There will be full Council and community consultation on the best way to secure the Tottenham town water supply, according to Lachlan Shire Mayor John Medcalf.
This reassurance, comes after an announcement of $2.3 million grant to expand the Tottenham Water Storage Facility by Member for Barwon, Kevin Humphries.
The funding was made available through the NSW Government’s Regional Water and Waste Water Program.
“The project includes the construction of a 100 megalitre storage dam, evaporation covers for the Leg O Mutton Dam and new dam, a pump station, power supply augmentation and transfer pipeline between the two dams,” Mr Humphries said.
The total cost of the project would be $4.6 million, which means Lachlan Shire Council has to find the other $2.3 million from budgetary measures.
Questions were raised by members of the community last week, as to why such a project was not put before Council and more consultation not undertaken.
More questions were raised about Mayor Medcalf’s personal involvement in the making the grant application and influencing the overall decision making process.
Mayor Medcalf was adamant, these questions and concerns needed to be addressed quickly, to avoid unnecessary angst or bitterness in the Tottenham community.
“I did not have any input into the submission for the grant prior to it being lodged. A previous Director of Infrastructure made the application,” he explained.
“As for me having undue influence over the decision making process that is untrue and unfair. I would never use my position as Mayor to improperly affect the outcome for a Shire community.
“The Tottenham water supply has never been a “pet project” of mine. And as for Council being a “one man band” that is simply false. There are nine other Councillors who sit alongside me, and will be actively involved in making decisions for the entire Shire throughout their four year term.
“I am from Tottenham, but like all other councillors I have been elected to represent the Lachlan Shire, and the best interests of residents. And I will continue to do that.”
Mr Medcalf said he wanted to assure the community of Tottenham, no such major decisions on expanding the Water Storage Facility would be made without extensive consultation and expert advice.
“We are going to be looking at all options for securing the water storage and supply at Tottenham,” he said.
“This has been a long process and Council wants to make sure we get the best outcome for the residents of Tottenham.
“Tottenham is in the top five of most vulnerable water supplies in the State according to Kevin Humphries. Decisions will have to be made on the water supply, but that will come before Council and they will explore all options available.
“I want Tottenham residents to know that options will be carefully considered and whatever the final outcome, they can be assured there will be transparency of the process.”
The Condobolin Chamber of Commerce had its first AGM on Wednesday the 12th October to find that no one present was willing to stand as Chairperson.
The AGM will be rerun 6pm on Wednesday 9th November, at the Committee Room at the Shire.
The Condoboin Chamber of Commerce is the peak representative body for business in town. It has the full support of Council and is the venue for business to improve the business climate of the town, to promote local business, the benefits of shopping local and liaise with Shire.
The Chamber is seeking membership and hopes that all businesses will join. It is a $65 fee to join which will help to fund the administration of the Chamber and some promotional work.
Every business is urged to join. Please cut out the form included and send to the Chamber Treasurer, Shirley Bell as outlined.
Community Markets will be held in Condobolin at Renown Park on Saturday, 29 October from 9am.
The Markets will feature Giftware, Sun Catchers, Candles, Handmade Sewing, Crochet, Confectionary, Scentsy, Cooking Delights (Xmas Cakes, Slices and Sauces), Inspiration Sauces, Baby Wear, Woodwork, Plants, Waste to Art Works, Barbwire Creations, Rabbit and Pig Food, plus many other attractions.
More storeholders are welcome to attend, and a small fee of $15 is requested to cover the cost of insurance which is being covered by Council.
For further information, contact Julie on 0417 671 304 or Mick on 0418 451 530. MB
Ian Simpson and Co are proud to be opening their office in Condobolin this week.
Ian, Director of the business has been servicing the Condobolin District for now 8 years.
“It is so exciting to be opening my very own office dedicated to all facets of real estate for the Condobolin Community,” Ian said.
Over the last 8 years Ian has been focussed on selling rural property only and some of his successful sales includes “Wallaroi West”, “Burando”, “Old Gulgo”, “Gilgies” and “Urah” to name a few.
“We now not only focus on selling rural property but we now can offer residential sales, water sales and property management”.
The team at Ian Simpson and Co. include Ian Simpson Director and Rural Sales and Tammie Simpson Director and Accounts, Ned Hamilton Rural Sales Specialist, Stacey Clarke, Residential Sales Specialist and Daniel Willis Real Estate Sales Support.
The business will kick off with an exciting new property coming up for auction in Officer’s Parade
By Melissa Blewitt
Drivers are putting their lives at risk and damaging the local road network as they conintue to ignore “road closed” signs throughout the Lachlan Shire.
There have been a number of sightings of trucks driving on unsealed roads through long stretches of water, severely damaging the surface structure.
Police can issue traffic infringement notices to drivers that ‘Disobey road access signs’, which carries a penalty of $253 and two demerit points.
This fine is for light vehicles, and depending on the number of axles, the fine increases, as more damage is done.
Police in Lachlan Local Area Command would also like to remind people not to drive through floodwaters.
“The message is simple ‘do not drive through flood waters’. Cars can easily be washed off the road,” Chief Inspector Nick Weyland said.
Motorists need to be aware that all insurances, including car/vehicle, income protection, and life insurance can be rendered null and void, and may not/will not cover the driver or those in the vehicle, should an accident occur.
The Condobolin Argus implores drivers to obey all road signs, and respect the road network that is under extreme stress due to the current flood event across the Shire.
By Melissa Blewitt
Condobolin resident Keith Watt celebrated a magnificent milestone with his Condobolin SES Unit friends and colleagues last Wednesday (5 October).
The longest serving member of the Local Unit, Mr Watt, shared his 90th birthday commemorations with the team, enjoying lots of fun, laughter and gifts.
He joined the NSW SES in 1976. On joining, Mr Watt trained in all core skills in the earlier years but of late has taken on the role of ‘Finance Officer’, managing the Unit accounts with precision and diligence.
Mr Watt has contributed to the safety of his community by attending many operations including storms, floods and road crash rescue incidents, and continues to provide valuable support to the Condobolin SES Unit as a volunteer member.
By Melissa Blewitt
Councillor John Medcalf will be Mayor of Lachlan Shire for the next two years.
He was elected at an Extraordinary Council meeting held last Wednesday.
Mayor Medcalf, who has served a total of 25 years to date on Lachlan Shire Council, was honoured with the result.
“I am very proud and honoured to again take on the role as Mayor and I’m looking forward to a positive and productive two years ahead working with the new Council for the benefit of the various communities in Lachlan,” he said.
‘A’ Ward Councillor John Medcalf was elected to Council in 1991. Born in Condobolin and raised in Tottenham, Mayor Medcalf is well known for his long standing involvement with the community.
Mayor Medcalf lives in Tottenham with his wife Jane, and has two children and four grand-children. Owning and managing his own family farming enterprise, Mayor Medcalf has a focus on making a difference for future generations.
The Lachlan Shire Deputy Mayor position was contested by Councillor Dave Carter (C Ward), Councillor Max Frankel (D Ward) and Councillor Paul Phillips (E Ward).
Councillor Paul Phillips from Lake Cargelligo was voted in as Deputy Mayor for the next 12 months.
Mr Phillips said he was honoured to be elected Deputy Mayor and looked forward to representing not only ‘E’ Ward but the entire Lachlan Shire.
Mayor Medcalf was elected unopposed, and was officially declared by returning officer Lachlan Shire Council (LSC) General Manager Robert Hunt. Mayoral elections are now held every two years.
The future of the Mineral Hill Mine near Condobolin is unclear.
Receivers and Managers have been appointed to KBL Mining Limited, the operators of the well known local mine.
Administrators were appointed to the company on 8 September.
However, on 19 September the secured creditor of the company appointed Martin Jones, Andrew Smith and Ryan Eagle of Ferrier Hodgson as Receivers and Managers over the assets and undertakings of the company.
A creditor’s meeting was held at the Railway Hotel on Tuesday, 20 September.
By Melissa Blewitt
Condobolin children showed off their voices and sense of fun when they participated in the Condobolin Library’s Baby Rhyme Time last Friday.
The program is aimed at introducing young children to the wonderful world of books and music.
“It combines action rhymes, music and singing to develop early literacy skills and allows toddlers to dance to familiar songs,” Librarian Theresa Jude said.
“They can dance, make noise and communicate through sound.
“Parents, grandparents and carers can sit with their child and everyone can sing or act out songs and rhymes.
“It’s noisy, fun and a wonderful chance to learn some new songs for bedtime, bath time or when you’re stuck in the car. We sing each song a few times so that we can all learn the words.”
Baby Rhyme Time is followed by Storytime. Storytime is a fun session of storytelling that fosters an early love of reading and develops literacy skills and social interaction in readiness for school.
Rhyme Time takes place every Friday from 9.30am to 10am at the Condobolin Library. Storytime follows from 10am until 11am. Contact the Condobolin Library on 6895 2253 for more information.
By Melissa Blewitt
“Team Condo” will be beginning the Scrapheap Adventure Ride 2016 on Friday, 30 September.
They will leave from the Condobolin Tennis Courts at 8am and make their way to Four Corners Farm Stay at Nymagee.
There will be nine riders in the group – Jock Leighton, David Geeves, Peter Haydon, Mark Leighton, Colin Stibbard, Darren Smith, Ashley Bremner, Lochie Bremner and Andrew Braddon.
The Scrapheap Adventure Ride is a unique fundraising event which involves motorcycle enthusiasts from all over the country purchasing a bike for no more than $1,000 and doing it up for an adventure ride through the Aussie outback, all while raising money for people with Down Syndrome.
They are aiming to have fun, raise awareness and funds for Down Syndrome NSW.
“Team Condo” is already neck and neck with the more seasoned “Team Inverell”, in fundraising the highest amount of money overall, having raised over $11,000.
“People can help this great cause and keep us at the top by donating any amount,” “Team Condo” spokesperson Peter Haydon said.
“We would love to raise more than Inverell. We would like to thank all of those who have already donated – every dollar will make a difference.
“Please come down to the Condobolin Tennis Courts and see us off on the start of our adventure.”
The community can head to the website http://www.scrapheapadventureride.com.au/ click on support, select Team Condo or their riders, to make a donation.
Another way to contribute to the cause is to visit www.mycause.com.au/page/123733/team-condo-2016-scrapheap-ride
There is also a donation bucket at the Railway Hotel in Condobolin. Residents can also donate direct to Down Syndrome NSW.
The Condobolin SES with the assistance of the Lachlan Shire Council and RFS have been busy preparing their town for the effect of a peak higher than what was seen in the 2012 floods.
The Condobolin SES and council are monitoring the situation and are prepared to implement property protection to the low lying business that may be effected. Local SES controller Keith Dawe said
“We are constantly watching the river and are ready to act if necessary when the river peaks at 6.7m today (Tuesday).”
The wet weather and flooding also resulted in the closure of the North Forbes Road with evacuation warnings sent to residents who would become potentially isolated. Other residents in low lying areas should now be prepared for possible isolation and inundation. For more information on road closures please refer to the Lachlan Shire Council website
A number of flood warnings remain current for the Lachlan River, which is expected to peak near 6.7 metres at Condobolin on Tuesday 20th August. The peak of the flood waters will continue to move down the catchment to Euabalong where the river is then expected to peak at 6.8 metres around Friday.
NSW SES Controller for the Lachlan Region, Nichole Richardson said,” we have had great support from the local community during this event, however we have a small number of people continuing to risk their lives and the safety of NSW SES flood rescue volunteers by driving into flood waters.”
Ms Richardson continued by saying, “The dangers of driving through flood waters are not always apparent but you can’t tell the condition of the road surface under the flood water and people often under estimate the power of water. Make safe decisions. It’s not worth risking the life of yourself and your family, as well as risking the lives of the NSW SES flood rescue volunteers.”
The Condobolin council depot is open during business hours at the end of Bathurst Street for people wanting to collect sand bags to protect their property.
For more information on how to prepare for and respond to floods residents can visit the NSW SES flood website www.floodsafe.com.au. For emergency assistance in floods and storms call NSW SES on 132 500, in life threatening situations dial triple zero.
Contributed by SES Operations Centre Lachlan Region
Four new faces have become Lachlan Shire Councillors. Melissa Rees and Melissa Blewitt were elected in B Ward, while Dave Carter and Peter Harris were elected in C Ward. B Ward was a very close contest, with the count going to the Distribution of Preferences before a final result was announced. Incumbents Graham Scott (C Ward), Dennis Brady (C Ward), and Les Saunders (B Ward) lost their bid to be re-elected. Des Manwaring did not re-contest.
Returning Councillors are John Medcalf and Brian Nelson in A Ward, Mark Hall and Paul Phillips in E Ward, and John Ridley and Max Frankel in D Ward.
Lachlan Shire Councillors by Ward are: A Ward, John Medcalf and Brian Nelson; B Ward, Melissa Rees and Melissa Blewitt; C Ward Dave Carter and Peter Harris; D Ward, Max Frankel and John Ridley; E Ward, Mark Hall and Paul Phillips.
By Melissa Blewitt
A flood is moving through the Lachlan River, with moderate flooding expected in the Condobolin area.
The Bureau of Meterology (BOM) currently predicts the peak to reach near 6.4m at Condobolin around Friday, 16 September with moderate flooding. For comparison, the river at Condobolin peaked at 6.67m in March 2012. Condobolin gauge was 6.27m at 7:30am on Tuesday, 13 September and rising slowly with only 40mm rise since Monday (12 September) morning.
Another smaller peak is still heading towards Forbes, so Condobolin will most likely see that a week later.
In anticipation of rising water levels, the Condobolin SES requires urgent help with sandbagging. Sandbagging is taking place between the Lachlan Shire Council Depot (end of Bathurst Street) and the Truck/Equipment Yard. If you can lend a hand, go to the Depot or contact Judy Price on 0427 953 170. Some 6,000 sandbags have already been prepared (some already distributed and in place). The SES would like to have at least another 7,000 completed to form a sandbag stockpile.
BOM is still expecting 6.7m around 21 September at Euabalong with moderate flooding – this will be reviewed when Condobolin peaks. Land holders near the river may lose access in some areas – consider moving pumps and stock. If access will be affected and unable to remain in place, please consider moving out to a higher location.
Several roads are impacted by flooding. Lachlan Shire Council provides daily or twice daily updates of road conditions on their website http://www.lachlan.nsw.gov.au/.
Significant road impacts include:
There are also two minor floods passing slowly through Humbug Creek between Girral and Condobolin. This is affecting a few local roads south of Condobolin.
By Melissa Blewitt
Lily Ward is more than happy to be back in Condobolin.
She is the dentist at the Condobolin Aboriginal Dental Health Service, and is settling into her new role with support from her colleagues and the community.
“I just love working in Condobolin,” Dr Ward said.
She is passionate and dedicated to ensuring locals have access to great dental care and promoting good dental health.
“This is such a modern facility with two full equipped treatment rooms and state-of-the-art amenities,” she explained.
The entire Condobolin community is able to access the Condobolin Aboriginal Dental Health Service.
“The service is for everybody in the community.
“Sometimes there is a misconception that the service is not available to all, and that is simply not true.
“The staff here have been absolutely fantastic. They are a really relaxed and friendly team.”
Dr Ward spent five years training to become a dentist, and is relishing being back in her home town.
“I always wanted to do something in health, and I had a great dentist growing up, so that was a positive argument for me to go into the profession,” she said.
Dr Ward is the daughter of Mark and Danni Ward. She lives on a property with her fiancé, which is between Condobolin and Forbes.