WAY OUT WEST
Visiting Queensland councils to ensure staff are up to date with the latest Local Buy purchasing arrangements, is a vital factor in their successful utilisation by those councils. Emma Peters, Local Buy Regional Client Relationship Manager is based in Townsville and looks after 37 Queensland Councils from Isaac, across to Mt Isa and then North.
Servicing that amount of territory requires time on the road, and Emma undertakes regular road trips to visit her councils. Pat McCormack, Local Buy Category Manager for Works accompanied Emma on this trip from Townsville to Mt Isa. These trips help to maintain relationships, share information and to gain an understanding of current projects and issues faced by these councils.
The North and North West has had alot of recent rain, and the whole area was noticeably green, compared to normal conditions. Evidence of receded floodwaters were noticeable with frequent roadworks and water pooling beside the highway. Presentations were conducted at Hughenden, Richmond, Julia Creek and Mt Isa. Emma and Pat were mightily impressed with councils staffs’ enthusiasm for their area, can do attitude and hospitality.
Overnight stays at Richmond and Julia Creek offered the opportunity to inspect current council projects and some socialising at local “water holes”. At Richmond they took the opportunity to inspect the recently completed water treatment plant, tennis centre, lake precinct with walkways, BBQs, native garden and children’s water play area, and also the extensions to the caravan park with the locally dubbed “Great Wall of Richmond”. Julia Creek offered the opportunity to view preparations for the upcoming Dirt ’n Dust Festival, facility upgrades at the airport and caravan park, and get involved with a promotion for the Outback Bushwack Festival. Visit https://www.facebook.com/mckinlayshire.council/videos/1723609857719055/
if you dare. A big day was topped off by soaking in the claw foot baths at Julia Creek Caravan Park, in warm artesian water, taking in the local vistas at sunset.
There is so much more to these towns than you can get from just driving through. The isolation brings challenges but also offers great experiences, especially for people from the big smoke. We recommend you stop to smell the roses, visit the local café and shops, and stay overnight if you can. The stars and the people are fantastic out there.