Ray Stevens has YouTube meltdown over cableway proposal questions

Oh dear! Ray Stevens, the MP who is under pressure about a perceived conflict of interest has had an unfortunate meltdown.

The full story:

Embattled LNP Assistant Minister Ray Stevens gets aggro while being questioned by IA editor David Donovan outside a pre-polling booth on the Gold Coast today.

It would be almost funny if it wasn’t so disgraceful — the conduct of LNP Assistant Minister Ray Stevens outside the Mermaid Beach pre-polling booth on the Gold Coast this morning (21/1/15).

I had just interviewed fellow Mermaid Beach candidates Alex Caraco (PUP) and Gary Pead (ALP) when I approached ‘Mermaid’ Ray to talk to him about the controversial project in which he stands to gain millions after a “fortuitous” Newman Government law change.

Of course, readers of IA would know that there are serious questions to be answered by Stevens about this project, especially about Stevens serious alleged conflict of interest and possible deceptive conduct regarding the Integrity Commission. Readers would also know I have been endeavouring to speak to him about this matter for months, but he has been avoiding me — just like he has been avoiding all other journalists.

He was sitting in a comfortable chair under a marquee outside the booth and after introducing myself and holding out my hand ‒ which he refused to take ‒ I asked Stevens if he would talk to me about the project.

He declined and directed me to his office. I told him, truthfully, that I had been trying through his office for a long time and had no success. He dismissed this out of hand.

As politely as I could, I then began to ask him some of the pertinent questions, starting with

“Mr Stevens, why won’t you release the Integrity Commissioner’s advice.”

Upon hearing this, Stevens leapt to his feet and chased after a young bearded man walking past, apparently to hand him a how to vote card. I followed Stevens continuing to ask him questions:

“Mr Stevens, do you have something to hide?

“Shouldn’t the voters of Mermaid beach know about your involvement, Mr Stevens?”

It was then, after walking back inside his tent, while I stood outside, that Mermaid Ray really lost the plot — but without saying a word. I can only surmise that he didn’t realise the exchange was being filmed, since I was only holding my miniature digital audio recorder towards him.

You can see why he thought he could be disgracefully (sic), because by saying nothing there was little of substance from the audio.

Here is the audio (I apologise for its poor quality) of the exchange:

Stevens then quickly darted to stand just inside the marquee, with me just outside.

He held his hands out wide, as inviting me to do something. Come inside? Have a go? Who knows.

I continued asking questions:

“How much money do you expect to make from the cablecar development?”

He leaned over towards me and, still silent, started waving his arms up and down as I repeated the question a few times.

“You’re not saying anything, Mr Stevens,” I said, suddenly reminded of another famous meltdown.

He started doing a dance and gyrating around — this is a Minister of the Crown, we’re talking about, let me remind you.)

“You’re not saying anything Mr Stevens,” I said again and he started making little duck beaks with his hands inches from my face.

As I asked belligerent Mermaid Ray

“Is this the way you treat your electors, Mr Stevens?”

he made slapping motions in the air close to my face, then turned and walked away.

“Why are you avoiding the media over the cableway,” I asked him and he came back and made shooing motions near me.

The whole incident was over in a couple of minutes, but any residual respect I may have had for this local MP had evaporated long before I walked away.

Stevens may have thought his aggressive, juvenile behaviour would never be seen, however sadly for him, the entire exchange was being videotaped on phone by a booth volunteer. This young gentleman was allegedly confronted by Stevens soon after, with the MP allegedly trying to intimidate into not releasing the video.

Luckily for us ‒ and the voters of Mermaid Beach ‒ the volunteer was made of sterner stuff.

Here is the video of the volunteer, which has been overdubbed with my audio:

Irrespective of the probity of Stevens’ actions over the Skyride, about which he obviously refuses to talk, it is clear that he is not a fit candidate for any public office whatsoever. In fact, wouldn’t let him walk my dog, who is far more courteous and polite than Ray Stevens.

Ray Stevens should be disendorsed by the LNP.

This probably won’t happen, however I urge you to share this story amongst everyone in Mermaid Beach. This man ‒ and I use that term reluctantly ‒ deserves to be punished on October 31 by the voters of Mermaid, because he clearly holds them in utter contempt.

If you are voting in Queensland this month, put the LNP last — as shown by today’s events, that’s where they’ve put you.


This is a great version of the story – Queensland politician Ray Stevens makes sock puppets with his fingers and does extremely weird stuff in response to questions he doesn’t like

The Gold Coast Bulletin picked this up as well

The Guardian

Google search for Ray Stevens Meltdown 🙂

Pop Up Protest #2 – Cableway NoRay

Hinterland residents mount ‘pop-up’ Cableway protest outside MP Ray Stevens’ office

Opponents of the cableway project stage a pop-up rally outside the electorate office of M

Opponents of the cableway project stage a pop-up rally outside the electorate office of Mermaid Beach MP Ray Stevens. Picture: Jerad Williams

MORE than a dozen hinterland residents opposed to the cableway have begun staging a pop-up protest outside the electorate office of Mermaid Beach MP Ray Stevens.

Residents began gathering outside the MP’s office on the Gold Coast Highway just before 7.30am and plan to continue their protest during the morning.

Mr Stevens and his staffers had yet to arrive but the protest sparked support from pedestrians and the attention of motorists driving north to Broadbeach and Surfers Paradise in the peak hour traffic.

Opponents of the cableway project protest outside the office of Mermaid Beach MP Ray Stev

Opponents of the cableway project protest outside the office of Mermaid Beach MP Ray Stevens. Picture: Jerad Williams

“Where is Ray,” a local resident on a morning walk asked the protest group which immediately sparked a chant from the cableway opponents.

They were holding placards with various slogans including “Don’t let Ray take you for a ride” and “trees not towers”.

Cableway No Way group spokesman Ceris Ash said the pop-protest was organised to alert voters in the Mermaid Beach electorate about the hinterland proposal by their MP.

Mr Stevens told Parliament in late October last year that he was part of a consortium which planned a $100 million cableway on a 9km route to Springbrook.

Despite numerous requests from the Bulletin, the Leader of the House has refused to provide details of correspondence between himself and the Integrity Commissioner about the project.

Opponents raise signs in opposition to the Hinterland cableway project outside the office

Opponents raise signs in opposition to the Hinterland cableway project outside the office of Mermaid Beach MP Ray Stevens. Picture: Jerad Williams

Cableway No Way spokesman Ceris Ash said opponents would continue to ask Mr Stevens to release details of the letters.

“The majority of proposed route is on State-owned land including the World Heritage listed Springbrook National Park and the Hinze and Little Nerang dams,” Ms Ash said.

“Ray is the face of Skyrail. We’ve decided to come down to his electorate. This would seem to a huge conflict of interest yet he will not release the advice form the Integrity Commissioner. Why is he hiding.”


Gary Pead (ALP Mermaid candidate) on the cableway

From Gary Pead’s website:

The LNP’s Ray Stevens continues to treat the Mermaid Beach electorate with contempt in our Meet the Candidate radio interview today on the ABC Gold Coast’s Mornings program.

He still refuses to release the integrity commissioners report about his private development project into the Gold Coast’s World Heritage listed National Park in Springbrook.

The proposed Springbrook cableway was rejected as being unviable and unsuitable 16 years ago. It was reported that the original failed project was intended to be sold off to overseas interests as soon as it was approved so that developers could make a quick buck. What’s stopping Ray Stevens doing the same if he is re-elected? Absolutely nothing. He isn’t interested in its viability, Gold Coast tourism, sustainability or whether it’s even appropriate for Springbrook.

My stance as a vehement opponent to the development of this World Heritage listed site has not changed, nor has the stance of the majority of the Gold Coast community. This is sheer profiteering by Ray Stevens; an opportunistic grab, using his position as a minister in the state government to secure millions of dollars in profit for himself. This is on top of his obscene parliamentary salary of hundreds of thousands of dollars.


Voters in Mermaid Beach are livid. He must be voted out.


Still fighting the same fight: me about to make a speech at the anti-cableway rally I organised in October 2000.


Click the link below to hear an excerpt from ABC Gold Coast Mornings program with Nicole Dyer where I call Ray Stevens’ integrity into question.



State government tight lipped on tenders for property on proposed $100m cable car route

It is great to see that the cableway has become an election issue.


The property formerly known as Springbrook Mountain Manor at Springbook.

The property formerly known as Springbrook Mountain Manor at Springbook.

THE Newman Government has received two tender applications for a property in the path of a proposed $100 million cable car development but refuses to say if either is linked to one of its own MPs.

Parks Minister Steve Dickson declined to identify the applicants bidding for Springbrook Mountain Manor, but it is understood one is from the Gold Coast.

The boutique hotel on 10ha was purchased for $2.5 million by the State Government in 2007 but First National Real Estate Mudgeeraba sales agent Murray Duthie said it could be worth up to $4 million if the cable car went ahead.

The cable car is proposed by Gold Coast Skyride, a company in which Gold Coast LNP MP Ray Stevens is an investor and adviser.

The property has been on the market for two months.

Harcourts selling agent Julie Andrews, who confirmed two tender applications had been received, said she had been silenced by the State Government until the election was over.

“We can’t actually move forward until after the election,” she said.

“The Campbell Newman Government has put everything in caretaker mode and we can’t reveal anything.

“Two tenders have been received; one from an interstate buyer and another from a local on the Gold Coast.”

The property formerly known as Springbrook Mountain Manor at Springbook.

The property formerly known as Springbrook Mountain Manor at Springbook.

A spokeswoman for Mr Dickson said the identity of applicants could not be revealed as the Government was operating under the “caretaker convention”.

“Details are commercial-in-confidence and part of an ongoing tender process which has been overtaken by the caretaker convention following the issuing of writs for the election,” she said.

The Labor Government purchased 705ha on Springbrook Mountain in 2007 at a cost of $40.15 million to taxpayers.

Most of the land has been turned into national parks but the State Government still owns more than 56ha which is being run by the Rainforest Conservation Society.

Mermaid Beach MP Ray Stevens declined to comment on issues relating to the proposed cableway and Gold Coast Skyride chairman Terry Jackman did not return multiple calls for comment.

When the property came on the market in November last year Mr Jackman said the cable car group would assess the potential of the site.



Ray, you are not hearing voices

‘Ray, you are not hearing voices’ — A tongue-in-cheek email run down leading up to MP Ray Stevens’ shock cableway announcement

How did it go down with the Premier and Ros Bates when MP Ray Stevens said he was going to revive the cable car project? We have the, very real, email chain.

WHAT was the lead-up to the shock announcement last week in Parliament by Mermaid Beach MP Ray Stevens that he intended to revive the Naturelink cable car project?

The Leader of the House surprised colleagues by declaring his role as an adviser and investor in the new $100 million Hinterland proposal.

Below is a tongue-in-cheek email trail of the political drama the night before.


From: Ray Stevens

Date: 29 October 2014, 6.30pm

To: Campbell Newman

Premier, I wish to formally notify you that I will rise in the House tomorrow to announce a major new project, the first on the Gold Coast for a decade. I am part of a consortium which will build the $100 million Springbrook to Mudgeeraba cable car. Campbell, I’ve been hearing voices. They are saying “Build the skyrail, Ray, and people will come”.

From: Campbell Newman

Date: 29 October 2014, 6.35pm

To: Ray Stevens

People will come, Ray, people will come. They’ll come to Mudgeeraba for reasons they can’t even fathom. They’ll turn up at your cableway not knowing for sure why they’re doing it. They’ll arrive at your door as innocent as children, longing for the past. People will surely come, Ray. The one constant through all the years on the Gold Coast Ray, has been ­cable car projects.


From: Ray Stevens

Date: 29 October 2014, 7.02pm

To: Ros Bates

Dear Ros, as a courtesy, I intend to announce a cableway project in your electorate. You might recall, 16 years ago, with Naturelink I planned using helicopters to drop 12 towers to support the gondolas which went within 100m of World Heritage national park. I concede this did divide the electorate, helped produce numerous No Way Cableway car bumper stickers and effectively gave Labor an 18 per cent swing and the seat. But if I build it, people will come, Ros. Regards Ray.


From: Ros Bates

Date: 29 October 2014, 7.04pm

To: Ray Stevens

Ray, you need to realise that I’m only a trained nurse. You have to see a doctor, or a team of doctors. I will arrange for either Dr Alex Douglas and/or Dr Bruce Flegg to attend your parliamentary rooms. Regards Ros.


From: Dr Alex Douglas

Date: 29 October 2014, 10.30pm

To: Ros Bates.

Dear Ros, patient is stable, admits to flashbacks, hearing voices and upon examination found to have a severe middle ear infection.

Once resolved, realised “the voices” were, in fact, constituents telling him to “build the light rail, Ray, build the light rail”.

Patient currently resting, was administered with a large glass of red wine by Dr Flegg and has asked for another.

Suggest follow-up consultation in my electorate at Dreamworld location to visualise cablecars in theme parks and not rainforest. Keep monitoring. Regards Alex.



Statement by Ros Bates – with comments

The proposed cableway to Springbrook is not a proposal of the LNP Government and is at this stage an idea put forward by a private consortium.

Is the current MP distancing herself and the government from this project? It was after all announced by the LNP in the Parliament! And the private consortium does include a sitting Member of Parliament

No formal application was made to the Government before the writs were issued and as we are now in caretaker mode any future application would be considered after the election.

True.  But that doesn’t stop a candidate from stating their position on a major issue in her electorate.  Other candidates are telling us their position.

It, like any other application will be considered in the usual way and rigorously assessed by the relevant Department.

But Ms Bates says there isn’t an application?  And how could it be considered in the “usual way”, when it is proposed through the middle of a world heritage area, on state owned land?

I have already publicly stated that any eco-tourism proposal in the electorate of Mudgeeraba would have to stack up environmentally and economically.

But, haven’t the very laws that would have helped protect Springbrook National Park been weakened to enable commercial development in national parks?

I am in favour of responsible ecotourism in the hinterland and will do whatever I can to provide a boost for the community and businesses.

Please tell us then if 800,000 people a year to a small, fragile National Park, in a high risk fire area, with no sewage system at the source of the Gold Coast’s water supply is responsible ecotourism – or even responsible development full stop?

In a milestone for the Springbrook community we’ll see the Purlingbrook Falls suspension bridge completed shortly for all to enjoy and for visitors to explore.

Haven’t there been some problems with finishing this infrastructure?  Hasn’t all work stopped for some of the same reasons that make a cableway difficult?

The Purlingbrook Circuit will also be completed shortly (weather dependant).

In a high rainfall, high fire risk area, tracks close regularly – from landslide, tree fall and other natural events.  How weather dependent is a cableway, and what actions will need to be taken to protect private infrastructure interests, at the expense of the park and its wildlife?

In addition, we have spent $136,000 to reopen Warrie Circuit and Twin Falls Circuit. 

Whoops, Warrie Circuit is closed again!

Working closely with Glenn TOZER for Mudgeeraba & Hinterland (Division 9), we have reopened and cleaned up many of the popular walking tracks in Springbrook to encourage eco- tourism.

Horses, BMX bikes and large commercial infrastructure like cableways, in National Parks is not low impact ecotourism.

The LNP Government is a strong team with a strong plan to boost tourism as one of the four pillars of the economy, but we need to ensure that we stay on track to secure a bright future.

Is ‘on track’ the continued weakening of the laws that protect these areas?  What is the strong plan for Springbrook?

As Mudgeeraba’s strong local champion, I’m looking forward to working with locals to make Springbrook an even stronger community.

Then work with us, be our strong local champion and assure us that this destructive proposal will never proceed in our world heritage listed Springbrook National Park, a jewel in your seat of Mudgeeraba.

Those slippery politicians…

A few people have been trying to get an answer from LNP Member of Parliament for Mudgeeraba, Ros Bates, about her stance on the project.  We are happy to show any politician’s position.

But it is hard…so hard…

[UPDATE]…especially when Ros Bates censors dissent by deleting the post and banning the dissenters.  Fortunately it is now on record.

Slippery Bates

This screenshot from Ros Bates’ facebook page at 10:15PM Thursday Jan 8th

Mature Age Party and Conflict of Interest

A new party representing mature aged people at theMAP.org.au

Conflict Of Interest !! Ray Stevens

 Here we have another classic example of the Queensland Liberal National Party arrogance and attitude towards the voters of this great State,how can a Member of Parliament openly state that he has outside financial interests  in a consortium to construct a ‘ Sky Rail .What does this Ray Stevens want !! to be .this is just another disgraceful snub at Queensland voters .


Something is rotten in Mermaid

Kudos to the Gold Coast Bulletin for keeping the pressure on Mermaid Ray over his perceived conflict of interest in this sordid affair.

“The integrity commissioner has reviewed his proposed investment and has given him a clearance and I am satisfied with that.”

When asked again why he wouldn’t release the report, Mr Newman repeated: “The integrity commissioner has given him a clearance, and I say that to you today, and that is why we have an integrity commissioner”.

Mr Stevens again refused to answer any questions on the cable car, saying only that he was “busy electioneering”.

Mr Stevens was expecting to run unopposed for Mermaid Beach, but the ALP confirmed this week that it had signed up Gary Pead to run against Mr Stevens.

Mr Pead, who described himself as climate reality project leader at Climate Reality Project, campaigned as an independent in the state seat of Mudgeeraba in 2006.


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