No signposts at crossroads

29/06/2018 // by admin

Editorial – August 8, 2014
Nanjing Night Net

Gunnedah is at a crossroads.

The town that’s going places has now gone places and is standing at the junction, wondering which direction to turn.

While some other towns are wishing they had rich natural resources, our shire is torn between the riches above and those beneath the ground, and it is aching with the growing pains.

The burgeoning mining industry in this shire and the ones beyond it has brought new opportunities, new challenges, new faces, new heartbreaks and new hopes.

For some it has meant a job, a house, money for the farm, customers in the shop, business on the books and money for public projects.

For others, it has meant fear over properties that have been passed down through generations, trucks on the road, high rents and mines for neighbours.

But along with all the issues that come with the mining industry, is the issue of growth.

With growth comes necessary upgrades to highways – with their own issues such as whether the Visitor Information Centre should be located along the highways.

It also brings a growth in other industries. The network is here, the people are here, the land is here, and the industries want to be here.

At yesterday’s Gunnedah Shire Council planning, environment and development committee meeting, council considered an application for a grain processing plant on Marys Mount Road.

This 24-hour operation has local residents concerned.

“It is like council is preferencing big business over the current residents,” one neighbour of the site said.

In the meeting last night, council noted a number of potential “game changers” that will impact on Gunnedah and how it could develop over the next decade.

These were:

• Development of the Maules Creek Coal Project near Boggabri.

• Potential determination of the proposed Shenhua Watermark Coal Project near Breeza.

• Imminent determination of the Vickery Coal Project north west of Gunnedah.

• Establishment of a second rail overpass at Gunnedah. Realignment of the state highway and regional road network within the Gunnedah urban area.

• Interest from major new business in establishing in Gunnedah, and

• Increase in demand for housing and accommodation.

All of these things spell progress for the shire, but they also spell out the need for a great deal of caution.

To preserve our country way of life and our farming base, each of these things needs to be looked at in light of where they are taking us.

Council may not have the power to say yes or no to many of these things, but here is a strong word of caution that each application, each new move, needs to be looked at as part of the big picture.

We are changing, but this change can be managed to a degree.

Gunnedah needs leadership to protect and nurture the community, to deal with the substantial challenges and opportunities we face, and to make informed, and considered, decisions.

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Woman sexually assaulted on Brisbane train

29/06/2018 // by admin

Police are looking for a man over the alleged sexual assault of a woman on a Brisbane train last month.
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They have released pictures of a man they wish to speak to about the incident, which happened about 1am on July 26.

Police said the woman was travelling on an outbound service when she was approached by the man.

The assault stopped when two passengers came to her aid. The attacker then left the carriage at Loganlea station.

The man, who was dressed in a Brisbane Broncos jersey, was also wearing a black jacket and blue jeans.

The Broncos played a match against the Melbourne Storm at Suncorp Stadium hours before the incident.

The man is described as aged in his late 50s, about 180 centimetres tall with short grey hair an olive complexion and a heavy build.

Police have called for anyone with information to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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Anglican Bishop apologises for church abuse and mistreatment

29/06/2018 // by admin

The Right Reverend Stuart Robinson, Bishop of Canberra and GoulburnOn Sunday August 10, 2014, parishes across the Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn will hold a special commemoration service called Lamentation Sunday.
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These services will include a public apology by the Right Reverend Stuart Robinson, Bishop of Canberra and Goulburn. The public apology is as follows:

“On behalf of my Episcopal colleagues and the leadership of the Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn, I wish to convey our deep and genuine sadness in relation to the pain and brokenness that people have experienced as a result of their engagement with our Church.

“I take this opportunity to apologise for any abuse or mistreatment that those sharing in this event may have experienced by individuals or groups connected with our Church.

“We know that hurt and sorrow can last for decades – indeed generations – and so we’d value the opportunity to work with people towards wholeness, forgiveness, reconciliation and restoration – and trust that this service might begin to address such things.

“Our aim is to create and grow communities of faith that are safe, life-giving, transformative and Christ-honouring.

“In addressing personal grievances and unresolved conflict, we’ll be better placed to achieve our aim.

“Thank you for sharing in this gathering with us.”

Services of Lamentation are a way for Anglicans to recognise the pain, hurt and sorrow caused by the actions and inactions of our Church. It seeks to raise awareness about the need for pro-active engagement to create safe environments for people and be a step towards healing, forgiveness and reconciliation.

Cootamundra Anglicans say sorry this SundayANGLICAN parishioners of Cootamundra are being encouraged to take part in a public apology to victims of abuse.

Reverend Rob Donald, the Rector of Christ Church Cootamundra preparing to host services for ‘Lamentation Sunday.’

“Our regular services will become the focus of this apology to all who have been abused through our churches,” Rev. Donald said.

Services held in the Cootamundra Shire are part of an initiative led by the Bishop of Canberra and Goulburn, the Right Reverend Stuart Robinson.

The Rt Rev Robinson has called upon all churches in the Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn to make a public apology to those who have experienced abuse at the hands of church members.

Rev Donald says a letter written by the bishop will be read at Lamentation Sunday services.

“This letter calls upon us all to work towards healing for victims of abuse and to ensure our churches become ‘safe-havens’ for all those who are oppressed,” he said.

“It’s hoped that many will be led to join us to be part of this public act of contrition and change.”

The former Prime Minister’s public apology to Australia’s Indigenous people is a source of inspiration Rev. Donald.

“When the Federal government said sorry to our Aboriginal people this was a turning point inthe Australian understanding of collective guilt,” he said.

“It was recognised that we’re all responsible for perpetrating abuse when we don’t speak out or act against it.”

A more current motivator is the Australian government’s treatment of asylum seekers.

“Further questions are being asked about how we dehumanise people and their rights for a safe haven in our labelling and treatment of so-called ‘boat-people’.

“We, as Australians, need to say sorry for our indifference.

Rev. Donald invites the community to attend church services at Christ Church on Sunday.

Regular communion services at 7.30am, 9am and 11am at Christ Church Cootamundra, and 3pm at St James Stockinbingal.

“I hope people can attend these gatherings to begin to make a difference.”

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Support our local HOME

29/06/2018 // by admin

HOME manager Anne Pratt (with Benny the residence’s in-house pooch) is encouraging Queanbeyan people to support this year’s HOME movie night at The Q.HOME in Queanbeyan will be hosting their annual movie fundraiser night next month at The Q, screening the film The Soloist, a movie based on a true story about a homeless cellist who caught the attention of an LA-based columnist.
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Those attending the night will also hear from keynote speaker, swimming legend and Olympic gold medallist, Petria Thomas.

HOME manager Anne Pratt said there will be food and drinks as usual before swimming legend Thomas discusses her life, career and her own experience with depression.

Ms Pratt said the night will be an opportunity for the community to connect with like-minded people whose main objective was to support HOME in Queanbeyan, a home-grown organisation that receives no government funding and survives on local funding.

“We don’t get government funding, so we need the community support. I like to say that HOME in Queanbeyan is proudly community owned,” she said.

“HOME gives people living with a mental illness an opportunity for their life to change. They see themselves just as a mental illness [sufferer], so we work on that mental illness to keep it stable so we can find the human side of them again.

“A couple of our residents are working, so it’s about finding themselves again and not just being recognised as a mental illness.”

Patron of HOME in Queanbeyan, Sir William Deane and his wife Lady Mary Deane will again be attending the night and Ms Pratt said the Deanes had “supported us from the beginning when we were just a thought.”

The movie fundraiser night will be held Friday, September 5 and will raise money for the organisation that currently houses 19 residents – five women and 14 men aged between 28 and 69 – who are all living with a mental illness.

Tickets for the night can be purchased for $70 by visiting www.theq.net.au or by calling (02) 6285 6290.

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$150K bail for Russell Island man extradited for dangerous driving

29/06/2018 // by admin

A 38-year-oldman who fled NSW after a fatal car crash in 2000 was extradited from his Russell Island hometo face 17 charges.
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Bradley Hazeltonwas arrested last week and charged with 17 offences relating to a July 2000 crash whichclaimed the life of 20-year-old Dwayne Nicholson.

He was taken to Sydney and charged with dangerous driving occasioningdeath, dangerous driving occasioning grievous bodily harm and 15 otheroffences.

Fronting Campbelltown Local Court on Wednesday, Hazelton did not enterpleas but sought release on bail, saying he promised to turn up forfuture court dates and abide by any conditions imposed as part of hisrelease.

Magistrate Janet Wahlquist granted Hazelton$150,000 bail despiteDirector of Public Prosecution lawyer Nadia Sawagid opposingthe application, saying he had avoided police detection for 14 years.

Ms Sawagid said Hazelton was only apprehended following an anonymoustip-off from a member of the public via Crimestoppers.

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Baby Ivy’s a real winner

29/06/2018 // by admin

Qbn’s Cutest Baby comp winner, Ivy Shoard.
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THE Queanbeyan Age has been chock full of chubby baby cheeks, and big wonder-filled baby eyes over the last month as we scoured the town for this year’s cutest bubs.

Proud parents and extended families across Queanbeyan rose to the challenge, and after four weeks of voting and over 500 entries, a winner has been found in four-month-old Ivy Shoard.

Ivy’s parents Kiah Barrett-Shoard and Tristin Shoard roped in friends and their large extended family to support their new bundle of joy, and were overjoyed to win.

“It’s very exciting,” mum Kiah said.

“We’ve kept the paper for her to show her when she’s older.”

Kiah described Ivy as a laid back baby who’s won over not just her parents but her grandparents and many aunts and uncles as well, most of who voted for her.

“She’s great. She eats well and sleeps well and is pretty laid back.”

Ivy was born at Queanbeyan Hospital on March 28 and is a younger sister to the couple’s three-year-old son, Cruz.

Local cuties Zahlia Jamie Lee Rapana Cross and Rocky Dal Molin came second and third respectively, with only four votes between them.

Qbn’s Cutest Baby comp winners

1st prize- $250 gift card- Ivy Shoard (99 votes)

2nd prize- $150 gift card- Zahlia Jamie Lee Rapana Cross (64 votes)

3rd prize- $50 gift card- Rocky Dal Molin (60 votes)

Congratulations to all our entrants on their beautiful bubs, and thanks for supporting The Queanbeyan Age.

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We’ve got Mail: Hardcore Sydney outfit set to hit the Edge

29/06/2018 // by admin

THE white road markings are set to become a familiar sight for Sydney punk-pop/metal outfit Mail Day.
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MELODIC METAL: Sydney pop punk/metal band Mail Day will be the headline act at a show at The Edge next Friday.

Guitarist Josh King said he and bandmates Josh Gibbs, Jonny Reid, Jerry Dilger and Mark Dixon would tour their backsides off (or words to that effect) to get their name up in lights.

Still a relatively new project, Mail Day’s sound has influences such as A Day To Remember and New Found Glory, and draws similarities to fellow Sydney punk rockers Heroes For Hire.

The group will play in Sunraysia for the first time when they headline an all ages show at The Edge Hotel Motel next Friday, August 15.

Mail Day will line up alongside local bands Legion, The Maledict, Truth Is Torture and Soul.

With their debut album To Helen Backagen, recorded in Thailand, set for release in October or November, King said his first tour with the band could be a long one.

“We haven’t got down that way (to Mildura) yet. We’re only a relatively new band,” the former Heroes for Hire guitarist said.

“We’re off to Melbourne on tour afterwards and then we’ve got a few shows lined up in Adelaide.

“We’re keen to just get out there and tour.”

For more of this story, purchase your copy of Friday’s Sunraysia Daily 08/08/2014.

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Real estate market to be discussed

29/06/2018 // by admin

PORT Pirie Cham-ber of Commerce and Industry will host another Networking Evening next week.
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Local real estate agent Matt Ganley will be the guest speaker at the event at the golf club next Wednesday.

Mr Ganley will talk about the real estate market in the region and any affects the Nyrstar Transform-ation is having on the industry.

Questions will be welcome at the end of Mr Ganley’s speech.

Chamber president Mark Hanlon said the previous networking evening was a huge success with more than 50 attending.

“Nights such as this are open to everyone, not just chamber members, but if anyone would like to join, membership forms will be available on the night,” he said.

“Increasing our membership is a high priority in the next six months.

“The more members we can attract, the stronger voice we can have on matters which affect businesses and the community.”

Mr Hanlon said the chamber was now more informative and members and non-members could follow its activities on the website (google Port Pirie Cha-mber of Commerce).

He said the networking evening would be at 5.45pm for a 6 pm start.

At the end of the night, light refreshments will be available.

Also on the agenda for the evening will be a brief meeting for chamber members to ratify changes to the constitution. “This meeting should only take a few minutes, but we have proposed changes to the constitution, which we believe are more in line with today’s running of organisations,” he said.

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Lifetime of giving

29/06/2018 // by admin

Shirley Williamson was awarded the Hospital Auxiliary Lifetime Membership Award and the Lifetime Membership Award from the United Hospital Auxiliary of NSW, a tremendous achievement from a member of our community.
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Born and raised in Yass, Shirley joined the Hospital Auxiliary in 1976, with the passion to make a difference to her community and local hospital.

“What really got me in was a dear old lady that I knew; she took me to one of the meetings. I sat listening to these inspirational stories and just knew that there was so much that needed to be done, and I desperately wanted to help,” she told the Tribune from her Adele Street home.

Shirley describes that the most rewarding part of her work with the auxiliary is providing

the comfort and resources to patients at the hospital.

“We spend a lot of time raising funds through street stalls, raffles and community events.

Before the legislation on insurance changed, there were even fetes outside the Yass Hospital.”

“It is great knowing that equipment that the hospital needs is being provided by our charity.”

“Back when I started, there were large numbers of memberships, but today it has fallen off a bit. We work with numerous members of combined hospital auxiliaries, where everyone believes in getting in to get the job done.”

One of the biggest undertakings is doing the Melbourne Cup luncheons.

“We were absolutely amazed by the level of support from the local community,” she said of the event.

President Larraine Healy describes Shirley as very likeable and hardworking.

“She steps up at any time that we need her, and she is a well deserved recipient of the award.”

Reminiscing about her time with the Hospital Auxiliary, she describes the most hair-raising experience in 2003, where they did the first of many catering events for the Rebel bikie gang’s annual fun-run.

The fun-run involved a ride from Sydney to their clubhouse in Yass.

“It was definitely an interesting experience, all the waitresses were topless and only had little g-strings on,” she laughed.

“But they were such gentlemen, the men would cook the food and we would just serve it to the waitresses. This event raised the most amount of money for the year; $4000 the first year.”

If you would like to get involved in the Hospital Auxiliary or further information on upcoming events, you can contact the secretary Valree Jewel on 6226 1061.

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Student who used chat sites to befriend potential victims pleads guilty to raping two girls

29/06/2018 // by admin

A university student turned “predator” who used popular internet chat sites to befriend potential victims has pleaded guilty to ‘‘sickening’’ offences, including the rape of two teenage girls.
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A Melbourne court heard Taylan Reeves created false internet chat site identities of boys and one girl to communicate in sessions or on webcams with adults and people aged between 11 and 18.

The County Court heard on Thursday that Reeves, then aged 18 and 19, used the sites MeetMe南京夜网, KIK messenger, Skype, Viber, iMessage and Facebook and sometimes portrayed himself as a model/acting agent.

Luisa Dipietrantonio said in her prosecution opening that Reeves, over a 15-month period from May, 2012, engaged with people in Victoria, interstate and overseas, including Europe and America.

Ms Dipietrantinio said as a result of some of the communications, Reeves was able to contact teenagers via phone and sometimes tried to or did arrange meetings.

“The online communications progressed to sexually explicit conversations with (Reeves) requesting specific naked images of the teenagers, including images which would be classified as child pornography — and feet,” she said.

Judge Felicity Hampel heard that Reeves also searched websites for young models and actors seeking work and had contacted some to ask if they would participate in “naked photo shoots next to his vehicle”. He also accessed and downloaded child pornography.

Reeves, now 20, formerly of Essendon, pleaded guilty to a total of nine charges that also included procuring sexual penetration by threat or fraud and using a carriage service to procure a person under 16 for sexual activity.

The court heard a girl, 14, that Reeves digitally raped, and a girl, 15, he committed penile, digital and oral rape against, were each threatened by him to participate or he would distribute explicit photos he had of them to people that included their parents.

Ms Dipietrantonio said conversations Reeve had with a third girl he targeted turned sexually explicit before she felt “pressured” to send naked images of herself.

After they later met at a football oval and sexual activity occurred, Reeves threatened to post naked photos of her on Facebook unless she had sex with him but she reported him to police.

A fourth girl, aged 11, who advertised for acting work online, was called by Reeves on the phone number she had posted.

Reeves told the girl he intended to hire her in an acting role and then persuaded her to pose in and the without her bathers, but when his demands turned offensive and she became ‘‘worried, scared and angry’’ she told her parents.

He was initially arrested and released, but later police analysis of his computers uncovered further offending and he was returned to custody.

Ms Dipietrantonio said more than 2000 child pornography and 220 movies were found.

Defence barrister Julie Sutherland said Reeves, supported in court by his “shattered and grief-stricken” parents, had been studying a psychology/law double degree at La Trobe university with a now-lost dream to become a lawyer.

Ms Sutherland said his parents, “loving and nurturing” people, would continue to support him while written character references “bespoke of a young man otherwise of excellent and outstanding character”.

She submitted the rape offences, while the most serious, were “nowhere near the worst category” to which Judge Hample responded that they had involved psychological threats.

Ms Sutherland said Reeves had initially “standardised” the victims, in that he did not see them as “real victims”, but was now “disgusted and sickened” by his behaviour.

He told her that to say sorry now to them would be an insult “but I want them to know I am”.

Psychologist Patrick Newton gave evidence that testing of Reeves revealed that as a child he was uncertain of his sexuality and “gender preference” and from later feelings of inadequacies he had engaged in “disinhibiting escalation” through deviant Internet material.

Reeves also used Skype to communicate with adult females in America, the UK, Russia, the Ukraine and Colombia in which he asked them to have their young children engage in sexual activity or pose naked.

Ms Sutherland conceded that the offending was abbohrent, appalling, sickening and predatory.

She also acknowledged that all child pornography was wrong, but she told Judge Hampel that about 85% of the images were in the less “egregious” category while about half of the movies were similarly regarded.

Mr Newton said that Reeves was presently assessed a “high risk” of reoffending, but with effective treatment this could be reduced to a moderate to high risk.

While Ms Dipietrantonio opposed it, Judge Hampel acceded to a defence application to adjourn the hearing for three months to assess Reeves after continued treatment with a colleague of Mr Newton’s.

Judge Hampel said her decision was based on the ultimate protection of the community and in the interests of justice as prisoners cannot access the sexual offenders’ treatment program until towards the end of their sentence.

Given that Reeves was a young offender, and conscious the victims would have to await a final outcome, she adjourned sentencing until November to consider a report on his progress.

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