By ERWIN CHLANDA
Member for Stuart Scott McConnell (pictured) says he is opposed to a Federal prison in Alice Springs proposed by the Major Business Group.
“I’m all for advocacy and there are many business opportunities in Central Australia, but I was concerned by their first pitch for a Federal Prison,” says Mr McConnell.
“I think we have to have a vision for what we want our community to look like now and in the future. A Federal Prison would not be my starting point.”
Meanwhile the group, which says its members employ directly and indirectly over 1700 people in Alice Springs alone, has invested over $120m in capital over the past five years and has an annual turnover of more than $500m, has now disclosed its “inaugural” membership:
• Chairman David Batic, General Manager Alice Springs Airport.
• Craig Jervis, Chief Operating Officer Lasseter’s.
• Greg Boaz, Managing Director Boaz Group.
• Paul Graham, Managing Director AsBuild,
• Randle Walker, Chief Executive Officer Centrecorp.
• Steve Brouwer (Observer), Managing Director Brouwer Group.
The following is an edited version of information about its members provided by the Alice Springs Major Business Group:
Chairman David Batic has worked in the defence and civil aviation industry for over 35 years prior to his current appointment as general manager of the Alice Springs and Tennant Creek Airports. He was previously general manager aviation operations at the Townsville international airport.
He holds a Graduate Certificate in Business Administration, Bachelor of Aviation and is currently a Chartered Engineer through Engineers Australia.
Other professional memberships include the Royal Aeronautical Society, the International Society of Air Safety Investigators and the Safety Institute of Australia.
He is on the National Engineering Associates Register in the discipline of Mechanical Engineering and is a RAAF Squadron Leader Aeronautical Engineer Reserve member. He has over 6,000 flying hours experience as a flight engineer.
He is the chairman of Tourism Central Australia and of the Central Australian Chamber of Commerce, board director of Desert Knowledge Australia, chairman of the Alice Springs Major Business Group and the Vibrant CBD Committee and is president of the Alice Springs RSL.
Randle Walker is CEO and company secretary for Centrecorp Aboriginal Investment Corporation and Centrecorp Foundation.
Centrecorp is an Alice Springs based organisation which invests in a range of commercial businesses and properties to produce commercial returns that fund benevolent relief to disadvantaged Aboriginal people of Central Australia.
Its investment portfolio includes car dealerships, shopping centres, a number of commercial properties, car rental franchises, a resort, real estate franchise and a supermarket.
Mr Walker is either company secretary and/or a director on these investments and related entities. He has a Bachelor of Business (Accounting), Associate Diploma of Accounting and Certificate in Production and Inventory Management and is a Fellow CPA, JP and member of Institute of Company Directors.
He holds committee positions with organisations including the Alice Springs Chamber of Commerce, chair of Audit Committee for MacDonnell Regional Council, and is the president of CPA Northern Territory.
He has formerly held positions on Tourism Central Australia and Alice Springs Regional Economic Development Committees.
Craig Jervis is the chief operating officer of Lasseters Hotel Casino, has more than 20 years’ experience in hospitality, 11 years in in Alice.
He holds a BA in Hospitality & Tourism Management, Advance Diploma in Hotel Management and Diploma of Adult Tertiary Teaching.
Involvement has included sitting on the board of The Australian Hotel Associations (NT), Australian Tourism Export Council (NT) committee member, the Red Centre Economic Development committee and Chairman of the Central Australian Liquor Accord.
Lasseters has 205 rooms, a casino featuring 13 table games and 310 electronic gaming machines; four restaurants, two cafes and multiple bars and a convention centre attracting more than 11,000 delegates each year, resulting in an estimated $10m in “economic stimulus” for the town. Operational expenses across the centre exceed $27m annually and the company has invested $52m in capital expenditure in the last five years.
With more than 330 employees, Lasseters is the largest private employer in Alice Springs and contributes more than $320,000 in “direct community assistance”.
Paul Graham has worked in the building industry for about 25 years, with a trade background in carpentry, progressing to building supervision, project management and business ownership. He is a director of Asbuild (NT) Pty Ltd and a director of development company, Graham Nominees.
He held committee positions on the Building Advisory Council, Chamber of Commerce and currently Redtails, Right Tracks and he is a member of Institute of Company Directors.
No details are provided for Greg Boaz but he is known as a former builder and owner of the Gapview Hotel and bottleshop.
By ERWIN CHLANDA