Seven Days

The week’s top sto­ries from around the re­gion by John Ryan

Dubbo Photo News - - News & Anal­y­sis -


LOOK no fur­ther than preda­tory petrol pric­ing when it comes to see­ing how gov­ern­ment pol­icy is ma­nip­u­lated by the power of big busi­ness.

Fuel com­pa­nies can make bil­lions of dol­lars ex­tra on their mar­gins and hide be­hind two things – the fact they pre­vent any sort of trans­parency en­ter­ing the mar­ket, and se­condly, that govern­ments make so much money from fuel that they don’t want to kill the golden goose.

It’s why Dubbo res­i­dents are able to be legally ripped-off to the tune of tens of mil­lions of dol­lars each year, yet have no way of pre­vent­ing this from hap­pen­ing.

When un­leaded petrol is as low as $111.9 in Welling­ton the same day it’s up to $134.9 in Dubbo, you know some­thing’s wrong.


WE des­per­ately need an in­de­pen­dent in­quiry into the re­cent Boil Wa­ter Alert re­gard­ing Dubbo Re­gional Coun­cil’s drink­ing wa­ter across much of the city.

Look­ing at coun­cil’s An­nual Re­port 1/3/2015 – 29/2/2016, it ap­pears that there were all sorts of warn­ing sig­nals, in­clud­ing da­m­age to bird proof­ing and screws miss­ing from roofs on drink­ing reser­voirs, rub­ber flaps not seal­ing ac­cess hatches etc that weren’t acted on in great haste.

Fast for­ward to ear­lier this month and we have more than a week of wa­ter un­fit for hu­man use.

I’ve al­ways won­dered how we can have stuff-up af­ter stuffup at coun­cil, yet no-one ever seems to have to take re­spon­si­bil­ity for th­ese stuff-ups, in other words, no-one ever seems to lose their jobs over th­ese ma­jor fail­ures.


IT’S been a bad month for plane crashes in the re­gion, with a pi­lot in his 50s killed af­ter his crop duster crashed on Dan­daloo Rd, about 35 kilo­me­tres west of Nar­romine this week, po­lice say the wreck­age was en­gulfed in flames

The pi­lot’s younger brother was ap­par­ently killed in a crop duster crash six years ago, so this must be heart­break­ing for the fam­ily.

Ag fly­ing is a tough game, it’s not of­ten some­thing goes wrong and you get a sec­ond chance.lo­cal po­lice are work­ing with in­ves­ti­ga­tors from the Aus­tralian Trans­port Safety Bureau (ATSB) and the Avi­a­tion Sup­port Branch. A re­port will be pre­pared for the Coro­ner.


MORE tragedy this week with a 45 year-old woman dy­ing af­ter be­ing run over by a car on Bur­ren­dong Way, near Drip­stone which is 63 k’s south-east of Dubbo.

I’ve read the po­lice press re­lease care­fully, it ap­pears two cars were pulled up on the side of the road and the woman was talk­ing with a 25 year-old man, when his ve­hi­cle moved and hit her.

Paramedics rushed to the scene but were un­able to re­vive her.

In yet more bad car news, po­lice are ap­peal­ing for wit­nesses to an in­ci­dent from Novem­ber 8, in which a driver died af­ter hit­ting a tree 45 kilo­me­tres west of Dubbo on the Mitchell High­way.

Po­lice had turned to fol­low the car the man was driv­ing but by the time they found him the ve­hi­cle had hit the tree. There’s cur­rently a crit­i­cal in­ci­dent in­ves­ti­ga­tion into this crash.


WHEN so many good peo­ple put so much ef­fort into White Rib­bon events, it’s dis­turb­ing to see re­ports this week that some of the move­ment’s power bro­kers are more in­tent on photo opps with celebri­ties than they are with en­sur­ing the money raised hits the ground.

De­spite all that, lo­cally we have plenty of peo­ple do­ing some great aware­ness rais­ing about this is­sue which de­stroys so many lives.

Novem­ber 25 is White Rib­bon Day, so White Rib­bon Aus­tralia, work­ing in col­lab­o­ra­tion with Com­mu­nity Cor­rec­tions, Cor­rec­tive Ser­vice NSW, Mis­sion Aus­tralia Dubbo, Orana Sup­port Ser­vice and the Dubbo Vi­o­lence Preven­tion Col­lec­tive, are work­ing to­gether to raise aware­ness of the of im­pact that Do­mes­tic Vi­o­lence has on the wider com­mu­nity, in par­tic­u­lar women and chil­dren in our com­mu­nity.

Dubbo’s par­tic­i­pa­tion will be launched at Church Street Ro­tunda at 11am fol­lowed by an all-male net­ball game, with a twist, at 1:30pm on the Nita Mc­garth Net­ball Fields.

Fol­low­ing the launch and net­ball game, White Rib­bon will be host­ing a free com­mu­nity BBQ and Ser­vice Providers ex­hi­bi­tion at the Mac­quarie Lions Park (Vis­i­tor Cen­tre Park)

Mean­time, The Clon­tarf Foun­da­tion is do­ing its bit, stag­ing a White Rib­bon Zoo Ride at Taronga Western Plains Zoo at 9am to 10.30am this Sat­ur­day (to­mor­row).

The Clon­tarf boys from South Cam­pus will go on a bike ride and ori­en­teer­ing chal­lenge around the Zoo with their life men­tor whom they choose and bring along to do the chal­lenge.

The point of this ride is to raise aware­ness about do­mes­tic vi­o­lence and cre­at­ing an op­por­tu­nity for con­ver­sa­tion be­tween the young Abo­rig­i­nal boys and their life men­tor/fa­ther/un­cle that do­mes­tic vi­o­lence is not tol­er­ated within In­dige­nous com­mu­ni­ties.


TWO big things hap­pened this week, one at each of Dubbo mens Sheds.

Event num­ber one was the mov­ing in to the South Dubbo Vet­er­ans and Com­mu­nity Mens Shed.

What seemed like a bad omen has proven to be a sil­ver lin­ing, the crew set­ting up this week in new and unimag­in­ably col­lab­o­ra­tive sur­round­ings, ac­cord­ing to Mak­ers Space pres­i­dent Adam Clark.

“The South Dubbo Vet­er­ans and Com­mu­nity Mens Shed came to the party and gave us a re­ally re­ally good space here and they’ve been very sup­port­ive of what we’re do­ing,” Adam said.

“What they’re do­ing is right up the al­ley of the whole Mak­ers Space ethos, so it’s a mar­riage made in heaven re­ally.”

He’s re­fer­ring to the fact the South Mens Shed al­ready has full wood and met­al­work­shops up and run­ning, and all th­ese as­sets will be avail­able to Mak­ers Space mem­bers.

Mean­time, just a few blocks up the road and a few min­utes later, the city’s orig­i­nal mens’ shed was be­ing con­grat­u­lated.

The shed had built some steel and mod­wood seats for the ameni­ties block which sits be­tween Num­bers Two and Three Ovals, grounds which are gen-

er­ally used for footy and cricket.

It’s a great thing to see a group of com­mu­nity blokes able to help out in this re­gard, be­cause the only rea­son the shed is sit­u­ated in such a great lo­ca­tion at the north­ern end of No3 Oval is be­cause of the sup­port coun­cil has given them in the first place, by pro­vid­ing that cen­tral venue.


LEAV­ING the Mens’ Shed seat han­dover, I no­ticed a Dubbo re­gional Coun­cil mower try­ing to keep things neat and tidy on No3.

It’s go­ing to be a stretched or­ga­ni­za­tion this year, the hy­per-wet sea­son has seen un­prece­dented growth across the re­gion, and that means lots of weeds and other nas­ties as well as the good stuff.


THE In­land Wa­ter­ways crew hasn’t wasted any time.

Just weeks af­ter the suc­cess­ful Casino Nite, the bus and par­tic­i­pants are out and about, clean­ing rub­bish off the pub­lic land along the banks of the Mac­quarie River, and pre­par­ing to plant trees and rip out weeds among other jobs.

This project should be a model for all com­mu­nity or­gan­i­sa­tions to em­u­late – at all lev­els, govern­ments are be­com­ing more cum­ber­some and with­draw­ing ser­vices we used to take for granted.

This is a great way to get the com­mon­wealth to pay for the labour while at the same time train­ing peo­ple across a range of skills.

The Work for the Dole par­tic­i­pants will also get the feel­ing that this isn’t make-work, but that they’re do­ing some­thing re­ward­ing and of great value to the com­mu­nity.


THE River Re­pair Bus is pretty down to earth stuff, un­like this next snip­pet.

NSW Farm­ers As­so­ci­a­tion is up­set about the poor per­for­mance of the Na­tional Broadband Net­work (NBN) – they’re not the only ones, let me tell you, it’s a dis­grace in so many ways.

So here we are, with not enough satel­lite ca­pac­ity to ser­vice the needs of the bush, yet NBN is hap­pily sell­ing off satel­lite ca­pac­ity to QAN­TAS ac­cord­ing to farm­ers boss Derek Schoen.

“Sell­ing satel­lite ca­pac­ity to Qan­tas is a slap in the face to farm­ers who can’t even get a re­li­able sig­nal,” Mr Schoen said.

“It tells re­gional Aus­tralians loud and clear that they don’t mat­ter, that they are noth­ing more than an in­con­ve­nience th­ese satel­lites are sup­posed to end the dig­i­tal di­vide be­tween ru­ral and ur­ban Aus­tralia. In­stead, we are just see­ing it en­trenched.

“Watch­ing cat videos while you are fly­ing doesn’t add to the pro­duc­tiv­ity of the Aus­tralian econ­omy, mak­ing sure that re­gional Aus­tralians have suf­fi­cient in­ter­net speed to run their busi­nesses does,” he said.

Couldn’t agree more, but once again, it’s big, high pro­file busi­ness with big pock­ets and in­flu­ence ver­sus a small group of busy, and of­ten di­vided, farm­ers.

Mem­bers of Dubbo Col­lege’s Clon­tarf Acad­e­mies par­tic­i­pated in a 12 hour bike re­lay last week to raise aware­ness in the lead up to White Rib­bon Day. Pic­tured are some of the Clon­tarf stu­dents and of­fi­cers with League leg­end Nathan Mer­ritt, rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the NSW Po­lice Force and the Abo­rig­i­nal Ed­u­ca­tion of­fice.

Vic­tor Chang Car­diac Re­search award Dubbo Col­lege Se­nior Cam­pus year 12 stu­dent, Ash­wini Manorathan is one of 24 stu­dents in the re­gion to re­ceive this pres­ti­gious award. Well done!

Dubbo Day award re­cip­i­ents were recog­nised at a cer­e­mony on Wednes­day, Novem­ber 23 at the Dubbo Re­gional Theatre.

Dubbo Col­lege Del­roy Cam­pus year 10 stu­dents have com­pleted their first ac­tive vol­un­teer­ing cer­tifi­cate by work­ing as vol­un­teers with the Read­ing For Life pro­gram in Dubbo pri­mary schools. Pic­tured are Del­roy Cam­pus deputy prin­ci­pal Kathryn Ber­ming­ham, Mu­tale Mu­tale, Dar­cie Holmes-smith, Kyla Wil­son, Hay­ley-ann Smith, Gemma Har­ley, Cathy Jones from Ed­u­ca­tion and train­ing Out West (ETOW) and front, Jahnesta Car­riage, Ker­rie Per­rin, ETOW, Paula­jane Hop­kins and Natalie Gar­doll.

The River Re­pair bus crew

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