Indigenous leaders hear sombre news

If councils ran their finances the way the Federal Government does, they would have been dismissed and administrators put in place long ago, the Indigenous Leaders Forum heard in Cairns.

Senator Ian Macdonald, Opposition Spokesman for Northern and Remote Australia, addressed the forum, saying that he was disappointed that the present Federal government seemed to consult mainly with unelected bodies rather than the elected representatives of the community.

Too often these unelected bodies have been appointed by the central government to deliver Canberra views and positions to remote communities, rather than listening to the real concerns of members of those communities,

As someone who, like you, lives and works in places remote from capital cities, I understand the additional costs that the carbon tax makes to everything councils do," Senator Macdonald told the gathering of Mayors, Councillors and CEOs.

I understand what waste and mismanagement has done to the projects that are so essential to remote Australians, which have had to be postponed, and I know how Canberras decisions have restricted councils taking full advantage of the opportunities that are available and that could create real jobs and a future built on hope and reward.

CLICK HERE to read the full speech.

The Indigenous Leaders Forum was held by the Local Government Association of Queensland with leaders of 16 indigenous councils gathering in Cairns over two days to discuss ways of meeting challenges and taking advantages of opportunities available to them.

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