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Thursday, 19 April


Gippsland Line Notification: Delay "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

18:14 Bairnsdale - Southern Cross train is now delayed by approximately 44 minutes.

[20:37 19/04]


Gippsland Line Notification: Delay "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

18:14 Bairnsdale - Southern Cross train is delayed by approximately 25 minutes due to an earlier ill customer.

[18:41 19/04]


Gippsland Line Notification: Train Delay - Gippsland line "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

13:20 SCS to Bairnsdale train is delayed by approximately 50 minutes due to an ill customer at Warragul [15:57 19/04]


Gippsland Line Notification: Train Delay - Gippsland line "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

13:20 SCS to Bairnsdale train is delayed by approximately 18 minutes due to a signal fault in the Metro area [15:38 19/04]


5 Things to do in San Francisco with kids (Tweens) "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

San Francisco is a hip, cool destination that has something for the whole family. asked me to share a guide to experiencing San Francisco with tweens.  We have two tweens in our family, one likes all things adventurous and exciting while the other likes museums and educational attractions. Add some cultural experiences and you have the perfect destination

Where to stay in San Francisco  Hotel Union

Square Hotel Union Square is in the centre of the San Francisco Shopping District. Situated on the cable car line in the downtown area, the boutique hotel is 2 blocks from Union Square and 4 blocks from the Moscone Center and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. The sounds of ringing cable car bells recall the nostalgic old San Francisco days. Built over 100 years ago in 1913 for the 1915 Pan Pacific Exposition. Union Square Hotel is an amazing mix of art deco and classic San Francisco style. For more information on hotels in San Francisco...


Employment growth stalls "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Stall speed

Australia's economy has added a very impressive +525,900 jobs on a net basis since September 2016, but the dream run was over by March 2018, with only a small increase recorded in the month and a revised drop reported for February. 

Very hard to look at this chart with rose-tinted spectacles for 2018!

After a spectacular run it's no surprise that New South Wales has hit a leaner patch, while South Australia recorded a net employment loss of -6,100 for the month, as the local economy struggles to gain traction, possibly with some flow-through to suppliers of the now shuttered auto assembly industry.

Over the past quarter employment growth was overwhelmingly driven by Queensland (+17,800) and Victoria (+15,900).

On a trend basis over the past year Queensland recorded by far and away the strongest employment growth rate at +4.3 per cent, although New South Wales was also very strong at +3.6 per cent.

Unemployment steady

The participation rate in Australia has been tracking as high as we've ever seen, though it ticked down a notch to 65.5 per cent in March. 


Gippsland Line Notification: Delay update - Gippsland line "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

10:20 Southern Cross - Traralgon is delayed by approximately 15 minutes due to congestion on tracks shared with Metro Trains at Pakenham. [11:57 19/04]


FixedIt: Child abuse charges are not a sex case "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The UK Business Insider reported on the closing remarks in the Melbourne Magistrates Court hearing on the child sexual abuse charges against Cardinal George Pell and described the case as asex case.

Cardinal Pell strongly denies the charges against him. This commentary has nothing to do with his guilt or innocence, which must be determined by the court. This is only about how the charges are described in the media.

Children cannot have sex. Sex requires consent, children cannot legally or morally give consent so it is not sex. Rape, sexual abuse and sex are not the same thing and they can not be used interchangeably in headlines.

Here are the reasons this matters, in every case, with every headline.

The victim impact statements from child abuse trials are harrowing, a testament to the lifelong injuries suffered by people who were sexually abused as children. They are the litany of drug addition, alcohol dependence, gambling problems, depression, crippling anxiety, relationship breakdowns, suicidal thoughts, shame, self-hatred, mistrust of others and long term emotional damage so common in survivors of child sexual abuse. Children who have been abused are also significantly more likely to suffer further abuse, both as children and as adults.

The effects of sexual abuse of children then lead to the cycle of horror where victims become unreliable witnesses to their own abuse.

When the media, as it so persistently does, labels sexual abuse of children as child sex, we are weakening the public understanding of the extent and effect of such abuse. This has serious effects. A study conducted for the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse found that juries who have a better understanding of the facts of child sexual abuse are less likely to make mistakes in their assessment of evidence given in court.

Children cannot have sex with adults. Sex requires consent and children, by definition, cannot give consent, so its not sex. Its rape, its child abuse, its sexual abuse, its any number of terms that accurately describe a crime. An act perpetrated on an innocent victim, someone who was unable to defend themselves from the violence done to them, and who suffers for years, possibly decades, from the trauma caused by an adults choice to commit that violence.



Council jumps on jetty as best car-ferry option "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

THE Bass Coast Shire Council wants the State Government to pay for another study into feasibility of the Cowes to Stony Point Car Ferry, one that specifically looks at using the existing Cowes Jetty location as the site for the ferry terminal.

It follows months of community angst, including a protest and many angry emails to councillors and the consultants of the business case EarthCheck over the preferred terminal location mid-way between Mussel Rocks and the Cowes Yacht Club.

On Wednesday night, around 200 people turned out to listen to councillors debate the car ferry, at the Phillip Island Golf Club. Police were also in attendance.

Cr Rothfield believed the recommendation to investigate the Cowes Jetty as the terminal site had merit.

An amended motion, spearheaded by the mayor, also asked the State Government for an Environmental Effects Assessment on the preferred location for the terminal.

The motion passed, but without the support of Cr Michael Whelan, Cr Julian Brown and Cr Geoff Ellis.

I acknowledge along the way there were missteps, Cr Rothfield said.

But I do feel this recommendation shows the community that we listen, we are not hell-bent on ramming through the development of a car ferry infrastructure in a location to which the community is opposed, she said.

I fell that this recommendation shows the community does have a voice and the council has listened.

Councils also vowed to support the car ferry in principle.

I see this ferry as a potential as being our real public transport option, she said, receiving laughs from the crowd.

Council will defer a decision on the business case until an investigation is undertaken of whether the Cowes Jetty is a more suitable location for the terminal.

Pictured below: The Mayor Cr Rothfield has ruled out the option that Rhyll would ever host a car ferry saying the need to constantly dredge a channel, other environmental issues and inconvenience for foot traffic made the site completely unviable.

Also pictured the unpopular Cowes Osborne Beach site has been ruled out by the community.



Sketches In Australia By George Whitelaw, 1857-1864 "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

I was sort of watching an old episode of Antiques Roadshow ("watching" = noise in the background while I researched Oz history) when I heard the above title mentioned.
Now, poor George was a consumptive bloke ( he was quickly fading away from TB) so he had a little time to fill in.
The sketches in his book aren't fabulously long-lost works of art BUT they are observations of people and Aboriginal people in and around the small settlement of Melbourne; rudimentary ink drawings show mia-mias (huts) and Aboriginal figures with notes on the back of the sketch detailing how they lived.
He also sketched figures waltzing off to the goldfields, showing the various classes by their dress, with the usual accoutrements of digging in their hot little hands.
In short,  rare wonderful glimpses of history.
After the value was given by the Antiques Roadshow expert, with comments that it would garner high interest in the Aussie market, the owner stated he wouldn't be selling.
Now, doing my sums that episode was from 2009 (I told you it was an oldie) so I had a quick Gurgle to see if the sketchbook ever made its way to The Fair Isle of Oz - and, yes, it did!
Mossgreen Auctions in Armadale, Vic, auctioned it last May; how much or who bought it I have not the foggiest, I can only hope it or a facsimile eventually finds its way into the National Library or into print for schools or some such.

You can read a lengthy description by the auction house of George's sketch book  HERE

You can read the transcript of the AR ep HERE.


Gippsland Line Notification: Delay update - Gippsland line "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

06:10 Bairnsdale - Southern Cross is now delayed by approximately 15 minutes due to a track fault in the Pakemham area. [09:24 19/04]


Meeting 6pm Tonight: Independent and Peaceful Australia Network - War on Syria contingency meeting 19 April "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Invitation to a meeting to coordinate contingency plans for an emergency rally in the event of war breaking out or bombing resuming in Syria/Middle East or on the Korean Peninsula.

Thursday 19 April
Level 4
Trades Hall
(Please note that we have changed to a larger room)

The global situation is unpredictable and inflammable.

The peace movement needs to come together to make contingency plans in advance to mobilise mass protests and rallies in the event of war breaking out.

A contingency plan and a broad coalition is needed to mobilise a wide range of people, organisations and contacts at a very short notice.

A co-ordinating group will be set up.

If you want to find out more or be a contact for your organisation or community but unable to come this Thursday, please reply to this email or phone 0417456001.

Shirley Winton
Independent and Peaceful Australia Network

... ...
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April 19 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

1623 - After kidnapping an Aboriginal bloke the previous day it wasn't surprising that the Dutch sailors of the Pera were then greeted by over 200 angry and hostile Aboriginals in North QLD.

1770 - Lieut Zachary Hicks eyeballed the point of land which now bears his name as Point Hicks (Cape Everard).

1805 - Aboriginal people defending their land managed to kill several colonists which resulted in a Government Order today to Captain William Bligh to send soldiers to protect the settlers.

1818 Phillip Parker King discovers Port Essington , later one of the first British settlements in what is now the Northern Territory.

1831 - The Sydney Gazette reported that: - Elizabeth Smith, an importation by the Earl of Liverpool, who made her first appearance ashore on Friday last was charged with insolence to her mistress. It appeared that the prisoner was assigned direct from the ship, to the service of a gentleman in Sydney, to whose house she was sent on the day she landed. In the afternoon obtained permission of her mistress to go out, on some business of her own, for a limited time, which she exceeded, and on being reprimanded on her return home, told her mistress she was " a-good-for nothing hussy," and that she (Elizabeth) " knew by the cut of her jib" that the service would not answer her. The bench sentenced her to the third class in the Factory for three months. Elizabeth Smith had been assigned to William Foster in Sydney on arrival.

1836 - Governor Bourke visited Newcastle on the Ceres. He inspected the site for the New Military Barracks and other buildings which were to be erected at Newcastle, proceeded overland to Brisbane Water and returned to Sydney.

1856 - Stoke up your boiler, Aunty Maud, the first steam railway from Adelaide to Port Adelaide started chuffing along.

1876 - Those erstwhile Fenian convicts all gallivanting aboard the whaling ship Catalpa were called to hove to by the armed guards aboard the Georgette after they'd fired a shot across her bow; the master of the Catalpa claimed they were in international waters, inquiring would the Water Police Superintendent J. F. Stone like to trigger An Incident?
As Britain had just then lost a 3 million pound case in similar circumstances Stone decided his wage didn't quite stretch far enough to cover his backside so he let the Catalpa go sailing off into the sunset with the escaped political prisoners.

1877 - The Main Western Railway Line (NSW) was opened from Blayney to Orange.

1900 - Tired of twiddling their thumbs after the Sunday roast the Victorian pollies dreamt up a Royal Commission on local government laws.

From 1911 until 1916 today was proclaimed to be Discovery Day to celebrate the day on which Jimmy Cook tripped over some great lump of dirt now known...

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Wednesday, 18 April


First dressage day "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

Cleo Pohlen formed a winning combination with her pony Tooravale Prophecy.

DESPITE terrible weather, the Bass Valley Pony Clubs Mini Dressage Day at Woolamai was well-attended.
It was the pony clubs first dressage event and competitors came from Phillip Island, Cranbourne and Warragul.
They braved the wind and rain to have a fun day out. For the most part, horses coped well with the weather.
The event was successful with friendly committee, great judges, arenas on time, the scores up quickly and presentations shortly followed.
The pony club would like to thank Goodwoods saddlery for donating the rugs for first prize.
It was great to see Bass Valleys own riders out competing with some good results.
For some of them it was their first event.
The club will make this an annual event.
Bass Valley Pony Club is located at Woolamai Recreation Reserve.

The post First dressage day appeared first on South Gippsland Sentinel-Times.


The Californians Are Coming! "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

I got a phone call a few months back from a woman in Arizona who sought my advice. Her town was receiving an influx of new residents from out of state and it was obvious the trend was accelerating. The resulting growth and economic distortions caused by an expanding population, more traffic congestion, less open space, stresses on municipal services, and higher home prices would (all together now) change the character of the community. She was an earnest woman who genuinely cared for her town and was in search of tools to manage the inevitable in the best way possible. But I had to smile when she announced, The Californians are coming! in a thick Chicago accent. How long had she been in Arizona?

I rented a house here in California to a Canadian couple for four years. They relocated to take advantage of career opportunities in San Francisco. They owned a condo in Vancouver which they rented out while they were living here so it was a financial wash for them. When a great job presented itself in Kelowna, B.C. the couple returned to Canada.

But the timing was rough. The city of Vancouver had recently enacted a tax on foreign property investors meant to cool the overheated real estate market. One side effect was a 25% price spike in Kelowna in a single year as hot money found the next sweet spot. In Vancouver, the tax induced a brief lull in the property market for a few months, but then prices resumed their upward trajectory as pools of international funds kept searching for a safe haven. Whats an extra 15% if youre already paying cash for a $1.2M condo? Was there anything Kelowna could have done to alter that trajectory? Friends in Australia tell me Hobart, Tasmania is seeing significant home value increases as people from Melbourne migrate to second and third tier cities in the provinces...



Flesh-eating disease Buruli ulcer increasing at alarming rate in Australia "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

A flesh-eating disease known as the Buruli ulcer, which is usually found in West and Central Africa, has been increasing at an alarming rate in Australia over the past two years, especially in the state of Victoria. A report published Tuesday in the Medical Journal of Australia describes the disease as a "worsening epidemic, defined by cases rapidly increasing in number, becoming more severe in nature and occurring in new geographic areas."


Greater Glider hotspot in danger - Call the Minister "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

The Greater Gliders of the Queensborough river forests are in danger.

Despite finding 13 Greater Gliders on just one survey the Department of Environment has allowed logging to recommence in the Greater Glider hotspot. 

Minister D'Ambrosio listed the Greater Glider as a threatened species under Victorian law 11 months ago. Since them nothing has been done to protect its habitat and logging in important strongholds has continued. 


Long term arrivals at record high "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Arrivals hit record

Skilled job vacancies advertisements rose for an 18th consecutive month according to the Department of Employment, for the first time since March 2011. 

There was quite a jump in the month too, from 184,000 to 189,000, with the trend result now +34 per cent higher (or +47,400 advertisements) than the October 2013 nadir. 

Conditions improved everywhere, especially Western Australia, although South Australia was the notable laggard, with only a small annual change in vacancies. 

Things are certainly looking up, slowly but surely, and when the economy improves often so too does immigration rise.

Indeed, the number of permanent and long term arrivals hit the highest ever level in February 2018 at 105,630, in turn sending the annual total to a record high of 788,260.

If you've ever wondered why Melbourne's supposed oversupply of housing never materialised, here's why.

February also played host to a tourism bonanza in honour of Chinese Lunar New Year, with a record 226,900 Chinese arrivals in the month.


Melbourne Town Hall meeting launches battle to take on industrial relations system and more "IndyWatch Feed Vic"


Contributed by Joe Montero

By any account, yesterdays (17 April) meeting of union delegates at the Melbourne Town Hall, was an impressive launch to an active major campaign to bring about an end to what is now widely regarded as an unfair industrial regime in Australia.

The official seating capacity of the hall is 1,500. But many more squeezed in.

Representatives from the Longford Esso-Exxon picket were there. The event marked 300 days they have been out of work, because management is trying to cut their wages by almost 50 percent. Troy, one of the union delegates spoke to the delegates and received a standing ovation.

The main thrust of the meeting was to gain the support of delegates for the Change the Rules campaign and participation to move it forward.

A section of the delegates at the meeting and some of the union banners displayed

Determination to win overwhelming public support and willingness to fight hard, spells serious trouble for the Turnbull government was evident. The emerging battle was expressed in terms of not only bringing an end to this government. But to ensure that the existing industrial relations regime will be replaced by one that is much fairer to all workers, whether they are members of unions or not.

One part of the strategy is to win over the support of the Labor Party, the Greens and other members of parliament. At the same time, it was understood that victory will depend on the ongoing activity on the ground.

Mention was made of the fact that the problem is not one just made by the current government, but one that has been gradually unrolled over at least 30 years. There is an implied criticism of Labor for having played a part in it, although it was acknowledged that the Howard and now Turnbull government have taken it much further.

Speakers referred to the need to confront and ensure the greed of big business is taken on. Big business avoids paying tax with government assistance, while the wages share of the wealth of Australia is reduced, and the richest one percent hold nearly three quarters of it all.

It was also said that this is a political battle, which must be won in the workplaces, in the streets and the neighbourhoods.

Nor was it left at saying that the rules are broken. Solutions were put forward, such as, the n...


hello "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Sorry I don't chatter much these days on here, or on Facebook lately, but I've been madly crocheting rugs and ponchos and beanies (oh, my!) for remote Indigenous communities.
The temps drop below freezing in the desert areas and many of our Elders need warm clothing, blankets, the usual Winter basics to survive.
I won't go into detail about the shockingly over-priced "shops" in some towns but there are Indigenous communities who have started up their own op shops, domestic abuse refuges, fabric making/printing workshops, children's libraries, etc, with a little help from peeps around Oz donating items.
No, I won't share any postage details on here as some ultra-right wing arseholes send abusive crap through the post and we won't be encouraging any of those twat-waffling scum.
One thing that has pissed me off this week - and last week - was the police targetting Dylan Voller at the Commonwealth Games.
They managed to seriously injure a female Elder, also, during a peaceful protest.
Police in Victoria are under the spotlight, too, for some really questionable tactics.
Fellas, do yourselves some favours and boot the bastards out of the force, they are giving the rest of you cops a bad name.
There are some decent police, I've engaged with them in the past, but the mongrels who think the uniform gives them carte blanche to savage people in any situation need to be treated like any person breaking the law.
Well, I'm off now, like a bucket of prawns in the noonday sun, to continue crocheting winter woollies.
By the by, Victoria Parliament Library - PLEASE update your "On this day" site; shit tonnes happened in the Colony of Vic, find it !
Also, NSW, QLD, WA, SA, NT & Tassie parliaments?
Create an On This Day searchable database on your parliament websites, ffs.
Hello to the City of Melbourne person who pops over for a regular read!


April 18 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

1623 - Dutch sailors from the ship Pera, with instructions to kidnap "full-grown persons, or better still,
. . . boys and girls, to the end that the latter may be brought up here and be turned to useful purpose in the said quarters when occasion shall serve " , landed in North Queensland where a large number of Aborigines approached them with no sign of fear, handling the muskets and showing interest in iron and beads. The Dutch took this opportunity and 'seized one of the blacks by a string which he
wore round his neck, and carried him off to the pinnace'.

1831 - Australias oldest newspaper, the Sydney Morning Herald, was launched.

1834 - Hobart had it's knickers in a right Royal twist when Messrs. Attorney and Solicitor General Stephen and M'Dowall avowed that they have prepared an Act of Council limiting the number, and restricting the qualifications of juries here.

1843 - The Southern Australian newspaper was bemoaning the fact that "...The simplicity of their wants, and of their lives, is another great barrier : their whole attention seems devoted to the providing of food, and other animal enjoyments : their motto literally is, eat, drink, and be merry, for to-morrow we die ; and any principle beyond that, they, and their fathers, have not known or regarded...."
qualifications of juries.

1864 - Sharpen those fish knives and flush out the fish kettles, ladies, the HMAS Victoria parked its bow in Hobart, having on board 100,000 salmon and 3,000 trout googie eggs bound for Tassie's first fish hatchery.

1872 - Oh you great sodding bastards.
To think ... we've been deprived of the chance to catch a train from the oh-so-gorgeously titled Schoolhouse Lane train station, which happened to open on this day as the terminus of the North East Railway line from Essendon.
May your chooks turn into emus and kick your dunny door down.

1875 - Fire destroyed the photographic studio of Townsend Duryea. His entire collection of 50,000 negatives was destroyed - a tragic loss for him and for South Australia.

1882 - Tenders for the construction of the Port Milang Railway lines (SA) were called on this day and Walke and Swann were successful in obtaining the joint contract for a price of 143,678.

1890 - The West Melbourne Cable Tram Line (VIC) began trundling about the streets via Spencer St and Flemington Rd, with the powerhouse located at the south-west corner of Queensberry Street and Abbotsford Street.

1902 - One-time hubby of the aforementioned Dame Daisy Bates, Breaker Harry Morant, had been court martialed in secret (against regulations) and shot in February, but despite the court transcripts conveniently going missing a summary of the trumped up nonsense appeared in the London Times today.

Tuesday, 17 April


Island brings it home "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

Sundays conditions werent ideal but the standard was still high.

ISLAND Surfboards has won the fifth Phillip Island National Surfing Reserve Teams Challenge and Dave Fincher Memorial Trophy at the event held on Sunday, April 15 at Summerland Beach.
In what can only be called challenging conditions, Island won the event for the second time. The team also took out the competition back in 2015 with Sandy Ryan captaining the team for both victories.
The competition was changed from Saturday due to predicted wild weather conditions and organisers were up at dawn on Sunday morning to determine if conditions would allow the event to proceed.
Event organiser Geoff Owens made the call at 7am and surfers braved the wild and wet weather to gather on the beach for a briefing, followed by a Welcome to Country and Smoking Ceremony from Boon wurrung Community member Steve Parker.
The gutsy grommets (surfers aged 14 and under) and Malibu riders were first to paddle through the large swell rolling off the point before the teams took to the waters based on the judges draw.
The less than perfect waves did not deter the highly skilled surfers with each giving it their all and making the most of every ride.
The loyal crowd, watching in rain and wind, were rewarded with an impressive display of skill, determination and a little bit of comedy.
After the first two rounds, it was decided to cut the competition short and not hold the repechage round, instead going straight to the final.
The last moments of the competition were a hilarious race to the finish line as team members did almost anything to get the points needed to qualify for a place in the messy shore break.
In the end it all came down to guts, determination, teamwork and skill. Team EP, captained by Nick Fostin took out second prize and third prize was won by United Smiths, captained by Matt Crooks. Last years winners Archysurf came in fourth with Newhaven Spoonbills in fifth and Woolamai Hards in sixth place.
There was a wide range of prizes and awards given out at the presentation ceremony at the Woolamai Beach Surf Life Saving Club supported by event sponsors: Phillip Island Nature Parks, Bass Coast Shire Council, Westernport Water, Phillip Island RSL, Newhaven College, Karoon Gas, Cape Kitchen, Ramada Resort, Rip Curl/Islantis, Island Surfboards, San Remo IGA and more.
Highlights of the aw...


Monaro Climate News by Jenny Goldie "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

(Monthly Newsletter. Jenny is the President of Climate Action Monaro fb page )

As if it wasnt bad enough to have a lump of coal brought into parliament a few months ago, 20 or so Parliamentarians led by Tony Abbott, Eric Abetz, Barnaby Joyce, Kevin Andrews and Craig Kelly, have formed the Monash Group to push for a new coal-fired power station. To his credit, Treasurer Scott Morrison (a wielder of coal in the earlier stunt), declared it was not economic and rejected the idea. The next day, the descendants of General Sir John Monash, who was a civil engineer and an Australian military commander of the First World War, complained about the group using the name Monash for their anti-science, anti-intellectual proposal.

Despite Morrisons rejecting the idea of a new coal power station, the Prime Minister clearly thought a sop to the backbench was in order. He is pushing Alinta to buy the ageing Liddell coal-fired power station from AGL so that base-load power can continue after its planned closure in 2022. PM Turnbull wants another three years or so of it so it coincides with the opening of Snowy 2.0 (pumped hydro). Fortunately, the heroic Andy Vesey of AGL is standing firm and not selling, and using it as a base to develop renewables.

Someone needs to tell the PM that base-load power is not what is required any more, rather dispatchable power is, and old power plants like Liddell do not deliver dispatchable power. And he needs to know that coal-fired power stations caused a surge in airborne mercury pollution, according to a study done in Victorias Latrobe valley.

David Spratt, from Climate Code Red, released a report two days ago that finds we will reach 1.5oC warming within a decade, based on a number of recent scientific papers. This of course, was the more ambitious limit of warming (as against 2oC) set by the Paris Agreement. You can read the report here.

One of the worlds leading climate activists, Bill McKibben, is coming to Australia soon [ ]. He will speak in Canberra on May 2 [and Melbourne May 3 ed.] on accelerating climate action. Hes always worthwhile but you have to pay.

Good to see our federal MP, Mike Kelly, standing firm against a nuclear power plant for the South Coast. While nuclear power does deliver carbon-free power once bui...


Save Our Sons Easter and the Fairlea Five in 1971 "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Contributed by Glen Davis
Due to accident, this short article turned up a little late. It recalls an event that occurred during Easter, nearly 50 years ago. The Vietnam War was still going on and the massive movement to put an end to it was reaching its peak. This is an important part of our history, worth recalling and learning from its lessons.

As we move on from another Easter lets cast our minds back to this time in 1971, when five members of Save Our Sons, were jailed for 14 days during the Easter.

Their heinous offence was sitting in the offices of the then Federal Department of Labour and National Service, handing out leaflets opposing conscription for the unjust,

undeclared war in Vietnam.

Just to recall who they were; Save Our Sons was formed back in 1965 to oppose the conscription of young men to fight and die in war. Throughout the next few years they were active and prominent in the anti-conscription and anti-war campaigns.

When arrested they were charged under the Summary Offences Act; legislation put in place by the Bolte state Government (Victoria). Their court case was finally heard late in the afternoon of Holy Thursday.

The presiding magistrate jailed them for 14 days, with no option of paying a fine. Thus Jean McLean, Joan Coxsedge, Irene Miller, Chris Cathie and Jo Maclaine-Cross, were locked away.

As we know, the Easter long week end is a quiet time, people go away, services close down, it can be very isolating.  Nonetheless, support for them was quick and strong.

They became known as the Fairlea Five. Large demonstrations were arranged outside the Womens prison, and around 800 people attended the ongoing vigil outside.

Maritime workers stopped work in support of the Fairlea Five. After 11 days of organised support for them, they were released, to reacquaint with their families.

Their fight was part of the broader peoples struggle against the unjust, undeclared war in Vietnam.


The post Save Our Sons Easter and the Fairlea Five in 1971 appeared first on The Pen.


Australian TV Host Peta Credlin Goes Off On Transgender Birth Certificates "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Australian TV host Peta Credlin gave a short monologue yesterday against a proposal to let people at whim call themselves or their newborns male, female, intersex, unspecified, or indeterminate on their birth certificates. She notes this ideas proponents say its the next step after government affirmation of same-sex relationships, although at the time that was not publicly sold as an entrance point for transsexual politics.

Trust us, they said, didnt they? Love is love,' she recalls.

Children are born a boy or a girl, [for] the vast bulk of humanity, Credlin says, because stating the obvious is now not only necessary, it even requires courage. That is a biological fact, and laws must reflect reality.

Credlin noted an exception is logical for the approximately 1.5 percent of humans who are discovered, usually at puberty, to have both male and female reproductive organs due to chromosomal abnormalities. But then and only then is the time right to alter a birth certificate, armed with medical fact, but not in a birthing suite due to the whim of a parent who wants to record [her] child as nonbinary, Credlin continued.

This is nothing more than a dangerous push by the Left into records we have kept as civilizations since almost as long as we have had the written word. Assuming change from the outset is designed to disrupt social norms and it must be resisted.

The Australian News Weekly notes the Victorian Upper House voted down transgendering Victorian birth certificates in 2016. When Victorian opposition parliamentarians asked, if a person can change their sex, can they also change their age or change their race? Labor members had no answer.

The proposal would require no physical alterations to a persons body before retconning his or her birth certificate. Transgender activists claim that would discriminate against trans people or those who identify as something other than transgender, male, or female (such as  visual trigger warning ...


Mysterious Flesh-Eating Ulcer Epidemic Cases Have Increased by 50 Percent "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Something quite strange and yet terrifying is happening in Australia at the moment and it has doctors of all kinds baffled. As this epidemic grows, many are wondering: What can be done?

Cases of Buruli ulcer, a skin disease most commonly found in Africa have literally surged by four hundred percent in the last four years. Doctors do not have a clue how to prevent this disease which is caused by bacteria that basically breaks down tissue. Last year there was a 51 percent increase in cases of this infection when compared to 2016.

This skin disease is caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium ulcerans. It emits toxins that work to destroy skin cells, fat, and blood vessels. This eventually forms ulcers and causes skin loss. It tends to affect the arms and legs, but depending on the person and severity, it can also be found on other parts of the body including the face.

One of the most terrifying things about this skin disease is that no one knows how it is transmitted to humans and some believe it is possible that mosquitoes can carry the bacteria. Please prepare yourself for the image below as this is not a pretty sight at all and is still even a more mild case.

Ella Crofts/BBC


Dr. OBrien co-author of the call for government funding to research this disease told BBC as follows:

No one understands whats happening and whats driving this epidemic. We can offer clues but not definitive advice. Its a mystery.

The problem is, we dont have the time to sit around and pontificate about it the epidemic has reached frightening proportions.

These ulcers are not easy to deal with and come with a recovery period of anywhere between six months to one whole year. Many people who come down with this skin disease end up having to undergo reconstructive surgery as it literally eats away the skin.

A study published just days ago in the Medical Journal of Australia cautions of thi...


Cardinal George Pell allegations a product of fantasy to punish him, court told "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

I realise a defence lawyers duty is to place his client, no matter how good or bad they are, in the best possible light. However, in child sex abuse cases, there should be the greatest respect for the victims.

This is clearly not the case in the trial of Australian Cardinal George Pell, no 2 equal Roman Catholic in the world.

I think George Pell will go down, and go to jail.

ABC Australia

Cardinal George Pell allegations a product of fantasy to punish him, court told

Updated about 7 hours ago

Cardinal George Pell may have become the target of false sexual offence allegations to punish him for not having prevented the sexual abuse of children, his defence barrister has told a court.

Robert Richter QC has described complaints made against Cardinal Pell as impossible and the complainants behind them as unreliable as he tried to persuade a magistrate not to commit Australias most senior Catholic cleric to stand trial.

Instead, Mr Richter told the hearing at the Melbourne Magistrates Court that all the charges faced by the 76-year-old should be thrown out.

Whether the allegations are the product of fantasy, the product of some mental problems or just pure invention in order to punish the representative of the Catholic Church in this country for not stopping abuse by others of children, he said.

Mr Richter said some of the complainants had been sexually abused by other priests who had since died, therefore offering them no recourse.

Cardinal Pell representing the face of the Catholic Church had been the obvious target of allegations that are not true, but are designed to punish him for not having prevented sexual....


Change the rules for refugees flyer "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

RAC flyer on why refugees rights are a union issue in colour and black and white. Please print and put up in your workplace change the rules for refugees.pdf change the rules for refugees bw.pdf


Water woes evaporate "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

TWO of Fosters premier sporting venues will have access to an affordable water supply next summer. Foster Recreation Reserve and Foster Golf Club will see treated wastewater channelled to it, []

The post Water woes evaporate appeared first on Foster Community Online.


Truce called on Leongatha plan "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

COUNCILLOR Ray Argento took a conciliatory approach as another potential conflict flashpoint loomed at last Wednesdays South Gippsland Shire Council Special Urgent Meeting. On the agenda was the relisting of []

The post Truce called on Leongatha plan appeared first on Foster Community Online.


Foster Skate Park event Victorian Youth Week "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

THE Foster Skate Park will be transformed during Victorian Youth Week this April. Manna Gum Community House have organised a project for young people to paint the park in partnership []

The post Foster Skate Park event Victorian Youth Week appeared first on Foster Community Online.


Gippsland Line Notification: Service change "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

23:59 Southern Cross - Traralgon train has been replaced by road coaches due to staff sickness. 

[19:36 17/04]


Gippsland Line Notification: Delay "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

18:48 Traralgon - Southern Cross is delayed by approximately 22 minutes. 

[19:20 17/04]


Gippsland Line Notification: Delay "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

16:16 Southern Cross - Traralgon train is delayed by approximately 29 minutes due to an ongoing track fault at Beaconsfield.

[18:22 17/04]


Australia flesh-eating ulcer 'epidemic' a mystery, say doctors "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Doctors in Australia have called for urgent research into why a flesh-eating ulcer has become a "worsening epidemic" in the state of Victoria. Local cases of Buruli ulcer, a skin disease most commonly found in Africa, have surged by 400% in the last four years, experts say. Infections have also become more severe and spread to new areas. Doctors do not know how to prevent the disease, which is caused by bacteria that breaks down tissue. WARNING: Graphic image below A record 275 new infections were recorded the state last year, marking a 51% increase on 2016. Infectious diseases expert Dr Daniel O'Brien said cases of the Buruli ulcer, or Mycobacterium ulcerans disease, had become "frighteningly more common and also more severe" in the region. It was unclear why the ulcer, typically found in tropical areas, had emerged in the temperate climate of Victoria, he said.


Tough night for Giants "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

Korumburra-Benas Jordan Grabham was a livewire for the Giants Thirds on Saturday, getting clear of the chasing Luke Alford. M641618

Korumburra-Bena Thirds forward Lochie Row gets into the clear to drive the team back into attack at Korumburra last Saturday. M631618

The match between Korumburra-Bena and Kilcunda-Bass, under lights at Korumburra last Saturday was a special occasion for the Gus James Memorial Cup, part of the Beyond Blue Round.
Also both clubs also wore blue armbands to mark the occasion, but with the Giants having a black armband as well, and the flag at half mast, after the tragic passing of Josh Whiteside during the week.
Josh was a current player with the club, a terrific young bloke, well-liked by everyone and he will be very sadly missed.
Both sides and the umpires lined up for a minutes silence prior to the main game.
Killy-Bass kicked to the town-end goals which were favoured by gale force winds and they scored two goals. The Giants didnt score but played well to hold Killy-Bass to the modest total.
Kicking with the wind when their turn came, the Giants were wasteful in front of goal and only managed four points which proved crucial in the final analysis.
Jake McMillan was a standout all night for the Giants, whether relieving in the ruck or doing the big man role front and back. Beau Anthony on ball, Alex Johnston around the flanks, young Brad Monson terrific in his first game, Rhys Dixon in defence and ever reliable, Jye Celebrine on the ball were among those to distinguish themselves.
Killy-Bass came out determined in the third quarter putting on four more goals to have the match in th...


Gippsland Line Notification: Delay "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

13:20 Southern Cross - Bairnsdale train is delayed by approximately 18 minutes due to a track fault

[14:52 17/04]


Gippsland Line Notification: Delays Expected - Gippsland line "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

Trains on the Traralgon line are expected to be delayed by approximately 20 minutes due to a track fault at Beaconsfield. [14:37 17/04]


Food Collective celebrates a successful first year "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

Wonthaggis Angela, Pat (far right) and Angus Wishart mum, dad and cousin of PCFC co-founder Amelia Bright got a real sense of paddock to plate at the Collectives first birthday celebration at Dumbalk on Sunday. kg231618

Karen Cardy regularly drives 150km to Dumbalk from Beaconsfield to stock up on produce from the Prom Coast Food Collective. Over the course of the Collectives first year, shes had to buy two extra freezers to keep her prized South Gippsland and Bass Coast produce fresh. kg241618

WITH a birthday cake made of stacked wheels of mouth-watering local cheese, and surrounded by fresh local figs and honeycomb taken from beehives just metres away, the Prom Coast Food Collective celebrated its first birthday in manner truly befitting its philosophy of championing local produce and sharing the benefits between farmers and consumers.
The Sunday gathering at Dumbalks Blue Tree Honey Farm was, like every PCFC convergence, all about the food and a relaxed, community vibe, with just a touch of ceremony to mark a successful first year of collaboration between small family farms, ethical producers and makers, and conscientious consumers.
Co-founders Sally Ruljancich and Amelia Bright said a few words, thanking the Collectives suppliers and customers for their support, and their families for understanding their dedication to the project.
Im just overwhelmed by the success, really. And so thankful for the generosity of everyone involved, Amelia said.
The multi-producer hub, which offers everything from poultry, lamb, beef, cheese, olive oil, condiments, vegetables, honey, fruit, bread, flour, crackers, baked treats, pork and smallgoods, butter, milk and eggs, has grown and evolved since starting a year ago, with more producers coming on board (around 20 now with some seasonal), more products ava...


May Forum: Melbourne to Armidale Bill McKibben Livestream "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

[ Thursday, 3 May; 6:30 pm; ] It is by sheer luck that our usual monthly forum is on at exactly the same time as this important broadcast by founder and world-renowned climate defender Bill McKibben. Bill McKibben will be in Australia as a part of 350 Australias Fossil Free campaign to talk to people about what we need to do to [...] full article 


Traffic lights to deliver safety "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

WORKS to install Wonthaggis first set of traffic lights are well underway.
To be installed at the intersection of Korumburra-Wonthaggi Road and the Bass Highway, the lights will aim to increase traffic flow and improve safety.
The $3.76 million project was funded through the Federal and State Governments, as well as Bass Coast Shire Council.
These new traffic lights will improve the safety of both drivers and pedestrians at the Bass Highway and Korumburra-Wonthaggi Road intersection, Minister for Roads and Road Safety Luke Donnellan said.
The intersection has seen congestion and risky driver behaviour for many years, thats why were investing in this important safety upgrade.
Motorists have endured long delays at the intersection, which has resulted in impatience and drivers taking dangerous risks.
There have been 10 crashes with three people seriously injured in the last 10 years.
As well as the traffic lights, the intersection will also feature extended right turning lanes and raised platforms, which will force drivers to slow down as they approach.
VicRoads reported there were 11,000 vehicle movements at the intersection each day, including 1300 heavy vehicle movements.
Deputy mayor Cr Brett Tessari said he cant wait to see the traffic lights up and running.
Work has already started, and there will need to be some sort of traffic management plan put in place eventually. Itll be a bit of pain, but it will be worth it once the intersection is fixed, he said.
As far as Im concerned, this is a fantastic project. It is a little sad to see the small country town you grew up in get to the stage where it needs traffic lights, but its absolutely necessary for safety at that intersection and the future development of Wonthaggi.
Its almost impossible to turn right at the intersection at the moment. Most locals know to avoid it, so its going to be extremely beneficial for people trying to get on and off the Korumburra-Wonthaggi Road.
Cr Tessari said the lights will also provide opportunity for pedestrians to cross the intersection safely.
The work is expected to be completed in June, with minor delays for motorists.
Traffic controls will be in place while the signals are being installed, so motorists are asked to take care if theyre travelling through the work site, VicRoads acting regional director Eastern Region Pas Monacella said.


Reduced rainfall increases stress "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

FARMERS have been feeling the stress over these past few dry months in South Gippsland.
Meeniyan rainfall recorder Lindsay Fromhold has recorded 93.9mm of rain in Meeniyan since the start of January this year, which in comparison to the same time last year is a very poor amount.
During the same time in 2017, Mr Fromhold recorded 161.9mm of rain.
Its been a tough autumn and its not good going into winter like this, he said.
Things are still so dry and if we dont get some rain soon its going to be even tougher on our farmers.
Its pretty stressful for farmers because the feeding costs go up and there is nothing cheaper than feeding animals with grass from the paddock, the workload increases because farmers have to shift water around their properties and therefore the pressure increases.
Mr Fromhold said the countryside has generally greened up with the 37mm of rain South Gippsland copped between March 25 and 27.
The paddocks have a bit of a green tinge to them due to that rain however we certainly need another lot to keep it going, he said.
The only good thing about the lack of rain is that it kills the bugs in the ground that eat the grass and depending on how much rain we end up getting it wont be as muddy this winter.
We can also access more nice dry firewood.
Rainfall recorded at South Gippsland Waters storages from March 31st to April 6 saw three mm at Lance Creek, two mm at Ruby Creek, zero mm at Coalition Creek, Deep Creek and Little Bass and two mm at Battery Creek.
The start of April has brought little rain across the region and storages at Little Bass are now nearing restriction levels at 53 percent capacity, South Gippsland Waters managing director Philippe du Plessis said.
The corporation is preparing for the possibility that restrictions may be needed for Poowong, Loch and Nyora townships in the coming weeks.

Dry season: Meeniyan rainfall recorder Lindsay Fromhold has recorded very low rainfall for Meeniyan so far this year.


Police assure crash victims "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

THE Proactive Police Unit (PPU) from Morwell was in Leongatha on Tuesday, April 10 following the terrifying crash on April 9 in McCartin Street.
Jesse Proctor, a 21 year old from Moe, crashed a stolen vehicle into two parked cars which burst into flames outside Woorayl Lodge aged care hostel in Leongatha.
The PPU was set up at the accident site for around four or five hours.
They were there for public reassurance and to assist the public with the recovery stage after the major incident, Senior Sergeant Col Sheppard said.
Police spoke with the residents of Woorayl Lodge and reassured them that this kind of incident was not normal.
The offender was apprehended and we are offering support for those people who are affected through referral agencies.
Police said Mr Proctor was released from prison on March 2 and was withdrawing from the drug ice and has now been charged with 74 offences.
After the vehicles exploded, Mr Proctor got into the vehicle of a woman passing by, threatening to kill her if she didnt drive away.
The woman got out of her car with her keys and Mr Proctor ran to Young Street, and found another woman in a vehicle with two children aged four and one.
Mr Proctor entered the vehicle and told the woman to drive, threatening to stab the woman.
The woman drove a distance before stopping the vehicle and getting out with her children, after which Proctor allegedly punched her in the head and sexually assaulted her.
He took her keys and drove towards Hedley at around 180km/h where he was arrested around two and a half hours after the crash in Leongatha.
Police used stop sticks to puncture the vehicles tyres.
Mr Proctor was remanded in custody to return to court in July this year.


Big improvements at Baromi Park "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

THE Mirboo North Baromi Park draft master plan has been completed.
The town received a $400,000 allocation for future capital works and there is currently $300,000 in the Mirboo North and District Community Bank Branch of Bendigo Bank.
The draft master plan suggests how that $300,000 should be spent.
The plan states $18,800 will go towards a half court basketball court, $18,800 towards refurbishing the existing skate bowl, $10,000 to design a skate extension and $14,000 to construct an asphalt connecting path.
A further $58,500 to construct/landscape toilets at the east end of the park, $25,000 to construct a performance platform and $10,000 towards designing parking at the rear end of the shops.
I think the community budgeting process was a fantastic example of local democracy and that it felt empowering to have input into how money is spent in the town, Mirboo North and District Community Foundation executive officer Ruth Rogan said.
As with all democratic processes, not everyone agrees with the outcome, but everyone does have their opportunity to have a say.
I am excited to see the impact of the OurSay process and the Baromi Park Masterplan during 2018 and 19 and hopefully the Mirboo North and District Community Foundation can partner with this through our community grants program.

Moving forward: from left, community project officer Thomasin Bales, Mirboo North and District Community Foundation executive officer Ruth Rogan, South Gippsland Shire Councillor Maxine Kiel and Mirboo North Country Development chair and secretary Heather Butler are making progress with the Mirboo North Baromi Park draft master plan.


Councillors frustrated by round table push "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

AN urgent meeting held by South Gippsland Shire Council to reconsider establishing a peak group in Leongatha similar to the successful Korumburra Round Table has been labelled a waste of time.
At the March council meeting, Cr Don Hill asked council to see if the community wanted a round table, but his motion was not supported.
Crs Hill, Andrew McEwen and Jeremy Rich called for a special urgent meeting of council last Wednesday to consider the proposal further and council voted to reconsider it at its April 26 meeting.
Cr Alyson Skinner said the matter was not urgent and labelled last Wednesdays meeting a waste of time and resources.
I dont believe this is a matter that needs to have an urgent special council meeting. We already decided on it, she said.
Crs Maxine Kiel and Ray Argento agreed.
The original motion was defeated. This is a waste of council time and resources, Cr Kiel said.
Cr Argento said because the motion failed at the March meeting, it had been dealt with.
Cr Hill said he was totally surprised the motion failed to pass at the March council meeting.
The reason I am bringing this up as an urgent motion today, is because if we dont do this todaywe will have to wait three months before we could implement it again, he said.
Cr Hill was disappointed with comments made by several councillors at the March meeting. He also denied criticising the Leongatha Chamber of Commerce and Industry at the meeting.
I in no way criticised any groups in town, in the report or outside the report. The Leongatha Chamber of Commerce which has been mentioned, is a fine organisation that I have every confidence in, he said.
Cr Hill said when speaking on the motion at the March meeting, Cr Edwards made a lot of emotive conversation.
He said she was patronising and offensive.
The report does not give any direction to tell the community how things are to be done. It is purely to give authority to officers to instigate discussions, he said.
Cr Skinner said council should put resources into its community strengthening strategy.
Cr Hill said Leongatha was the only place in the shire that did not have its own plan or vision.
If they continue like that as a town, it is going to be harder for us to approve funding for big projects, he said.
I implore my fellow councillors to vote for the future of Leongatha here, otherwise you are cutting Leongatha adrift.
Cr Hill claimed every other community gets money for those sorts of things, drawing an audible scoff from Cr Skinner, which was met with a swift rebuttal.
You have brought up millions of things for your area Cr Skinner, ahead of the council bringing them forward and you have put them to the top of the queue. You have now put Leongatha to the bottom of the queue, Cr Hill said....


Uproar across Asia over Australia's approval of multinational GM rice. "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

For Immediate Release Friday 13th April, 2018

The genetically-modified organism (GMO) known as golden rice (GR2E rice) will not significantly address hunger or Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) according to the National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC).

The International Conference on Golden Rice was organised by MASIPAG and the Stop Golden Rice Network in the Philippines and facilitated by the Anti-Poverty Commission. It included delegates and farmers, scientists, and development workers from Bangladesh, Vietnam, Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, India, and the Philippines. The conference participants joined peasant farmers calling for the stopping of the GM rice outside the Department of Agriculture [1].
The conference heard that Australia/New Zealand approval of GR2E rice will impact heavily on indigenous farmers all over Asia. This is because as Filipino law stands, the Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) safety assessment can be used for approval to plant in many of the Asian rice growing countries.
FSANZ said that on the best available scientific evidence it was safe to eat.  Yet, experts and farmers from India, the Philippines and Indonesia provided studies raising concerns over the safety of the rice, proving that not all evidence was sought or considered by FSANZ. FSANZ has approved the rice into the Australasian food chain 'in case of contamination' to 'avoid trade issues'. There is a total absence of evidence for consumers to know if it is safe to eat.  FSANZ said feeding/ingestion studies were not provided nor did FSANZ require them [2].
FSANZs rubber stamp approach to food safety is putting the health of billions of people at risk. This GM rice is aimed at pregnant women and children and yet there is an absence of evidence of safety. Said Fran Murrell from MADGE Australia, We hope that the Philippine Government regulators protect their people by ensuring that rigorous, long term safety studies are carried out.
Liza Maza from the National Anti-Poverty Commission in the Philippines said There was no comparative studies between GR2E rice and other varieties to see if it can lessen Vitamin A deficiency,
Cris Panerio, national coordinator for the Philippino farmer and scientist alliance (MASIPAG), noted Golden rice is fraught with inherent problems, one of which is the low yield resulting to the disruption of the native structure...


Back on track "IndyWatch Feed Gippsland"

THE Leongatha Cycling Carnival could roll back into town next year with the Leongatha Chamber of Commerce and Industry leading the charge and meeting next Monday, April 23 to further discuss this plan.

Chamber vice president Anthony Walls said the team was working towards bringing back the once iconic cycling carnival that attracted huge crowds of more than 6000 people to the Leongatha velodrome for 29 years from 1979 to 2007.

Coordinated by Leongathas Terry Watchorn, the cycling carnival became one of South Gippslands premium events and one of the biggest velodrome events in Australia.

The event attracted 52 world, Commonwealth Games and Olympic gold medallists over the years, including Anna Meares, Shane Kelly, Gary Neiwand, Stephen Pate, Brett Aitken, Scott McGrory and many international riders.

Also around 94 Australian and state champions raced at Leongatha over that period.

The cycling carnival not only attracted many world and Australias best cyclists, but was also a huge social event on the Gippsland calendar that saw people travel from all parts of the state to attend.

We will have the first formal meeting next Monday, April 23 to discuss that further, Mr Walls said.

At this stage we are aiming for a return in February 2019, but it may not happen until 2020.

Collaboration with other community groups and organisations is high also on the chamber committees list of priorities.

Mr Walls said the group is already working together with the Rotary Club of Leongatha and is looking forward to working with more groups and sporting clubs in the future.

The chambers AGM will be held in a few months.

We have got some really good people who want to put in a lot of time and effort. We are trying to create a really positive feel around the town, Mr Wall said.

There are a few new businesses that have recently come to Leongatha and are thriving and have become a great support to the chamber as well.

We want all the shops filled and all businesses to succeed.

The chamber is aiming to become the Leongatha Business Association in the coming months, in an effort to give the organisation a fresh start.

Mr Walls said the rebranding became necessary, as people were, and still are confused as to what the chamber does and what it stands for.

We have a new look committee and a lot of new members who are willing to contribute their great ideas, he said.

The new name says simply who and what we are. We want to get every business in Leongatha on board, not just retailers.

The name change will come with a fresh new logo as well....


Gippsland Line Notification: Delay "bairnsdale IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

09:20 Traralgon - Southern Cross is delayed by approximately 20 minutes. 

[11:17 17/04]


Vacancy rates tighten in Canberra "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Canberra tightens

Vacancy rates tightened slightly to 2.1 per cent in March 2018, down from 2.3 per cent a year earlier (and 2.2 per cent in February 2018) according to SQM Research. 

In the month of March vacancy rates fell in Brisbane from 3.4 per cent to 3.2 per cent, and in Canberra from 0.8 per cent to just 0.6 per cent.

The vacancy rate for Canberra has fallen from 2.5 per cent in mid-2015 when it was announced in the Barr Budget that there would be significant rate rise and land taxes imposed in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT).

While there are rentals on the market, the methodology picks up rental properties vacant between leases for a period of time and acts a viable leading indicator for markets that are tightening or easing. 

With investors looking elsewhere, SQM reports that median asking rents for houses in the ACT have increased by +29 per cent over the past 3 years to $617/week.

That makes Canberra the second most expensive capital city after Sydney at a $738/week median asking rent for houses. 

In Hobart the chronic shortage of rentals has eased a little over the past two months, if only a little. 

Melbourne has a relatively tight vacancy rate at 1.4 per cent, while in Sydney the vacancy rate of 2.3 per cent is being reflected in relatively flat rents overall, including a slight decline for median house asking rents. 

The Perth market continues to pick up steadily from its nadir. 



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