Mayor takes MP to task over boast on billboard
BLAIR MP Shayne Neumann's campaign slogan is ruffling feathers as the race to Canberra heats up.
The billboard on Brisbane Rd at Bundamba declares "Only Shayne Neumann Fights for Ipswich" - but Mayor Paul Pisasale has taken the federal politician to task on the claim.
"That's not true. I don't know why he is saying that. The city is full of great ambassadors and great people," he told The Queensland Times.
Cr Pisasale, nearing a decade as Ipswich's mayor, was joined by Blair LNP candidate Teresa Harding in criticising the sign. Ms Harding labelled the slogan as "arrogant".
Cr Pisasale said he works 84 hours a week and Ipswich's success was a team effort, with the contribution of volunteers and the Ipswich Chamber of Commerce all factors.
"The wording could be better. There's no doubt Shayne is a hard worker, but he's not the only one.
"We are in the middle of a federal campaign and what he is doing is campaigning, I don't think he is having a go at me."
After speaking to The QT, Mr Neumann contacted the mayor and denied that he had been angered by the sign.
"I spoke to the mayor about it and he was not the least bit upset. He didn't criticise it or complain because he knows very well that I am talking about the federal election," he said.
"He was talking to me about how he is going to support me in the campaign and what he can do to help. The mayoral campaign was ages ago and I have voted for Paul every time he's run because he is a great backer and spruiker for Ipswich."
Ms Harding said the sign's claim was "typical of Mr Neumann's arrogance".
"It shows he believes that he is responsible for all the wonderful features in our city," she said.
"It's a slap in the face for the many people who work extremely hard every day to improve our city, including Mayor Paul Pisasale, his hardworking councillors, and our outstanding state members of parliament, Ian Berry MP and Sean Choat MP."
Mr Neumann said Ms Harding must be rattled if a sign was all she had to worry about.
"You know your opponent's campaign is in trouble when she spends two days complaining about billboards," he said.
"She should spend more of her time fighting for funding for Ipswich. She's been preselected for a year and she hasn't promised the people of Ipswich anything."
Mr Neumann said he has a record of fighting for Ipswich.
"I do fight for Ipswich. I fought for the Ipswich Motorway to be built from Dinmore to Darra in three federal elections against LNP opponents that opposed it.
"She is standing for a party that won't deliver the Darra to Rocklea section of the motorway, but I fought for the funding to get it done."