Council no show at trade hearing

THE Lockyer Valley Regional Council (LVRC) is continuing to fight seven-day trading from permeating the Lockyer Valley, but because no representative from LVRC was present at a recent Queensland Industrial Relations Commission (QIRC) hearing, it may be dismissed by commissioners.

President of the National Retail Federation, Scott Driscoll, said he was disappointed that no one was there to represent LVRC.

“I think it is a very poor show by the organisation entrusted by the community to be their voice,” Mr Driscoll said.

“They just had to lodge a witness statement and they could have sent a representative to attend.

“The point we raise is you can't just send in a note in a court environment, council must have a representative present, even if it is just to confirm the validity of their position.”

LVRC Mayor Steve Jones said council's position was determined by consulting with small businesses.

“There are advantages and disadvantages with anything you do and the disadvantages outweigh the advantages in this case,” he said.

“Many of the businesses are only operated by one or two people and it would limit the resources.

“Councils like to give a response in writing, because once you get into a hearing, they tend to try and manipulate things.

“We would like to make sure everything is clear and in writing.”

Mr Driscoll said although council's position within the resolution is rather clear the QIRC haven't heard it in a formal way.

“The commission will completely disregard the application,” he said.

“I think the council's position against the application is right they just went about it in the wrong way.

“It's a wasted opportunity and they have a moral obligation to the people.”

He said local government is the only tier of government that counts in the outcome of the case.


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