Dust, drought, rain, Tel­stra out­age

Dubbo Photo News - - Weekender -

WE’RE still do­ing so much wrong when it comes to agri­cul­ture in this coun­try but one thing that has vastly im­proved since the 1982 drought is the amount of ground­cover.

Farm­ers back in the ‘80s used to have as many pad­docks ploughed up as pos­si­ble, wait­ing for rain, and this meant not only that all the root zone was de­stroyed, but that the frag­ile soil was there just wait­ing for wind or water to carry it all away.

Re­gen­er­a­tive farm­ers these days, and even many con­ven­tional chem­i­cal farm­ers, now un­der­stand the ben­e­fits of leav­ing ground­cover on the soil and the mantra is “100 per cent ground­cover 100 per cent of the time”.

What this means is that when the wind blows, its far less likely to cre­ate huge walls of dust that look like a scene out of Hol­ly­wood Dooms­day movie.

So no won­der that Rochelle Karsten’s in­cred­i­ble pic­ture of a mas­sive dust cloud mov­ing to­wards Gum Bend Lake at Con­dobolin has at­tracted so much at­ten­tion this week.

We’re im­prov­ing when it comes to land man­age­ment in NSW, but we’ve got a hell of a long way to go. GREAT to see some more rain in the past week, but it’d be great if it was a bit more con­stant and wide­spread, although Dubbo should be grate­ful I sup­pose for what we’ve re­ceived com­pared to plenty of other ar­eas.

The city has proven re­mark­ably re­silient dur­ing the dry times which have made up most of this cen­tury so far, but just re­cently many busi­ness­peo­ple I’ve spo­ken to have said things are get­ting pretty tough.

So be­fore you click that com­puter but­ton to shop on­line, have a look around lo­cally first and even ask if the sup­plier does deals, give ev­ery­one a cou­ple of chances be­fore you buy from an overseas bil­lion­aire.

Those dol­lars you spend lo­cally will come back to help make Dubbo a bet­ter place for you and ev­ery­one who lives here. than 24 hours.

Imag­ine if you as an in­di­vid­ual pro­vided a ser­vice to gov­ern­ment and that hap­pened on your watch, but when it comes to Tel­stra, luck­ily it ap­pears that this time the un­mon­i­tored of­fend­ers didn’t get away with mur­der.

The net­work’s gen­eral unreliability and who-cares at­ti­tude has now gone from a mas­sive and wide­spread nui­sance to what could be a life and death sit­u­a­tion.

And what other po­ten­tial prob­lems aren’t we hear­ing about?

I’M a huge fan of learn­ing that’s adapted to what stu­dents need, so it’s great to see Welling­ton High School once again run­ning its “River to Re­ten­tion” class­room on Fri­days.

There are so many ad­van­tages to stag­ing lessons, es­pe­cially when con­nect­ing to cul­ture, by leav­ing the boxed-in class­rooms be­hind and get­ting amongst a bit of Vi­ta­min N (Na­ture).

Adam Ryan teaches at Wello High and says the way the stu­dents re­spond to the pro­gram makes it all worth­while. WHILE we’re swel­ter­ing in and out of an early heat­wave, Ja­son Ren­nie is all rugged up in the Antarc­tic.

In fact he’s more than rugged up, he’s got what looks like a full-face paint­ball mask on to com­bat the wind-driven snow in what looks like a gale, but for down there is prob­a­bly a mild breeze.

It’s in­cred­i­ble to think of the very thin al­ti­tude and tem­per­a­ture range where hu­mans can ex­ist on what is the only hab­it­able planet we know about.

**

RING THE BELL: pic if needed Be­ing our only planet, we re­ally should put some thought and ef­fort into sav­ing it rather than run­ning it down and ex­ploit­ing our nat­u­ral re­sources the way we do just to make a quick dol­lar or bil­lion.

Peter An­drews is be­gin­ning a series of work­shops around Welling­ton from Novem­ber 18. He’s a good mate of mine who I be­lieve has the unique ca­pac­ity to re­store our land­scape func­tions so na­ture works as it should – ef­fort­lessly.

“Ring the Bell” is a Mid-mac­quarie Land­care project which will be launched at the boat ramp near the low level bridge in Welling­ton at noon on Sun­day, Novem­ber 18.

There’ll be a free bar­be­cue and land­hold­ers will be able to reg­is­ter their in­ter­est in hav­ing a work­shop on their prop­erty.

Dis­claimer: I work part time for Mid-mac­quarie Land­care and am over the moon about the over­whelm­ing and un­prece­dented pos­i­tive re­sponse from the gen­eral SUP­PLIED pub­lic af­ter the ABC’S “Aus­tralian Story” aired its 7th episode on Peter An­drews last week. WHEN you see just how much gov­ern­ments are able to waste on seem­ingly sim­ple things it’s amaz­ing we don’t have more par­ties try­ing to get more trac­tion about mak­ing real sav­ings, in­stead of just sell­ing ev­ery­thing off for a sugar hit and say­ing they’ll save money for tax­pay­ers.

State gov­ern­ments have been flog­ging off just about ev­ery­thing that’s bolted down yet are still ad­dicted to pay­roll tax, which is es­sen­tially, and any way you look at it, a tax on jobs.

The Mo­tor Traders’ As­so­ci­a­tion of NSW (MTA NSW) has just re­leased new re­search which claims that elim­i­nat­ing pay­roll tax would have a sig­nif­i­cant pos­i­tive in­flu­ence on em­ploy­ment and busi­ness in­vest­ment.

The pa­per says pay­roll tax is paid by busi­ness re­gard­less of the per­for­mance and prof­itabil­ity and, as such, im­poses a hard­ship in dif­fi­cult years, in­clud­ing now with many busi­nesses be­ing im­pacted by the se­vere drought.

It also points out that pay­roll tax is re­gres­sive – the amount of tax rises as busi­nesses hire more work­ers and in­crease pay lev­els.

Co-au­thor of the White Pa­per, Mar­ket Eco­nom­ics Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor Stephen Kouk­oulas, said pay­roll tax has been iden­ti­fied as an in­ef­fi­cient tax.

“Un­like most other taxes, it doesn’t de­cline when prof­its or in­comes are tem­po­rar­ily weaker and this is why busi­nesses are often cau­tious about adding staff, even in good times,” Mr Kouk­oulas said.

“With­out pay­roll tax, MTA Mem­bers have in­di­cated quite clearly that they would be more in­clined to add to their staff lev­els and would have cash freed up to al­low for greater in­vest­ment, which would be a clear pos­i­tive for the econ­omy.”

MTA NSW Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Stavros Yal­louridis agrees.

“With the amount of pay­roll tax ris­ing as busi­nesses add em­ploy­ees, busi­nesses are often re­luc­tant to add staff,” Mr Yal­lour­dis said.

“Im­por­tant also is the bur­den of red tape and high ad­min­is­tra­tive costs meet­ing the tax obli­ga­tions.

“The MTA NSW would like to see the gov­ern­ment com­mit to the phas­ing out and even­tual abo­li­tion of the pay­roll tax as this would un­der­pin a pick-up in em­ploy­ment and in­vest­ment,” he said.

So many lo­cal busi­ness own­ers have told me again and again that they’d em­ploy more staff if the state wiped this crazy tax, so get­ting rid of it could have a hugely pos­i­tive im­pact on Dubbo and be­yond.

Elec­tion prom­ise any­one? 2WHEELBABES runs the big­gest all women’s mo­tor­cy­cle ral­lies in Aus­tralia. Their events are held in var­i­ous lo­ca­tions in Aus­tralia and this year they’re host­ing their Mega Babe Raid and world record at­tempts here in Dubbo.

These chicks on bikes last vis­ited the city in 2016 where they set two world records for most women on mo­tor­cy­cles at one time and most women at a fe­male bike meet.

This year they’ll be here for three days and at­tempt­ing an in­cred­i­ble 15 world records, and while their ral­lies are nor­mally fe­male ex­clu­sive, this year they’ve in­cor­po­rated some­thing for the fel­las as well.

The pro­gram in­cludes Show and Shines, rider train­ing, first aid train­ing, gymkhana events and much more.

There’ll be tal­ent nights, a cir­cus night and the en­tire com­mu­nity is in­vited to at­tend MEGA SUN­DAY where the 15 records will be at­tempted, which in­clude:

z Most women on mo­tor­cy­cles at one time – num­ber needed 1200

z Long­est mo­tor­cy­cle con­voy – fe­male only – num­ber needed 1200

z Long­est mo­tor­cy­cle con­voy fe­male and men – num­ber needed 2300

z Largest pa­rade of Har­ley David­sons – num­ber needed 2500;

z Largest pa­rade of Du­catis – num­ber needed 406;

z Largest pa­rade of Tri­umphs – num­ber needed 540;

z Largest pa­rade of trikes – num­ber needed 20 and so on...

This is a tick­eted event and can be pur­chased through www.123tix.com.au or at the Coun­try Leisure Mo­tor Inn at 86 Co­bra Street in Dubbo

And tick­ets are only $25 pre sale or $35 at the door.

97 per cent of the event has been sourced in Dubbo in­clud­ing jobs, with Dubbo lo­cals hired as bar staff, traf­fic con­trol and check-in crew, etc.

z Send your news tips to john.ryan@panscott.com.au or 0429 452 245 txt is best

z Ad­di­tional re­port­ing by

News staff. Note: John Ryan is also a coun­cil­lor on Dubbo Re­gional Coun­cil, and is also em­ployed part-time by Land­care. He writes here in his ca­pac­ity as a jour­nal­ist.

Rochelle Karsten’s in­cred­i­ble pic­ture of a mas­sive dust cloud mov­ing to­wards Gum Bend Lake at Con­dobolin.

Welling­ton’s “River to Re­ten­tion” class­room gets stu­dents out in the fresh air. PHOTO:

Send your news tips to john.ryan@panscott.com.au or 0429 452 245 txt is best

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