Charleville gathers at Thinkfest to speak its mind
“WHAT do you want for five hundred thousand?”
That was the question posed by Murweh Shire mayor Denis Cook at the start of last week’s community meeting.
Called Thinkfest, it was an opportunity for the community to share their ideas with council and nearly 200 locals.
Cr Cook said council had already spent two-thirds of a one and a half million dollar new federal funding stream.
A quarter of a million will be going to Morven and Augathella each. Another half a million goes into the Cosmos Centre.
There were plenty of ideas for how to spend the remaining half a million.
Angie Walton wanted to spruce up downtown.
“We need a major streetscape plan up our main streets, she said.
“In summer our main street is a hot barren desert.”
She wanted a plan “with trees, a real beautification plan”.
She also asked for additional zoning for industrial land, saying existing business could not expand due to a lack of space.
Local member Ann Leahy wanted a promotion points plan for public servants.
“An incentive program for them to come out,” is what she wanted.
Sherryl Lawton wanted to invest in a Mulga-based business, or to set up a local co-operative as a regional bank.
Several people offered solutions for the empty kangaroo works on the Warrego Highway.
John Burey, who owns it, said he was hobbled by the sheer cost of electricity.
“To run that factory... would cost us $4000 a day,” he said.
Others talked up geothermal and solar. John Jones wanted a natural gas plant south of town, to reduce brownouts and cost.
There is already a petition to enact Sarah Grayson’s proposal: getting the PCYC in town.
She said the plan would require a new building, preferably at the race complex, funded by council.