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Tuesday, 20 March


Is This The Clarence River Estuary Future If Berejiklian Government Has Its Way? "As the cruise season continues, smoke particles emitted from cruise ship funnels have left people living and working near the port increasingly alarmed" North Coast Voices

Well the NSW Minister for Roads Maritime and Freight & Nationals MP for Oxley Melinda Pavey ended the fourth quarter of 2017 in much the same manner as she progressed through the three preceding quarters - she meet with a representative/s of international cruise lines.

I still didn't see any listed meeting with Yaegl native title representatives or with Clarence Valley Council.

I know she hasn't met with the communities of Yamba and Iluka which will be most affected by the 24/7 noise and fumes emanating from those cruise ships she is so eager to see make Port of Yamba-Clarence River a regular destination.

This is what happened in Hobart when it opened its doors to such cruise ships........ 

The Mercury, 15 March 2018:

HOBART residents are continuing to suffer the effects of air pollution from visiting cruise ships, says Acting Lord Mayor Ron Christie.

As the cruise season continues, smoke particles emitted from cruise ship funnels have left people living and working near the port increasingly alarmed, Ald Christie said.


Australia Post-Port Arthur Massacre North Coast Voices

Twenty years after the Port Arthur Massacre when a lone gunman killed 35 people and wounded 23 more.

The Conversation, 27 April 2016:

The 1996 firearm laws were immediately followed by a buying spree, as banned rapid-fire rifles and shotguns were replaced with freshly imported single-shot firearms.
By 1999, civilian gun imports had dropped to a record low. And most gun dealers closed their doors.

In the years that followed, gun-buying climbed steadily to new heights. By 2015, the arms trade had broken all previous records. Last financial year Australia imported 104,000 firearms.

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Monday, 19 March


Lone Goat Gallery: Jessica Leitmanis Excavations of the Deep 23 March 18 April Byron Bay Blog

EXCAVATIONS OF THE DEEP is a series of woven sculptures created from marine debris rope, that explore the relationship between mind and matter. 


Jessica Leitmanis. Spouts from which to drink, circa 200 C.E. 2018, salvaged marine debris rope and fishing line, 54cm (h) x 40cm (w) x 27cm (d)

To what degree does our internal world influence our external world? 

To what degree does our environment influence our thoughts?

Using archaeology as a framework, Jessica Leitmanis looks to the objects of our acquaintance for insights into contemporary society. She creates dialogue surrounding our constructs and design principles, in order to reflect on the values and beliefs of the modern world.

A contemporary archaeological dig that invites the viewer to question current modes of thinking, being, feeling, cultivating, creating, consuming, and discarding

This excavation looks for clues in the disconnect between that which is, and that which is assumed. The seen and the unseen; the surface and the submerged; the conscious and the sub-conscious



Nice new building but Lismore Hospital has longest regional waiting list Local News Echonetdaily

L to R: Justine Elliot, Walt Secord and Luke Foley with Lismore Hospital unionists at Mondays (March 19) announcement. Photo supplied

The opposition has taken a swing at the state governments handling of rural health, using Lismore Hospital as a base from which to launch its Schools and Hospitals before Stadiums campaign.

Labor leader Luke Foley and Northern NSW Shadow Minister Walt Secord were in Lismore this morning (March 19) to highlight the hospitals deficiencies a year out from the state election.

The pair demanded the Berejiklian government explain and justify why they are spending $2.7 billion on new stadiums in Sydney while rural, regional and coastal families get a second-class health and hospital system.

While Lismore Base Hospital is the subject of an upgrade, they say the hospital is unable to meet the growing demand in the region and it has the longest waits in emergency department for a rural and regional hospital.

In the most recent independent Bureau of Health Information data for the October to December 2017 quarterly reporting period released on March 14, Lismore Base Hospital had the longest waits in emergency department outside Sydney, Wollongong and Newcastle.

Mr Foley said the hospital was at breaking point, adding patients are suffering.

The Berejiklian Government has the wrong priorities. They are spending billions on stadiums but letting down country families wanting first class health and hospital services.

Sadly, patients wait at every stage in NSW; they wait for an ambulance; they wait in an emergency department; they wait for a hospital bed; and when they finally get a bed, they are rushed out of the hospital, risking re-admission due to infection.

Mr Secord said the hospital was under enormous pressure with the longest waits in emergency departments in the entire state.

Lismore Base Hospital has secured the unfortunate distinction of being the most under pressure hospital in regional NSW, he added.

According to the Bureau of Health Information, the elective surgery waiting list at Lismore Hospital has increased by 18 per cent in the past year.

The number of patients waiting for a hip replacement has increased by 54 per cen...


More funding for Ocean Shores Waterlily Park Local News Echonetdaily

Local Nationals MLC Ben Franklin celebrating the funding announcement with the Ocean Shores community.

For years, Ocean Shores Waterlily Park was the poor cousin to other childrens playgrounds in the region. But thats all changing.

Hot on the heels of recent rehabilitation of the park, Nationals Parliamentary Secretary for Northern NSW, Ben Franklin, announced a further $418,608 in state government funding in a celebration at the playground yesterday (Sunday March 18).

Mr Franklin said the funding will go towards construction of shared cycling and walking pathways, formalization of the car park, shade sails for the playground and construction of an all-abilities ying fox and wheelchair friendly tree-house.

I am thrilled we are able to support this wonderful playground, which is such an important part of this community. Ocean Shores is home to many young families and this project will deliver more facilities to these families, Mr Franklin said.

He announced the funding at yesterdays community celebration at the Park.

It was a delight to join the Ocean Shores community to celebrate this wonderful project, said Mr Franklin.

The project has been led by the Ocean Shores community. Our local school children have played a huge part in the design of the playground. It is so incredible that the children of this community have been able to assist in the design of the equipment they will play on and children for generations to come, Mr Franklin said.

I want to pay tribute to Orit Ben-Harush and the whole Waterlily Playscape Committee for all their work in bringing this project to life.

The funding is part of the NSW Governments $200 million Stronger Country Communities Fund. Applications for Round Two of the Fund are currently open until 4 May 2018.


The post More funding for Ocean Shores Waterlily Park appeared first on Echonetdaily.


$250k cash to splash for community groups Local News Echonetdaily

Not-for-profit company Enterprise and Training Company Limited (ETC) has announced $250,000 funding for community groups, including those on the North Coast.

People and groups interested in making a positive difference to their community are being encouraged to apply for funding.

Some previous beneficiaries have included OneVisionProductions, the Byron Bay Community Association, Camp Quality, NSW State Emergency Service, Lifeline and Westpac Rescue Helicopter.

Chairman Rod McKelvey said ETC was making the community grants available as part of the ETCs Community Support Fund.

The fund is designed to help organisations reduce disadvantage, generate opportunity, increase support services and/or build capacity in the communities in which we operate, Mr McKelvey said.

$20,000 limit

Mr McKelvey said organisations could apply for up to $20,000 each with funding for small projects also encouraged. Applications would be assessed based on how well they align with ETCs focus on employment and training, and meet one or more of the funding objectives:

  • Contribute to reducing disadvantage faced by the unemployed and/or other disadvantaged groups
  • Support the availability and/or sustainability of employment and training opportunities
  • Enhance community support services and/or build community capacity

Mr McKelvey said the ETC Community Support Fund had provided close to a million dollars in funding to more than 100 worthwhile organisations since 2012.

Its incredible the projects weve been able to support over the past six years, Mr McKelvey said.

The next round of the ETC Community Support Fund opens on 19 March and closes on 13 April 2018.

For further information and/or to apply online visit

The post $250k cash to splash for community groups appeared first on Echonetdaily.


Uluru statement on its way to Brunswick Heads Local News Echonetdaily

Thomas Mayor and his daughter in front of the Uluru Statement from the Heart. (supplied)

Darwin-based Thomas Mayor, who has been touring the country with the canvas of the Uluru Statement from the Heart, will visit Brunswick Heads Park next to the Housie Shed, on Sunday at 10.30am.

The Uluru Statement from the Heart was a culmination of a constitutional convention held last year which brought together more than 250 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leaders at the foot of Uluru in Central Australia on the lands of the Aangu people.

The majority resolved to call for the establishment of a First Nations Voice in the Australian Constitution and a Makarrata Commission to supervise a process of agreement-making and truth-telling between governments and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The Uluru Statement from the Heart affirms the sovereignty, and long and continuing connection of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples with the land.

It also comments on the social difficulties faced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the structural impediments to the real empowerment of First Nations Peoples.

Thomas Mayor said the Uluru Statement from the Heart is life changing for all who behold it.

When people see it they become spiritually connected, he said.

It is more than an invaluable piece of art, and it is more than a historical set of moving words; the ancient art and the powerful words combined with the signatures of those who endorsed it, represents Indigenous aspirations for a Voice that is powerful, and for Treaty and Truth Telling.

Being in its presence motivates people to join us on the walk, especially when they are given the opportunity to sign the additional canvases that have been far and wide.

He said it was hoped that the Uluru Statement from the Heart could become the foundations of a renewed conversation with the whole Australian community about constitutional reform.

The Turnbull government rejected the statement.

ANTaR, which is an independent, national network of organisations and individuals working in support of Justice, Rights and Respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Australia, said the governments rejection was an extraordinary show of bad faith from a Prime Minist...


Buskers to play off for a spot at Bluesfest Local News Echonetdaily

Buskers will be vying for the chance to take to the stage at Bluesfest from next Saturday. (file pic)

An eclectic mix of rising musicians will be taking part in the 15th Annual Bluesfest Busking Competition, with the six winners getting the chance to play at the festival.

Organisers said the busking competition would kick off on Saturday, 24 March, at 9am at the Byron Youth Activity Centre with the annual Grommet Bluesfest Busking Comp.

This initiative has been instilled as a key part of the Annual Bluesfest history and has such a strong growing force behind it, organisers said.

This is the perfect opportunity to kick start your 2018 Bluesfest experience with a hive of excitement and an eclectic mix of rising musos offering their best with a wealth of free entertainment.

The event on Saturday will see 24 artists take to the stage.

This is a competition and three  artists will be chosen by an industry panel of judges to play the Beach Hotel for the Finals Day Event kicking off at 12pm on Good Friday, organisers said.

The next chapter in this event will see the Open Semi-finalists take to the stage at the Byron Bay Brewery over the Tuesday and Wednesday evening of the 27 and 28 March, commencing at 5pm daily.

Each evening will see 20 artists putting themselves before the judges for the chance to progress into the finals.

A place in the finals will guarantee them a stage slot on the Delta Stage for the 2018 Bluesfest event a true dream come true for six artists.

We then welcome you to join the absolute buzz that is a packed day at the Beach Hotel for the finals day on Easter Friday, the combined Grommet and Open Finalists hitting the stage from 12pm.


The post Buskers to play off for a spot at Bluesfest appeared first on Echonetdaily.


Woman critical after South Ballina crash Local News Echonetdaily

The Westpac Rescue Helicopter has taken a female car accident victim to Gold Coast University Hospital in a critical condition.

The Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter was tasked during the night (Sunday, March 18) to a single-vehicle collision on River Drive South Ballina.

A car in which three people were travelling had left the road and collided with a tree.

It was reported that the 31-year-old female occupant of the vehicle was trapped by compression.

She was released by local SES and transported by helicopter to Gold Coast University Hospital in a critical condition suffering multiple injuries.

Two male occupants were transported by road ambulance to Lismore Base Hospital in a stable condition.

The post Woman critical after South Ballina crash appeared first on Echonetdaily.


Ballina gallery seeks public input on future direction Local News Echonetdaily

Ballina Shire Council is calling for community feedback on the future direction of arts in the shire. (supplied)

The Northern Rivers Community Gallery at Ballina is calling for community feedback on its future direction.

Ballina Shire Councils communications officer Catherine Jost said the feedback would assist the gallery and council best meet the needs of the community in shaping vibrant arts and culture programs, exhibitions, events and cultural infrastructure within the shire.

Ms Jost said the feedback would support the gallerys application for further state government funding under the Cultural Infrastructure Regional Cultural Fund.

She said the gallery had been shortlisted for sustainable lighting upgrades, and the expansion Ignite Studios @ NRCG.

Ignite Studios @ NRCG is located in the former fire station will provide a dynamic shared access space supporting the development and participation of artistic pursuits.

Facilities include artist studios, a visiting artist-in-residence (AiR) studio and two access spaces for workshops, creative events, pop-up exhibitions, meetings and special projects.

Ms Jost said anyone interested in the future of arts in Ballina could complete a five minute survey online at the gallerys website, at

Your feedback is important and will help us shape the future of arts and culture in the Ballina Shire, she said.

The Northern Rivers Community Gallery is located at 44 Cherry Street Ballina and is open Wednesday to Friday from 10am until 4pm and weekends from 9.30am until 2.30pm.

The post Ballina gallery seeks public input on future direction appeared first on Echonetdaily.


Three-hour police chase, man charged Local News Echonetdaily

A man will appear in Lismore Local Court this morning after a three-hour police chase at Casino on Friday.

The 19-year-old man is accused of evading police after he allegedly breached bail in February.

Trains had to be stopped during the chase as police searched the rail corridor.

Schools were warned to keep students indoors until they could be accompanied home.

The man was arrested at around 6.30pm.

The post Three-hour police chase, man charged appeared first on Echonetdaily.


Man charged with gun, traffic offences Local News Echonetdaily

A has been charged with several firearms offences after a vehicle stop near Ballina on Saturday (March 17).

About 8.20am, police attached to Ballina Highway Patrol stopped a Ford Territory in relation to minor traffic matters on Skennars Head Road at Skennars Head.

When the officer examined the mans licence, it was found to have expired, and the officer returned to the police vehicle to conduct further checks.

As the officer waited for other police to arrive, the 28-year-old male driver attempted to speed from the scene, but was stopped by police a short distance away.

The man was arrested and taken to Ballina Police Station.

The officers conducted further inquiries and a loaded .32 calibre revolver located on the side of Skennars Road.

A search of the mans nearby accommodation allegedly revealed a quantity of ammunition for the revolver and steroids.

The man was later charged with possessing an unregistered firearm, not keeping firearms safely, possessing an unregistered, unauthorised pistol in public place, possessing ammunition, dangerous driving, possessing prohibited drug and traffic offences.

The man was refused bail to appear at Lismore Local Court on Sunday, March 18.

Inquiries into the incident continue.

Anyone with information about the incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Police are urging anyone with information in relation to this incident to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page:

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Trump brings out the knives in his effort to derail the FBI-Mueller investigation into Russian involvment in his presidential campaign North Coast Voices

What occurred.....

Andrew McCabe became acting head of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) after the sudden firing of James B. Comey on 9 May 2017 and, as acting head gave evidence before a US Senate committee in which he contradicted the WhiteHouses assertion that James B. Comey, the F.B.I. director fired by PresidentTrump...had lost the support of rank-and-file F.B.I. agents.

US President Donald Trump's reaction was hostile across multiple tweets over the following months and he implied that McCabe might be fired before he could retire.  

On 15 March 2018 The New York Times reported:

WASHINGTON The special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, has subpoenaed the Trump Organization in recent weeks to turn over documents, including some related to Russia, according to two people briefed on the matter. The order is the first known instance of the special counsel demanding records directly related to President Trumps businesses, bringing the investigation closer to the president.



A year ago the Turnbull Cabinet decided to elevate "a fascist like Peter Dutton" North Coast Voices

This is Peter Craig Dutton, Australian Minister for Home Affairs, Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, millionaire property speculator, alleged closet racist and former Queensland police officer.

Twelve months ago government and national intelligence circles were unhappy about his elevation to powerful Tsar

Dutton's portfolios are now under audit and review as they merge and grow.


Sunday, 18 March


Sunday, 18 March 2018 - 8:12pm

Jack did it again. He was desperate to go out into the street this morning, where he's not generally allowed because of the neighbours' dogs - and, frankly, some of the neighbours. Stupidly I thought: old, arthritic, several vital organs clapped out (him, not me; well, actually probably both of us) - how far can he go?

Ten minutes later: no sign of him. I fall for it every couple of months. Calling for him every fifteen minutes, crawling around looking under cars, asking neighbours ("Yes, he's just out there Oh, he's gone").


Australian personal investment portfolio profiles reveal a sjgnificant lack of diversification and a fondness for shares North Coast Voices

This is indeed the wealthiest retired generation ever in Australian history. Self-funded or partly self-funded retirees appear to enjoy a significantly higher standard of living than those who rely on the Aged Pension  [Australian Centre for Australian Studies, August 2016]

According to the Australian Stock Exchange in 2017 there were over 11 million investors across the country.

Given the many words being written on the subject of share dividend imputation and franking credits here is a broad breakdown of the investment types these people hold.

Sources of income during retirement

In 201617, there were 3.6 million persons, aged 45 years and over, who reported that they were retired from the labour force. This group comprised 1.7 million men and 1.9 million women. Just over half of all retired persons were aged 70 years and over (56% of retired men and 52% of retired women).


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