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   Aug 21

Recognition for farmers

FOR too long, agriculture has taken a back seat to matter of national importance.
Nanjing Night Net

Political parties driven by polls in an attempt to hold on to power have bowed to inner-city thinking and policies that have made life harder for those who feed our nation.

The release of the federal government’s Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper finally addresses some of the key issues which had been ignored on the ALP/Greens coalition.

Instead of acknowledging the important role agriculture plays in making our nation great, they chose to either ignore key issues or, in some cases, make it more difficult.

This could not have been more clearly illustrated thanthe Gillard government’s knee-jerk reaction to a television programwhich effectively shutdown the live export trade to Indonesia.

The white paper acknowledges not just the importance of agriculture to our nation’s future, but the massive potential the sector holds for the prosperity of our country.

As the world’s population continues to rise, more nation’s are seeking food sources from other countries and Australia is perfectly positioned to capitalise on that demand.

The Coalitionclearly takes agriculture seriously and this white paper will go some way towards addressing the indifference of the previous government.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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   Aug 21

Oscar to take on state’s best

Rising rugby union star Oscar Moran, 14, of Bowral, will play for the NSW Under-15s Country squad this weekend. Photo supplied
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BOWRAL teenager Oscar Moran has enjoyed a rapid rise in rugby union.

Earlier this year, the 14-year-old undertook his first trial for a representative team.

This weekend, Oscar will represent the NSW Under-15s Country squad at a major state competition.

Oscar, who plays at loose head prop, will head to Narrabeen on Wednesday to meet team mates and take part in a three-day camp.

The team will compete against another country side and four city outfits in Narrabeen on the weekend.

Oscar’s mum Nicky Moran said the top players at the carnival would be picked for the NSW under-15s team.

“It’s Oscar’s first rep opportunity and he loves his rugby,” she said.

2015 has already been a big year for the young Bowral Blacks player. The journey started in January when he represented the Illawarra Junior Gold team at a pre-season competition.

He then represented the Illawarra under-15s team at the State Country Champion-ship in Mudgee last month.

Oscar played well at the championship and was elevated to the NSW Country side.

In between rep duties, Oscar has played at under-15s level for the Bowral Blacks and Oxley College.

Ms Moran said her son took up the sport at six because his father Scott and brothers Max and Zac had played.

“Oscar has learnt so much this year,” she said.

“He has improved his technique and enjoyed the opportunities.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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   Aug 21

Fifty years on and Maitland’s city centre still cause for public discussion

The 50-year-old cartoon. SAME OLD JOKE: Margaret McKenzie of Rutherford with the old Mercury cartoon from 1965. Picture by CATH BOWEN
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A 50-year-old cartoon has been unearthed that proves history does repeat.

A Mercury reader has found a copy of a ­cartoon that was published in the Maitland Mercury in November, 1965, that ­satirically depicts Maitland City Council and the changes that were taking place in central Maitland at the time.

The cartoon depicts Maitland council as a toy store that sells items such as “The Kill High Street Game”, “Supermarket Monopoly”and a kit to “build your very own life sizesupermarket”.

It reflects a time when there was community debate over developments in Maitland, similar to the public discussion that has been taking place in the city in recent months over The Levee.

A large box in the corner of the cartoon could even be mistaken for an early concept drawing of the High Street kiosk.

The cartoon was uncovered by 81-year-old Rutherford woman Margaret McKenzie, whose father Peter Ziforich was a Maitland alderman for nine years in the 1960s.

Mrs McKenzie said she found the cartoon in a scrapbook of newspaper clippings that her father had collected during his time as a representative of the city.

“I’ve got no idea what happened in Maitland that year, but the cartoon is relevant to what’s going on today, 50 years later,” she said.

“I just thought it was funny and hoped people would get a laugh out of it.”

Mr Ziforich was a Russian immigrant who came to Australia as a 12-year-old.

As an adult, he owned the Shell service station at Rutherford for about 20 years from the 1940s to the 1960s.

He worked in the orphanage at Monte Pio and served as an alderman on Maitland council, in a time when the elected representatives did their jobs for no pay.

“He would have been horrified to see what has been happening in Maitland,” Mrs McKenzie said.

“He was very well-liked and respected. He was an all-round good bloke.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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   Aug 21

Barriers come down for people with disabilities

OPPORTUNITIES: Program graduate David Morey has achieved many of his aspirations because of Life Without Barriers.
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LIFE Without Barriers (LWB) has opened the doors of a brand new office in Nowra.

The non-profit organisation provides an important community service to ensure the best care and support is developed for those needing additional assistance in their everyday life.

This includes delivering a range of programs for children, young people, older people and those with disabilities who often need support in their homes and set them on the right path to achieving their goals.

The new location will provide a hub for senior staff, program co-ordinators as well as a base to run training programs and workshops.

The office was opened recently by Minister for Disability Services, John Ajaka, together with area operations manager for Life Without Barriers, Edward Birt, who said having the Shoalhaven office in a prominent location was a win for service delivery in the area.

“What we see time and again when you open a regional hub, people just feel so much more connected, better supported and able to access the service when they need it,” Mr Birt said.

“It builds on all of those networks and relationships we have in the region. Often when you’re looking for answers and solutions for the people you are working with, that’s going to come through those networks and relationships.”

The Shoalhaven has some 50 adults with disabilities and 20 children and young people in care, who currently access the LBW service.

“From this office we do disability support services as well as out-of-home care support services,” he said.

“There are a number of foster care families in the Shoalhaven. So we’ll have a case manager based here as well as a supporter of carers, who go out and work with those families and the people who reside with them.”

Mr Birt said one of the main aims for LWB is to see people get the opportunities in life everyone is entitled to.

“We want to get outcomes,” he said.

“We see people’s potential. A bit of walking side-by-side with somebody and support at the right level is important. Some of the people we support have significant impairments other people have less so. We support right through and it doesn’t matter where the person is, that’s not the issue, it’s about coming in at the right level and ensuring that people are doing everything they can be doing.

“All people inherently get a kick out of doing things for themselves, be you five or 95 years old.”

David Morey, a LWB graduate, who now has a job he loves at the Postman’s Tavern, is a shining example of the transformation LBW can make to people’s lives.

“We set goals at the start of the program, I wanted to get into hospitality and get my certificate III in commercial cookery,” Mr Morey said.

“Life Without Barriers helped me with that by coming, sitting down and going through the exam with me.”

Mr Morey also achieved what is considered to be a rite of passage for most independent teenagers.

“I’ve also got my licence, which was one of my goals. I was a bit hesitant and they pushed me with that,” he said.

“They came to the RMS and helped me fill out all the forms.

“Because I also have epilepsy, you have to wait five years and they helped me with all the doctor’s forms.”

Normally, a two-year program, Mr Morey achieved his goals in only 18 months.

“I got the job with Postman’s Tavern and once you get so many hours’ worth of work, you move out of the program because you have accomplished everything you wanted.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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   Aug 21

Questions need to be answered about who will pay for shock signs at rock platforms

THE sea is an unpredictable thing. Calm one moment, it can throw up unexpectedly powerful waves, especially around rock structures, which can cause rapid upwelling, depending on the sea’s state.
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The sea is also tempting, offering a bounty of food to those who fish from its shore.

For rock-fishers who cast from ledges, it is an extremely dangerous place. Rocks are slippery and waves can be calamitous, as far too many people have discovered to their own cost.

So the call for shock signage in the wake of nine deaths of rock-fishers examined by the coroner is entirely understandable. So, too, moves to make the wearing of lifejackets among rock-fishers mandatory.

But, as deputy mayor John Wells rightly points out, for a local government area with as much coastline as the Shoalhaven, the cost of new signage, not to mention the policing of lifejacket rules, would be a huge impost on ratepayers, the majority of whom do not place their lives in danger by rock-fishing.

So for the idea of new shock signage to gain any traction, some agreement must be reached to share the burden of the cost that would be associated. Yes, local government should make a contribution because fishing is one of the major drawcards of the region and visitors bring in money. But local government should not foot the entire bill because it would be too burdensome and other services or capital works would have to be reprioritised.

We accept that too many people die each year while fishing off rocks in NSW. We accept, too, that warning signs and the provision of angel rings might help reduce this number, as would education.

However, we regard these measures as something the whole state should be pitching in to help with, not just the local government areas whose coastlines are popular with rock-fishers.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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   Jul 22

Free mulch at Mt Vincent tip

Maitland residents can pick up a free trailer load of mulch from Mount Vincent Waste Management Centre this month as part of Maitland City Council’s Mulch Madness promotion.
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Don’t miss out on picking up a trailer load of free mulch from the Mount Vincent Waste Management Centre.

The mulch has been composted and is a great addition to any garden.

It helps retain soil moisture, provides root protection during hot and cold weather and reduces weed growth.

A self-load stockpile will also be available at the tip for residents who want to collect small amounts of mulch, rather than a trailer load.

Council’s development and environment manager David Simm said the centre had received more than 1900 tonnes of storm-damaged green waste as a result of the April super storm. He said the green waste had since been turned into mulch.

“There is plenty to go around, so if you or anyone you know needs mulch then make sure you take advantage of this offer,” he said.

“With spring just around the corner, it’s a great time to get your garden looking great and prepared for the warmer growth season.”

Residents can collect a trailer load of mulch throughout July, between 8.30am and 3.30pm any day.

People can also arrange to have a truck deliver mulch to them if they are unable to collect it. One truck load contains about six cubic metres.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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   Jul 22

Ready to get back in the saddle

Riders will take in picturesque outback scenery during the Border Ride.IF YOU’RE wondering why all of a sudden there seems to more cyclists than usual around the city – the answer is the annual Irish Club Border Ride is just around the corner.
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The August 1 event is now in its eighth year and organisers forecast previous records will be broken with rider numbers.

Inquiries are coming in from all over and already plans are under way for a team of 14 from Julia Creek to attend.

George Fisher Mine has reportedly amassed a formidable team of more than 30 riders.

Team manager Ross Lovejoy has thrown down the challenge to the Copper Mine employees and any other mine or company.

Showing how serious they are, Lovejoy has appointed German former sprint king Cornelius Slotta as coach and mentor.

Known as the ‘‘Hardman from Hamburg’’ in his racing days, Slotta was once given a 12-month suspension for continually head butting at finish lines and this, by Slotta’s own admission, was before helmets were introduced.

Slotta said he was hoping to ride alongside Copper Team captain Simon Pope at the finish.

“Pope has had a lot to say since I arrived in town about me possibly ‘being over the hill’,’’ he said.

‘‘I hope his helmet has plenty of padding.’’

Asked whether there were any standout riders in the team he replied: “Obviously Mount Isa’s cycling superstar, Steve Carson”.

“We have built the team around Carson and he is currently down in the Hunter Valley for a fortnight doing altitude training, which will be followed by a week in Vanuatu where he will taper off prior to the ride.’’

Those close to Carson have said though this may well mean he’ll be two weeks at a pub on a hill followed by a week sobering up.

Ride stalwarts Glen Rysanek and Roy Pattison will line up for their fifth Border Ride.

Rysanek said they were confident of improving on previous performances.

“We were over the moon last year when ‘Patto’ only fell off twice during the ride. Once when he stood still at the start and the other when he had pulled up at the water stop and couldn’t get the cleats out,’’ he said.

“In fairness to Roy though, the oil he sprayed onto the pedals was actually liquid superglue. With poor labelling, a mistake anyone could make.”

In the lead-up to the ride, the annual Border Ride dinner will once again be held at the Irish Club on July 30.

Last year’s proved to be an enormous success and organiser Sue Wicks is urging people to book early as there is limited seating.

Last year, organisers entertained guests by profiling local rider Max Shawcross along with a ride preview presented in a somewhat different way.

Guest speaker Wayne Sanchez kept people laughing with anecdotes from an illustrious cycling career, which he assured everyone was not over. Keeping his promise, Sanchez went out two days later and set a record time of four hours and 54 minutes for the 202-kilometre ride.

This year’s guest brings stories from Australian and international tours. His name, well you’ll have to come along to find out, although some know him as ‘‘King Kunda’’.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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   Jul 22

Roosters cruise to big win over Blues

CONTEST: South Warrnambool’s Bridget Smith flies for a high ball while Warrnambool’s Taylah Antonio closes in to apply pressure from behind. Picture: Aaron Sawall.
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THE absence of two team leaders did not stop South Warrnambool fromracking up a comfortable 53-32 win over Warrnambool on Sunday.

Roosters coach Susan Pettigrew was overseas for work while seniorplayer Leah Kermeenwas on the Gold Coast running a marathon.

Fill-in coach Monique Smith said it was a strong team effort by the Roosters.

“Our defensive pressure all over the court was fantastic,” Smith said.

“That allowed us to drive forward and Nell Mitchell was very good in goals.”

South Warrnambool couldn’t afford to drop this game as they sitas one of four teams from fourth to seventh on the ladder,all on six wins.

The 21-goal margin was also an important part of the win with percentage likely to play a big part in the final make-up of the top five.

The loss leaves Warrnambool without a win after 11 rounds.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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   Jul 22

NBN to rollout in city’s eastern suburbs

Federal Newcastle MP Sharon Claydon.Beresfield, Tarro, Woodberry and Thornton have been included in the latest National Broadband Network rollout announcement.
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Work to deliver the high-speed internet service to these towns will begin next year.

Federal Newcastle MP Sharon Claydon, whose electorate includes Beresfield, Tarro, Woodberry and Thornton, said the announcement was welcome news.

“A number of Newcastle suburbs, including the poorly serviced broadband areas of Thornton and Stockton, have at last been formally added to the National Broadband Network rollout plan,” she said.

“This is a significant win for residents who have campaigned tirelessly to be added to the NBN rollout plan since the Abbott Liberal government wiped the entire region off the maps when they were elected.

“Access to high-speed broadband is an essential service and vital for educational, health, social, business and everyday transactional applications.”

Several other Newcastle suburbs were also included in the rollout announcement.

NBN Co chief operating officer Greg Adcock said one in 10 homes and businesses across Australia could already connect to the NBN and the organisation hoped to more than double that rate with the construction work that would begin in the next 18 months.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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   Jul 22

Cup roadshow rides into town

John Letts and Banjo ‘‘chat’’ to Scott Seamer and Ethereal after the 2001 Melbourne Cup.
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AS the 2015 Emirates Melbourne Cup Tour prepares to head to Mount Isa, Cloncurry and Boulia, the Victoria Racing Club has announced that Melbourne Cup-winning jockey Scott Seamer will join the local community in celebrating the tour in Queensland.

Seamer will be the special guest on this leg of the tour, including attending a day of community celebrations in Boulia, a mine site tour in Mount Isa and a visit to the John Flynn Place Art Gallery and Museum in Cloncurry.

Seamer etched his name in Australian racing history with a rare Caulfield-Melbourne Cup double atop Ethereal in 2001.

VRC chief executive Simon Love said he was excited to welcome Seamer to the Emirates Melbourne Cup Tour, the first time as an official ambassador.

“Scott’s win on Ethereal in 2001 to secure the Caulfield and Melbourne Cup double was a remarkable moment in Australian racing history.

“We are delighted to have a Melbourne Cup-winning jockey escorting this year’s cup to Queensland, where he will share his unique story with the people of Mount Isa, Cloncurry and Boulia,” Mr Love said.

The cup will visit Mount Isa on Thursday, July 9, Cloncurry on Saturday, July 11, and Sunday, July 12, and Boulia on Tuesday, July 14.

The $175,000, 18-carat gold Emirates Melbourne Cup trophy starts its tour this month and will travel to 33 towns and cities across Australia, New Zealand and for the first time, Malaysia, where it will join a special World War II memorial service.

The 2015 Emirates Melbourne Cup will return to Melbourne on Monday, October 26, before the running of the 155th Emirates Melbourne Cup on the first Tuesday in November.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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