Day: May 5, 2018

Raiders smash Boambee 6-love

Paul Pomroy soars above the pack.Raider’s striker Harry Gale rewrote the odds on the winner of the Raider’s golden boot award last weekend with a four goal haul against a disappointing Boambee Bombers outfit.
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A brace in the first and second halves bought Gales season tally to 6 and was a welcome return to form for the hard working forward. Gale said post match that it was good to hit the back of the net before lauding the efforts of the defense and midfield pointing out that they were the heroes not him. And a new back four it was too with coach Tom Campbell replacing the blonde beiber Adam Marks with Paul Pomroy and Jai Waddick with Channey Simmonds, the moves enforced by various midseason injuries and highlights the depth of talent that the Raiders have at the moment. Spare a thought for Bombers hard working coach Dave Ayrani, his side conceding an eye watering 13 goals in two games (the Lions whacked in 7 the previous round) its enough to put you into that room of mirrors sans clothes to have a good look at yourself.

Without the bad boy Brady Parker the Bombers seem to have lost their way and have been left with enthusiasm to get them on the scoresheet. That said Ayrani must have been pleased with the efforts of their keeper Zac Keating Ware who pulled a number of great saves his positioning and selflessness denying Urunga several certain goals also Josh Chapman his spark creating a few problems for the Raider’s defense.

The Urunga side though were two up at the break and seemed to have control of the match they certainly had most of the possession in the first 45 minutes but at Aryeshire Park AKA ‘the runway’ and that bounce who knows what the Bombers could come up with in the second. Well I can tell you that question was answered in emphatic terms moments after the Bombers kicked off. Ben Dooley won possession of the ball seconds after the Bombers restarted play and fired out a ball for Tommy Frewen to connect with Kale ‘Horatio’ Hopper, Hopper boned one defender before passing to Gale this time the provider for Hopper to sweep around and fire at Keating Ware from 17m and into the net to advance the score to 3 -0. It was a slick piece of play by the visitors the speed, the ball control on show and appreciated by anyone in maroon and white and would be repeated at regular intervals for the next 42 minutes. The Bombers best chance of scoring seemed to be the odd free kick awarded by Dave Morgan for a careless Raider challenge but no joy there either for the home side and the raiders ran out comfortable 6-0 victors, the win lifting the Raiders into 3rd position on the ladder

This weekend it may be a different story at the Cabbage Patch as the Raiders front up against the 2nd placed Maclean Bobcats who went down 2-1 to the Lions last weekend and that was at Maclean. The kickoffs for that match on Sunday will be 12pm U/21’s and 2pm for 1st grade it will be a cracker. In other results, the U/21’s came through a few nervous moments to run out 2-1 winners over Boambee, the win keeping them at the top of the table, the U/17’s had a hard fought 2-1 win over Northern Storm Daniel Gregory and Joel Teece standouts in that game they remain at the top as well, while the women won reserve grade 2-1 Kaniesha Phillips Cook making an immediate impact in that game scoring the winner but went down 4-1 in first grade which would be a new feeling for the previously undefeated side. I hope to see you at the Cabbage Patch this Sunday for the Raiders V Bobcats it will be the match of the round.

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Bill Turner Trophy Area Champions

Bellingen High School’s 15 years girls soccer team.The competition involves over 400 schools, both public and private, from Queensland, NSW, ACT and Victoria. This puts them in the final 32 in the competition. On their way to becoming Area Champions they have defeated Dorrigo HS 5-0, Coffs Harbour HS 6-2, McAuley Catholic College Grafton 4-1 and finally John Paul College 2-1.
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The game was a close affair from start to finish. The girls from JPC were keen, aggressive and fast to the ball, however, the Bellingen girls stuck to their passing game and it paid off with a number of close chances during the first half. At the other end of the pitch JPC attempted a number of long shots which keeper, Gita Pastro, had well covered. The narrow field meant there was always pressure in the midfield and midfielders Jess Marks and Sam Barker, ably supported by Millie King and Alex Jandzio Fry, got through a ton of work. Half time came and the score was still nil all.

The second half started and Bellingen was on top feeding passes to make a number of opportunities. Finally a raid paid off. Sam Barker fed a great ball to Katie Thorn who beat her player played back to Sam in the centre just outside the 18 yard box who cracked it at the goal. One of the JPC defenders put her hands up to stop the ball in the box and without hesitation a penalty was given. Sam made no mistake in converting it.

Finally, 1-0 however whether Bellingen relaxed or JPC picked up their game the balance of the game changed and JPC were on the attack. After sustained pressure JPC got one back and the scored was tied again. This seemed to pick up the Bellingen girls who again began to dominate. A through ball to Jayden Morgan finally paid off with Jayden’s never say die determination scoring her a goal. 2-1 the final score of a very closely contested game. Undoubtedly a well-deserved win for a great young team!

The Bellingen girls will now have to travel to Tenterfield to take on the winners of the North West Area, Tenterfield HS.

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Lester Achieves Prestigious Lions Award

Lester Sheather with his award.The highlight of last Tuesdays Lions Changeover Night was the presentation by Zone Chairman Lion Jeff Mott to Bellingen Lion Lester Sheather of the highest & most prestigious award in Lions – a Melvin Jones Fellowship Award.
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Lion Jeff said this award is only achieved by Lions who have given outstanding service to their Club & their Community. Lester was overcome with emotion and extremely proud to be amongst the best of the best in Lions. He said that he has loved every minute & has very fond memories of his 47 years with Bellingen Lions. He thanked his fellow members & wife Merle for “supporting putting up with him all these years”. This is a great honour for Lion Lester – Congratulations you have done yourself and the Club proud.

Lions President Hilton McLennan welcomed the Special Guests for the evening, Zone Chairman Lion Jeff Mott & Lions Lady Lyn, Mayor of Bellingen Shire Mark Troy & wife Gina, Rotarians James & Diana Christian, Honorary Lions Rick & Pauline, and Lions Lady Betty Kilborne.

Mayor Troy proposed a toast to Lions Clubs International and praised them & especially Bellingen Lions for the enormous amount of work they do each year for our local community and the continued co-operation with Bellingen Shire Council on local projects.

Lions Past District Governor Ken Smith gave a fine response stating that there were some 44750 Lions Clubs worldwide all working for the welfare of mankind. What a great feeling to be part of such a wonderful organisation.

A toast to Kindred Organisations was proposed by Lion Wal Tyson and he spoke of the other organisations present, Rotary, the Red Cross, View Club, Show Committee, Meal on Wheels, Church Op Shops etc and how we all work together to help our community in many ways. Rotarian James Christian responded and spoke of welcoming continued co-operation with Bellingen Lions on future community projects.

Bellingen Lions Club President Hilton McLennan then gave his final Presidents Report saying how proud he was to have been in charge for the past 2 years and thanked those who had given great support and assistance to him during his term. Some of the Clubs achievements including donation of some $27,000 during the past year – “a wonderful achievement for a small group of blokes”. Hilton’s legacy gift to the Club is the ongoing assistance & co-operation of the Youth Cultural Tour Group to the Club in the Catering Kiosk and on Lions Projects such as the paving of the outdoor areas at Bellorana Nursing Home, and the Senior Citizens Luncheon.

These “kids” are a wonderful asset to our Club – they are proud young adults willing to give a hand when it is needed and in return our Club funds some of their travel costs for their Cultural Tour. It is wonderful to see the inter-generational banter & fun that occurs as well.

President Hilton thanked the king of the catering kiosk; Lion John Molloy & student mentor Lindsay Kingsley for overseeing this wonderfully co-operative project.

Other projects for 2011/12 include a hugely successful 2011 Fireworks Spectacular (it’s almost that time again), that extensive paving project at Bellorana, renovating the horse stalls at the showground, and of course the many thousands of $$$$ in donations to the hospital & other community organisations.

Changeover Time – Zone Chairman Lion Jeff Mott then installed the new officers for 2012/13. Congratulations to President Lester Sheather, Secretary Bill Butler, Treasurer Pat Fox – (for the 13th year) – well done Pat.

The “Tail Twisting” fines session followed with the slightest indescrepancy in recent times being seized upon by Lion Steve Shields. Steve does a great job of producing a few red faces, much laughter & plenty of money in the “Money Lion” for Lion Tamer Maddo.

Altogether a fun night of celebration & fellowship was enjoyed by all – our thanks to the ladies who provided flowers to decorate the tables & provided pre-dinner nibbles throughout the year.

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Urunga Hardware closes the door

Greg McPhee is closing the doors of Utrunga Hardware for last time on Saturday.Urunga will be left without a hardware store when Greg McPhee closes the door at Thrifty Link Hardware this Saturday (June 30).
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“I made a decision at Christmas that if the business was not sold by the end of June, I would close down regardless,” Mr McPhee said. “I couldn’t find a buyer, so we are finishing up at the close of business on Saturday.”

“I’ve been here for eleven-and-a-half years,” he said, “and the last 12 months have been very quiet.”

“It’s a pity for the town, but I can’t blame anyone for not buying a business in the current economic climate.”

At this stage, the owners don’t have another business confirmed for the Bonville Street premises.

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Switchover effort ramps up across Northern NSW

The Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy is encouraging people living in Northern NSW to get digital ready as the switchover across the region kicks into top gear.The Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy is encouraging people living in Northern NSW to get digital ready as the switchover across the region kicks into top gear.
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“555,000 households in Northern NSW are switching to digital-only free to air TV on 27 November – and with just over five months to go, the Government’s Digital Switchover Taskforce is ramping up activities across the switchover region to help people get ready.

“Five dedicated Digital Switchover Liaison Officers, 12 Indigenous Community Liaison Officers and Multicultural Ambassadors have been appointed and are all ready to help people and communities across Northern NSW make the switch,” said Senator Conroy.

Former Rugby League great David Peachey has taken on the role of Indigenous Switchover Ambassador for the region.

“The Government is also providing financial and practical help to eligible people who need extra assistance to make the switch, through the Household Assistance Scheme and the Satellite Subsidy Scheme. Both schemes are now open for applications,” Senator Conroy said.

“The Household Assistance Scheme has already helped over 100,000 households across Australia convert to digital TV, and 11,000 people have received a subsided installation of satellite equipment under the Satellite Subsidy Scheme.”

If you are eligible for either Government program, you should have received a letter from Centrelink inviting you to apply. You can also check your eligibility by calling the Digital Ready Information Line on 1800 20 10 13.

“We want to make sure that nobody is left behind in the switch to digital TV, so if you have questions, please call the Digital Ready Information Line 1800 20 10 13 or visit

“If you’ve already switched, you might want to help out a family member or friend so that they can start enjoying all the benefits that come with digital TV, including more channels, and better picture and sound quality,” Senator Conroy said.

Local information and contact details for Digital Switchover Liaison Officers, Australian Government Endorsed Antenna Installers and your closest retail advisor are available by entering your address into mySwitch at

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New owners for Bellingen Hardware

Call in to Bellingen Hardware for a chat with new owner, Jim Hunt and former owner, Paul Warman.New owners Jim and Kathryn Hunt would like to warmly welcome everyone to the opening of Hunt’s Hardware Bellingen.
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After living in the Bellingen area for several years Jim and Kathryn decided to grab the opportunity of owning the store.

Jim has had extensive experience in outdoor home maintenance over the last twenty years and so looks forward to extending the gardening range within the store.

The store is very pleased to announce the return of Paul Warman. Paul is a former co-owner of the store for sixteen years and has since been running a handyman business on the Gold Coast for the past eight years. Many locals will remember his face from the old Mitre Ten days. He is a very valuable addition to the store.

The store will be focusing on catering to the needs of D.I.Y’ers and gardeners with a big focus on friendly and helpful customer service. The staff is there to listen to and cater to the needs of the local market so please feel free to come in and say g’day and suggest what it is you would like to see in the store.

The store offers free home delivery within the town so anyone without a car can still get that potting mix home!

The store hours will be 7am till 5pm weekdays, 8am till 2pm Saturdays and 9am till 12pm Sundays so all those weekend warriors can get those jobs done without leaving town!

The store has had a fantastic history for many years and Jim and Kathryn are very pleased to become part of it.

They would love to see everyone to the store’s opening on the 30th of this month for an opening sale of 10 to 50% off on selected items and from 2pm out the back in the lane behind the store there will be a sausage sizzle and refreshments provided with some tongue in cheek entertainment from Slim Jim and the Tools.

Come along and enjoy yourself and meet the new owners of your hardware store.

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Major changes to Council structure

Councillors adopted option 4 for a major changes to Council’s management structure, which involves a two department structure.All seven Councillors unanimously endorsed major changes to the management structure of Bellingen Council, but there is a cost.
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General Manager, Liz Jeremy says it was a long-term investment in service efficiency and customer service.

She said the Bellingen Shire community would see:

-A one stop shop with a focus on improved customer service at a number of locations across the Shire;

-Improvements to our Development Approval process that further reduce the time taken to process DA’s and facilitate appropriate development;

-Improved financial management;

-A focus on asset maintenance (people and systems);

-Investment in local young people through traineeships; and

-Enhancement of our library services.

Ms Jeremy said the Organisational Review process and the affiliated initiatives currently underway sought to position council over time to respond to a range of external influences, consider long term issues such as asset management and financial sustainability, improve customer service and refine the operations of Council to deliver efficient and effective services to an agreed standard.

Council engaged consultants, Blackadder Associates (BA) to conduct the Organisational Review. They put four options to Council.

At a special meeting last Thursday, Councillors unanimously adopted option 4, which creates a two department structure, each headed by a deputy General Manager, reporting to the General Manager, Liz Jeremy.

Deputy General Manager Operations will be responsible for Water and Waste Water; Asset Management and Design; Works; Planning; Building and Regulation.

Deputy General Manager Corporate and Community will be responsible for Community Services; Economic and Business Development; Sustainability and Natural Resources; Information and Technology Services; Finance; Governance and Engagement (see diagram).

A conservative estimate of implementing the changes is $270,000 with recurrent costs of $50,000, but the option chosen was the most financially viable and best outcome for the community.

The implementation cost will be funded (and repaid over a number of years) from:

(a) a one off unfavourable variation to the year end review of $60,000

(b) the balance funded by internal borrowings as follows:

 $75,000 from the Employee Leave Entitlements Reserve

 $100,000 from the Water and Sewer funds

 $35,000 from the Domestic Waste Reserve

Council’s special meeting lasted just 15 minutes, but followed a three-hour closed meeting with the consultants.

Cr Gordon Braithwaite said he went to the meeting with the intention of not supporting the organisational review, “but I now have a different view. We are restructuring the organisation to get better value for money”.

Cr Shaun Tuohy said Council had decided to bite the bullet. “This is a great opportunity and I look forward to its implementation.”

Mayor Mark Troy said it was a major reform of Council. “It will improve delivery to the public as demanded by staff and the ratepayers.”

Cr Bruce Cronin Council must now communicate with the community to ensure the message gets to them.

Cr Kerry Child commended General Manager, Liz Jeremy for listening to Councillors, staff and the community.

Ms Jeremy said the two department structure (option four) was becoming increasingly popular in local government.

“Councils (are) trying to save on high salary costs of senior staff, and to enable the small number of executives to take on more of a strategic planning role and to equip the organisation with very capable managers running the organisational unis,” she said.

Ms Jeremy said that under this structure it was expected the deputy General Manager positions would be advertised and a competitive recruitment process conducted to ensure the best persons were appointed to the roles.

“Once recruited the new deputy General Managers would work with the General Manager to appoint managers to lead the organisational units above. A key priority is to ensure the right capacity and capability of staff is achieved in those appointments.”

She said this option had potentially the highest one-off cost but when funded would not arise again. “The Review Team considers this option offers the best outcome for the organisation and the community.”

“Stage 1 of the review has sought to provide Council with an appropriate structure to deliver operational and process improvements that reduce duplication, increase efficiency, improve service levels to our community and potentially reduce costs.

“Stage 2 of the review which is canvassed within the implementation plan will identify opportunities for alliances and partnerships that will deliver improved financial sustainability in the provision of priority community services,” she conluded.

The two deputy General Manager positions will be advertised as senior staff positions “and a competitive recruitment process conducted to ensure the best persons are appointed to the roles”.

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New bridge restores access to Styx River camping area

The Eely Creek Bridge has been replaced restoring access to the Wattle Flat picnic and camping area in Styx River State Forest.The Wattle Flat picnic and camping area in Styx River State Forest between Ebor and Armidale has been reopened to all traffic after the completion of a new bridge.
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The old timber bridge over Eely Creek failed some years ago and until recently entry has only been passable by a splash crossing which limited the types of vehicles that could reach the area.

“The new bridge has just been completed at a cost of $50,000,” said Forests NSW Central Region manager Kathy Jones.

“There is a 20 tonne weight limit on the new bridge but vehicles towing caravans and RVs will be able to cross.”

The bridge was designed by Forests NSW Central Region operations manager Karel Zejbrlik and contractor Dave Thurgood from Belmore.

Supervision was provided by operations forest assistant Dave Couchman.

“Forests NSW would like to thank the operators of Yaraandoo Eco Lodge, neighbours of the forest, who provided accommodation for the construction team,” Ms Jones said.

“The bridge is a new design using massive concrete blocks for abutments and the deck is made of reinforced steel sections.

“These are 12m long and 2.5m wide giving a 5m deck with a steel safety railing either side.

“This allowed minimum environmental disturbance and the creek banks were stabilised using jute mesh and rye grass.”

The bridge was erected in the same location as the old bridge to protect the stuttering frog mixophyes balbus which has been recorded further downstream.

“Wattle Flat is a popular picnic and camping area on the banks of the Styx River,” Ms Jones said.

“This improved two-wheel-drive access will make it easily accessible to all vehicles.”

The picnic ground can be entered off Styx River Forest Way which runs between the Kempsey Armidale Road and Point Lookout Road, a tourist drive just off Waterfall Way.

Forests NSW has also installed new environmentally friendly toilets at the picnic area and will soon upgrade the toilets at the camping area.

“We are pleased to be able to upgrade these visitor facilities in Styx River State Forest which has been sustainably harvested and regenerated for many years and the cycle is just beginning again now.”

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City and country united on value of agricultural land

NSW Farmers’ President, Fiona Simson, says she is genuinely surprised by the depth of feeling across the state. NSW city and country dwellers think too much emphasis is being placed on mining and coal seam gas by the government, research released this week by NSW Farmers’ Association has found.
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A Newspoll survey found 58 percent of respondents thought the NSW Government was putting too much emphasis on satisfying the interests of extractive industries compared with about 1 percent who said too much emphasis was placed on farmers.

The survey also revealed that 88 percent were either strongly in favour or somewhat in favour of parts of NSW’s agricultural land being reserved from mining and coal seam gas.

Approximately 50 percent thought that more than half of the state’s food-producing land should be reserved for agriculture while one in four believed more than 90 percent should be set aside solely for agriculture. Under proposed new land use policies, the NSW Government has not earmarked any farm land to be excluded from mining or coal seam gas activities.

NSW Farmers’ President, Fiona Simson, said she was genuinely surprised by the depth of feeling across the state.

“People talk about the country and city divide but it’s not there on this issue and I think that is very encouraging,” she said.

“It is also great to see an awareness and appreciation of agricultural land and its value and the need for it to be reserved to ensure sustainability of food production.

“NSW country and city dwellers alike want to see areas of agricultural land in NSW off limits to mining and exploration.

“Currently, more than 100 percent of NSW is covered cumulatively by mining and CSG titles and applications. This is causing great uncertainty for farm families, the $8.4 billion agriculture industry and the 74 000 people it employs.”

In NSW, at present, not one hectare has been set aside for food production. NSW Farmers is asking the government to declare some agricultural land off limits to exploration and to strengthen proposed land and water protections for mining and CSG.

On 1 May this year, NSW Farmers joined with more than 20 groups from across the state in a rally outside Parliament House to demonstrate concern about the NSW Government’s Strategic Regional Land Use Policy and its approach to exploration and mining in this state.

During the recent consultation process on the policy, the government received over 1,400 submissions – a vast majority of which were in favour of stronger protections for the state’s land and water resources. The policy will be finalised later this year.

Meanwhile, a recent report by the Australian Farm Institute has highlighted that NSW lost 6 percent of its farm land in the twelve years to 2009 due in part to mining and urban encroachment.

Ms Simson said that NSW Farmers was not against mining or coal seam gas. However, opening up the whole of NSW for exploration does not make sense and will lead to decades of needless uncertainty for farm businesses across NSW.

Newspoll surveyed 671 people aged 18 years and over by telephone across all areas of NSW and weighted results based on ABS data.

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Stop the squabbling: Hartsuyker

Left to right: Luke Hartsuyker, Warren Truss and Richie Williamson at their Pacific Highway meeting in Canberra.The money available for work on the Pacific Highway should be spent on improvements as soon as possible, rather than squabbling over percentages between the Federal and State Governments, the Federal Member for Cowper, Luke Hartsuyker said this week.
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He was speaking after a meeting in Canberra on Thursday (June 21) with the Leader of The Nationals, Warren Truss, and the chair of the Pacific Highway Taskforce and Mayor of Clarence Valley Council, Richie Williamson. Mr Truss is also Shadow Minister for Infrastructure and Transport.

“At the meeting, Warren Truss reaffirmed the Coalition’s commitment to upgrading the highway as quickly as possible, both to save lives and as a vital piece of national infrastructure,” Mr Hartsuyker said.

“He recognised that it has been apparent for some 12 months that the completion date for the dualling of the highway of 2016 was not realistic. It has taken 16 years to complete just 52 per cent of the project. Completing the remaining 48 per cent in four years is not feasible.

“We currently have $1.5bn in State funding and $3.5bn in Federal funding on the table which can be used to make considerable progress. Both governments should get on with the job instead of squabbling over percentages.

“There was no new funding announced for the coming financial year and the Federal funding announced in the Budget does not commence until 2013/14 so there is plenty of time to sort out the details.

“What we don’t want is for any of this money to be diverted to other projects because of a lack of agreement.”

Mr Williamson described the meeting as “fruitful” and said the taskforce was keen to explore all funding avenues to complete the highway duplication at the earliest feasible date.

Media Contact: Richard Lehnert Coffs Harbour: 02 6652 6233 Canberra: 02 6277 4447 Mobile: 0422 565581 Email: [email protected]

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