The capital works program for Central Australia consists mostly of revotes from last year when the total value was $38m. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. PHOTO: The Kilgariff development gets $3.3m – this morning it looked like an Ayers Rock replica under construction.
Only 30 residential blocks will be built in stage one of the new Kilgariff suburb south of The Gap, Lands Minister Peter Chandler has now confirmed, with blocks to cost from $160,000 to $180,000. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.
Housing blocks will go on the market for $160,000 to $180,000 average in the new Kigariff suburb and its development is 18 months ahead of the former Labor Government's schedule, Chief Minister Adam Giles told the Chamber of Commerce budget luncheon yesterday. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.PHOTO: Kilgariff – the lock will come off 18 months sooner.
Chief Minister Terry Mills is in Alice Springs for the Country Liberal Party annual meeting. ERWIN CHLANDA asked him to comment on three issues.
KILGARIFF: Given that the suburb is being built on land that is owned by the public, is there a good case for blocks – at least some – to be sold for the cost of developing them, around $70,000, although residential real estate currently costs up to five times as much?
ALCOHOL IN REMOTE COMMUNITIES: As the weaker people in bush communities may come under pressure from the more powerful, should there be secret ballots to decide whether alcohol should be allowed?
There is confusion about MANDATORY ALCOHOL REHABILITATION: Is it a criminal or medical measure?
Country Liberals leader Terry Mills pledged $2.5m "to transform the Anzac Hill youth centre into a Police and Citizens Youth Club".
It will "have access to youth workers and other appropriate support networks as well as organised activities and sports infrastructure," he said during a whistlestop visit to Alice Springs today.
"The existing centre will be re-developed in stages [no time frame is given] and the upgraded facility will include a cafe operated by the PCYC."
Asked how many blocks at the new Kilgariff suburb will be sold and at what price, he said the market would set the prices.
Will there be an amalgamation of prison and alcohol rehabilitation farms?
Mr Mills said these facilities would be for people failing to seek help.
"But if that is not sought [that would be] a breach of a court order and then there would be the intervention."
But Russell Goldflam, president of the Criminal Lawyers Association, says this is tantamount to re-criminalising drunkenness.
Mr Mills said there would be 20 extra police in Alice Springs permanently, "not just when some problem arises that causes embarrassment for the government."
He could not answer what new infrastructure the tourism industry could expect because the proposed new tourist commission had not yet been set up.
PHOTOS: Country Liberals leader Terry Mills and MLA for Araluen Robyn Lambley this morning, with reporters. A sketch of what the refurbished centre would look like.
As there was no opportunity for asking Mr Mills further questions this morning the Alice Springs News Online has emailed him these:-
• Would a CL government provide two more lots of $5m to the Alice Springs Town Council, as it requested, for the revitalisation of town centre? (The Labor commitment is for just $2.5m).
• What plans, if any, does the CL have for the development of horticulture and agriculture in remote areas to soak up the massive number of unemployed there?
Vocal law and order campaigner Steve Brown (pictured) is standing for Mayor and Alderman in the town council elections on March 24, although he says he will be "facing an uphill battle" against the "firmly entrenched incumbent," Damien Ryan.
Mr Brown says he would bring a "much more vigorous approach" to the position: "Damien’s embrace of the NT Labor Government's policies and his willingness to take up offered positions on every board and committee that came his way has often left him obligated and somewhat compromised, and the council in a position of being unable to criticise when criticism was absolutely due."
He says he will not accept membership of "any committees or bodies or boards not directly associated with the operation of the Alice Springs Town Council".
Mr Brown says if elected he would have a pro-growth "corporate Alice" approach, running the town as a successful business, aiming at attracting more permanent workers and giving incentives to business.
Meanwhile Alderman Eli Melky, while still not declaring his hand for the coming elections, continues his attack on the actions of the current council.
He has given notice that at council's committee meeting next Monday he will put a motion to abolish council's “Removal of graffiti” by-law, which places the onus of removal on property-owners. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.