Friday, May 20, 2022

CATEGORY

Politics

CWA calls for urgent action on health care, farmland protection and housing security

The Country Women’s Association (CWA) of NSW is calling for greater financial protection for landholders from mining exploration, urgent action on the quality of health services for rural and regional communities and an increased supply of social and affordable housing for older women in both metropolitan and regional areas of NSW.

Skywalk to go ahead

A decision on a controversial subject which has split the community was finally resolved when Narrandera Shire Council voted to proceed with the skywalk project during its meeting on Tuesday ... Narrandera Mayor Neville Kschenka was pleased a decision had been reached to give the project the green light and implied that Narrandera could be the catalyst for other councils to build their own skywalk.

MDBA starts dam releases

To demonstrate the magnitude of ignorance, look no further than the coffers of Australia’s largest irrigator, the taxpayer funded Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder (CEWH). For the 2021-22 season, the CEWH has a total of 2,365,000 megalitres – 1,640,000 in new allocation and 725,000 in carryover from the year previous – 1,030,400 of that in the Murray system. As of March 31, 2022, the CEWH had used 492,200 megalitres in the Murray system for the 2021-22 season.

Desperately seeking big policy ideas for our smallest youngest people

A Charles Sturt University early childhood education expert asks where in the 2022 election campaign is the commitment to big investment and to big policy ideas that ensure free and accessible early childhood education for the long-term? Dr Leanne Gibbs tells ARR.News how the challenges in workforce supply and retention in the ECE sector are even greater in rural, regional and remote areas within Australia.

It’s back to the future for Yamba floodplain planning

Geoff Helisma. Environmental watchdog, Valley Watch, first began predicting flooding of Yamba, as a result of developing West Yamba, in about 1995; on Sunday May 21, the group will present a more than 1,000-signature petition to the mayor, Ian Tiley (or his proxy), calling for a moratorium on further filling and development approvals on the Yamba floodplain. “Basically, the petition is demanding a well-designed master plan for West Yamba,” Valley Watch spokesperson Helen Tyas Tunggal said.

On which side will the rural independents hang?

Kookaburra decided that it could be helpful for readers of Australian Rural & Regional News if we were to conduct a survey of independent candidates from across rural and regional Australia to find out which party group they would support in the event of a hung Parliament.

The koala, unlike science, is in absolutely no danger of extinction: a case study from NSW’s north coast: Vic Jurskis

Vic Jurskis discusses data from historical reports and field surveys and concludes that koalas are in no danger of extinction. ARR.News asked some further questions of Vic.

Koalas: How threatened? Threatened how?

The Australian Rural & Regional News webinar held on 21 April 2022 is now available for public viewing.

Politics plagues housing funding

More than 50 new homes will be built in Cape York communities to address major overcrowding issues, but the state government has taken all the credit, despite using federal funding. Not for the first time, the health and wellbeing of Queensland’s most remote and vulnerable residents has been politicised.

Councils vote to keep road open

Cook Shire Council briefed leaders on a move by Australia Zoo and Terri Irwin to seek the closure of the gazetted Bertiehaugh Road which traverses through part of the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve ... The council representatives had a busy agenda in Cooktown. Mayor Peter Scott said the TCICA gatherings were a highlight on the calendar.

NFF’s Policy Voting Guide scrutinises parties’ credentials on agriculture and the regions

In an election campaign of hits and misses for farmers and regional Australia, the National Farmers’ Federation has revealed how the major parties stack up against its election priorities, rating them in a Policy Voting Guide.

Kookaburra’s questions for candidates

In order to assist readers of Australian Rural & Regional News to obtain some more policy detail from candidates running for rural and regional seats at the up and coming Federal election, Kookaburra has put together a list of questions on some critical issues which one might expect any candidate standing for Parliament to be able to answer ... 1. If you are an independent candidate, in the event of a hung Parliament, will you support the formation of a Coalition or an ALP minority government?

The destruction of the Marradong Timber Reserve 145/25 (MTR): Frank Batini

This timber reserve is located just west of the Boddington townsite , on the eastern fringe of the jarrah forest in Western Australia ... The infertile, lateritic soils that initially spared the MTR from clearing by farmers were its ultimate downfall ... An important question to ask is “How much bauxite mining is enough?”

Consultation starts for new rehab facility location

“With the new Board of Directors, and myself as Chair of BRADAGG commencing in March this year, we are keen to start moving ahead with a clean slate on this sorely needed alcohol and other drug (AOD) therapeutic treatment facility. The NT Government first committed funding towards a new facility in 2018" : Barkly Regional Alcohol and Drug Abuse Advisory Group Chair, Elliot McAdam. 

East Timor 20 years of independence celebration

The Australian Timor Leste Friendship Network was established in 2009, and in the same year, Mount Alexander Shire entered into a Friendship Relationship Agreement with the sub-district of Lolotoe, Timor Leste and Friends of Lolotoe Timor-Leste Incorporated. This friendship is based on mutual support and respect for each other’s culture. The Friendship group started work raising funds for school infrastructure, school resources, scholarships and gardening programs.

Action needed on rural, regional and remote healthcare in NSW

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) has welcomed a New South Wales parliamentary inquiry report into health outcomes in rural, regional, and remote communities but warned that action is also needed at the federal level to ensure the future of general practice care in the bush.

Smart and Vickery: No response re national expert

Chris Oldfield. For more than a month, CEO Trevor Smart and Mayor Erika Vickery have not responded to questions relating to Australian Roads Research Board (ARRB) Chief Technology Leader, Asset Performance Tyrone Toole's expertise. Mr Toole has spent a lifetime building and researching roads around the world.

Road seals need accurate calculations

Chris Oldfield. When crunching numbers about whether to seal a road, the cost should be spread over 60 years "or as long as possible". Australian Road Research Board Chief Technology Leader, Asset Performance Tyrone Toole said it would be pointless to only spread the cost over 10 years.

Labor matches childcare pledge

Gabrielle Duykers. Kingston has successfully secured a new $1.8 million childcare facility, after the Federal Opposition agreed to match the recent election promise of its opposition ... Labor shadow minister for early childhood education and development, Amanda Rishworth, announced the bipartisan agreement during an interview with the ABC last week.

‘Day of reckoning’ is fast approaching: Speak Up

“It is impossible for this to be achieved by 2024. So, what happens then? Will we have huge volumes of water sitting in dams supposedly for ‘environmental use’ that cannot be released because it won’t fit down the system, but not enough water allocated to growing the food and fibre our nation needs? Under this scenario, regional communities will continue to suffer, and every Australian will be hit by increased cost of living" : Speak Up Chair, Shelley Scoullar.

Sophie wants change

Kirstin Nicholson. Sophie Baldwin wants to make a change. The Cohuna born and bred woman is standing in the upcoming federal election. She is the first woman from this district to stand in a federal election, and the first person to stand as an independent ... Passionate about water advocacy, in 2020, she started working with Southern Riverina Irrigators and it soon became evident that someone needed to have a louder and stronger voice.

Bush poet keen to rekindle John O’Brien centre

A push is on to rekindle interest in establishing a centre to honour one of Narrandera's most prominent figures from the past - Monsignor Patrick Hartigan ...better known under the pen name of John O'Brien, the legendary, internationally recognised pioneer poet ... Australian champion bush poet Noel Stallard took on the role of John O'Brien for 22 years in the annual John O'Brien Festival.

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