A smiling man in a hard hat and high-vis.

‘What’s your problem?’: Gold Coast mayor lashes out at Brisbane’s ‘clunky’ and ‘arrogant’ counterpart

Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate has labeled Brisbane Mayor Adrian Schrinner a “crass” and “arrogant” after being rejected again by the Olympics organizing committee.

Today the South East Queensland Council of Mayors, chaired by Mr Schrinner, voted in Noosa. Mayor Clare Stewart will join the organizing committee for the 2032 Brisbane Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The decision followed Redlands Mayor Karen Williams stepping down from the committee after she crashed her car while driving under the influence

Mr Tate said he or Vice Mayor Donna Gates should be appointed to the board instead.

The Gold Coast is expected to host about a quarter of the 2032 Olympic events.

“The Brisbane mayor somehow can’t help but play politics, that’s the disappointing part,” Tate said.

“It’s rude – disrespect and okay you’re mayor of Brisbane, but when you come to the Gold Coast you get the same cold shoulder.

“If you don’t stay humble and consult, you’re just arrogant.

In a statement, Mr. Schrinner said: “There are 12 municipalities in SEQ and 11 of them are actively cooperating and cooperating in the interest of our region and its inhabitants”.

“Gold Coast has chosen to remove itself from this discussion,” the statement said.

Ms Stewart said she was voted in by a secret ballot and felt “grateful for the support and confidence” given to her.

“I will advocate and support South East Queensland as I have been elected,” she said.

“We are not currently holding an Olympic event [in Noosa]but that puts us in a perfect position to be an impartial broker and advocate for all of South East Queensland, as I should in this role.

“This was a position open to the South East Queensland Council of Mayors… Mayor Tate is not part of the South East Queensland Council of Mayors.”

Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner is President of the South East Queensland Council of Mayors.MONKEY: Dan Peled

Another Olympics dispute

Mr. Tate and Mr. Schrinner have previously bumped publicly about Olympic matters.

The City of Gold Coast has left and rejoined the Council of Mayors several times over the past decade.

Last year, the City of Gold Coast voted to cancel its membership at the behest of Mr Tate.

Then in March the Gold Coast was barred from a A $1.8 billion infrastructure deal signed exclusively between members of the South-East Council of Mayors and the federal and state governments.

A housing plan for buildings for an Olympic village.
A proposed Olympic village in Robina on the Gold Coast would be home to more than 2,600 athletes and officials.Delivered: International Olympic Committee

Mr Tate later said that he… wouldn’t “kiss ass” to get hired to the Olympic and Paralympic Organizing Committee, but denied that there was any personal hostility between him and Mr. Schrinner.

Today, Mr Tate said he does not regret leaving the Council of Mayors, which has cost taxpayers $350,000 in membership fees.

“When it comes to voting, you get the same number of votes for a small council whose enrollment is maybe $12,000,” he said.

An aerial view of a beachfront town on a glorious day.
Tate says the Gold Coast deserves to be consulted given the amount it will contribute to the Games.ABC Gold Coast: Dominic Cansdale

In a statement released earlier today to announce Ms Stewart’s appointment to the committee, Mr Schrinner said “regional cooperation” is “a team sport”.

“This is a great example of the councils that have worked together to secure the Games and continue to work together as a team for the benefit of our region and its communities,” he said.

“SEQ councils will play an important role during the Games and I look forward to working with Mayor Stewart to ensure they are an active part of the region’s 2032 journey.”

The inside of the stadium with crowds, people on the field and fireworks.
An artist’s impression of the opening ceremony in the Gabba in 2032.Delivered: Government of Queensland

‘More skin in the game’

Brisbane will host most of the events for the 2032 games, many of which will be held at state-owned venues.

Six locations on the Gold Coast, including two temporary facilities, can accommodate events such as volleyball and football.

While events are planned for the Sunshine Coast, the ABC understands that none will be held in the Noosa Council area.

Mr Tate said the Gold Coast had “more skin involved” as the city offered more council-owned venues for the Games than the Sunshine Coast or Brisbane.

While Gold Coast businesswoman Rebecca Frizelle sits on the board of the Olympic organizing committee, Mr Tate said she would not be able to make any major financial commitments from the council.

A woman lies on a paddleboard above the crowd as dancers reenact a beach scene.
Tate says the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games helped Brisbane win its Olympic bid.ABC News: James Maasdorp

Gold Coast still ‘supportive’

John-Paul Langbroek, the LNP’s state member for Surfers Paradise, said the Gold Coast was “ruled out” and the nomination may be based on gender.

“The gender issue dominates experience and dominates the rights of a city that should be represented because of the experience we’ve had,” he said.

“The 2018 Commonwealth Games were compromised by Brisbane’s lack of understanding and bureaucracy about how to treat locals.

Mr Tate said that while his relationship with Mr Schrinner “didn’t exist”, it would not change “our supportive attitude towards the Olympics”.

“It’s still 10 years to go,” he said.

“You’ll see a lot of change on the board — but one thing that won’t change is the city’s commitment to the Gold Coast to be part of the team and do our part.”

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