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    Minister for Local Government, Community Recovery and Resilience
    The Honourable David Crisafulli

    Minister releases Douglas referendum question

    Minister for Local Government, Community Recovery and Resilience
    The Honourable David Crisafulli

    Friday, February 08, 2013

    Minister releases Douglas referendum question

    Residents in the former Douglas Shire Council area will be asked to simply answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ when they vote on de-amalgamation next month.

    Local Government Minister David Crisafulli said it was crucial all registered voters made their vote count.

    “When the polls open on March 9, residents will have the very rare opportunity to choose their system of local government,” Mr Crisafulli said.

    “This referendum is a chance for the community to decide once and for all if it’s prepared to pay to establish a new local council.

    The question will read:

    ‘Should a Douglas Shire Council be created by the de-amalgamation of the Cairns Regional Council local government area, with the costs to be met by the Douglas Shire Council?’

    Queensland Treasury Corporation (QTC) found the initial cost for Douglas to de-amalgamate would be $8,146,000 or an extra $701 per ratepayer in the first year.

    There would also be ongoing costs of an extra $462 per ratepayer every year thereafter, rising with inflation.

    “People can rightly argue that any council can adjust their costs in each and every budget,” Mr Crisafulli said.

    “But what I asked Queensland Treasury Corporation to provide was the cost of establishing a new council that can provide the same level of service residents get today.”

    Only registered voters in the former council area will vote at the referendum on March 9.

    Voting is compulsory and failing to vote will attract a fine of $110.

    De-amalgamation information is available at http://www.dlg.qld.gov.au/bc// 

    Referendum information is available at http://www.ecq.qld.gov.au/

    [ENDS] 8 February 2013

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