On Wednesday 29 August the Lord Mayor Graham Quirk and his Civic Cabinet visited the Wynnum Manly Ward. Council advised they were expecting 100 people. By the time the meeting started, at least 30 more chairs were made available and there were many standing at the back.
The mood of the attendees was decisive. The main agenda was the proposed aged care amendments to the City Plan.
Almost every question from the floor queried the Council’s motivation in allowing more power for the developers and less for the community. The necessity for aged care was not queried, but many speakers noted that the developments were not about caring for the aged, but catering for upwardly mobile older citizens who still had choices. It was felt the amendments would fail to deliver real aged care and instead make it easier for developers to build more luxury units for the general market.
Questions were also raised (but not answered) about the makeup of the BCC Taskforce into Retirement and Aged Care and the over representation of Govt, and Aged Care Providers without any general public or Aged Care advocacy groups being present.
At the end of the questions, which were time limited, the Lord Mayor commented that he was hearing the community loud and clear. The Civic Cabinet then broke up and attendees were able to ask questions of those councillors.
The consensus from the meeting was that Council wanted to push ahead with the amendment package, standing by its claims that the changes were needed to deliver more accommodation for the elderly.