This is the first of our interviews with candidates for the seat of Lytton (here’s the electorate map). Our focus is very much on what the candidates would do if elected to help the Wynnum central shopping area. As things stand there are approximately 25 empty shop units, of which 12 are in Edith Street.
Given that this is a quickfire election, the major parties are yet to announce many of their major policies, so this is a snapshot of what each candidate has to say at this point.
It has been suggested (by one of the candidates) that WynnumCentral hold a candidates debate closer to election day – if we do this we’ll let you know!
We asked each candidate two questions:
1. What would you do if elected to help revitalise the Wynnum Central shopping area?
2. The UK has a minister for high streets. What do you think of this idea?
Our first interviewee was Neil Symes, LNP candidate and the current state member for Lytton.
Q: What would you do if elected to help revitalise the Wynnum Central shopping area?
A: Neil Symes pointed out that there were more empty shops – 35 – when he was elected and that the vacancy rate has reduced down to around 25 during his term in office (WynnumCentral is unable to verify this information), with for example a legal practice and a mortgage finance business moving into premises in Wynnum, as well as other new businesses.
He explained that the current Queensland Government has provided an environment suitable for business growth, and in the Lytton electorate he has supported a ‘buy local’ campaign and encouraged the opening of new Bunnings facilities at the Port of Brisbane and in Manly West. He referred to his ongoing support of local initiatives including the WynnumCentral market (Mr Symes has given financial support to the markets) and the Wynnum & Districts Chamber of Commerce, and a recent $40,000 donation to the Koha Shed, an organisation to help primarily New Zealand nationals who have hit hard times.
If re-elected he stated he would continue with a buy local strategy, as well as lobbying the Queensland Government to bring regional offices to Wynnum. He also referred to the LNP policy of regionalising government offices, which may also benefit Wynnum, which he said was a move opposed by the ALP. The LNP has pledged 209,000 new jobs and to introduce payments to businesses to encourage them to take on new apprentices.
Q: The UK has a minister for high streets. What do you think of this idea?
A: Neil Symes indicated that he supports the current ministerial structure and that the ALP has already stated that it will cut the number of ministerial positions from 19 to 14 if elected.
Neil Symes also pointed out that the LNP still has a number of significant policy announcements waiting in the wings, including one which will directly impact the Lytton electorate.
Remember to vote in our snap poll (on the right hand side of this page) – let us know who you would vote for. If you’re undecided at this point, wait until you’ve made your mind up and then vote, as we’ll keep the poll going until election day.
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