People Power Forces SandTunes Festival to Move

9 Sep 2019 4:14 PMJann Stuckey People Power Forces SandTunes Festival to Move

Member for Currumbin, Jann Stuckey said news that the SandTunes music festival for 35,000 people that was planned for Coolangatta Beach on 30 November and 1 December will be moved to Metricon stadium is music to the ears of local residents and businesses.

Member for Currumbin, Jann Stuckey said news that the SandTunes music festival for 35,000 people that was planned for Coolangatta Beach on 30 November and 1 December will be moved to Metricon stadium is music to the ears of local residents and businesses. 

“The response from the local community was overwhelming and this decision to move the event is a huge win for people power,’ said Ms Stuckey.

“Minister for Tourism, Kate Jones, and the member for Gaven, Meaghan Scanlon, made a big mistake in supporting the SandTunes Festival as a major event on Coolangatta beach for several years after the Gold Coast City Council approved it in September 2017. 

“Firstly, the location was on a World Surfing Reserve that Labor declared worthy of protection only a few years ago, with much fanfare. I know; I was there. 

“Secondly, there was no community consultation and countless risk factors were identified by those who know best, our surf lifesavers and police. 

“What people want to know now is whether council and state government contracts will lapse, or whether they will be resurrected again next year or the year after. 

“We need to make sure that we will not have to go through this turmoil again. That is why I am exploring options to create a charter of community rights to give residents and small businesses a say in future major events. 

“Rarely does an issue ignite passion amongst residents as has this proposed festival for 35,000. It was a completely wrong fit for our precinct because of the high risk and opposition voiced by many groups and individuals and I thank sincerely the hundreds of residents who mailed or phoned me and my office.

“I worked closely as a team with Councillor Gail O'Neil, our local chamber and President Hilary Jacobs, Andy McKinnon the president of the World Surfing Reserve, local surf-lifesaving clubs, police, Bilinga2Border, and Donna and Steve Archdeacon, along with many others. 

“The media - radio, print and TV all played a role in sending a strong message to council, state government and the organisers that opposition to the location of the festival was widespread. 

“On behalf of the people in the Currumbin electorate, and particularly the Coolangatta precinct, I express our heartfelt thanks to them all. I acknowledge and thank my staff for their long hours and commitment to supporting public sentiment. They went the extra mile for locals, but that is what we do. 

“By falsely stating that people were trying to ruin this event for the Gold Coast, the member for Gaven insulted around 900 people who live locally and who voice their concerns as they are entitled to do. 

“The push was always to have the festival moved to a more appropriate location. Her comments were untrue and a cheap political play from a member who could learn a thing or two about community consultation. 

“The member for Gaven said that the Metricon venue is perfect for a large-scale music event; it is a better option. I rest my case. If it is so perfect for the event, why was it not placed there from the start?

Ends 06/09/2019