The Mary Valley Rattler
The Mary Valley Rattler Contributed

'Grave concerns' about validity of Rattler report numbers

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

(GYMPIE council) CEO Bernard Smith was good enough to send me a copy of the Mary Valley Rattler economic benefits to the region report compiled by EarthCheck.

He did this after I raised concerns to Mayor Curran about the validity of the report.

After reading the report a few times I must say I have grave concerns that the figures have been embellished to give a false representation of the actual statistics.

Tim Jerome is running for mayor at the 2020 Gympie council election.
Tim Jerome is running for mayor at the 2020 Gympie council election. Scott Kovacevic

Being an educator myself, if a student were to submit this report as their assessment, there would be no way I could pass this report. The report has not been properly referenced. The sources used are not valid sources to make the report believable or trustworthy.

Considering that EarthCheck was the same company used to do the feasibility case study and gave the Mayor the green light for the Rattler to go ahead in 2016, again raises real concerns.

In the real world, for myself as an educator to validate a student's work who is OP eligible, I have to rely on outside or different teachers from different areas to confirm the marks I as a teacher can give a student in my class.

This is called validation.

Rattler Railway Company Chairperson Ian McNicol and Mayor Mick Curran at the Rattler.
Rattler Railway Company Chairperson Ian McNicol and Mayor Mick Curran at the Rattler. Scott Kovacevic

Validation is done so a teacher does not bias the mark he/she has given to their student. This is basic accountability.

If this is what is expected with students in a high school, surely the same or higher should be the expectation when we are talking about spending millions of dollars of ratepayer money.

I challenge any teacher to read the Rattler economic report submitted by EarthCheck as if it was one of their student's work to give it a passing grade.

Yes, it has pretty pictures and yes, they have used nice colours, but when a student gets to grade 12 the pretty pictures and nice colours don't count for anything.

What we should be looking for are valid referencing and valid sources to make the report believable or trustworthy.

I'm not against the Rattler but it needs to stand on its own two feet.

This can only happen when a report is done by an unbiased company who validates their findings with actual substantiated facts.

Tim Jerome,

Traveston

Gympie Times


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