie says:

      Logic would suggest she would NOT be in favour of the proposal, if for no other reason than her own electoral survival. You don’t have to be a ‘stable genius’ to work out that the biggest backlash would be among those Division 10 residents in the blocks behind the Strand if the inevitable increased traffic and parking activity was forced into their streets. That’s on top of the general opposition to the idea of making something that has always been a free community asset subject to an unnecessary council charge. A charge that we would like to see the costings on … cannot work out that it is feasible even from a financial point of view.

      • Jenny says:

        Division 10?
        I notice that there are shitloads of people in town (for the V8s and Cowboys home game I guess) and various activities around Jezzine Barracks that are bringing them and the school holiday multitudes to the Strand. Thursday was unbelievable. There was no chance of getting a park within cooee of the Strand so presumably all the side streets were filled to overflowing inviting some sort “backlash”. Did anything happen? Did North Ward residents care enough to even notice?

        • The Magpie says:

          You’re an idiot.

          Paid parking year round is a totally different matter to standard, predictable recurring events, about which little can be done. And the benefits outweigh temporary inconvenience. Most residents appreciate their position and accept such occasional matters as inevitable and fair.

          Give it a rest, Jenny, until you get a bit more coherent.

      • Prickster says:

        Both Ribena and Food Trucks not happy with Strand parking yet unanimously approved to budget, WTF?

        Team Hill councilors recent facile behavior in the chamber is laughable. Giving the Mayor the silent treatment, no voting on motions, or engaging in debate.

        Councilors with a modicum of talent would draw out the Mayor by debating motions, asking for matters to be reintroduced with more information, showing their connection to what the community needs.

        The longer this saga goes on. The more we see how hopeless councilors are.

        • The Magpie says:

          That, Prickster, is one of your most cack-handed and dishonest comments yet (a crowded field).

          First, a little common sense, perspective and a little slack … councillors operated under uncertainty as to just what authorities were going to do under the unique circumstances and were charting new territory when the budget was due to be voted on. They voted it through, with Paul Jacob noting the relief that it had got through without any bureaucratic obstruction to moving forward. The ‘Pie reasd thisd as an attempt at assuring public that the council was handling business as normal. The more savvy councillors knew that items can be rescinded from budgets, it happens at all levels all the time, and (in The ‘Pie’s opinion) they voted for the budget as a signal to a spooked city that things were going ahead.

          The worst part of your comment about the ‘silent treatment’ and ‘not voting on motions’ is just low level, dishonest and selective crap from you, Prickster.

          The councillors all refused to make a vote when wording confused them and they thought they were being asked to endorse Thompson in the mayoral chair. They unanimously refused to do so, hands kept down and remaining silent until Suzy Batkovic got a clarification that that was not what they were voting on, just the restoration of the suspended agenda. They then all voted unanimously. No one made any comment about the fraudster by name and there was just some brief anodyne stuff about integrity versus legality from one of the Andrew Robinson (I think).

          We here in The Nest and elsewhere are doing ourselves no favours by trying to increase the chaos by not allowing these councillors time to find their way while they await effective leadership. Big ticket questions about possible corruption and other questionable shenanigans from the past will move forward in their own time, but they should not be a shackle to allow the elected councillors time to sort themselves out in this new landscape.

          The ‘Pie reckons they can make things work for the time being, but any moves by council from now on will still be rigorously examined and reasonable criticism aired in established manner in The Nest, and one would hope, by other media.

          Disappointing attitude, Prickster.

    • Ducks Nuts says:

      I imagine Ribena is being shanked in the councillors offices as we speak. He would have been aware this was being considered in 2023, and in the meetings when this proposal was put to them. He has only asked for a pause because of the public backlash. Prior to that he didn’t raise a hand in protest. He’s just as shit as the rest of the councillors

      • The Magpie says:

        One former fellow councillor labelled him ‘totally untrustworthy and shifty’.

        • Ducks Nuts says:

          Yep.
          There was a point when previous councillors were refusing to share an office with him because he is an untrustworthy POS.

    • Not standing for Mayor says:

      Certainly worth remembering that the budget in its entirety was passed unanimously (which means EVERY councillor voted for it) so every councillor voted for the parking area extension and the 10.1 percent rate rise. Try as they might to wriggle out of it their names are on the voting record. Last week they supported it and this week when they are afraid they pretend they weren’t there.

    • OED says:

      If the point of paid parking is to use a price signal to ration a scarce resource, the council should simply set a metric by which to assess whether any block should become metered.

      eg, if it has a parking occupancy rate between 9-5 that is the same as or higher than Flinders Street between Stanley and Denham Streets.

      Maybe this already forms part of the rationale, who knows.

      • The Magpie says:

        Parking on the Strand, though, is not a ‘scarce source’. it’s never been an issue. Until now.

        • OED says:

          That’s the point – if they take a look and parking scarcity is less than the meter criteria then no parking meters. If it’s above then at least they’re using a consistent easy to understand standard to make the decision.

  76. Pat Coleman says:

    Re V8 pests . If someone with the time and a telephoto lens can get up to the castle hill lookout facing back towards the creek over the weekend, that should give us an actual picture of attendance rates to beat the spin.

    You will have to go several times a day at the same time.

    • The Magpie says:

      Look forward to getting you pics, Pat.

    • J jones says:

      Why can’t you go mate if that’s what you’re after?

    • Alahazbin says:

      Pat, Some goose from V8 Supercars yesterday declared that the 2023 crowd over the 3 days of the event was 197,000. So why were the previous council so coy on releasing crowd figures last year.
      No way were there 65,000 a day there by TV pictures.

  77. Achilles says:

    Looks like Senator Paymans, never had the right to be in parliament in the first place as she has duel citizenship.

    Begs the question of how much due diligence was exercised for her original selection.

    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/latest-news/senior-labor-figures-reportedly-hold-concerns-over-rebel-senator-fatima-paymans-citizenship-status/news-story/0fd9801ccbc2f5cdccc4fdd684fc0d9e

    • The Magpie says:

      Muslim’s are often associated with swords, particular scimitars, but didn’t know they went in for duelling.

    • Jenny says:

      And we think our town is badly served by its Labor politicians and media.

    • Achilles says:

      Damn your eyes Pie; DUAL written X 50 OK? am standing in the naughty corner!

    • OED says:

      Dual citizenship is allowed where revoking the second citizenship is impossible- such as Payman’s case where it would involve negotiating with the Taliban. Due diligence was done, this is just some gross Labor backgrounding against her to try and blast her out of the seat so they can install a Labor replacement.

  78. Peter Plaintiff. says:

    Government departments like the CCC, Ombudsman, Right to Information etc are only independent when it suits,
    If any government or one of its departments has been negligent or corrupt, a citizen has zero change of obtaining a decision in their favour or getting information. I CAN VERIFY THAT!

    • The Magpie says:

      But yes, it was ever thus.

      • Hee Haw says:

        I can also verify that from personal experience. In fact i can go a step further having been issued with a Gag Order by the Queensland Parliament not to make any mention of a certain matter to ANYONE INCLUDING THE MEDIA.

        There be more to come

  79. Burnt Brows says:

    Question : in the history of Mayors, has there ever been a worse Mayor than Birnbrauer?

  80. Legal Matt says:

    Thompson lied, no criminal intent.

    10 councillors lied, knowingly about major projects.

    Cr. Jacobs in big trouble.

    Team Jenny Hill past & present facing criminal intent.

    Dept. LG advises councillors they were wrong, they reverse some items by motion, not all, hold out the mayor, it may not fall the way expected, there was intent.

    Thompson may be the last man standing. The councillors approved a budget, under illegal motions.

    P Thompson asks for State to explain. My scribes tell me, state are advised monthly. Criminal intent

    CEO has discriminated on Thompson with epilepsy and mental health, Human Rights will not go away.

    The untenable position is the acting CEO, this is not good for Townsville. If the minister checks in, she may well be put in to the CCC too.

    Interpretation is one thing, but clear legal lines another. It will get much worse, my suggestion, the media concentrate on the real criminal acts, around operations, past councillors and executive.

    A commission into past terms will happen.

    • The Magpie says:

      Oh, please, stop pretending you know anything about the law.

      Waste of time going through all that gabble, but just one point. Thompson DID lie and he DID DO IT with criminal intent, as in fraud … intent to defraud voters into electing him to office on his record, which all turned out to be lies and half truths.

      • Legal Matt says:

        While I respect your view. The OIA cleared him and sent their report to CCC, after the Minister was motivated to do so, they found there to be no intent, I expect it to be the same outcome. After talking to my friends along flinders street, they concur, there was nothing misleading at the time that constitutes criminal intent. In the other matters with regards to the 10 councillors, I’m informed they are considered deliberate, and ongoing. The fact the code of meeting practice, which is a guide. Was weaponised against the Act, speaks to itself, the Act is law, councillors were deliberate in their intent, both in holding a media conference, and then a motion to vote, two members have since carried it further by stating they still support the motions. The minister will deem them illegal and overturn the motions, this will then lead to misconduct and move straight to the CCC. Its very serious, Mr Thompsons matter is less serious, and media have not and won’t influence the decisions.

        • The Magpie says:

          (Sigh) If you say so, we’ll see.

        • Jenny says:

          Matt, As I read it the OIA did not “clear” him or make any decision other than that consideration of what he did before the election was outside its jurisdiction. When he mislead, deceived or otherwise duped the electorate he was not (yet) a councillor. The OIA only looks into the affairs of actual councillors.

          • Gunja Girl says:

            Still at it Jen? WHAT is in the pipe you smoke? Whatever it is, you seem to lurch from lurid to lucid and all ports in between!

          • Grumpy says:

            Sorry, Jenny – the OIC did look at his social media behaviour whilst a Mayor. Decided that he acted like an idiot, advised him to read the rules and gave him a mild admonishment. The more serious stuff is with the CCC. He then went on to misrepresent what actually happened in social media by writing that the complaint was dismissed. About which I seriously considered making a further complaint to the OIC.

    • Grumpy says:

      Your “scribe” tells you? What are you on about? More to the point, what are you on? Is that you, Shady?

    • Ducks Nuts says:

      Anyone with any legal background (or half a brain) would wipe their feet on you Matt.

      • Grumpy says:

        Ducky – the sort of thing that someone with a law degree but not actually a lawyer would write – self-important gosh

  81. OED says:

    Maybe throw in some UK cartoons this week, Magpie!

  82. Elusive Butterfly says:

    This clown can’t be real Mr. Pie.
    Check his sentence structure and punctuation.
    Children in Year 10 do better!

  83. The third eye says:

    Deloitte are commissioning a feasibility study for a $1b desalination plant in Gladstone. Isn’t it ironic, our water project has been dicked around for years, secret cost blowouts, lack of transparency etc. Yet once again Gladstone is getting on with things. Their $1b Fitzroy water pipeline project is running on time and on budget. Amazing things happen when a confident, qualified, transparent Council is involved in things.

    • Grumpy says:

      Desalination won’t work here. I invite Guy to tell us why.

      • The Magpie says:

        Christ, mate, do you have to?

      • Guy says:

        I believe it might be an environmental thing, the water leaving such a place is MUCH saltier and this may affect sea life in the vicinity. To my knowledge you ideally need good water currents to take the saltier water away and where it can mix back into normal levels. Whether such water currents exist around local waters I don’t know.

        How often such a plant gets switched on is anyone’s guess. You’ll have ongoing costs whether it’s turned on or off – guaranteed. Oh yes – they are very expensive to build and maintain.

  84. Critical says:

    Driving down Mitchell and Eyre Streets mid-morning yesterday it hit me that a large number of residents who live in units where on-site parking is restricted, currently park on the street. Where are these residents and their visitors going to park if these streets are used by people going to the Strand. I doubt they’ll park on the footpath and incur a parking fine from Council.
    I doubt Councillors and the out-of-touch with reality Council bureaucracy even identified this issue so that they could develop solutions to address the problem.

    • Bob Roberts says:

      They don’t own the street in front of their buildings so they can take their chances like everyone else.

      • The Magpie says:

        ‘Everyone else’ being people from elsewhere enticed to park you out in residential streets because of a council policy on parking meters? Let The ‘Pie know when you’re running for council.

  85. Tezza says:

    Thompson won’t get fired. He will get a scolding and that’s it. Watch this space. I put money on him not lasting his full term, he will fuck up or upset the councillors and ratepayer to a point where the pressure gets to him and he quits to spend more time with family. It’s a given people, sorry to disappoint you all.

    • Ball Bag says:

      You think TwoNames will fuck up bad enough to be fired or quit? Let’s hope it happens sooner rather than later. But given his current abysmal form, I doubt he’ll ever go on his own terms.

  86. Guy says:

    “The information provided to me shows a project cost increase from $179.6M to over $420M – more than 133 per cent – as well as a project completion blowout of more than four years.”

    Interesting with Phillip Thompson’s expose on townsville council’s dealings. When I got involved with that water group many years ago that got the ball rolling on this disaster after listening to what was going on and having worked in the burdekin irrigation system I thought that the pipeline would cost at least 1 billion dollars. Its why just walked away from it – recycling water was the cheapest, fastest most efficient of increasing clean safe water to taps in townsville. I’m fairly sure I’ve copped a lot of flak over the recycling water idea here ( just like on my ongoing warnings for years.

    Sun water was saying that they wanted money to “upgrade” the pumping system ( read huge expensive pumps and control systems – either upgrade or build NEW pump stations).

    After paying sunwater for upgrading their water infrastructure we wouldn’t even own the water – we’d be paying for the water and paying for it to be pumped to Townsville.

    Call me old fashioned but I’d either use a concrete pipe or canal to get water to Townsville. How long plastic pipes will last is anyone’s guess.

    Recycling water is the best way as it’s here in town already , I don’t need to upgrade a water system kilometers away. I don’t need to pay sunwater for the water. Pure, safe water can be delivered to taps here – its a radical thought.

    You can save money by not doing council gardening work on weekends, stopping expensive projects in their tracks. Cutting less grass – no whipper snipping. Sure it will be a little unkempt but that’s the price of blowing up council finances for 16 years.

    • Ducks Nuts says:

      Just curious, what water engineering qualifications do you hold Guy?

      • Guy says:

        The Romans had NO engineering qualifications and yet from my travels in Turkey, Syria, Jordan, Israel, Britain and everywhere an awful lot of stuff is still there and in many cases still being used.

        Are these engineering qualifications the same ones that created the snowy hydro 2 debacle, F35 , submarine, highway fiascos or do we just cherry pick – do I need to be an evolutionary biologist to know what a women is ? No – I can use my brains to know what’s viable and what’s not ? Did I need financial training to tell me 14 years ago the council had overspent and had broken its finances ? It’s like telling someone paying more at bowser they need to work in the oil industry they are paying over the odds for fuel.

        • The Magpie says:

          Even The Magpie could not invent a reply so off point and wimpy as that.

          And love the nonsensical bit about the Romans not having engineering qualifications … beg to differ, they were, along with the Greeks, engineering pioneers.

        • romani says:

          Well, apart from medicine, irrigation,
          health, roads, cheese and education,
          baths and the Circus Maximus,
          what have the Romans ever done for us?

    • Anti-Flog says:

      I’m fairly sure council’s insurance won’t cover for someone getting sick from recycled water. The cost of installing additional water pipeline infrastructure to run parallel to this to allow for recycled water would probably also cost a fortune. I wouldn’t know if the insurance Council has can be changed easily.

      • Guy says:

        You can investigate, poke your head into the people who make something like the omniprocessor. It pumps out distilled water.

  87. TheOtherGuy says:

    Why are my posts being deleted?

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