Mother’s Day at the Royal Hotel

* The Royal Hotel in Condobolin is putting on a specail menu for Mather’s Day. Give Mum a break and take her out for dinner.

Major Water loss for Condobolin 1st May

• A map showing the area that will be affected by a major water interruption supply, that will see over 30 streets without water from 8am and 7pm on 1 May. Lachlan Shire Council will be undertaking valve replacement works in Denison and Orange Streets. Darker Sreet lines indicate the areas that will be affected.Source: LSC

By Melissa Blewitt

Over 30 streets in Condobolin will suffer a complete loss of water supply on 1 May.
The interruption will happen between 8am and 7pm, as Lachlan Shire Council (LSC) undertakes planned valve replacement works in Denison and Orange Streets.
“The interruption is to allow Council to undertake critical maintenance works prior to upgrading water mains in Denison Street,” LSC Director of Infrastructure Services Phil King said.
“Residents in the affected areas are requested to open an outside tap (preferably the closest tap to your meter) once loss of supply has commenced.
“This will assist with pressure and discolouration. Council advises that taps be left open for 60 minutes following water supply being reinstated.”
While the interruption may seem lengthy, it is important for Council to plan the allocated timeframe to cover all bases, Mr King explained.
LSC sent out 1200 notices advising residents of the water supply interruption, which were delivered to the Condobolin Post Office on Monday, 18 April for distribution to all Condobolin mail boxes and PO Boxes.
The streets that will be affected are: Madline Street (far eastern end); Maitland Street (east of Leifermann St); Jones Lane; Browns Lane; Worthingtons Lane; Willis Lane; Burnett Street; May Street; Parkes Road; Station Street; Rogers Street; Stenhouse Street; Kurrajong Street; Honan Street; Mooney Street; Goobang Street; Gordon Street; Denison Street; North Forbes Road; Willow Bend Village; Willow Bend Road; Oxley Street; Marsden Street; Evans Street; Bathurst Street (east of William St); Lachlan Street (east of William St); Orange Street (east of Melrose St); Molong Street (east of Melrose St); William Street (Molong St to Bathurst St); Napier Street (south of Molong St); and McDonnell Street (south of Molong St).
Residents in all other streets of Condobolin may experience reduced pressure and water discolouration, although it is not expected that complete loss of water supply will occur in other streets.
Those who have a special water need, should contact LSC immediately for service arrangements to be made.
For further information contact Lachlan Shire Council’s Manager Utilities Chris Perry, during office hours on 02 6895 1900.

Garage Sale at 154 Bathurst Street on Friday 29th April has been cancelled due to predicted poor weather.

West Wyalong Ladies day and Jobs

If you are an aspiring farm manager or just want a day out check out the classified this week.

West Wyalong Ladies Day should be fun and Pink Velvet are offering 10% off ladies clothing and the chance to win a $50 voucher on the 29th and 30th of April.

A local Australian White Stud is seeking a mixed farm hand with the view of training them as a manager.

Go to the classified section for more information.

Kapooka Army Band to play at Hospital Auxiliary Fundraiser

 

• Above – The Kapooka Army Band will be the entertainment for the Condobolin Hostpital Auxiliary major fudraiser to be held at the Shearing Shed at the SRA Grounds. Tickets must be purchased at Condo Clothing by Wednesday 4th May. (photo courtesy of Kapooka Web Page)

By Anne Coffey

It will be drums and “move to the beat” when the Australian Army Band Kapooka stars as the entertainment at the annual Condobolin United Hospital Auxiliary fundraiser.

The “Music Under the Stars”  will be based at the showground shearing shed on Saturday the 7th May   starting at 6.00pm.

The evening will start with a wine tasting followed by dinner and entertainment by the band. If people require alcohol they need to bring their own.

Tickets of $30pp must be bought by Wednesday the 4th May and can be purchased from Condo Clothing in Bathurst Street.  The tickets include a three course meal, wine and entertainment by the band.

The Kapooka Band is based at the Army Recruit Training Centre (ARTC) at Wagga Wagga. Originally a brass band with 12 members, the unit has since  grown to 22 musicians performing on brass, woodwind and rhythm section instruments. As well as it’s marching band, Australian Army Band Kapooka also has a stage band, rock band, jazz ensemble and  brass and saxophone groups. This gives the band great versatility and means the band can cater for all musical tastes. (source – the band web page)

A Remembrance Day to remember

. Joe Flick places soil and mememtos on Willaim Taskers grave.

By Joe Flick

Former Wiradjuri  Condobolin Corporation employee  Joe Flick was a part of a delegation of 81 people from across New South Wales that took 2 Indigenous Under 17’s rugby league teams on a tour to France and Italy in November 2015.

The tour was organised by Steve Hall (NSW Rugby League) and Tas Baitieri (International Development Manager NRL) and included former NRL players Ronnie “Rambo” Gibbs and Beau Champion.  Joe was responsible for organising a visit to Villers Bretonneux for Remembrance Day.  This has been the 3rd year in a row that Joe has been in France for Remembrance Day.  “As 2015 was the 100th Anniversary of the Landing at Gallipoli we wanted to pay our respects to all fallen soldiers including the Aboriginal soldiers who did not come home”

“If you would have asked me 3 years ago if I would be doing that I would have said no way”.  Joe’s Grandfather Mick Flick from Collarenebri had enlisted in World War 1 in Narrabri in 1916 and saw action on the Western Front.  “I remember my Dad telling me about some of the places that Pop was at including Villers Bretonneux, Hamel and others”

Joe had taken soil from Burra Bee Dee Aboriginal mission at Coonabarabran to scatter on the grave of William IRWIN and soil from Gingi Mission at Walgett to scatter on the grave of Thomas DODD.  “It was my way of connecting them back to country and to show that someone has come to visit them” They like so many others are so far from family and home.

On the 11th November the group visited the National Memorial early in the morning and Joe scattered soil from the Condobolin Cemetery onto William TASKER’s grave.  William was born in Condobolin and it was an honour to share Williams’s story with those present on the day.  William landed at Gallipoli on ANZAC Day but was wounded in May and returned to Australia.  He tried to re-enlist on 3 occasions and was eventually successful.

William died on the battlefield fighting for the freedom that we enjoy today.  Joe would like to thank the Condobolin Sports Club for their donation towards his trip.

Later that morning the group was a guest of the Mayor of Villers Bretonneux, Monsieur Patrick Simon for the Remembrance Day service.  “In 2014 I was also a guest of the Mayor for the service but then I was by myself and this year there was the most Kooris on the Western Front since WW1”

Joe had taken the Aboriginal flag, the Torres Strait Islander flag and the Australian flag with him and 3 of the boys carried these flags in the March alongside the French flag.  Two other young men laid a wreath with the Mayor at this very emotional service.

That afternoon the 2 Under 17 Indigenous teams played 2 French development squads at Villers Bretonneux, the first time that rugby league was played in the village.  The Indigenous teams won both games.  At the presentation after the games Heath Gibbs and Jalen Rose were presented with the Larkin Medal for the Best and Fairest in their respective games.

“The Larkin Medal was something that I come up with to honour the first fulltime Secretary of the NSW Rugby League, Edward Larkin.  Edward was one of only two sitting members of Parliament who enlisted in the First World War and sadly both were killed on the 25th April at ANZAC Cove in 1915”.

Joe was presented with a pewter Poppy by the Mayor at the presentation.  “I have spoken to school groups over there about Australian history and our role on the Western Front and have also presented resources to the museum including books, a didgeridoo and replica medals of my Grandfather”.The following day Joe flew to London to conduct a Commemorative Service for Joseph Knight an Aboriginal soldier from Bourke who died at Salisbury Isolation hospital in 1917.  Salisbury is about 150klms from London.  The service was held at the St Lawrence’s Church at Stratford Sub-Castle.

“The following morning the attack on Paris had happened and at one stage the borders to France was closed and I was a little worried about how was I going to get back to join up with the touring group who were still in France but had moved to the south of France about 8 hours from Paris” There were a lot of anxious hours and a number of Mums and families wanting us to bring their boys home immediately.  Following advice from the Australian Embassy we continued the tour and after a couple of more days in France we moved on to Rome for 4 days of sightseeing. The boys had played 8 games on tour, 6 against French teams and 2 against an Italian development squad and were unbeaten.

“It was a Remembrance Day to remember and I am sure that these young Australians will look back on the tour and not only remember the games and the sights but also know and understand the sacrifice made by so many Australians on the battlefields of France”

 

A day of remembrance

• Alan Townsend (Centre) gave the 2016 ANZAC Day address. He served for 21 years as Combat Engineer and Sapper, and achieved the rank of Sergeant Major. He is withPresident of the Condobolin RSL Sub Branch Keith Hartin and Vice President Michael Wighton. MB

A Digger, A Sapper, A Combat Engineer

• One of Condobolin’s oldest serving Diggers Ron L’Estrange with Vietnam Veteran Alan Townsend, who gave the 2016 ANZAC Day address. Mr Townsend served 21 years as a Combat Engineer and achieved the rank of Sergeant Major. Full covergae of ANZAC Day on pages 8, 10, 11 and 12. MB

The 2016 ANZAC Day address was given by Alan R Townsend RAE (Sapper) ARA (Retired). Mr Townsend also works at Lachlan Shire Council as the Manager Building Services.

Today we come together not to celebrate battles or to glorify wars, but to honour and remember those who have served and who are currently serving in all conflicts as Australians protecting Australians, their way of life, and the freedom to enjoy, through selfless sacrifices they have endured.

The spirit of the ANZAC was bequeathed to all Australians, by young Australian diggers and New Zealand soldiers, on the 25 April 1915 at Gallipoli, and now is our National Day of Commemoration.

At Gallipoli the ANZAC fought a formidable enemy, with ferocious intensity, at all cost, over the harshest of terrain and at such a young age, some didn’t even shave. The campaign was lost, some 8,000 diggers had given their lives, and more than 24,000 soldiers were wounded, before the final withdrawal creating the ANZAC legend to be born.

The Australian’s didn’t take kindly to the loss of her sons, forcing the World and the Empire to recognise their value, their worth. Australia, a young country, 14 years old, was now given a bond, of courage, determination, of fighting prowess, of mateship and larrikinism, and they proved they were the best.

The first Australians to serve in a foreign campaign, was a NSW contingent in the Sudan War in 1885, and at the turning of the century, Australians again saw service in the Boer War. The Great War to end all wars, saw Australia drawn into World War I, declared by others with a sense of duty to the Empire, King and Country. The first contingents were all volunteers with firm beliefs this was the basis of ferocity which created the ANZAC legend. The Australians and New Zealanders acquitted themselves with distinction throughout the Great War with heavy losses through Turkey, France, Belgium and Egypt, and to the ultimate success to end the Great War.

Let us pay our respects and remember all service men and women, at home and abroad, who have sacrificed their freedom, so that we as Australians can live a lifestyle enjoyed by all. To be safe and secure, with protection of rights, in a humane environment, with that ANZAC Spirit looking over us at night.

We pay our respects and remember those who gave the supreme sacrifice defending our country in all campaigns from the First and Second World Wars, Korea, Malaya, Vietnam and more recently Iraq and Afghanistan, and to the service of all who have served Australia in Peace Keeping and multi-national campaigns or operational service around the world.

In Australia today, with terrorism and evil on our doorstep, serving our nation means much more than the foreign campaigns, therefore we must also, pay our respects to the Emergency Services, keeping us safe from harm’s way, guided by the ANZAC Spirit. I once worked for an Emergency Services Commissioner, and in a hostile situation, he looked me in the eye and said, “Whatever it takes”, a true expression of the ANZAC tradition.

We should remember and pay our respects to those who have supported our service men and women in service and returning from service, because unfortunately they change both physically and mentally from the service that they have given and endured.

There are no winners in war, just legends born, from every day men and women, not wanting to die, but willing to make the ultimate sacrifice, for abnormalities or war, so that we may enjoy what Australia is today, your freedom of choice, and your right to have your say.

Today I would like to make a special mention of the last Fuzzy Wuzzy Angel, Mr Faole Bokoi of the Manari Village, who passed away on the 7 March 2016. The Fuzzy Wuzzy Angels, fighting for freedom in their own country, helped save many a digger’s life as bearers and guides, on the Kokoda Track in World War II, and just like our ANZAC’s, they became legends and a spirit reincarnated from the horrors of war.

I would now like to read a poem written by a Digger about those Fuzzy Wuzzy Angels.

“Fuzzy Wuzzy Angels”

Many a mother in Australia

When their busy day is done

Sends a prayer to the Almighty

For the keeping of her son

Asking that an angel guide him

And bring him safely back

Now we see those prayers answered

On the Owen Stanley Track

For they haven’t any halos

Only holes slashed in their ears

And their faces worked by tattoos

With scratch pins in their hair

Bringing back the badly wounded

Just as steady as a horse

Using leaves to keep the rain off

As gentle as a nurse

Slow and careful in the bad places

On the awful mountain track

The look upon their faces

Would make you think Christ was black

Not a move to hurt the wounded

As they treat him like a saint

It’s a picture worth recording

That an artist’s yet to paint

Many a lad will see his mother

And husband see their wives

Just because a Fuzzy Wuzzy

Carried them to save their lives

From mortar bombs and machine gun fire

Or chance surprise attacks

To the safety and the care of doctors

At the bottom of the track

May the mothers of Australia

When they offer up a prayer

Mention those impromptu angels

With their fuzzy wuzzy hair.

Written by Bert Beros Sapper. Bert a veteran of both WWI and WWII, wrote this poem whilst fighting on the Owen Stanley Track in the highlands of New Guinea. Like myself, Bert wasn’t famous, just a Digger, a Sapper and a Combat Engineer.

For my final words of commemoration today. I have written my own short poem.

Please let us all remember,

And never ever forget,

Who gave you what you’ve got today,

Don’t take it all for granted,

Our diggers pay the price,

Remembering the Spirit of the ANZACS,

And the ultimate sacrifice.

Lachlan Shire letter to residents of the Condobolin Retirement Village

CWA to screen The Dressmaker on 29th April at Callara Theatre

 

CWA to screen The Dressmaker as a fundraiser

The Condobolin CWA is to screen The Dressmaker as a fundraiser.

The film will be shown at the Callara Theatre at Western Plains Regional Development on Friday the 29th April.  The $15.00 ticket includes the film, wine and cheese on arrival and light refreshment.

Tickets are limited as the Theatre only seats 40 people. Tickets should be booked and paid for early to avoid disappointment. Tickets can be purchased from Western Plains Regional Development, 18 William Street, Condobolin. –phone 68953301.

People are asked to arrive by 6.30pm for nibbles. Screening starts at 7.00pm.

 

Water to be interrupted in Condobolin

 

Condobolin Water Supply to be interrupted in Condobolin on the 1st May.

 

by Melissa Blewitt

There will be a complete loss of water supply to 30 Streets in Condobolin on 1 May.

The interruption will happen between 8am and 7pm, as Lachlan Shire Council (LSC) undertakes planned valve replacement works in Denison and Orange Streets.

“The interruption is to allow Council to undertake critical maintenance works prior to upgrading water mains in Denison Street,” LSC Director of Infrastructure Services Phil King said.

“Residents in the affected areas are requested to open an outside tap (preferably the closest tap to your meter) once loss of supply has commenced.

“This will assist with pressure and discolouration. Council advises that taps be left open for three minutes following water supply being reinstated.”

“You can direct this water through a sprinkler, so that it doesn’t go to waste” Mr King said.

The streets that will be affected are: Madline Street (far eastern end); Maitland Street (east of Leifermann St); Jones Lane; Browns Lane; Worthingtons Lane; Willis Lane; Burnett Street; May Street; Parkes Road; Station Street; Rogers Street; Kurrajong Street; Honan Street; Mooney Street; Goobang Street; Gordon Street; Denison Street; North Forbes Road; Willow Bend Village; Willow Bend Road; Oxley Street; Marsden Street; Evans Street; Bathurst Street (east of William St); Lachlan Street (east of William St); Orange Street (east of Melrose St); Molong Street (east of Melrose St); William Street (Molong St to Bathurst St); Napier Street (south of Molong St); and McDonnell Street (south of Molong St).

Residents in all other streets of Condobolin may experience reduced pressure and water discolouration, although it is not expected that complete loss of water supply will occur in other streets.

“All consumers are advised they may experience some further discoloration of the supply in the 24 to 48 hours following the works,” Mr King said.

“Residents in the affected areas are requested to ensure they have ample water in reserve to cover their requirements during the interruption to service.”

A letter and a map, outlining all of the affected streets, will also be sent to residents, Mr King said.

Residents who have a special water need, should contact LSC immediately for service arrangements to be made.

For further information contact Lachlan Shire Council’s Manager Utilities Chris Perry, during office hours on 02 6895 1900.

Whiddon wants out

• The Whiddon Group “Is no longer prepared to operate the Condobolin Service in partnership with LSC (Lachlan Shire Council).” MB 

The Whiddon Group released the following letter to residents, families, staff and the Condobolin community on Tuesday, 19 April, 2016. It pertains to the negotiations between the company and Lachlan Shire Council in relation to a two-year lease extension at the Condobolin Retirement Village.

 

To our residents and families, our employees and the Condobolin community.

As many of you are aware, Whiddon has been negotiating with the Lachlan Shire Council (LSC) to enable our organisation to continue with the management  of the Condobolin Aged Care Services and Independent Living Units.

Our initial negotiations began in December 2015 and up until March 2016 we were hopeful that both parties would enter an agreement to extend our management of the service for a further two years.

Whiddon committed more than 240k in 2015 to provide new equipment and update areas of the home, including the dementia care wing. Furthermore, we wrote to the LSC in November 2015 confirming that Whiddon would commit an additional 260k towards repainting the entire home, asbestos remediation and equipment upgrades.

Over and above these investments, and following Whiddon’s appointment in 2010 as managers of the service, we have subsidised operating losses in excess of $2M dollars as at December 2015. Our actions and investment not only underpins Whiddon’s strong commitment to the service, but also our willingness to remain embedded in the Condobolin community.

Whiddon plays an important role as a care provider in rural remote NSW and this is demonstrated every day at locations auch as Condobolin, Temora, Bourke, Walgett, Wee Waa and Narrabri. We understand the important role we play in caring for local people while also keeping our residents connected to their families and communities. We also understand the role services such as this play in contributing to the local economy and in providing employment opportunities  for local people. Whiddon contributes millions of dollars annually to rural and remote communities across NSW. This occurs through the creation of stable employment, ongoing skill development and our daily spend with local businesses, valued at $3M per annum.

Given the commitment that we have already demonstrated, we were very disappointed at the content of the article, which was published on the front page of The Lachlander, announcing that the LSC intended to place the service on the market and did not intend to extend the term of the management agreement beyond six months. The article was published with the knowledge that the service was due for re-accreditation in August 2016 and that Whiddon has already commenced a $500K upgrade for 2016, in addition to the substantial financial commitment made over the past 6 years.

Given the instability, unnecessary angst caused for the residents and employees, and delays we have experienced working with LSC, Whiddon is no longer prepared to operate the Condobolin Service in partnership with LSC.

We are a not-for-profit organisation and have more than proven that we are not driven by  commercial outcomes at Condobolin. Our actions to date clearly demonstrate that our interest lie in providing quality a aged care services to the Condobolin Community. Despite the challenges we have faced, we have a genuine desire to continue to operate this service long into the future, invest in the home and its employees, and provide provide care and support to our residents and their families.

Noting that Whiddon, not the LSC, have subsidised $2M in losses, over the last 5 years, it is our belief that the Condobolin Community will be best served with the property and service owned outright and being operated by Whiddon. The LSC Council do not currently share this view.

The Condobolin  Service does not generate sufficient funds to meet the ongoing needs of the building or replace equipment as it begins to age, and given Whiddon’s size and experience in locations such as this, it is our view that we are best placed to continue to subsidise operations into the future, and serve the community’s needs. We have a well earned reputation for quality care services in the many regional, rural and remote locations that we serve and our priorities will always lie with our residents, their families, our employees and the community.

The LSC have indicated that they are not prepared to accept the recommendation, made by Whiddon, and as such we have been left with no other choice but to allow our Management Agreement to lapse. In order to assist with any future transition of the service back to LSC whiddon will firstly provide three months notice effective today.

We, like yourselves,  must now be guided by the LSC and will wait to understand how they wish to proceed.  It is important to note that under the provisions within the Aged Care Act 1997 the situation we find ourselves in hinders  Whiddons ability to provide ongoing security of tenure for our residents. This means that we will cease to take new admissions until the LSC makes their intentions known. Rest assured that we will continue to care for all our existing  residents. Additionally, staff will continue to be employed by Whiddon to continue to meet the needs of our residents in Condobolin.

The decision to proceed this way has not been made lightly; it has weighed heavily on many of us and goes against Whiddon’s core principals. However, continuing with the current arrangement will compromise our services and ultimately impact on our esidents and employees in a manner that we are not prepared to support.

It is our belief that by moving this into the public arena you will be able to voice your opinion directly to the LSC or your local MP. We genuinely hope that with your support we can convince the LSC to allow Whiddon to move forward and continue operating this vital community service.

Notwithstanding, we would like to extend our thanks to Robert Hunt, LSC General Manager, and Cr Des Manwaring, who have shown great support and consideration for our residents and employees at the Condobolin Aged Care Service and Independent Living Units.

Whiddon is also keen to hear from you on this matter, so please feel free to contact us at media@whiddon.com.au.

 

Sincerely,

Chris Mamarelis.

Chief Executive Officer.

 

Lachlan Shire and Whiddon end partnership

Negotiations for two year Village lease extension reach breaking point

By Melissa Blewitt

The partnership between Lachlan Shire Council (LSC) and The Whiddon Group is coming to an end.

Negotiations between the two, for the extension of a two-year lease agreement at the Condobolin Retirement Village have broken down.

In a letter obtained by The Condobolin Argus, The Whiddon Group, states “Given the instability, unnecessary angst caused for residents and employees, and delays we have experienced working with the LSC, Whiddon is no longer prepared to operate the Condobolin Service in partnership with the LSC.”

In response, LSC General Manager, Robert Hunt, said he believed The Whiddon Group was using “very heavy-handed tactics” in a bid to force Council into effectively gifting the facility to it.

“Whiddon has indicated they want to terminate their partnership with LSC,” he said.

“They have cited an article published in The Lachlander, as one of the main reasons for ending the agreement.

“We have been negotiating with Whiddon for a lengthy amount of time and accept they no longer want to operate the Condobolin Retirement Village.

“LSC has done everything in its power to conduct transparent and honest negotiations, and it seems Whiddon is not prepared to do the same.”

The agreement with Whiddon will come to an end on 30 June.

A letter which has been distributed by The Whiddon Group to residents, staff and the community, “flies in the face” of the current agreement, according to Mr Hunt.

“It was prepared without any consultation with LSC, and will cause nothing but unnecessary anguish, fear and stress to residents, families, staff and the community,” he said.

“It also contains statements which are inaccurate and misrepresent Council’s communication with Whiddon.

“LSC had been, as recently as Tuesday, 18 April, in talks with Whiddon.

“The letter makes no mention of the significant financial contribution Council has made to capital improvements at the facility.”

Mr Hunt explained the land on which the Retirement Village sits, cannot be sold, until it is reclassified from community land to operational land and this would take several months.

“Council cannot sell or transfer the [Village] land to anyone at this time,” he said.

LSC will decide at today’s Council Meeting whether it will call for Expressions of Interest, to engage another operator for the facility.

“We want to ensure a smooth transition of arrangements for the continuing care and welfare of the residents in particular,” Mr Hunt said.

Meet NSW Farmers President Derek Schoen

 

Presdient of the NSW Farmers Association Derek Schoen will be in town on 20 April to attend a Condobolin Branch meeting. It will be a chance for members to ask questions and advise him of farming issues within the Shire. Cont

 

By Melissa Blewitt

Condobolin Branch members of the NSW Farmers Association will have the chance to meet with President Derek Schoen, on Wednesday, 20 April.
He will be in town, along with new Regional Services Manager South West Simone Norrie, to meet with members and non members at the Condobolin Sports Club from 6.30pm.
Mr Schoen will give an update on issues NSW Farmers is currently working on, including the much anticipated new draft biodiversity laws which are expected to be released for consultation this month.
It will give local landholders a chance to ask them both questions and let them know of farming issues in the Condobolin region.
The Association has recently undergone a restructure with the dissolution of District Council’s, and Mr Schoen and Ms Norrie feel now more than ever, that the Condobolin Branch is an important asset to our community and a great platform to have our voices heard at a State and Federal level.
Nibbles will be provided.
For more information contact Simone Norrie on norries@nswfarmers.org.au or phone 0427 773 495.

New home to attract Shire staff

8 McGregor Street, one of the older and smaller homes to be sold to purchase better quality homes for staff.

 

By Melissa Blewitt

 

Lachlan Shire Council (LSC) has purchased an executive home to be rented by its General Manager, Robert Hunt.

A decision to purchase the home was made after Councillors decided to sell two of LSC’s other older residential properties to offset the cost of the upgraded dwelling.

Councillors, at an Extraordinary  Meeting held on the 3rd February, voted largely in favour of purchasing the residence, with Manwaring, Scott, Ridley, Nelson, Hall, Phillips and Frankel voting for the motion, while Brady and Saunders voted against.

Mr Hunt will pay full market rent back to Council, and the decision to purchase was seen as a way of enhancing Council’s prospects of retaining and attracting future senior staff to the Shire.

LSC was advised in a report by Rural Recruitment Consultant Terrey Kiss with Blackadder Associates, that “reality must be faced and it should be understood that Local Government in the current era is different to that of the 70s, 80s and 90s. Staff are not willing to relocate to rural areas for career advancement.”

The report went on to say, “Potential applicants will not wish to lower their living standards to relocate, nor will they want to purchase or build in a country town in the early stages of employment.

“Council should consider building modern residences for the staff they are wishing to recruit. Rental is a matter of negotiation, however, it should be subsidised to a certain degree.”

The report also urged LSC to ensure they provided a competitive-plus salary component, and more attractive ancillary benefits, such as performance bonuses and vehicle usage.

Providing modern accommodation for staff forms part of many NSW Council’s employment practices.

For instance, at Tenterfield Shire Council, they recently offered an attractive four-bedroom residence with a large yard at a highly subsidised rental, as part of their employment package for the General Manager’s position. A Toyota Prado vehicle was also part of the deal.

LSC Mayor John Medcalf said he understood there may be some concern in the community about purchasing residential properties for use by staff, however many other rural councils provide residential properties for senior staff and it was imperative that LSC was able to compete with those other councils in attracting and retaining experienced and qualified professional staff.

Improving animal welfare in Shire

Lachlan Shire Council (LSC) Ranger Willy Cunningham and LSC Director of Environment and Planning Andrew Johns (back) together with Monique O’Reilly, Gemma Ma, Dr Ann-Margret Withers, Jess Pooley, Narelle Maxwell and Darci Bradford of RSPCA NSW, at the makeshift veterinary clinic set up at Condobolin Tennis Club Hall last week. MB.

 

By Melissa Blewitt

 

In a bid to reduce the number of unwanted companion animals in Lachlan Shire and improve their overall health, RSPCA NSW desexed, microchipped and vaccinated 100 animals in the town last week.

The project was part of the Community Animal Welfare Scheme (CAWS) which has been an initiative of RSPCA NSW in regional NSW for the past 13 years, helping to reduce the number of unwanted cats and dogs ending up in pounds.

A makeshift and temporarily registered veterinary clinic was set up at the Condobolin Tennis Club Hall, after permission was granted by the Veterinary Practitioners Board of NSW.

The program was funded by Lachlan Shire Council, through NSW Government’s Responsible Pet Ownership Grants Program, and organised by local Ranger Willy Cunningham.

“Since this program began six years ago, we’ve seen a decrease in the number of dogs dying from the deadly parvovirus, and less unwanted puppies and kittens being abandoned,” Mr Cunningham said.

“It is important for pet owners to understand that Parvovirus is 100 per cent preventable with an appropriate course of vaccinations.

“The virus is especially active in the warmer months, and is rampant in this area over summer. It’s an absolutely awful disease. So vaccinations are extremely important.

“This is a very important program for the Shire and I want to commend and thank all the pet owners who participated.”

CAWS has been run in 16 communities, like the Lachlan Shire, for over a decade.

“This program is important as it offers services to pensioners and low income earners: who would not usually be able to afford veterinary care,” RSPCA NSW Community Outreach Programs Veterinarian Doctor Ann-Margret Withers, who ran the Condobolin Clinic, said. “The procedures were provided at a slightly subsidised cost to the owners. The program is about education and prevention.

“One hundred animals in a week is a big effort, but it will make a difference in local communities, and that is what it really is all about.”

Help fight illegal dumping in the Shire

Help fight illegal dumping in the Shire

By Melissa Blewitt

Want to help fight illegal dumping in the Lachlan Shire?

Lachlan Shire Council will launch a new initiative, RIDonline, aimed at reducing illegal dumping, this week.

RIDonline is an online reporting portal targeting illegal dumping in the local area, and will be launched at 10am on Thursday, 14 April at Renown Park in Condobolin.

Illegal dumping occurs across dozens of regional and rural areas, in national parks, state reserves and on crown lands and roadways.

The NetWaste member councils of Lachlan, Forbes, Parkes, Cobar, Central Darling and Lithgow were awarded $120,000 in NSW Government funding under the Waste Less, Recycle More initiative. The the aim is to identify illegal dumping hotspots within each local government area.

RIDonline can be accessed via a smartphone whenever people come across illegally dumped waste. Simply visit ridonline.epa.nsw.gov.au, enter the type of waste, location and add a photo to report an incident. The reports from RIDonline will be used to create a baseline register of illegal dumping incidents for each council area, which will help to inform future anti-dumping programs and prevention initiatives.

RIDonline can also be accessed via the ‘Report to EPA’ App for smart devices. This project is a NSW EPA Waste Less, Recycle More initiative funded from the waste levy.

 

Oats for profit and versatility

 by Anne Coffey                    Advertorial

As wheat prices continue to plummet principal of Condo Milling, Tony Slade, is urging farmers to think about oats as a potential cash crop this year.

“Oats has a lot going for it” said Tony. “It’s hardy, less expensive to grow and can be grazed if the season dictates. Also oat stubbles make good grazing and an early summer rain often brings a self sown crop that you can finish lambs on. “

“Oat seed quality is important to us, so a dedicated seed crop always has higher potential for quality grain” he said

Oats offers considerable dividends and Condo Milling is offering repeat customers the opportunity to lock in prices for harvest.

“Come in and discuss your options” said Tony. “We are a local business having a go and offering alternatives for farmers in the region. At the moment we require around 100 tonne a week to meet our milling commitments.

We are also looking for quality oat seed to top up our suppliers who want top quality product.”

Condo Milling are currently buying oats but are also keen to shore up their supplies for next year.

“We have our storage and finance options under control for harvest and can even pick up on farm. We can give people the option to store grain for later pick up if this suits them. All they need to do is talk to us. We have competitive prices on offer, but we do have minimum standards that we have to meet.”

“Some grain last year was very light and we were unable to use it for milling. We will take most grades but prefer the milling varieties, echidna, matika, but will take yarran as it is popular and offers grazing options to famers.”

Phone and  talk to Tony today to arrange your harvest options 0428 975 236 or Office 02 68 953 399.

 

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