Alice Springs news
Alice Springs news; NewspaperNT
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Community newspspers; Australia, Central; Alice Springs (N.T.); Newspapers
v. 17 issue 34
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grants for first home buyers. NEWS: My question is, what will you be pushing for as the representative for Araluen? FINDLAY: I want affordable housing for the people of Alice Springs, there is no question about that. Weve just gone through the process of buying a home here, and its a very daunting task with the prices here in the last four or five years. Definitely Ill be looking for a good result for the first home buyers. NEWS: Is there a case for selling the AZRI blocks for or near the cost of their development? FINDLAY: In due course everything has got to be looked at. Im not sure about the mechanics of it. You should probably ask the minister about that detail. NEWS: The voters will wish to know what your intentions are, what your platform is and what youre pushing for. FINDLAY: I will definitely be pushing for a good deal for first home buyers and for affordable housing. Ill endeavour to get some more details out in the course of this campaign. NEWS: A report has just come to light that recommends five storey developments in several locations of the centre of Alice Springs. The government has apparently received that report close to a year ago, and so did an advisory committee headed by the Mayor Damien Ryan and Minister for Central Australia Karl Hampton. The real estate industry is represented on that committee. Earlier this year the government gave the green light to the five story Melanka development, yet the public was invited to comment only a few days ago. FINDLAY: This is a really important question but you should ask the minister. NEWS: Weve put in a question. [This was on September 10 and the News has still not received an answer.] FINDLAY: Ive started asking businesses around the mall and in the CBD what their feelings are about going to five storeys and Ill be continuing to do that to form an opinion. NEWS: What are the answers youre getting so far? FINDLAY: A lot of people really dont want it and people with vested interests do want it. Its a fairly hot topic. NEWS: Is it about half-half at the moment? FINDLAY: Very close to half-half, yes, possibly favouring slightly against. NEWS: As we speak were on a flood alert. The question for many years has been whether we should build a flood mitigation dam not a lake which experts consider to be the only measure which would save the town from major loss of life and catastrophic damage in a one-in-100 year flood. What is your view? FINDLAY: I was here in the late 80s when [Federal Aboriginal Affairs Minister] Robert Tickner stopped the dam from being built. I was in the region during the 1988 floods in Alice Springs, when the centre of town was flooded. And I had my own home affected by floods in NSW. I consider there to be a risk. I will consider anything that can protect Alice Springs and its people. NEWS: Would that include a dam, given what the experts say, irrespective of the arguments against it? FINDLAY: What I have to do as a candidate is to sound people out, how people feel about that, and then pursue vigorously what the people of Araluen want me to do. NEWS: Yuendumu has just had a few days of unrest which had its roots in the death of a man in Alice Springs. From what we can make out, there were suspicions of sorcery, a man was paid back by stabbing him and he, too, died. Is it not time for the government to pass clear legislation banning payback and the excesses of tribal punishment? FINDLAY: Thats a sensitive and complicated area. Im not a government spokesman yet. I want the streets to be safe in all communities and in Alice Springs. Questions regarding something that is so sensitive is probably not something a candidate should answer [but should be directed to] a government minister. NEWS: We put a question to Karl Hampton in June on that very issue but we havent had an answer yet. The purpose of the conversation you and the News are having right now is to describe you as a candidate, what your views are, what you stand for. FINDLAY: This is day four of the election campaign. I am not a government spokesperson but I want our streets to be safe and for us to have law and order. There are a number of alcohol reforms and programs happening. NEWS: There has been a lot of tinkering with the problem of alcohol. Your opponent, Robyn Lambley, has suggested that habitual drunks should be dealt with by mandatory custodial rehabilitation, in other words, they should be locked up. FINDLAY: Most of the crime in this town is related to alcohol. The government is very clear: its about cutting grog and the opposition is about putting more grog on the streets. There is some measured success, some good programs, a lot of people are putting in hard work. I want to work with the key stakeholders, [including] the police. They are the experts in this field. Its not about tinkering but about doing real things to improve the safety in our streets. NEWS: What initiative in the last nine years, the period Labor has been in power, has worked, and how has it worked? FINDLAY: The restrictions have reduced consumption by 18%. There are now 195 police on the beat. Theres a whole
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