Canowindra, Grenfell and Peak Hill Showgirls are Sydney boundPhotos

Posted July 22nd, 2018 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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Canowindra, Grenfell and Peak Hill Showgirls are Sydney bound | Photos Zone 6 showgirl winners are Meg Austin, Canowindra; Francesca Scutella, Grenfell, and Mikaela Dart, Peak Hill.
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Lucy Dovall, Forbes; Sarah Sweeny and Kathryn Sweeney supporting Amelia Sweeney representing Forbes Show Society at Zone 6

Wellington Show Society Jane Brien with Hayden Cox of Mudgee at Zone 6 judging.

Ben Walker, Grenfell, with Young Showgirl Marina McMillan with her family, Daniel, Rebecca and Desiree McMillan.

Member for Riverina Michael McCormack, with Cowra Show Society president Anne Jeffery, and ASC past president Tim O’Brien.

Bedgerabong Showgirl Brittney Bishop with Bedgerabong Show Society secretary Anne Earney.

Camilla Kenny state finalist 2016 chats with David Fagan at the zone judging at Cowra

Scott Clarkson and Jo Cox, with Wellington showgirl Jane Brien and Hayden Cox.

Condobolin Showgirl Rachel Beasnett with parents Peter and Debra Brasnett and Nicholas Mead.

]Zone 6 Showgirls going through to Sydney with Member for Riverina Michael McCormack.

Cowra Showgirl Amelia Savva enjoying the atmosphere of the night.

Trundle Show Society showgirl Kate Nixon supported by Dominique, James and Elise Nixon on Saturday night.

Showgirls from Zone 6.

Jean Wenlace, Frenchs Forest Sydney; Jake Taylor, Caragabal; Francesca Scutella representing Grenfell PAH& I Assoc., and Fiona Scutella supporting Francesca at Zone 6 judging.

Warren Showgirl Chelsea Monkley with mum Carolyn enjoying the night.

Kathleen and Scott Wakefield, “Nyrang Park”, Parkes, and Luke Swindle, Parkes supporting Parkes PA & H Assoc showgirl Haylee Wakefield.

Nyngan Show Society Showgirl Katie Hamblin with Parents Ian and Tambry Hamblin.

The Land Sydney Royal Showgirl Grace Eppeleston with her parents Jacqui and Scott at Cowra Zone judging.

Royal Bathurst Showgirl Emma Murphy supported by her parents Fiona and Steve Murphy.

Ray Cannon with Peak Hill PA & H Association showgirl Mikaela Dart and Jo Wadsworth enjoying the night.

Anne-Marie Phillis, Taylah Phillis, Harden Murrumburrah Show Society and sister Cara Phillis enjoying the night.

Scott and Anna Brien Wellington, supporting their daughter Jane at Zone 6 judging.

Helen and Rick Jeffery with daughter Hannah, representing Narromine Show Society.

Cowra Showgirl Melanie Savva is supported by Dorothy Parto, Samantha Savva, Alana Johnston and Rachel Moore of the Cowra Show Society.

Blayney showgirl Annika Brown with Ben Colenso, Wagga Wagga.

Nyngan Showgirl Katie Hamblin, Royal Bathurst Showgirl Emma Murphy and Orange Showgirl Katherine Wannan catch up and the showgirl dinner at Cowra.

Royal Bathurst Showgirl co-ordinator, Vicki Wilson, and president Sam Farraway, supporting their showgirl Emma Murphy.

Kelly Dart,; Ray Cannon, Peak Hill Show Association; Showgirl Mikaela Dart, with Gavin Dart and Jo Wadsworth, catching up at Zone 6 judging.

Kyle Cain, Dubbo Showgirl, Pagan Hockley with parents Christine and Steven Hockley “Merhovia”, Dubbo

Blayney Showgirl Annika supported by Eric Brown and Naomi Beleeky.

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Lions jewel in Stephanie’s crown

Posted July 22nd, 2018 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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Youth of the year: Port Macquarie’s Stephanie Clark was named the region 3 winner of the Lions Youth of the Year on Saturday March 4. Pic: Allen Philp
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Port Macquarie’s Stephanie Clark is in line for the national final of Lions Youth of the Year.

The St Columba Anglican School student was named the region 3 winner on Saturday. She will now compete in the district finals in Coffs Harbour at the end of March.

With the state finals set for Forbes in April, Stephanie could then progress to the national final in Hobart on May 8.

The region judging was held at Port City Bowling Club and hosted by the Port Macquarie-Tacking Point Lions Club.

Event coordinator Mal Murray praised all four contestants.

“There was a very strong field for judging on Saturday night with Luke Strong from Manning River Lions Club, Stephanie Clark representing Port Macquarie Lions Club, Jorga Attard from the Port Macquarie-Tacking Point Lions Club andMaitrix Sumptner-Johnston representing the Taree Lions Club,” he said.

“All four were wonderful ambassadors for their community and their respective Lions Clubs.

“The youth of the year is designed to encourage, foster and develop leadership in conjunction with other citizenship qualities in our youth.

“As a former teacher, I think this is important at an age when these young people are about to enter the fields of employment or higher education.

“This program provides students with the incentive to pay greater attention to the general qualities, so vital in developing our youth into first class citizens.

“The qualities sought after, apart from academic attainments are those of leadership, personality, sportsmanship, public speaking and good citizenship.”

Mr Murray said there was 64 people at the dinner with the night sponsored byPort Macquarie NAB, Port News, Port City Bowling Club, Hastings District Flying Club, Port Macquarie Car Wash, Town Green Inn, Rivermark Restaurant, Grumpys, Nostalgia Cafe, Bean Tree Cafe, Lake Innes Bakery,Douglas Vale Vineyard, Will & Able Laundromat and Bookface,

“Asincerethank you from all the members of the Tacking Point Lions Club foryour continuedsupport,” he added.

Judging covered two key categories: public speaking and resume and interviews.

Hot field: Luke Strong, from Manning River Lions Club, Stephanie Clark from the Port Macquarie Lions Club, Jorga Attard from Port Macquarie Tacking Point Lions Club and Maitrix Sumptner-Johnston representing the Taree Lions Club. Pic: Allen Philp

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Merino wool style wins

Posted July 22nd, 2018 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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Graham and Roy Robertson, “Lynlea”, Bookham, with their winning draft of Merino ewes.Roy Robertson and his father Graham, “Lynlea”, Bookham, have entered the Bookham-Berremangra Merino ewe competition conducted under the auspices of the Bookham Agricultural Bureausince its inception to track the steady improvement of their flock.
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This year they were rewarded for their commitment to the Merino industry, being awarded first place overall, sponsored by Elders,Yass, and first in the Selected Best Ten Percent class sponsored by Gordon Litchfield Wool, Yass.

Co-judge Mick Corkhill, Grassy Creek Merinos, Reids Flat, complimented the Robertson’s on the style of their sheep.

Richard Hyles, “Westbourne”, Berremangra, with his Merino ewes, placed first in the shortwool section.

“They have really magnificent wool, can handle the water beautifully and have incredible handle, softness and style with beautiful nourishment,’ Mr Corkhill said.

“I can see what you want to do with them, and I totally agree …get a bit more leg, a bit more length of body …but the fundamentals are there.”

Co-judge, Ben Lane, manager Windridge Farms, Young, and formerly of the Uardry Merino stud, Hay, concurred with Mr Corkhill’s comments.

“The top 10 per cent are where you want to be and obviously if you put a bit more size on them that would be great,” he said.

“A bigger ram with a bit more micron is not going to hurt because you have good skin.”

Mr Lane further said the ewes were in perfect condition with depth and good carcase shape.

Second overall, behind the Robertson flock was Caroline Spittle and Rosie Mitchell, Kingslea Partnership, Berramangra, presenting their March-shorn Grogansworth-blood ewes,with Richard Hyles, taking third place displaying his November-shorn Yarrawonga-blood flock.

In the Selected Best Ten Percent, the Robertson flock were judged ahead of Richard Hyles,”Westbourne”, Berremangra, and in third place Caroline Spittle and Rosie Mitchell, Kingslea Partnership, Berremangra.

Competition entrant Sandy Shannon, Bookham Station, Bookham, with his Merino ewes on the point of being shorn.

Mr Hyles was awarded the Grogansworth stud, Yass prize for first place in the shortwool section, while Bill, Marg and Brett Mackay, “Brookfield”, Bowning, were awarded the Encouragement prize sponsored by Bogo Merino stud, Yass.

Mr Mackay has introduced Yarrawonga genetics to lift the production of his traditional finewool flock based on Merryville-blood.

Soft Merino skins the answer at BookhamCommitted to their craft,woolgrowersGraham and Roy Robertson,“Lynlea”, Bookham, have a simple but defined vision when purchasing replacement rams.

Addressingthe gathered woolgrowers during the Bookham Merino ewe competition,Roy Robertsonsaidtheir rams have been selected for the past 20 years for their long staple length and deep crimp.

“We started with a superfine base, and we’ve managed to keep the [fine] micron,” he said.

“It is actually getting finer without really trying as we haven’t fleece micron tested for five years.”

Mr Robertson explained their aim is to breed a good size ewe, growing a long-stapled nice white and deep crimping fleece on a relatively thick skin.

Currently their maiden ewes, based on Tallawong, Merrignee and Yarrawonga genetics are cutting 5.5kg as 10 month lambs and measuring 16.9m.

Recent introductions of rams from the Yass-based studsBogo and Billa Burra Burra have been selected for their type based upon the Robertson philosophy.

Mr Robertson admitted their genetic base is becoming wider, but they continue to have the same determination when purchasing their replacement rams.

“Our ram selection has been focusing on size for the past couple of years and not necessarily on micron at the moment,” Mr Robertson admitted.

“We are not too worried about putting a 20 micronram over these sheep as it doesn’t seem to affect the micron [average] of the flock.”

Co-judge Mick Corkhill agreed with their ambition.

“You talk about putting a 20 micron wool over them …the skin quality of your sheep is spot on,” he said.

“Good skins are going to test …that is the bottom line!”

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World goes nuts for Australian produce

Posted July 22nd, 2019 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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The world is going nuts for Australian farm produce as overseas markets clamour for locally grown nuts such as almonds and macadamias as well as agricultural stalwarts such as beef, lamb, wool and cotton.
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The value of Australian farm production is forecast to surge by 8.3 per cent this financial year to a massive $63.8 billion, thanks to favourable seasonal conditions in most farming areas and strong prices for major exports such as beef, lamb and wool.

Production records have been smashed across the country, and with the overwhelming majority of our farm produce sent overseas, the value of farm exports is forecast to hit $47.7 billion in 2016-17 and rise even higher next year, to a record $48.7 billion.

Australia is tipped to export a record volume of wheat (22.8 million tonnes), barley (7.4 million tonnes) and chickpeas (1.4 million tonnes), and earn a record $75 million plus from cherry exports.

But a new story is emerging behind the Australian farm gate. The value of tree nut exports is projected to be $760 million in 2016-17, down on last year but still the second highest on record.

The nutty success has seen Australia rise to become the second-largest almond exporter in the world, and largest exporter of macadamias. The biggest buyers of Australian almonds in 2015-16 were India and Spain, while the biggest buyer of Australian macadamias was China.

Australia’s agriculture boom is reflected in figures to be released on Tuesday by the federal government’s agricultural economics forecaster, the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences, at the Outlook 2017 conference in Canberra.

“The exceptional value of farm production this year comes off the back of record crop production and strong performance across livestock industries,” ABARES executive director Peter Gooday said.

More good news lies ahead for Australian farmers, with strong export earnings growth forecast in 2017-18 for sectors including cotton (export earnings forecast to rise 35 per cent), dairy (up 11 per cent), and wool (up 10 per cent).

“It’s a record-breaking year and it’s mainly on the crop side of things that it’s a record-breaking year,” said Trish Gleeson, acting chief commodity analyst for ABARES.

“The winter crop that we’ve just harvested, for the first time, has been a record in every state. So that’s quite significant because usually, if we have a poor year in the eastern states, Western Australia has a bonza year. But this time [there’s] a record in each state for winter crop production,” she said.

National Farmers Federation president Fiona Simson strongly welcomed the report.

“Ag might be the new black,” she said.

“There’s been a lot of talk about a golden era for agriculture. And I think figures like this really show that agriculture is on the rise.

“We have been contributing for many generations solidly to the GDP, but to see these sorts of increases, to see these sorts of numbers – which NFF has been tipping for some time – is extremely satisfying,” she said.

“We think that agriculture is actually one of, if not the, fastest growing industries in Australia at the moment.”

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Two trends have turned reporting season into Results Roulette

Posted July 22nd, 2019 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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There are a lot of positive write-ups about the recent results season.
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I’ve read about a 20 per cent rise in total gross profit and a 475 per cent rise in pre-tax profit but, this year, believing these numbers is a trap because the whole thing is distorted by the BHP result.

BHP Billiton saw last year’s $5.669 billion net loss after a $7.184 billion impairment charge turn into a $3.204 billion profit. So it’s no good looking at the average of all stocks, it’s all muddled by BHP.

Of more interest to me was the ever growing volatility of company share prices post results announcements.

A 3 per cent move in a share price used to be a big thing. This results season more than half of the 260 odd results we logged moved more than 3 per cent on the day of their results. More than a third moved more than 5 per cent and more than one in 10 moved by 10 per cent.

Since their results, about half the stocks are up and half are down so this is more about the one-day movements than everything rising or falling. It is about ever increasing volatility on the day of announcements and it is happening for two reasons. 1. Continuous disclosure

Companies are not allowed to feed any price sensitive information into the market without a public announcement. Gone are the days when a company would talk to its favourite broker about how things were going and then leave it to them to write some research and quietly and slowly massage the market’s expectations towards something realistic and in so doing head off any precipitous share price falls. It was called “managing expectations”.

That’s no longer allowed. Net result, price sensitive information is now dumped on the market in one rare lump and the price reactions are understandably sharp and instantaneous. Some of the small and mid-cap companies don’t have the systems, investor relations departments or time to constantly monitor profits and to constantly manage expectations. So it is no wonder that when they announce their results every six months, it comes with an information dump and subsequent price reaction.2. Computer trading

ASIC did a study in March 2015 of high frequency trading (HFT). They had access to all trading information going back years. The study told us that, as of March 2015, nearly half of all orders entered into the market came from computers. Nearly a third of all trades by number were done by computers and a quarter of all turnover was executed by computers. Nearly four out of five of all computer-based orders were being done by just 10 big HFT players and the average holding time of an order in the market was 51 minutes.

In the futures market, which drives the equity market, the numbers are higher and increasing. If you then consider that 30 per cent of market turnover is also being done off-market in “dark pools”, anonymous order matching systems, then it looks like humans are only doing about 43 per cent of market turnover and that was back in March 2015. It will be less now.

HFT chases volatility. The algorithms that they run on detect other people’s orders in the screen, executed trades and short-term price trends and respond to that in nanoseconds without any consideration for fundamentals.

And a warning to company CEOs who are drafting their results announcements, the algorithms are also now electronically scanning the words of announcements, no humans involved, and picking up on adjectives and phrases like “profit warning” and “lowered guidance” or “raised guidance”. And they instantaneously start placing orders in response. So watch what you write. Especially in the headlines.

That algorithm activity is then picked up by the activity matching algorithms and, Bob’s your uncle, WorleyParsons opens down 21.8 per cent on the day of the results. Only to bounce 11.5 per cent by the end of the day.

Notably this all happens before any analysis is done by the brokers or the big institutional fund managers. The action stems from computer algorithms. The idea that this is being done by individual retail investors sitting at home, is laughable. Retail investors cannot move WorleyParsons 21.8 per cent on the open.

But rather than get upset, we have to accept. ASIC’s study into HFT concluded that while it might be exaggerating short-term price movements, HFT was not disrupting the integrity of the market or materially raising the costs of execution enough to ban it. It is here to stay. ASIC is clearly happy to sit back and let it happen, and the ASX has no interest in limiting it because they are raking it in from HFT customers paying for high speed data feeds with terabytes of information being provided by the exchange at huge cost.

You just have to get used to it. It used to be called the results season. Now it’s “results roulette”.

Marcus Padley is a director of MTIS Pty Ltd, the author of the daily stock market newsletter Marcus Today. For a free trial of the Marcus Today newsletter please go to marcustoday南京夜网419论坛.

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Hiding behind a public servant

Posted July 22nd, 2019 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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Minister Alan Tudge during question time at Parliament House in Canberra on Thursday 2 March 2017. Photo: Andrew Meares Photo: Andrew MearesThe government’s attempt to ratchet up the level of Centrelink funds recouped from overpaid welfare recipients is turning into another of its government’s spectacular policy failures. A detailed analysis of the policy, tellingly labelled “robo-debt” by its critics, will need to await the many reviews that are already under way, including those by the Commonwealth Ombudsman and the Senate’s community affairs reference committee. (The Auditor-General, with so many juicy topics to get his teeth into, has happily ceded this one to the Ombudsman, at least for the time being.) But the main problems are already clear from media reports.
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The basic premise of the policy is sensible and well-established: that Centrelink payments should be matched against income information held by the Australian Taxation Office to identify individuals who wrongly received welfare payments when their earnings made them ineligible. Such cross-checks leading to recovery of debts had been conducted manually since the mid-1990s. In 2011, the Gillard Labor government, under Tanya Plibersek (minister of human services) and Bill Shorten (assistant treasurer), introduced an automated system of cross-matching data from the two agencies. As a result, Centrelink staff were able to identify overpayments more efficiently. The amount of recovered government debt climbed significantly.

The new policy builds on Labor’s scheme but relies solely on an algorithm to identify possible double-dippers and to send them a letter without allowing staff any discretion over whom should be approached. It casts the net widely, consciously targeting many who will turn out to have done nothing wrong but allowing them the opportunity to prove their innocence by providing relevant documents. The government has justified its approach, citing the need to prevent illegal claims for assistance and the extra funds that will be added to the budget bottom line. The Public Sector Informant: latest issue

The policy has attracted criticism on a number of fronts. The algorithm itself is crude and simplistic. For instance, it equates average fortnightly earnings based on annual income reported to the Tax Office as equivalent to actual fortnightly earnings, overlooking the intermittent working histories of many Centrelink clients. The policy also places the onus of correcting errors on to the individual client, without acknowledging the human cost imposed on honest law-abiding citizens who are effectively accused of cheating the government and the taxpayer. Finally, the pressures on Centrelink’s communication systems mean that citizens face horrendous difficulties in trying to correct their records.

While this ill-conceived operation will yield many lessons for policymakers, it also raises interesting issues in relation to government accountability. To begin with, like the scandal over parliamentary travel expenses, discussed in last month’s Informant, the hostile public reaction has been greatly inflamed by timing. Robo-debt letters started arriving just before Christmas and the groundswell of public protest grew steadily over the holiday season. The story, with its continuous stream of heart-wrenching personal cases, was a godsend to political journalists desperate for copy during the dog days of the summer break, when governments generate so little news.

Timing also caught ministers on the hop. When the media storm gathered pace in the days immediately after new year, the responsible minister, Alan Tudge, was on holiday and could not be reached for comment. Filling in for him, the Minister for Social Services, Christian Porter, defended the robo-debt letters as meeting the government’s policy objectives and “working incredibly well”. Though Porter was the senior minister in the portfolio, the continuing absence of Tudge, the sponsor of the policy and long-time advocate of getting tough on welfare fraud, drew mounting criticism. When he returned to work the following week, it was to headlines such as “Centrelink minister finally emerges, says everything is fine”.

That a minister could be criticised for not returning from vacation until the second week of January is a sign of changing expectations. At that time of year, most of Australia’s movers and shakers are only halfway through their summer break, still holidaying overseas or looking forward to meeting up with friends and acquaintances at the tennis, which has not yet begun. They would look on Tudge’s return to Canberra, about January 10, as unluckily early not unconscionably late. These days, however, the news media operate on a continuous cycle, not only 24/7 but also 12/12.

Failure to recognise fully that the media’s interest in holding governments accountable does not take a summer break might help to explain why both ministers, Porter and then Tudge, were slow to acknowledge the seriousness of the problems facing the robo-debt policy. Still partly in vacation mode, they may have hoped the holidaying public could be fobbed off with bland assurances that the policy was running smoothly as planned.

Tudge may have also taken false comfort from the fact Centrelink has its own designated spokesman, Hank Jongen, who often takes the lead in publicly explaining and defending the agency’s actions. Jongen’s position, as a named spokesman, is unusual in the Australian Public Service. The only recent parallel is the role played by Sandi Logan, who was the prominent public voice of the Immigration Department from 2005 until 2013 when he was moved on by the new minister, Scott Morrison. For the most part, the task of explaining and justifying policy is properly undertaken by ministers, not public servants. On occasions where a politically neutral official view is called for, the appropriate person is either the departmental secretary, identified by name, or an anonymous agency spokesperson.

Jongen’s role can be understood within the evolution of Centrelink, which he joined when it was first established by the incoming Howard government in 1997 as a stand-alone delivery agency. Its creation was part of the then fashion for executive agencies pioneered by the “next steps” agencies in Britain. The rationale for executive agencies was that service delivery should be separated from direct political control. Governments and ministers (the “purchasers”) should be responsible for setting and funding general policy while executive agencies (the “providers”), under independent chief executives, would be separately responsible for implementing policy efficiently and effectively.

In that context, it made sense for Centrelink, without a minister officially responsible for its day-to-day operations, to look for new ways to communicate with its clients, now badged as “customers”. Cometh the hour, cometh the man. Since that time, Jongen has proved himself to be an able communicator and advocate for Centrelink in its manifold interfaces with the community. He is active on social media and clearly helps many members of the public find their way around the agency’s complex systems.

Centrelink, however, is no longer a separate agency at arm’s length from ministers. Indeed, it probably never was. As the British soon discovered, Westminster expectations do not tolerate ministers who wash their hands of responsibility for administrative performance. After a few high-profile cases of blame-shifting, the Blair government reimposed full ministerial responsibility for executive agencies. The agencies have remained as separate organisations focused on service delivery but ministers take responsibility for their actions in the standard way.

Similar thinking underpinned the inclusion of Centrelink in the new Department of Human Services in 2004. Centrelink would continue as a separate delivery agency, along with Medicare and other constituent agencies, but would come under direct ministerial control, albeit under a separate minister for human services.

Being part of a departmental structure makes Jongen’s role as designated spokesman more anomalous, particularly when it involves defending government policy. For example, in the latest controversy over the robo-debt letters, he has been in the thick of public argument, expressing confidence in the online compliance system and the checking procedures. On several occasions, he has argued that the letters are not debt letters but merely lawful requests for information. The alleged “error” rate of 20 per cent is not an error rate at all.

These are all arguable positions but, in the current context, they are also highly controversial, not to say partisan. It is Tudge, as minister, or other senior ministers and the Prime Minister, who should be expected to make this case for the government. Allowing Jongen to mount a defence on behalf of Centrelink gives the impression that Centrelink, not the government, is responsible for the policy. This impression is reinforced by the fact that Jongen is often identified as “general manager” as if he were the agency head. (The department has about 30 “general managers” and its organisational chart lists Jongen merely as “departmental spokesperson”.)

No doubt ministers are happy to have Jongen draw some of the hostile political flak away from themselves and towards the hapless bureaucrats in Centrelink. But the robo-debt crisis is a classic illustration of the need for ministers to take full responsibility for both policy and implementation. Ministers have certainly determined the general directions. They have looked for significant budgetary savings while depriving Centrelink of the staffing resources needed to administer the policy fairly and compassionately. As members of a right-of-centre government, they naturally lack empathy with welfare recipients and have thus encouraged a tough-minded attitude among loyal senior officials.

No doubt some of the failure is due to bureaucratic incompetence, which will be thrashed over in future reviews and reports. But such problems do not occur in a political vacuum. As the home insulation debacle demonstrated, government failure often flows from the determination of headstrong ministers to override practical difficulties. In such cases, ministers must take responsibility for the consequences of their actions and not hide behind their overstretched public servants.

Richard Mulgan is an emeritus professor at the ANU’s Crawford School of Public Policy. [email protected]论坛

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Partisan officials undermining the public service

Posted July 22nd, 2019 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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News New Public Service Commisioner John LloydThe Canberra Times Date: 22 January 2015Photo Jay Cronan Photo: Jay CronanOnce upon a time, Australian Public Service staff were absolutely prohibited by legislation – regulation 34(b) – from making any public comment on any matter relating to official business.
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The regulation could be taken seriously. In the early 1960s, the director of the Commonwealth Serum Laboratories (then part of the Health Department) was bold enough to publicly criticise legislation affecting his organisation. He was charged with improper conduct and had his rank and salary reduced as a result of actions taken by what The Age newspaper called “the Pecksniffian chiefs of the Public Service Board”.

Regulation 34(b) was based on an apprehension that if staff were to get caught up in partisan political debate the public would lose confidence in their ability to serve whatever government they elected. In turn, this would tempt governments to ditch merit and fill public service positions with political cronies. That’s standard practice in some countries, including the United States. Indeed, in the 1980s, the Hawke government came within a hair’s breadth of reserving a proportion of senior executive service positions for political appointees. The Public Sector Informant: latest issue

The problem with regulation 34(b) was that its absolutism was disproportionate to the politicisation risk. For example, it was one thing for the Treasury secretary to wade fearlessly into public political debate. Indeed, one (John Stone) did and his actions did much to tempt the Hawke government into compromising merit staffing in the SES. On the other hand, there would be little untoward if the local postman (up until 1975 a member of the APS proper) were to write a letter to the editor of his (and they were all men) local newspaper accusing the prime minister of being a dill. Public confidence in the postal service as ever rested on whether the letters turned up in one’s postbox.

Thus, the regulation was repealed in 1974. The Public Service Board explained that the aim was “to give public servants greater freedom by minimising the restrictions on public comment, but at the same time seek to avoid the involvement of staff in public controversy where this could prejudice the identity of a politically impartial career public service”. At the same time, guidelines were issued and staff who overstepped the mark could be disciplined.

And so it has remained and, while their purpose is unchanged, the guidelines have been revised from time. Indeed, the Public Service Commission is examining them to see if they’re adequate amid the perils of “social media” in the modern world.

The Public Service Commissioner, John Lloyd, appears to have been properly vigilant in administering the public comment guidelines. However, he has done himself no favours by writing an article in the Murdoch press barracking to re-establish the Australian Building and Construction Commission, a matter that has nothing to do with his current responsibilities and is a political hot potato if ever there was one. Anyway, not much harm seemed to be done as there were few if any ructions as a consequence of Lloyd rushing into print. And why should there be, as the resuscitated construction watchdog is unlikely to do anything to improve productivity in the industry as it can do no more than try to treat the symptoms of its dysfunctions and not their causes.

But Lloyd’s intervention in policy debate outside his current responsibilities brings to mind the general position of officials who, like him, occupy statutory positions outside the public service. Typically these statutory-office holders perform functions independent, in differing degrees, from ministers and their circumstances are different from public servants in departments, who are directly responsible to their ministers. Indeed, many statutory-office holders have legal and less formal responsibilities to engage in open debate and, at times, advocacy.

Nevertheless, the general principles underpinning the rules about public comment by departmental officials also apply to statutory-office holders. That is to say, they should avoid being seen as politically partisan so as not to cause public concern about their ability to perform their duties in an impartial way or cause political parties who are on the sharp end of their tongues to think about giving them the flick if the opportunity should arise.

With his hands on several major economic levers, Reserve Bank governor Philip Lowe works in a charged political environment. Yet the public utterances of Lowe and his stern predecessor, Glenn Stevens, are in many ways models of how statutory officials should conduct themselves in public. Their speeches are even-handed, take great care to analyse evidence thoroughly and they avoid taking partisan positions. Even then, hazards remain when hapless journalists distort the governor’s remarks for the sake of a headline. For example, a Financial Review journo reported that, in a recent speech, Lowe said he was “backing corporate tax cuts”. The governor did no such thing.

The small business and family enterprise ombudsman, Kate Carnell, should take a leaf from the Stevens-Lowe songbook. While the ombudsman is legally obliged to be an advocate for small business by conducting research, advising ministers, contributing to inquiries and “national strategies” and promoting best practice, she is stretching these responsibilities to breaking point via public statements chock-a-block with the crude political advocacy of second-rate politicians.

In a recent article in the Fairfax press, devoid of analysis and full of assertion, Carnell puts her shoulder behind tax cuts for small businesses, arguing they would boost confidence in the sector and create jobs and investment because “owners won’t pocket the savings”. But she says all this is at risk because “one of the major parties continues to argue against what would undeniably be a vital stepping stone for the future expansion of the sector”. Then, for those not in the know, she adds that, yes, “the federal opposition continues to oppose the flagged tax relief for small business”.

To gain a better understanding of her thinking, Carnell was asked about her estimate of the effective rate of tax in the small business sector, if she thought, as she said, that all owners “would not pocket” a tax reduction or, if not, what proportion might and what estimates she’d made about the employment effect of a tax reduction to 27.5 per cent.

Rather than answer the questions, Carnell blustered, saying the effective tax rate is hypothetical, that “when big businesses are downsizing, small and medium businesses are creating the new employment opportunities”, and speculated that a quarter of the three million SMEs may each take on one new employee.

It’s hard to know where to start with this kind of distorting commentary, but let’s make some points: In the eight years to 2014, employment growth rates in medium to large businesses were three times that in small ones (23 per cent to 8 per cent) while, in the five years to 2016, small businesses created only 5 per cent of the growth in private sector employment.If a tax reduction to 27.5 per cent were to result in a 750,000 increase in employment in SMEs, as Carnell hints, that would reduce unemployment to zero and be more than half as much as the total employment growth to 2020 predicted by the Employment Department, and three times more than the growth the department predicts in the fast-growing healthcare and social assistance area.The effective tax rate is not hypothetical for small businesses: it’s what they experience and one could be excused for thinking that Carnell has not bothered to find out what it might be.It’s London to a brick on that some small businesses would “pocket” a tax cut, and who could blame them if they’re struggling to stay alive given the special difficulties under which they operate, like – as recently summarised in a Reserve Bank paper – greater susceptibility to demand fluctuations, lesser economies of scale, higher fixed costs and often greater difficulty in attracting capital.For those who believe in the so-called “trickle-down” economics of corporate tax cuts, to the extent that these would lead to greater increases in capital in larger enterprises, there may be a sounder employment case for tax reductions for bigger enterprises than smaller ones.

There may be a case for a tax cut for small business. However, the kind of partisan political tactics to which Carnell has resorted is counterproductive. She’s failed to make any rational case for them. Her methods do not foster an open-minded consideration of tax options on their merits. They encourage responses in kind, making it less likely she will be able to advance the interests of her small business constituency. Moreover, it is inappropriate, for the reasons already canvassed, for Commonwealth statutory officials to deliberately take provocative, partisan positions in public debates.

The apparent increasing preference of politicians of all hues to advocate policies on the basis of cheapskate politics rather than the logical analysis of facts and evidence, as best they can be defined, is seriously restricting the federal government’s capacity to improve its management of the economy. The masses are sick of it. The contributions of the Reserve Bank governor and the likes of Productivity Commission chairman Peter Harris may help; those of the small business and family enterprise ombudsman on tax cuts and other matters are unlikely to.

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But to conclude on a lighter note.

On March 1, the Institute of Public Administration Australia and the Public Service Commission put on a $130-a-head do in the Glandel Hall at the National Gallery to mark the approximate second anniversary of the McPhee report on public service personnel management.

A wake might have been better, because this report was almost certainly the worst of its kind in Australia. Any doubt about that could be dispelled by a reading of the 1958 Boyer report, relevant sections of the 1975 Coombs royal commission report, or the public accounts committee’s report in the early 1980s on senior management.

Among other things, the McPhee report encouraged a dilution of merit, proposed measures that confused responsibility for staffing, and entirely ignored the dog’s breakfast of remuneration policy and practice.

The institute and the commision now say that “a key recommendation” of McPhee’s report was “the development of a new employment brand for the APS”. That’s a revealing comment about how inconsequential some of the report’s lesser recommendations were.

Anyway, on the strength of the “key recommendation”, the institute and the commission organised what it called a BRANDit competition, saying a new brand would lead to better engagement and reduced turnover. Entries were sought and more than 700 were received. They were judged by a committee composed of Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet secretary Martin Parkinson, Lloyd and two people from outside the public service.

At the knees-up at the Glandel Hall, presentations were made on “the exciting and innovative work” that been done on McPhee’s recommendations and the BRANDit winner was announced. New APS recruiting slogan: ‘Shape Australia. Create your Future.’ | #apsbrandit The Mandarin IPAA ACT (@IPAAACT) March 2, 2017This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

ATO eye cafes, restaurants, beauty salons in illegal cash economy fight

Posted June 20th, 2019 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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An estimated 400 restaurants, cafes and hair and beauty salons will get a visit from the Tax Office this month, as part of the agency’s continued focus on the illegal cash economy.
Nanjing Night Net

The ATO has in recent years stepped up audits of small businesses in high-risk industries, which it suspects may be taking illegal cash-in-hand payments.

ATO officers with Asian language skills have been visiting these kinds of businesses in major cities across Australia including Melbourne, Sydney, Gold Coast and Adelaide.

Assistant Commissioner Tom Wheeler said Perth and Canberra were next.

The ATO estimates about 1.6 million businesses (mostly micro and small businesses with an annual turnover up to $15 million) operating across 233 industries are part of the illegal cash economy.

Businesses that use cash only have a higher risk of not correctly reporting sales, Mr Wheeler said. “These industries are on our radar because they have ready access to cash, and this is a major risk indicator,” he said.

The ATO estimates more than half (58 per cent) of businesses in the hair and beauty industry are cash only and that almost half (45 per cent) of businesses in the restaurant, cafe, takeaway and catering industry are cash only.

Aside from cafes and restaurants and hair, beauty and nail salons, other industries that have been under the ATO’s watch include carpentry and electrical services, building trades, road freight and waste skip operators and cleaners.

In 2015-16 the agency monitored 127,000 cash economy businesses, conducted 15,000 audits and enforcement activities and raised over $208 million in tax and penalties.

The ATO wants to initially help businesses understand and meet their tax obligations, but should they then not comply, it could then lead to audits.

“We know that the majority of businesses get it right, so our first aim is to help businesses by checking they are properly registered and provide them with an opportunity to ask questions in person,” Mr Wheeler said.

“We then work to protect honest businesses from unfair competition by taking action against those who do the wrong thing.”

Mr Wheeler said the community plays an important role in making the tax system fair for everyone.

As Fairfax Media reported, more than 5500 workers dob in their bosses to the ATO every year for allegedly illegally paying them cash in hand.

“We take reports from the community very seriously,” Mr Wheeler said.

Aside from audits, the agency has also increased its data matching of these industries.

The ATO has identified the cash economy as a major tax integrity risk, which about 400 ATO staff, with a budget of $39.5 million in 2015-16 monitor.

While the cash economy risk has been identified, the ATO has not publicly released a robust estimate of the level of revenue at risk.

In other countries such as Britain tax authorities release “tax gap” estimates every year detailing how much money they think is at risk from small businesses using illegal cash-in-hand payments, as well as multinationals dodging their tax obligations.

Follow Nassim Khadem on Facebook and Twitter.

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Proposed laws ‘unlikely’ to stamp out exploitation of underpaid workers

Posted June 20th, 2019 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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Outlawing unreasonable requests for cash back from employees and higher penalties for franchisors will fail to stamp out exploitation of underpaid workers, legal experts have warned.
Nanjing Night Net

The proposed laws increase the maximum penalties to more than half a million dollars for contraventions that involve “deliberate and systemic” underpayment of staff.

The government bill follows revelations in Fairfax Media about rampant underpayment of staff at 7-Eleven, Pizza Hut, Caltex and other chains.

Immigration labour law authority, Joanna Howe, an Associate Professor at The University of Adelaide, said prohibiting exploitation was a step in the right direction but would not ensure unscrupulous employers were caught.

“What we know now about these types of employers is they calculate the chance of detection, which they know is slim,” Dr Howe said.

Vulnerable workers rarely complain about being underpaid to avoid risk of losing a temporary work visa or possible criminal charges for compliance with illegal conduct including cash-back scams.

Dr Howe said unscrupulous employers would likely continue to underpay vulnerable workers knowing their chances of being caught are slim.

The federal government has introduced a bill to make franchisors and holding companies for retail outlets and large fast food chains more accountable for wage fraud.

Dr Howe said many temporary migrant workers were too scared to complain about being under paid for fear of losing their job and visa.

“Prohibiting the practice does not empower them to come forward,” Dr Howe said.

“They fear that they may not find another job if they complain about being forced to hand cash back to their employer.

“Their frame of reference is their home country where the wage rates are lower. They also know that a lot of temporary migrant workers are getting exploited.”

Dr Howe said temporary migrant workers in breach of their visa face “very real possibility of deportation” under the Migration Act. Visa proposal

The Redfern Legal Centre, which provides a statewide legal advice service to international students, said the new bill was unlikely to provide comfort to exploited workers.

The centre has submitted a proposal to the Migrant Workers’ Taskforce ,chaired by Allan Fels, suggesting the Minister for Immigration issue a special direction against cancellation of a visa as part of section 499 of the Migration Act.

Redfern Legal Centre solicitors Linda Tucker and Sean Stimson said this would allow students forced to work more than 40-hours per fortnight (outside their visa’s limit) to raise a complaint without risk of losing their visa.

“Student employees will not come forward because the risk is their visa will be cancelled and that will always trump any other protections,” Ms Tucker said.

“We are not saying it should be a free-for-all, we are asking for an alternative approach to sanctioning that breach which takes into account the context in which the breach occurred.

“We are proposing the introduction of a ministerial direction to give decision-makers a direction to not cancel a visa when a student has breached the 40-hour per fortnight condition.”

Mr Stimson said the proposal would give students more confidence to come forward with a complaint if they would not automatically risk losing their visa.

“If there is a certainty around the preservation of a visa the employers will be aware they are exposing themselves to severe penalties,” he said.

Fairfax Media contacted Federal Employment Minister Michaelia Cash for comment.

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Smith takes a screamer – but it’s the grassed chance that hurts

Posted June 20th, 2019 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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Full scorecard: India vs Australia, Second Test, Bangalore
Nanjing Night Net

Steve Smith hauled in another screamer, but it’s the catch he could not take that is hurting Australia’s chances to claim a famous victory in the second Test.

The Australians are paying a heavy price after their captain put down Cheteshwar Pujara on four. The Indian No.3 was unbeaten on 79 at stumps and shapes as the key wicket for Smith’s men on the fourth day if Australia are to keep the run chase to a manageable target.

India were 4-213 at stumps on the third day, a lead of 126.

Smith grassed a tough chance low to his left at first slip and though it would be harsh to criticise, he has has held on to many more difficult catches.

He proved that later with his brilliant one-handed grab to dismiss Lokesh Rahul off Steve O’Keefe’s bowling.

Smith dived full stretch to his right to complete a catch every bit as good as the one he held to dismiss New Zealand’s BJ Watling a one-day international in Sydney.

“That’s one of the best catches I’ve ever seen live,” Brett Lee, who had a 21-year career at the top levels, said on Star Sports.

Smith, who made eight in the first innings, will need to play a key role with the bat in the run chase if Australia are to win the second Test and claim a 2-0 series lead.

Pujara had insisted the pitch was becoming easier to bat on – and proved it on the third day. He batted for the best part of two sessions and once set, did not give a chance.

Paceman Josh Hazlewood said he and Mitchell Starc had erred by not attacking the stumps and bringing the pitch’s variable bounce into play.

“We did bowl a bit wide, that Australian line – we can improve tomorrow morning,” Hazlewood said.

Whatever total Australia are set, they can at least draw comfort knowing India were able to score 87 more on a pitch that did not deteriorate much on the third day.

While there is still turn for the slow bowlers, the spin is not as quick as it was on day one when Nathan Lyon capitalised with eight wickets.

“I think the wicket’s drier now. When it does stay low and jump the batsman can react better and counter it,” Hazlewood said.

“Day one or two it was sharp and quick, the wicket played reasonably well today.”

The momentum is with India, but if Australia can strike early they will fancy their chances of quickly wrapping up India’s tail, which has been poor this series.

“I think it feels pretty level at the moment. They obviously fought back really well in that last session,” Hazlewood said.

“Credit to the two guys out there batting now, they stuck to their plans and fought hard and scratched away for quite a good amount of runs.”

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F-35A Joint Strike Fighter is introduced to the Hunter at RAAF Base Amberleyphotos, video

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First look at F-35As bound for Aussie bases F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers
Nanjing Night Net

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

PROUD PILOTS: Wing Commander Andrew Jackson and Squadron Leader David Bell in front of Wing Commander Jackson’s F-35A Joint Strike Fighter “001”. Pictures: Max Mason-Hubers

COMBAT READY: Williamtown RAAF Commander Air Combat Group, Zed Robertson, describes the F35-A to a mixed Queensland and Hunter audience at Amberley.

Secuirty patrol one of the newly arrived F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

MPs Kate Washington, Meryl Swanson, Sharon Claydon and Tim Crakanthorp and Commander Air Combat Group Williamtown Zed Roberton listen to F-35 pilots Wing Commander Andrew Jackson and Squadron Leader David Bell. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Commander, Air Combat Group Williamtown, Zed Roberton speaks to media at an F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commander Ken Robinson speaks to media at t F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Craig Heap, Senior ADF officer at Williamtown RAAF, explains a delay in departure to passengers waiting at Williamtown RAAF base. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

One Nation Senator Brian Burston in conversation with Air Commodore Craig Heap. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Craig Heap, Senior ADF officer at Williamtown RAAF, explains a delay in departure to passengers waiting at Williamtown RAAF base. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Craig Heap, Senior ADF officer at Williamtown RAAF at an F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Amberley Air Base, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Craig Heap, Senior ADF officer at Williamtown RAAF, explains a delay in departure to passengers waiting at Williamtown RAAF base. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commander Ken Robinson (Amberley Air Base) speaks to reporters beside one of the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commander Ken Robinson speaks to media at t F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 pilots Squadron Leader David Bell (L) and Wing Commander Andrew Jackson (R) speak to reporters beside one of the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets at a press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 pilots Squadron Leader David Bell (L) and Wing Commander Andrew Jackson (R) speak to reporters beside one of the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets at a press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Port Stephens MP Kate Washington. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Newcastle MP Tim Crakanthorp alights from an RAAF Wedgetail aircraft. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Craig Heap, Senior ADF officer at Williamtown RAAF at an F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Amberley Air Base, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Security guard and dog shelter from the sun under the wing of one of the newly arrived F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets at a press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Security guard and dog shelter from the sun under the wing of one of the newly arrived F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets at a press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

TweetFacebook F-35As on display at Amberley – Pictures: Max Mason-HubersA selection of photographs from the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLDld. Picture: Max Mason-HubersA GROUP of Hunter MPs and community representatives flewto RAAF Base Amberley base on Monday for an up-close look at an F-35A Joint Strike Fighter –the futuristic jetbound for RAAF Base Williamtown from December 2018.

Two of the long-awaited and controversial strike fighters made theirAustralian debut on Friday at the Australian International Airshow at Avalon airport at Geelong.

The RAAF had originally announced that the jetswould circleover Newcastle on Sunday, en route to Amberley, but concerns over lightning meant this trip was cancelled.

The Newcastle invitees assembled at Williamtown at 8am on Monday, expecting to fly to Amberley in a C-130 Hercules, and to be there before the F-35As, which were flying from Geelong.

But a problem with the first plane meant leaving later in a plane with fewer seats –an E-7A Wedgetail– so some of the invitees had to stay behind. When the Newcastle group arrived the two F-35As were already parked up –one on display, one in a hangar –meaning it was a visual inspection only, with a perimeter barrier and a guard dog to ensure no-one came too close.

Despite these limitations, all who made the tripsaid they were glad the RAAF had reached out to them and the community, and that the visit to Amberley was worthwhile, even if those who were worried about aircraft noise didn’t get to hear the plane in action.

The head of the Amberley base, Air Commodore Ken Robinson, said the federal government had approved the purchase of 72 aircraft, together with weapons and support materiel.

Air Commodore Robinson said the first public flight of the F-35A at Avalon was “quite an extraordinary moment” and there was a definite “mood of excitement” at the airshow.

He said it was “usually decades between celebratory drinks” when it comes to acquiring new fighter aircraft –and it was definitely time for a celebratory drink.

Military personnel guard the the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Zed Roberton of Williamtown RAAF described the F35-A as “the world’s greatest 5th generation aircraft”, and he thanked the plane’s manufacturers, Lockheed Martin, and its other “US partners”.

Asked about the cost controversyover the F-35A, Air Commodore Robinson said its “unit costs continued to reduce”, and the average cost of an Australian plane off the production line was now $US90 million ($119 million at current exchange rates).

The two planes that had flown to Australia had been used for training purposes since December 2014. They were going back to Luke Air Force Base in Phoenix, Arizona, where more Australian pilots were being trained.

ARRIVAL: Port Stephens MP Kate Washington looks across to the F-35A on the tarmac, followed by Sue Birch of Medowie and Newcastle MP Tim Crakanthorp.

The two Australian pilots who brought their planes across are Wing Commander Andrew “Jacko” Jackson, 39, and Squadron Leader David Bell, 37, both of Williamtown base.

Wing Commander Jackson had been at Williamtown from 1999 until his posting to Arizona in 2014, and Squadron Leader Bell, a test pilot, had been at Williamtown for more than six years.

Describing the plane, the pair said it flew at Mach 1.6, or almost2000 kilometres per hour. But it was the “situational awareness” that the pilots had in their helmets, which gave them 360 degree vision without having to move, and the weaponry, that set it apart, rather than outright speed.

Queensland media at Amberley on Monday were keen to talk up the potential for F-35As to be at the Ipswich base, but Wing Commander Jackson said: “We’ve had a long association with Newcastle, it’s a fantastic place to live, and it’s been the home of the fighters for a long time and that is going to continue into the future.”

Williamtown base commander Air Commodore Craig Heap said the RAAF was working closely with the community both on the preparations for the F-35A and the firefighting foam contamination problems.

Air Commodore Heap said Williamtown’s runway extensions meant the F-35A would be able to take off without its afterburners –the main noise concern with the plane.

The Labor federal member for Paterson, Meryl Swanson, said the visit had been worthwhile but she and the members of the Williamtown Advisory Group and the Community Reference Group who had made the trip were disappointed that they did not get to hear the plane.

One Nation Senator Brian Burston said noise was a secondary concern given how much Williamtown did for the defence of the nation.


Kressley leaves the jungle after harrowing 9/11 tale

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American stylist and “the best intruder” Carson Kressley was voted off I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here, but not before sharing one last harrowing tale of his life.
Nanjing Night Net

Previously Kressley spoke of growing up gay in Pennsylvania and being fearful about losing the love of his family if he admitted to being bullied for being homosexual.

On Monday’s episode described being in New York during the September 11 attacks and walking the streets with posters of a colleague’s sister, who worked in the Twin Towers, because “that’s what you did”.

“Nobody knew where everybody was and if they made it out, did they go to some hospital in New Jersey, or are they burnt and unrecognisable.

“They never found her. Nothing! So, yeah, like the next couple of days, like, it was just sirens and ambulances and clean-up. And the worst part, like, besides losing people, like everybody in New York knows somebody who died,” he added.

“The worse part is like I remember being – oh, my God, the world is, like, forever changed. Like, I was thinking about my niece who was like five years old, she’s going to have to live in a world where stuff like this happens here at home. Like you think it’s always far away.” The next celebrity leaving camp is… @carsonkressley! #ImACelebrityAUpic.twitter南京夜网/ZNrqtF3hVp??? #ImACelebrityAU (@ImACelebrityAU) March 6, [email protected] oozed confidence and nabbed two stars for camp ???? #ImACelebrityAUpic.twitter南京夜网/WC47Y7QRl7??? #ImACelebrityAU (@ImACelebrityAU) March 6, 2017Who had 1 min in for @nazeem_hussain’s first gag? #GagBingo#ImACelebrityAUpic.twitter南京夜网/WQCKVShYlQ??? #ImACelebrityAU (@ImACelebrityAU) March 6, 2017After three years, we’ve achieved the impossible – a cheeky @Ladyjmo vom ???? #ImACelebrityAUpic.twitter南京夜网/PIISio9Sjq??? #ImACelebrityAU (@ImACelebrityAU) March 6, 2017Welcome to camp, @Sandra_Sully! #ImACelebrityAUpic.twitter南京夜网/Im8jskWanS??? #ImACelebrityAU (@ImACelebrityAU) March 6, 2017You may have missed it, but there was a bit of a stuff up during the Oscars. Here’s how our celebs reacted ???? #ImACelebrityAUpic.twitter南京夜网/xqa7i6GVUY??? #ImACelebrityAU (@ImACelebrityAU) March 6, 2017This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Kohli fuming as Aussie loosen grip on second Test

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India 4-213, lead by 126
Nanjing Night Net

???BANGALORE: Under-the-pump India captain Virat Kohli was left seeing red as tensions escalated further between both sides after another white-knuckle day left the second Test hanging in the balance.

Steve O’Keefe is set to come under the scrutiny of match referee Chris Broad while Kohli’s angry reaction to his controversial dismissal will also be reviewed.

“The temperature’s rising a little bit, it’s intense out there,” paceman Josh Hazlewood said after stumps.

Australia’s reprogrammed batsmen are facing the supreme test of their character with a thrilling finish looming after India continued their bold revival on Monday.

Steve Smith’s men twice had the world No.1 on the ropes but were unable to land the knockout punch against an Indian side that has responded impressively to Kohli’s dressing-room call to arms.

Led by an unbeaten 79 by Cheteshwar Pujara, who gave difficult chances on three and four, India did not lose a wicket in the final session and reached stumps on the third day on 4-213, a lead of 126.

“The real India has arrived in the last two days,” former India team director Ravi Shastri said on Star Sports.

“You had the feeling there was only one team playing the series until then and today they’ve showed they have the stomach for the fight.”

Australia have made all the running since Nathan Lyon’s career-best performance on the first day but India have gradually pegged them back.

Both teams will start the fourth day with genuine belief of pulling off a win for the ages however it’s the Indians who are carrying the momentum.

A total in excess of 200 beckons for Australia and it will take some running down even if the M.Chinnaswamy Stadium pitch does not deteriorate much further.

Hazlewood, who has claimed three wickets, threatened to trigger another Indian collapse after tea but Australia’s bowling has lacked the consistency of their previous three efforts.

“We did bowl a bit wide, that Australian line,” Hazlewood said. “We can improve tomorrow morning.”

The day’s flashpoint came when Kohli failed to have his dismissal on 15 overturned by the video umpire. Adamant he had hit the ball first, he instantly challenged Nigel Llong’s call but replays failed to prove his case conclusively. Kohli stood stunned after receiving Richard Kettleborough’s verdict to the mirth of the Australians.

“The skipper’s angry again,” Smith quipped, shortly before Kohli left the crease.

A furious Kohli pointed the bottom edge of his bat to the crowd and exchanged terse words with fans as he left the field and was later seen stewing inside the dressing room.

Kohli, however, may get the last laugh in Bangalore after India’s beleaguered batsmen rediscovered their mojo.

Pujara, their dependable No.3, is making most of the chances given to him by Matthew Wade and Smith.

Wade failed to land a glove on a desperately hard chance, while Smith could not hold on to a hot offering low to his left at slip.

The Australian captain made amends with a one-handed screamer to dismiss the impressive Lokesh Rahul. “That’s one of the best catches I’ve ever seen live,” former Australian Test speedster Brett Lee, who had a 21-year career at the top levels, said on Star Sports.

Emotions ran high as O’Keefe celebrated by getting up close and personal with Pujara, earning a rebuke from both on-field umpires. India were only 25 runs in front when Kohli departed but Pujara has given them a very real chance of victory.

Australia squandered a golden opportunity to turn up the heat on India after their tail folded meekly against India’s spinners.

A first innings lead beyond 100 seemed on the cards while Wade and Mitchell Starc were at the crease but the end came quickly after the latter holed out in the deep.

Australia lost 4-7 in 29 balls to be dismissed for 276, while Jadeja finished with 6-63.

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