Cairns news report – 28th March 2020


Welcome to this weeks edition of my Cairns News Report, a complimentary ‘week in review’ of all the pertinent news stories on what’s happening in and around Cairns.

COVID-19 remains the hot topic, which is expected to continue for some time. If you missed any of the top Cairns news stories from last week, here they all are in full below. Just click the title to read the full story.

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Chemist begins Home Delivery, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 23 Mar 2020

AMCAL Smithfield has launched a delivery service from Cairns north to the beaches in an effort to protect the health of clients. “We don’t want our vulnerable population to be out and about unnecessarily,” pharmacist Phil Anderson said. He said stock levels of prescription medications remained “OK”.

Flexibility in earnings may be key, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 23 Mar 2020

The Federal Government has indicated major assistance packages will be coming for businesses and affected staff but severe belt-tightening will become inevitable for a vast number of operations. It has started in Cairns with the likes of Crystal brook Collection being forced to lay off 140 staff and many other organisations cutting staff numbers and hours – but it is only the beginning.

Funds to Flow for Hydro Scheme, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 23 Mar 2020

A $700 million pumped storage hydro-electricity project, creating 500 jobs, looks set to proceed southeast of Cairns with the federal and state governments firmly behind it and a resolution understood to be close on the scheme’s power supply agreement.

Money Advice Offered to Firms, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 23 Mar 2020

Trinity Accountants’ Rod Sherrington said he had already hosted 75 people in a virtual workshop on how to make sure businesses could make it through a national lockdown. He said government funding could help his business provide advice on cash flow management, loan applications and assistance packages and a set of management and financial reports for the eight months to March.

Stage on verge of closing services, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 23 Mar 2020

Queensland is poised for lockdown, with non-essential services, including pubs and clubs, set to be shut within days in a bid to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Popular beaches could be closed and suburbs quarantined, with even tougher restrictions to come, amid concerns that too many Queenslanders are not taking the risk seriously enough.

Tommy Bahama Pins Faith in city with lease, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 23 Mar 2020

Stuart Thyrd, who owns the old Cairns telegraph building in a consortium led by Frank Gasparin and others, said the retailer’s exterior has also been refreshed with a new marble facade costing $100,000. “Tommy Bahama take a long-term view of any of their decisions and they know the current situation is just a blip on the radar,” Mr. Thyrd said.

New World Order, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 24 Mar 2020

The State Government is tightening the screws even further in the fight against coronavirus with Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk urging people to stay within their neighbourhoods forcing major changes to everyday life. More and more are joining the unemployment queues while one business jumped on the front foot to stay afloat.

Builders Call for Support as Contracts Evaporate, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 24 Mar 2020

QUEENSLAND’S building sector is bracing for more company collapses as home buyers and developers walk away from contracts due to the spread of coronavirus. Master Builders Queensland deputy chief executive Paul Bidwell said builders were starting to report the loss of contracts as the economic uncertainty over the spread of the coronavirus grows.

No Staff Fired but No work at Casino, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 24 Mar 2020

The boss of Cairns’ casino has spoken publicly, saying none of its 400-strong workforce has been fired or made redundant but there was no work for them until further notice after the venue closed its doors. CEO Allan Tan said the Pullman Reef Hotel Casino was following government orders and the decision to close was not their choice.

FNQ’s New Frontline, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 25 Mar 2020

The fight against COVID-19 has gone to a new level with Stratford Medical Centre opening an outdoor triage on its doorstep. Patients like Lynda Etherington can now be checked for fever before entering and surgery or receiving treatment in one of two tents set up if they display signs of cold and flu.

More Flights Grounded, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 26 Mar 2020

Australia has reduced flights to Cairns to one service. The airline will operate the Brisbane to Cairns route. The Virgin Australia Group made the announcement to the Australian Securities Exchange yesterday morning.

No Penalty for Unpaid Parking, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 26 Mar 2020

Parking fines will no longer be issued across the city centre despite Cairns Regional Council still encouraging motorists to pay their fees. A spokesman for the council told the Cairns Post residents were expected to pay for parking – although they would not be penalised if they did not.

Airport reduces Terminal Facilities, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 27 Mar 2020

CAIRNS Airport is looking to scale back operations at its international terminal as it tries to cope with minimal flights from overseas. Air Niugini is the only international carrier regularly landing at the airport, as border closures result in other airlines temporarily halting activities in the Far North.

Agents Waiting for Dust to Settle, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 28 Mar 2020

While renters fear losing their home during the coronavirus crisis, mum-and-dad investors are fearing they will be financially ruined if a blanket eviction ban failed to consider property owners as well.

FNQ Evades Bleaching Hit, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 28 Mar 2020

A third mass coral bleaching event underway on the great barrier relief has left the Far North’s main tourism sites mostly untouched. But in Six months’ time, the coronavirus pandemic may result in only larger tour operators remaining afloat to take visitors offshore to see the natural wonder.

Who is hiring FNQ right now, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 28 Mar 2020

The banana industry is a major agricultural employer in FNQ and has a dedicated workforce,” Mr Pekin said. “If there are staff shortages in future on banana farms, the growers would be looking to ensure such staff have not been overseas in the last 14 days, have not come into close contact with anyone who has a confirmed case of coronavirus.

Hotels to Offer to isolate Arrivals, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 28 Mar 2020

Three new far Northern COVID-19 infections have been confirmed by Queensland health but it’s unclear if the latest cases have recently arrived home on international flights. It takes the official total for the cairns and hinterland hospital and health service to 15.

Aquatic Park has new aim, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 28 Mar 2020

The coronavirus pandemic is not stopping plans for a water park on the northern beaches of caurins. Paradise Palms owner Daren Halpin has assured the community that his $330 Million redevelopment of the former golf course is still progressing.

A day to be polls apart, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 28 Mar 2020

Tens of thousands of Far Northern voters go to the polls today in an unprecedented local council election where the highest concern is minimising health risks to COVID-19 infection. At booths across the Far North, from the tip of Cape York to Cardwell, social distancing of 1.5m apart and sanitising hands will be of utmost importance.

Positives seen amid the gloom, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 28 Mar 2020

“But if it’s something that rattles on and continues and the uncertainty fails to abate, then I think that people will be much more cautious as a result, and instead of seeing a rebound in the second half of the year, we’ll see an ongoing malaise and further need for government intervention.”

Projects may be hastened, Cairns Post e-Paper, The Cairns Post – 28 Mar 2020

Mulgrave MP Curtis Pitt said the facility, a first of its kind, would be able to transform from a community hub into an emergency facility during natural disasters. “More than 24,000 masonry blocks have been used in the facility and 126 truckloads of concrete were used to create the building’s foundation and on-site helipad – with all of the materials sourced locally,” he said.


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