John Buchanan, pictured here at Warraburra State School, says he wants to see Gracemere become part of Capricornia.
John Buchanan, pictured here at Warraburra State School, says he wants to see Gracemere become part of Capricornia. John Buchanan

Capricornia V Flynn: Where does Gracemere want to be?




DOES Gracemere want to leave Flynn for Capricornia?

Recently, here at The Morning Bulletin, we have received many Letters to the Editor and other reader correspondence discussing the electoral boundaries placing Gracemere in Flynn, despite Rockhampton being a part of Capricornia.

With the hopes of gaining a better understanding of what Gracemere residents want, a reporter spoke to residents on election day to see if they were happy being a part of Flynn or if they would rather be part of Capricornia?

It was a mixed response on the ground.

John Buchanan, a Labor volunteer, said he would much rather vote for a Capricornia representative as he had hardly heard from the Flynn incumbent Ken O'Dowd until the campaign period.

"We have only seen him a hand full of times over the years," he said.

If offered the chance to vote for Capricornia over Flynn, Mr Buchanan said he'd jump at the chance.

However, the question seemed to spark debate from passers-by as Dan Oram, from Oram Nurseries in Pink Lily.

His residence in Pink Lily is also in the electorate of Flynn despite being on the southern banks of the Fitzroy and adjacent to the other suburbs of Rockhampton.

He felt far better represented by Mr O'Dowd.

"We had a meeting (in Gracemere) the other night and all of the candidates were invited - Ken O'dowd was the only person to show up," Mr Oram said.

Much of the Flynn vs Capricornia debate focussed on the idea that sticking with Flynn would mean a new High School for Gracemere and Capricornia would not.

Mr Buchanan was of the opinion that a high school for Gracemere was not a priority for the area.

That was when another Gracemere resident, Ron Norman, entered the conversation.

"We get very good service here from our local member," he said.

"We're are one of the larger population hubs in the Flynn electorate so they have to pay attention to us."

When it came to possibly gaining a high school for Gracemere, Mr Norman presented a convincing case.

"If we have a high school here, we will have more local sports clubs and things like that," he said.

"People in Capricornia don't see a need for a high school here, even though we have some 900 high school students that take a fleet of buses into Rockhampton on a daily basis."

Strangely, the big ticket road upgrade promises, made by both parties in the weeks earlier, struggled to find their way in to the conversation.

Be sure to follow the rolling coverage for Capricornia and Flynn throughout the day to get the latest updates and stories.