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Who will be mayor?

INDUCTION: Councillors Liz Seckold, Tony Allen, Mitchell Nadin, Sharon Tapscott, Cathy Griff, Kristy McBain, Russell Fitzpatrick and Robyn Bain.Local government will be back in full swing on Wednesday, with the shire’s next mayor to serve an inaugural two-year term.
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Council’s general managerLeanne Barneswas looking forward to collaborating with the new councillors.

“I have contacted the newly-elected councillors by phone and am writing to all councillors on behalf of council staff to congratulate them on their election, and I know we will all work closely together to achieve outcomes for the community,” Ms Barnes said.

This year’s election saw previous councillors, Tony Allen, Kristy McBain, Sharon Tapscott, Russell FitzpatrickandLizSeckoldreturnedtotheirpositions.

Joining them in the shire’snew-looklocalgovernmentare JoDodds,Robyn Bain, Mitchell Nadin and Cathy Griff.

Many councillors remained tight-lipped during their induction onMonday when asked who would be putting their hand up for the role of mayor, but Ms Bain and Ms Griff confirmedthey would not be running.

The electioncomes at a time when the state government has pushed for a greater focus on councils forging partnerships with government agencies, other service providers, business and community groups.

While the media has focused on the state government’s controversial council amalgamations, theincrease to a two-year mayoral term and other amendments are also part of the Fit for the Future package.

Annual elections were seen to“create unnecessary instability and the risk that councillors will simply ‘take turns’ rather than taking the role seriously”.

The reforms aimto “improve the performance, transparency, governance and accountability of local councils in NSW”,with advancing“community cohesion” becoming a primary part of the amended role of mayor.

Council has invited the public to attend tomorrow’s meeting at 2pm at theBega Valley Commemorative Civic Centre,which will be the first time councillors are required to take an oath or affirmation of officer prior to taking up their role.

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‘Celebrate’ Newcastle, Baird urges

NEWCASTLE is on the cusp of something great, and NSW Premier Mike Baird is determined that we recognise it.
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On the back of his government’s announcement that it will spend $9.8 million on a Hunter Innovation Project providing free public Wi-Fi and a “digital precinct” in the city centre, Mr Baird gave a speech at the University of Newcastle on Monday night in which he urged the city’s residents to “celebrate” its growth and expressed personal “frustration” that not everyone does.

“I think Newcastle is not just a smart city, it’s not just a beautiful city, I genuinely think Newcastle is a city on the move like no other city in this great country and indeed the Asia Pacific region,” he said on Monday.

“Part of my frustration is I’m not sure everyone in Newcastle believes that and actually sees that.

“Because it is. And in the next couple of days I want to remind everyone that this is an incredible place.

“What is going to happen here in the next 20 to 25 years is unlike many other cities not just here but around the world [and] I think that’s something to celebrate.”

Mr Baird – who will make two major announcements in Newcastle on Tuesday – said the innovation funding, which is a joint $17.8 million project between the government, the University of Newcastle and Newcastle City Council, would help put the city at the centre of one of the fastest growing industries in Australia.

“This is all about believing in one of the major cities in the world,” he said.

“What we can’t forget is the next generation of jobs.”

Mr Baird said the digital economy would grow “exponentially” in the next 25 years, predicted to rise from five per cent of the state’s total economy to 22 per cent.

He said the “massive shift” could create 540,000 jobs in that period, and that while Sydney had become the “start-up city”, with about two-thirds of the nations start-ups based there, “it shouldn’t just be Sydney”.

“Newcastle is our largest regional city so my encouragement is how do we ensure that Newcastle is the centre of this push to the digital economy,” he said.

“How is it going to participate in innovation and the opportunities that come from that?

“So that’s why I think this announcement is so important. Newcastle, I think, is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It has so much potential.

“You can talk about beauty and the renewal but at the same time if we push the new jobs through innovation I think we are onto an absolute winner.”

The speech was billed as the Premier’s vision for the Hunter to 2036, and while admitting that the Hunter was not without challenges – he pointed to the region’s youth unemployment, currently stuck at about 19 per cent, or nearly twice the state average – Mr Baird was determined to pitch a positive vision.

He said his government had created 16,000 jobs since its election in 2011, and pointed to investments in health through the John Hunter Hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit, and a new hospital at Maitland, and infrastructure investments like the Newcastle Light Rail project.

“Bringing people back into the CBD is key [and] obviously obviously boosting economic activity,” he said.

He pointed to Property Council modelling that states the private investment in Newcastle coming alongside the government’s infrastructure commitments is at about $2 billion.

“Particularly the revitalisation project, something that we are quite proud of,” he said.

On Tuesday Mr Baird, together with Planning Minister Rob Stokes and Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter Scot MacDonald who are also in Newcastle, will make two funding announcements in Newcastle. One is being billed as “a major regional infrastructure and tourism announcement”, while the second is “a major sporting announcement”.

Mr Baird did not reveal details of the announcements on Monday, other than to say he wanted to “show this city off”.

“There are major events we want to bring here [and] tourists we want to bring here,” he said.

“A walk from the city down to Merewether Beach is one of the great walks in the world … one of the most beautiful coastlines”

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Netball ACT pushing for GWS Giants games in Canberra

Taylah Davies, Kristina Brice, Toni Anderson, Kimberlee Green, Susan Pettitt, Sam Poolman and Kristiana Manu’a will represent Giants Netball next year. Photo: Narelle SpangherGreater Western Sydney Giants’ new National Netball League club is likely to play games in Canberra in 2017.
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Netball ACT general manager Adam Horner said discussions had started with their New South Wales counterpart to establish a connection with the newly-formed Giants team to play select games in Canberra.

The draw is expected to be finalised in the coming weeks and Horner said he was focused on bringing games to Canberra.

“We’ve been very up front about the fact that we would love to have a presence of the league here in Canberra and there is no question that we’ve put our best foot forward,” he said.

“We’ve worked closely with a number of partners to try and make that a reality.”

The NNL replaces the trans-Tasman ANZ Championship and comprises Australian teams only, with the formation of three new clubs (GWS, Collingwood and Sunshine Coast) rounding out an eight-team league.

“Obviously it’s pretty exciting times for everyone involved in netball and it’s just going to be a matter of keeping a very close eye on all the bits and pieces that are happening to make the most out of this new league,” Horner said.

The Giants’ AFL team has experienced considerable success establishing Canberra as their second home by playing three games a season at Manuka Oval.

These games are regularly sold-out and Horner said this had provided a good example for the NNL franchise to follow.

“They’ve been very successful in establishing the Giants as Canberra’s team and we’ve been speaking with Netball NSW about trying to do something similar. We hope it can work in the same way,” Horner said.

Former NSW Swifts stars Kim Green and Susan Pettitt will join the Giants for their inaugural season, alongside English internationals Jo Harten and Serena Guthrie, as well as recent Australian Diamond debutant Kristiana Manu’a. Julie Fitzgerald will coach the team.

No Canberra players were selected in the initial team but Horner said it was a “long-term vision” to eventually do so.

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Letters to the editor

PIC OF THE WEEK: Kristy Boller captured this amazing shot of a Mollymook rainbow. Submit entries via email, Facebook or Instagram for your chance to be featured. Battle of the GateWindward Way Milton is a nice walk along a country lane.Well it use to be. Until the gates arrived.
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The no entry pedestrian signs on the padlocked gates have been there for more than five months or more. Council states “The no entry signs will be removed after rehabilitation.”The definition of Land rehabilitation is the process of returning the land in a given area to some degree of its former state.Which was a rough public track. Not a padlocked grass paddock 300 meters long and three lanes wide.

In a letter from Council in May this year it stated Wynyard Way is not a “Private Road”.In fact the track is not even a track but “unused road reserve”.The gate at Warden Street lies in the grass.The gate at the other end is regularly demolished by someone. Then rebuilt only to be demolished again.

The sign which states Council doesn’t maintain this track is still there.As 300 meters of the track no longer exists who will maintain the planted grass. Council sheep.

R.Croft, MiltonDogs on NarrawalleeI am writingtoexpress my alarm atthechanges that have happened on my local beach, Narrawallee.

I have watchedthepro dog movement(who are very media savvy) push their agenda further and further so that now there are very few times when we do not have dogs onthebeach.

I have just returned from a walk on Narrawallee where I passed sevendogs and owners atthenorth end ofthebeach where, supposedly, dogs are not permitted.Thesand was covered in paw prints from previous walkers.I then walked outtotheinlet,where supposedly again,dogs are not allowed (and let’s hopethe incredible bird life there will be protected).Ipassed three dog owners and fivedogs, all of whom had walked straight passedthesigns declaring it a no dog area.

Walking on One Track For All earlier this week, I noticed that someone has sprayed allthedog faeces with a fluro pink powder, pointing outthefact that dog owners are not cleaning up after their pets.It is everywhere on both sides ofthetrack.

If council has implemented these changes, it is vital that they enforcetherules. If a ranger was patrolling these areas frequently, council would be well ableto pay ranger wages with fines that aretheconsequence of taking your dog into no dog areas.

Iamnotatallantidog,buthavewatchedinhorrorasNarrawalleehasbeenturnedintoatotal“dogsocialisation” area, asthepro dog movement takes more and more space anddisregardstheboundaries they were given,with little thoughttothemajority of other beach users.

Can we please have more patrolling and very clear signage in this area, astheboundaries of where dogs can and cannot go are being totally disregarded.

Narrawallee residentSharia Law in AustraliaISIL and other extremists group claimSharia Law is supreme and Islam demands that it be the only law of the land. Their ultimate goal is to establish it forcibly everywhere in the world. Such an ideology is impractical, non-sense and totally contrary to the teachings of Islam.

The Koran clearly states‘there should be no compulsion in the religion’. Coercion was never an instrument in the religion, neither in the past, nor will be in future. The very essence of secularism is absolute justice be practiced regardless of the differences of faith, religion, color, creed or group.

Islam also pleads for a secular type of government as Koran states‘Allah (God) orders you to always practice justice’and ‘let not a people’s enmity incite you to act otherwise than with justice’.Prophet Muhammad never imposed Islamic law on the Jewish or other communities of Medina who accepted him not as their religious leader, but as a political leader.

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Cowra land project taking off

A family of pee wees has been spotted in a paddock that is being regenerated in the Cowra district. Photo JOHN COOPER Almost 500 new strategically located eucalypt trees are being planted in paddocks around Cowra to reconnect vital woodland habitat for local birds.
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Sadly, many of the old, solitary paddock trees still remaining in our heavily cleared landscape are now starting to die off, so replacement plantings are needed, say Landcare officers.

Mid Lachlan Landcare and the Cowra Woodland Birds Program have recruited local landholders to come to the rescue through the‘Paddock Tree’ partnership.

Through the Paddock Tree Project, Mid Lachlan Landcare has been supplying mesh and posts for tree guards to participating landholders, to help ensure the newly planted seedlings have the best chance of survival.

Individual paddocks trees areimportant for both biodiversity and aesthetics.

“Trees are a beautiful feature in the landscape and they are also critical for the survival of native bird species such as the superb parrot, the swift parrot and all of our owls,” said John Rankin from the Cowra Woodland Birds Program.

“The loss of paddock trees and our woodland environments has meant that a number of our native birds and other animals are declining,” he said.

The eastern Rosella is one of the bird species set to benefit from the Cowra tree-planting project initiated through Landcare. Photo JOHN COOPER

Initially, the Cowra Woodland Birds Program supplied funding to purchase seven rolls of heavy duty mesh, which could each create about a dozen tree guards.

“We had such strong demand from people wanting to take part that Mid Lachlan Landcare then boughtanother 10rolls of mesh, while the landholders purchased the tube stock and put the guards together in the paddock,” said Mid Lachlan local Landcare coordinatorTracee Burke.

Another 10rolls were bought through the Central Tablelands Local Land Services funded ‘Driving Sustainable Land Use’ project, which supports landholders to engage in improved grazing management practices and advises farmers on ecosystem repair priorities to boost farm productivity.

“We’ve now supplied enough guards for approximately 320 trees, and we know that many landholders are chipping in fromtheir own pockets to buy more mesh and posts in order to extend their plantings.In total we calculate about 500 new paddock trees have gone in this season across the Cowra Shire,” said Ms Burke.

“There has also been significant interest from people who haven’t officially signed up to the projects, but who are looking at doing similar paddock tree plantings on their properties in the future.

For more information about the Cowra Paddock Tree Project phoneTracee Burke at Mid Lachlan Landcare on 0417 799 425 or email: [email protected]南京夜网

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W-League: Canberra United lose Matildas keeper Lydia Williams

Canberra United coach Rae Dower. Photo: Melissa AdamsCanberra United is confident it can cope with the loss of Lydia Williams after the star Matildas keeper’s decision to leave the club.
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Williams has yet to announce her new club, although defending champions Melbourne City are considered favourites to sign the shot-stopper.

Williams helped United to two W-League premierships since joining the team as a foundation player in 2008.

Dower said United would unveil Williams’ replacement later this week and was confident the team could move on.

“One door closes in one respect and another door opens,” Dower said.

“As soon as we were aware that Lydia wasn’t coming back our focus was firmly on somebody to replace her and moving forward with the team.”

Meanwhile, Dower said the formation of the national women’s Australian football league would complement the W-League rather than poach talent.

A number of United players have been linked with AFL women’s teams, including Jenna McCormick and Ellie Brush, as well as the injured Caitlin Munoz, who attended a talent search session with the GWS Giants.

But Dower said the two codes would not compete with each other and the advancement in women’s sport was a “win-win”.

“The seasons only overlap by a couple of games and obviously they’re both endurance-based sports with collisions as well, so if there is the opportunity for the players to do it, and both the organisations want to do it, then it’s a win-win,” she said.

“The more that we can have female athletes become professional athletes and play professional sport throughout longer periods of the year then the higher the profiles of the female athletes will be.

“There is certainly room for us to work together, rather than in competition.”

A number of basketballers have presented as code-hoppers, with Opals star Erin Phillips signing with the Adelaide Crows, as well as Jessica Bibby training with the Giants.

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An unpleasant week set for a soggy record

What has already been a big few weeksof rainfall looks set to get a fair bit worse before themonth closes.
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If the predictions are even close to correct, many central Victorian towns areheading for their wettest Septemberin history.

The Bureau of Meteorologymight have been accused of “crying wolf” last week after some of the follow up rainfalls tothe floods failed to eventuate, but it is not holding back on the predictions for later thisweek.

The bureau is predicting a complex low pressure system will cause heavy rain, severe thunderstorms anddestructive winds.

On Wednesday, rain and thunderstorms will develop, spreading over western parts of Victoria during the afternoon and evening.

The strong westerly change will also bring damaging winds and surge east on Thursday, causing a broad band of rain and thunderstorms to sweep across Victoriabut even behind this the rain will continue.

Weatherzone has gone so far as predicting the weather patterns coming up later this weekto be one of the biggest weather systems we have seen so far this year.

Given this has been a year of some pretty extreme weather, all this talk does not bode well.

For Bendigo this amounts to as much as 60mm of rain over the three-day period from Wednesday to Friday.

Some 520mm of rain has fallen in Bendigo this year.

To put this figure in context, last year 294mm had been recorded to this point, while the long-term average is 384mm.

Even if the predictions don’t quite hit this total, sodden ground is unlikely to absorb any more water and low lying areas where water has pooled will possibly flood all over again.

All in all what this means is be ready for the worst.

Forewarned is to be forearmed and clearing a blocked drain or guttering may make a huge difference when the heavy falls come.

All the other warnings hold more than ever, including resisting the temptation to drive through flood waters.

Far too often during the last big rains we witnessed people taking a chance in floodwaters and getting stuck.

And if all these predictions amount to little, then there is no great loss in the caution.

It may even end with some good news; withthe tail end of the school holidays promisinga patch of sun and even adry grand-final day.

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Curtis Cheng’s widow Selina speaks about his death for the first time

Selina Cheng dabs her eyes as she speaks about her murdered husband. Photo: Nine News Curtis Cheng and his son Alpha (left) was shot dead by a 15-year-old boy outside NSW police headquarters last year. Photo: Supplied
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Mrs Cheng with her children Alpha and Zilvia at her husband’s funeral in October 2015. Photo: James Brickwood

Mrs Cheng said she felt guilt and despair after her husband’s death. Photo: James Brickwood

Flowers outside NSW Police headquarters in 2015, in tribute to Curtis Cheng. Photo: Steven Siewert

Almost a year after her husband was gunned down as he left work, Selina Cheng has spoken publicly for the first time.

Curtis Cheng, 58, a police accountant, was shot from behind as he walked away from NSW Police headquarters in Parramatta on October 2 last year.

Selina Cheng told Nine News on Monday that she felt immense guilt after the tragedy, as her husband had almost left work early that day.

Mr Cheng had offered to take his wife to see the doctor, but in the end she didn’t need to make an appointment.

She could not have known that her husband leaving work at his usual time would put him on a collision course with radicalised 15-year-old Farhad Jabar.

“Was it fate? … I don’t know,” Mrs Cheng said.

“I was so guilty. I was very guilty. I thought I give my husband more time at work. He wanted to look after my health, but he didn’t take off and the tragedy happened.”

In the months following her husband’s death, she constantly questioned why he went to work and didn’t come back.

“I don’t want anyone to suffer like me, as a widow,” she said.

Mrs Cheng said she fell into “total despair” after her husband was killed, and felt that she was living in darkness. Then, as she was supported by police officers, victims’ support groups and friends, a “beam of light” made its way into her life.

“Without those people I don’t think I can be able to walk on,” she said. “I know they will be beside me to continue the journey in life.”

Seconds after her husband was shot dead, his killer was also fatally shot by one of several special constables who were protecting the building.

Mrs Cheng said she has met with the man who shot Jabar, and the pair had “a big hug” and cried together when she said she understood that he wasn’t able to save her husband.

“You saved the rest, you saved more people,” she recalled.

“I remember, I really remember that moment. Both of us just burst into tears.”

As NSW Police plan to rename the Parramatta building where he died after Mr Cheng, Mrs Cheng said her “inspirational” husband will always have an impact on the lives of his family.

The inscription on his grave reads: “Your kindness, gentleness and patience will continue to guide us”.

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Frankston lose VFL licence, players learn via Twitter

Frankston players learnt the bad news on Twitter. Photo: Graham Denholm/AFL MediaFrankston Football Club is all but dead, with the club’s administrators saying that AFL Victoria had terminated the club’s VFL licence on Monday.
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And rather than being informed of the news via head office, Frankston coach Patrick Hill told Fairfax Media that the club’s players and officials had learnt of their fate via a reporter on Twitter.

“I would have liked to have told the players in person,” Hill said on Monday night.

Hill described the news as “tragic”, saying that past players would not be able to have their sons follow in their footsteps.

He also lamented the lost “opportunity for kids in the area”.

He said the club had provided a terrific outlet for the youth of the Mornington Peninsula – a place in which they could avoid drugs and alcohol.

“It was everything you wanted for young kids,” he said.

The Dolphins had been in dire straits after entering administration last month due to major financial problems.

Having entered the competition in 1966, Frankston had struggled on-field for much of the past decade, claiming the wooden spoon in 2015 and 2016.

Frankston’s sole VFA/VFL premiership came in Division 2 in 1978.

AFL Victoria was contacted for comment.

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Kevin Mack elected Albury’s mayor, Amanda Cohn as deputy

NEW TEAM: Kevin Mack as Albury’s mayor and Amanda Cohn as deputy. Picture: MARK JESSERKevin Mack was elected Albury mayor in a 5-4 vote on Monday night, indicating he would likely resign from Wodonga police after more than 35 years of service.
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Cr Mack won the two-year term thanks to his ticket members, John Stuchbery and Murray King, Labor Cr Darren Cameron and Greens Cr Amanda Cohn, who was elected deputy mayor in another 5-4 vote.

Cr Mack denied offering incumbent Cr Cohn the deputypositionfor her vote,and said she had mustered support herself, which included that of Cr King, CrCameron and Cr Stuchbery, whose votes ousted former deputy mayorDavid Thurley.

“I thought David did a wonderful job,Daviddidn’t want that support and essentially Amanda was certainly the one Ifelt (would)best represent the new group,” Cr Mack said.

Cr Cohn is Albury’s youngest deputy mayor in history at 26.

The junior doctor, who also ran as a Greens candidate for Farrer in the federal election, said her appointment“was a huge privilege and a huge opportunity”.

“I feel really honoured to have not only the support of the community as a councillor but the support of my fellow councillors as deputy mayor, and it’s a role that I’ll take really seriously,” she said.

Cr Cohn said she had already made arrangements to now work part-time at Albury Base Hospital to make way for her new role.

“I don’t think you necessarily need experience to be the deputy mayor,” she said.

“Ithink there is certainly a view from the community that we need some fresh ideas and some fresh perspective.”

She listed environmental sustainability,action on climate change, and theinclusion of diverse groups on the Border as priorities.

Cr Mack agreed with Cr Cohn’s partner and running mate Geoff Hudson’s argument that council ought to be more than “roads, rates and rubbish”, citing the NSW government’s rate of cost-shifting.

“Ithink it’s 10 per cent at last count, it’s looking at 20 per cent the next three to four years, that’s to offset the money they need to pay the residentsso there’s more things that we do as a council than people give us credit for,”he said.

But Cr Mack downplayed the notion that Albury council’s relationshipwith the NSW Government was damaged after outgoing mayor Henk van de Ven andAlbury MLAGreg Aplin had publicly lambasted each other over the level of funding allocated to the city.

“There’s no divide –this is just part and parcel of politics,” Cr Mack said.

“I don’t think friendships need to be tarnished because of aspirational ideas.”

Cr van de Ven had gone into the meeting on Monday night with an intention to remain mayor butCr Mack thanked him for leaving Albury council “in good shape”.

After the vote, Cr van de Ven shook Cr Mack’s hand and gave him a pat on the back in congratulation.

The new mayor said addressing a soft employment market and retaining the Lavington pool would be priorities.

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