Friday, 23 September 2011

The veil is lifted and the gloves come off | Cochrane to stand for Mayor.

The gloves are off. Mayor Val Schier's Deputy and chief pretender Cr. Margaret Cochrane has finally come out of the closet and announced her candidature for the Cairns' Mayoralty. In what was less than a surprise announcement Cr Cochrane held a press conference today to make the announcement.

This to some extent explains her opposition to the Entertainment Precinct on Wednesday's meeting after indicating privately to various Councillors that she would be voting with the Mayor on the issue. Sources within Council have suggested that the act bordered on treachery and deceit.

Politically, Cr Cochrance for the last 3 years has been a thorn in the side of the current Mayor with the result of destabilizing the administration. Cr Cochrane has wherever possible gone out of her way to undermine the authority of the current Mayor.

Questioned during the press conference what had caused her to nominate so far ahead of the Council election which is not due untill March 2012, Cr Cochrane stated that the Cairns Regional Council had directed the majority of Council funds to Culture and Lifestyle instead of extra funding and grants to sporting groups. It is interesting to note that Cochrane is Chairperson of the Council's Spots, Arts, Culture and Community Services Committee. From her complaints it seems she have failed her Committee's charter and guidelines.

A fact that cannot be denied and I am sure will be highlighted by Mayor Val Schier, during the Council election campaign is that as Deputy Mayor, Cr Cochrane was instrumental in formulating the last 3 Council budgets and indeed voted at each of the budget meetings to adopt the Budget in its entirety.

Meanwhile, grassroots councillor, Cr. Diane Forsyth has called on Cr Cochrane to resign from Council because of the disruption that she has been responsible for and what is anticipated as she jostles for the limelight.  

It has become obvious to Council commentators that from day one of the surprise election of Val Schier in March 2008, that the 'Gang of Five' also known as the 'old guard' has checked the Mayor almost in every move and with the ulterior motive of creating political disharmony and embarrassment.

This scenario has created a dysfunctional Council where party politics has become par for the course. Throughout the turmoil Cr Schier has remained dignified and has always put the interest of the citizens of Cairns first and has refrained from playing politics.

It is early days in the campaign but the political ground is fertile for the Mayor to focus her re election campaign on the simple message in asking the citizens of Cairns to give her a 'fair go'.

Ross Parisi

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  1. Margaret Cochrane is using the old proven political tactic of manipulating the sports lovers and pitting them against the culture buffs. Ugly, divisive stuff particularly in this unsophisticated city.

  2. Hello, I voted Kevin Byrne last election. So I do not hold any allegience to Val Schier. However, 4 weeks ago I wrote to both the Mayor and my divisional Councillor Margaret Cochrane regarding a certain matter that the Council had unanimously agreed on. I asked what was the reasoning of their decision, which I disagreed with. I received a very pleasant letter from Mayor Val Schier within two days. To date, I still have not received a reply from Margaret Cochrane. I would also like to point out that Deirdre Ford was my previous divisional councillor who was always approachable, no matter whether you agreed with her or not. Unfortunately the boundaries changed at the last election and she was replaced with Di Forsyth and Margaret Cochrane. I have lived in Edge Hill for the past 22 years and Deirdre was always to be found shopping locally and a great supporter of our local Edge Hill State School. And yet since the last election I have never laid eyes on Margaret Cochrane in my area. Though I have seen her several times having her toe nails painted in Cairns Central by the little Vietnamese girls. Mmmm I know who I will be voting for.

  3. Now let's get this straight. Margaret Cochrane is CHAIR of the Council's Sports, Arts, Culture and Community Services Committee, but she says THE CAIRNS REGIONAL COUNCIL (OR "THEY") had "directed most of the funds towards Culture and Lifestyle..."???!!!! What!!! Hey, does she know what she is saying? What the hell was she doing as Chair? Dozing? Granny napping???

  4. This is just preposterous. The woman doesn't knbow what she is doing.

  5. That is a little known fact...and to have the front to say there is a disproportionate allocation of funding is deceitful and dishonest. Furthermore, the pretender voted for all three Budgets as if they had been prepared by her. I hope that Val's strategy includes highlighting the above facts. Properly orchestrated it could well destroy her creditability.


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