The Queensland Women in Business Summit will be held over two days at Novotel Surfers Paradise.
The Queensland Women in Business Summit will be held over two days at Novotel Surfers Paradise. mattrimages

Council vote against sending councillor to $2000 summit

GLADSTONE councillors have voted against sending one of their own to today's Queensland Women in Business Summit at the Gold Coast.

Approval for Cr Desley O'Grady to attend the summit was sort at Tuesday's council meeting at Miriam Vale but the motion was defeated by four votes to three.

Councillors Glenn Churchill and PJ Sobhanian were absent from the meeting.

The trip was estimated to cost $2075. The summit is designed for women in business, STEM, innovation, emerging industries and education, and is expected to attract about 300 delegates and 30 guest speakers.

Gladstone Airport Corporation chairwoman Adrienne Ward will speak at the event.

Finding relevance to the Gladstone Region proved difficult for the four councillors who voted against Cr O'Grady's attendance.

"I can understand the great benefits that can be reached by attending conferences... For us to attend conferences we have to make sure there is a benefit to the ratepayers," Cr Peter Masters said.

"On this occasion I can't see any relevance for council to attend this conference."

Cr Kahn Goodluck said he'd read the summit's agenda but like Cr Masters, couldn't find relevance for council.

"They are all important (topics) but are not necessary relatable to local government," Cr Goodluck said.

Mayor Matt Burnett voted in favour of sending Cr O'Grady, who was looking to drum up support in order to hold the next summit in Gladstone.

Gladstone will host the Central Queensland Women in Business Awards on March 22.

"If we could have brought that summit back to Gladstone it would have an economic benefit to the city," Cr Burnett said.

"This summit is huge so to have that in our region in future years - whether it's only once or every few years - it would have been pretty good.

"Council made their decision not to send her and that's fine."