News

Candidates pull interested crowd

Council candidate Jim Simmons addresses the crowd.
Council candidate Jim Simmons addresses the crowd.

IF YOU thought people weren't interested in local government you weren't at the Meet the Candidates forum in Maclean on Monday night.

The forum was the first of two to be held this week; the other is being held tonight at Grafton District Services Club.

About 200 people packed Maclean Services Club to hear what the 17 aspiring candidates had to say. Six are councillors. Ian Dinham, Ian Tiley and Pat Comben will retire at the election.

Daily Examiner editor Jenna Cairney adjudicated, putting a range of reader-contributed questions to the candidates.

Ms Cairney also asked candidates whether they were aligned to a political party.

Several admitted being a member of a party, while one said she has been a member of virtually every political party at some stage.

As expected though, all espoused the importance of taking a non-political approach to local government.

The candidates were split on coal-seam gas mining, with some totally against it and others calling for a rational debate.

On job creation, a few had ideas but none that seemed would generate large-scale employment.

When asked about their support of the local timber industry - an important local jobs provider - all candidates who had the opportunity to respond to the question said they supported its continuation; although environmentalist Greg Clancy made the comment that timber was "not the future".

Jim Simmons, on the other hand, spoke passionately about his father's career in the timber industry and the importance of it for local jobs.

A question on the flying foxes in Maclean aroused some passion in the audience and even a bit of humour from one.

Joy de Roos said the bats were not there when she attended Maclean High School and said they should be moved on.

But Greg Clancy was shot down in flames by the audience when he said records showed the flying foxes had been in the area for more than 100 years.

This was tempered with Jeremy Challacombe's tongue-in-cheek comment that bats were a delicacy in some countries and there could be an opportunity for a new local industry packaging and exporting flying foxes.

>> Watch speeches from the Daily Examiner meet the candidates night in the videos above.

Topics:  candidates, clarence valley council, grafton, local elections 2012



UNITED FRONT: Mayor on ticket of unity

Newly elected Clarence Valley Council mayor Jim Simmons

New council leadership team determined to see the region grow

Justice Crew: Grafton to host one of only seven shows

Pop sensations Justice Crew are heading to the Clarence next on Thursday, October 6 o perform their new show It's What We Do.

Justice Crew brings new show to Saraton Theatre

Youth community speaks out online

SHARING STORY: Connor Tarrant is trying to help promote mental healthfor young people.

One youth speaks out about his mental health to help others

Local Partners

Caravana Sun and friends set to shine at Yamba

GROOVE: Caravana Sun are set to rock Yamba Golf Club on Friday, September 30 along with friends Nocturnal Tapes and Nick & Sam.

Caravana Sun and friends set to shine at Yamba

Cliff Richard to release 101st album

Sir Cliff Richard's album cover

Sir Cliff Richard is to release his 101st album

Justice Crew: Grafton to host one of only seven shows

Pop sensations Justice Crew are heading to the Clarence next on Thursday, October 6 o perform their new show It's What We Do.

Justice Crew brings new show to Saraton Theatre

CMC Rocks faces fan backlash over date change, headliners

The 10th annual CMC Rocks festival will be headlined by The Dixie Chicks.

FANS are not happy about festival being pushed back by two weeks.

Kim Kardashian West attacked by man trying to kiss her bottom

Vitalii Sediuk targeted Gigi Hadid last week

Big live acts for a big grand final weekend

Don't miss Canadian songman Harry Manx Thursday night at the Yamba Golf Club.

Enjoy another big weekend of live entertainment

Clarence Valley property prices go through the roof

Buyers are hungry to sink their teeth into the Clarence Valley

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

Couple build their own 'tiny house' for $45k

Holly Bowen and Oli Bucher built their "tiny house" themselves, only hiring a plumber and an electrician. Photo/supplied

The house, which is built on a trailer and can be towed.

Sunshine Beach property breaks real estate record

The property overlooks Sunshine Beach, as the backyard lawn meets the sand.

Sunshine Beach mansion sale smashes real estate record

NEW HOME: Agents to the rescue for family of nine

RELIEF: Tanya Cone (middle) with her kids and McKimm's Real Estate property managers Regan Firth and Nadine Greenhalgh who helped find her family a home.

DEX article prompts property managers to help family find new home

SOLD: Historic hotel finds new owner

Post Office Hotel Grafton

Photo Adam Hourigan / The Daily Examiner

Pub in new hands and heading in a brand new direction