The stars are aligning for the Toowoomba region
I AM very pleased to be given this opportunity to update you each week on some of the issues affecting our region.
The idea of a blog is not new to me, ever since I was elected mayor of Millmerran back in 2000, I have provided some insight into my role through that community's monthly newsletter.
I think it's very important to keep the community informed about the work I undertake as mayor of this fine region and I hope to use this column for just that.
Following my election, I coined the phrase, "the stars are aligning for this region" and indeed they are.
Our economic and social diversity is no doubt our greatest asset.
Our strong local industries - manufacturing, retail, education, agriculture, health and community services, and transport complemented by our proximity to Brisbane and each of the coasts as well as the Surat Basin provides an exceptional platform for a very positive future for this region.
I firmly believe Toowoomba has the capacity to become the real powerhouse of the Queensland economy in the coming years.
In recent weeks I've taken up the fight to ensure Toowoomba's place on the Australian Inland Railway route.
The establishment of the Melbourne to Brisbane line will change the face of this nation and has the potential to bring remarkable opportunity to our region.
The development of a major multi-modal transport hub at Charlton; moving the current rail-lines out of the CBD; and the development of a passenger route between Toowoomba and Brisbane are all possibilities if this project gets goes ahead.
As a council we are working to make sure we strike the right balance for our more than 160,000 residents.
This region really does offer the best of city and country living and we are fortunate to be very rich both socially and culturally.
I want to lead an inclusive community and continue to build on the remarkable community pride that already exists within this region.
So much of that pride was on show during recent events like the Carnival of Flowers, the Festival of the Golden Shears, the Millmerran Camp Oven Festival..and the list goes on.
My overwhelming vision in all of this is to listen to and respond to the needs of the community.