Mick and Amanda Astill with KCCI president Rob Fitz-Herbert

October 22, 2019

Kingaroy Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s latest meet’n’greet had a bit of everything on Tuesday night … good news, useful advice and a surprise announcement.

The meet’n’greet was hosted by Astill’s Electrical and hosts Amanda and Mick Astill had some good news to share.

After taking out the State trophy last month as Queensland Medium Employer of the Year at the Queensland Training Awards, Astill’s Electrical have now been short-listed for the national awards.

“Next week we will start the interview process,” Amanda said.

Only three of the winners from the State level are selected after further judging to represent Queensland at the national level.

The surprise announcement was made by KCCI executive member Kirstie Schumacher who told the audience of about 50 local businesspeople that she had decided to run for Division 4 at the next South Burnett Regional Council elections.

Kirstie is the third person to put up her hand publicly to run for Division 4, which is currently held by Cr Terry Fleischfresser.

Last week, Kingaroy accountant Brett Otto was unmasked on social media as a candidate for Division 4. His official campaign launch is on Thursday.

And Cr Fleischfresser has also stated in the media that he intends to run again.

The 2020 Local Government elections are due to be held across Queensland on Saturday, March 28.

The useful advice came from two representatives from BIEDO, the Burnett Inland Economic Development Organisation.

Communications officer Olivia Everitt and rural counsellor Karen Seiler spoke about programs which are being facilitated by BIEDO, including the recent “Taking Care of Inland Business” workshop which was held at The Platform in Murgon.

This workshop, which was sold out, featured talks by financial counsellors and representatives from the Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority (QRIDA).

Olivia said BIEDO was keen to hear from the business community about topics for future workshops.

Karen asked the KCCI members to check with their staff, to ask “are you okay?”, as the region had now been in drought since 2017 and many people – not just farmers – were being affected.

She thanked businesses whom she knew were “carrying” farmers but urged people to remember: “When it does rain, it won’t rain money. It will be a catch-up for years …”

Karen said a lot of farmers were still self-assessing for supports such as the Farm Household Allowance. She urged them to speak to Centrelink and said BIEDO also had information available about support offered by the QCWA, Drought Angels, Rural Aid and other organisations.

BIEDO was organising “Bugger The Drought” days at Burrandowan, Booie and Mondure which will include speakers from DAFF, Centrelink and QRIDA.

* * *

Other information from the meet’n’greet:

  • McDonald’s Kingaroy will be holding their McHappy Day fundraiser on November 16. Businesses have been asked to donate items for raffle prizes or volunteer to help out on the day.
  • The next South Burnett Business Breakfast will be held from 6:30am on Wednesday at the Nanango RSL Club. Guest speakers are Jacqui Trace, Chris “Corky” Corcoran and “the Sauce Man” ie. John Whitley and Nigel Squibb.
  • Officer-in-charge of Kingaroy Police, Senior Sergeant Dave Tierney, said an information session would be held at Kingaroy Police Station next Monday (October 28) to set up an online Kingaroy Neighbourhood Watch group. For more information, phone the station on (07) 4160-4900. Sgt Tierney said money raised through a road safety bumper sticker campaign and a proposed business fundraiser would be put towards a project to get a driving simulator in the region.
  • Mick Astill also spoke about his recent trip to Uganda for charity KCM where he helped to build a trauma rehabilitation centre for children. Donations to KCM can be made online

KCCI meet’n’greets are held every six weeks and are hosted by different businesses. Both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

The next meet’n’greet will be hosted by the Taabinga Rotary Club at the South Burnett Enterprise Centre on November 26.

This will also be the Annual General Meeting.

KCCI executive member Kirstie Schumacher with Mayor Keith Campbell and host Amanda Astill … Kirstie announced her intention to run as a candidate for Division 4 at the next Council election
Guest speakers Karen Seiler and Olivia Everitt from BIEDO
SBRC CEO Mark Pitt with Senior Sergeant Dave Tierney

Ros Heit for South Burnett Division 6
Vote 1 Kathy Duff for South Burnett Mayor


Vote 1 Jane Erkens for Division 1
Vote 1 Scott Hernschen for Division 6

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