Thursday, August 24, 2023


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Councillor Column

With Gary Simpson, Councillor for Division 5

Hello everyone,

The beginning of the year is just flying by and I’m excited to share some Division 5 news with our community.

Just call me ‘Good News Gary’ because we have just received some important funding from the Queensland Resilience and Risk Reduction Fund (QRRRF) to upgrade the Cantamessa Road Bridge in Strathdickie.

The bridge was badly damaged in the 2017 Cyclone Debbie event, but up until now, it has never been eligible for flood damage funding.

This bridge is an essential lifeline to our community. Not only do local farmers rely on it to safely transport heavy equipment and machinery during crushing season, but it also serves as a detour option should Strathdickie Road be closed.

I am grateful for the support of my fellow Councillors that we have finally managed to obtain grant funding of $144,000 from the QRRRF. That grant along with the $16,000 contribution from Council ensures a safe passage for all.

In other news, I am proud to say that the first Community Catch-up will be happening at the Dingo Beach Community Centre on Wednesday, March 1, from 9am – 11am.

This will be a great opportunity for Councillors and our senior Council staff to catch-up with local residents face to face and to listen to your needs and aspirations for the future.

I am also excited that investigations are underway for the Dingo Beach – Hydeaway Bay walking track, and I am advocating strongly to deliver a positive outcome for residents.

The application is currently waiting for sign-off by the powers that be in Brisbane, so fingers crossed we will have some good news soon.

It will be wonderful to see these two individual communities brought together in this way. I for one, cannot wait to explore the track with my family.

I can’t wait to catch up with those of you that can make it on March 1. I am so proud to live in our region and will do everything I can to make sure our residents are too.


Cr Gary

In other news