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Celebrating sunshine with a 3000 km race

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The birthplace of solar cars, or at least where they began to be taken seriously: Hans Tholstrup’s Solar Challenge turns 30 in a couple of weeks, and the famous Alice Springs sunshine will again be centre stage. Photo: GM’s Sunraycer, which took out the first event with a two-day margin. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


Alice’s upbeat YES campaign for marriage equality

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They may lament the waste of public funds on the Australian Government’s non-binding same sex marriage postal survey, but nonetheless the local LGBTQI+ community are throwing themselves into campaigning for YES, confident of success as long as people make sure to complete and post their form. KIERAN FINNANE speaks with two campaign supporters. FULL STORY »

Another river giant goes up in flames

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Our photos were taken yesterday at midday as the call was being made to 000. Passers-by had stopped when they saw smoke coming out of the hollows of this river giant. This follows the an unprecedented loss of mature trees  to apparent arson attacks over recent months.

UPDATE, Friday 22 September, 12.55pm: A prompt phone call to 000 and effective action by the fire brigade looks to have saved this tree. FULL STORY »

Grass fire close to rural suburb

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Fire threatened rural blocks in the south-eastern part of the town. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


The magic Certificate III: How does Batchelor stack up?

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Biggest enrolment in a course providing the most basic level of education, but students come “from the some of most disadvantaged and disempowered communities and regions in Australia, possibly even the world,” says Acting CEO Kim Jenkinson. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


New youth justice regime gets busy

2479 juvenile detention 2 SMNew youth outreach workers, refurbishment of the detention centre at a cost of $1.3m, NGOs helping with bail accommodation – the new broom is sweeping to ensure facilities are “as appropriate as possible” even before the Royal Commission hands down its findings. When that happens on November 17 planning will start for a purpose-built facility. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. FULL STORY »

Voices call, Nature responds: Desert Song in the gorge

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What better place could Desert Song’s assembled choirs have sung their songs of blessing, for peace, and of the strength found through acting together for change. KIERAN FINNANE and ERWIN CHLANDA were at Ormiston Gorge for Sunday’s concert. 



Have Minister, Tourism Central Australia acted on tragedy?




Taxpayer funded TCA ignores questions, and Lauren Moss will not comment on how to avoid a horrendous event such as  the deaths of German Tourists Wilfred and Gisela Thor, who perished Trephina Gorge (pictured) in February. The Minister says her hands are tied until the coronial which is not due to start until January next year.


Namatjira Project: a story of triumphs and false hopes

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In this film of the project the “remarkable triumph”of Albert Namatjira’s friendship with Rex Battarbee and what they achieved together takes second place to the story of the artist’s financial legacy, which also seems to have raised false hopes amongst the descendants.



CLC wants say about Indigenous voice to Parliament

2480 CLC council 1 SMCLC delegates want to be part of designing an Aboriginal body advising the Parliament to ensure it represents remote communities and acts against racially discriminatory laws. FULL STORY »

Getting kids off the streets and onto a better path

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Government and NGOs combine to create holiday activities, writes Dale Wakefield (pictured)Minister for Territory Families. 


Lambley: Asbestos just one problem in hospital




Lambley says asbestos removal would cost $500m and renews her calls for a new building by 2030.


Burst of desert art and life in Sydney CBD

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As commuters move through the underground corridors of Sydney CBD’s busy Wynyard Station this month, a burst of life and colour from Central Australia greets them: on a huge wide-format screen (23m x 3m), a video-installation by Yarrenyty Arltere Artists and Leonardo Ortega. KIERAN FINNANE reports. FULL STORY »

From the executive suite into the saddle

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Swapping laptops for pushbikes: 4000 klicks for a good cause as the latest continent crossers arrive in The Alice. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


Huge fence around Parliament is OK: Scullion

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Is an underground bunker such as Churchill had in WWII next, asks commentator. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


‘Territory Labor fails to enact its own fracking policy’




When is Resources Minister Ken Vowles (pictured) going to implement a decision from the 2017 Territory Labor Conference that no fracked gas is to be carried by the Northern Gas Pipeline, asks Pauline Cass, of the Territory Frack-Free Alliance.


Desert Mob: next generation always on their minds

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As an emblem of the driving force behind desert Aboriginal art, the photograph by Ikuntji Artists’ Roseranna Larry, winner of the 2017 Desart Photography Prize, is eloquent. In whatever medium they are working, artists are making their art primarily for their children, “for our next generations”: this is the most repeated statement about what motivates them, as simple as it is profound. KIERAN FINNANE reports on the annual Desert Mob. FULL STORY »

Journalists as prostitutes

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Advertising in exchange for a good story: Corrupt journalism is OK with the Gruen panel on ABC TV (Dee Madigan and Russel Howcroft are pictured). Comment by ERWIN CHLANDA.


UPDATE September 15, 12:47pm


Bush Bands Bash: music, language, country, fun!

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For the best of Indigenous music in Central Australia, in front of stage and back, RONJA HONEY MOSS and DEON M. SORTINO were at the annual Bush Bands Bash. FULL STORY »

Top scorer knocks back Deputy Mayor job

2476 councillors 1 SMCouncillor Jacinta Price says she is too busy to take incumbent Jamie de Brenni’s job but makes a firm commitment to serve a four year term. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. PHOTO The 13th council. FRONT ROW: Marli Banks, Jacinta Price, Mayor Damien Ryan, Catherine Satour, Matt Paterson. BACK ROW: CEO Rex Mooney, Jamie de Brenni, Jimmy Cocking, Eli Melky and Glen Auricht.


CLP pushes for oil & gas, including fracking




The industry should be “governed by world’s best practice and science-based regulations to protect agricultural, water and biodiversity values of the land,” writes party president Shane Stone.


‘CLP rehashes fracking policy that caused its wipe-out’




Shale gas produced in the NT would be some of the world’s most expensive, and would do nothing to bring down domestic prices which have trebled in recent years, putting jobs and households under pressure, writes Lauren Mellor of the Territory Frack-Free Alliance. PHOTO from the Alice Springs News Online archive.


Ancient stories meet government silence in the Lands

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Keeping the traditional law alive while moving his people out of welfare dependency, that’s what Frank Young – lawman, artist and administrative leader – sees as his mission in the sprawling APY lands. He spoke with ERWIN CHLANDA.  FULL STORY »

Alice wants substantial increase in solar: survey

2476 RePower Alice Springs SMLocals want 70% to 100% of electricity to come from renewable resources, finds RePower Alice Springs. FULL STORY »

Trouble in the Lands: Chairman, CEO clash

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Fear that an amendment in the SA Parliament will destroy Anangu property rights in the “Lands” brings toxic relationships between APY board chairman and celebrated artist, and his CEO, in the state’s top end to the boil. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


Batchelor probe into just two of 65 qualifications

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Recognition of prior learning under Federal scrutiny as interim CEO takes charge. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. PHOTO: Deputy CEO Dorothy Morrison with Defence Indigenous Development Program graduate Private Breana Miller. 


Raising the bar: the art of keeping your shop safe

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Grilles on shop windows that are things of beauty in themselves, from inside and out; gates at the shop entrance that are a work of art: instead of deadening the street with blank roller doors, they enliven it, while delivering the same security or better. It’s happening here in Alice Springs. KIERAN FINNANE reports. FULL STORY »

Is the Stuart statue next?




History denial may be on a return trip to Alice Springs, fears Hal Duell.


MLA MIA: The drover’s dog for Katherine?

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Government members show distain for Katherine, writes Bruce Francais. PICTURED: Sandra Nelson MLA


Ms Nelson replies.


No plans to stop NATS: Gunner

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Work Safe will be investigation yesterday’s “mass casualty incident”. Flames penetrating mesh fences and the crowd being close to the competition will be among the among the issues examined. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. Photo: Mr Gunner with hospital superintendent Dr Sam Goodwin, Police Superintendent Bradley Currie and Andrew Everingham, heading up the St John Ambulance, this morning in Alice Springs.

UPDATE September 9:
All four patients who were transferred to the Royal Adelaide Hospital are now in a stable condition, according to the Senior Media Adviser of South Australian Health.


Eyewitness of NATS blaze praises helpers

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Eleven people injured, four flown to Adelaide as burnout car sprays burning fuel into crowd during Red Centre NATS. Photo courtesy ABC TV Alice Springs. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


Home from the fire front

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Alice Springs fire chief helped fighting the worst blaze in the history of Canada’s British Columbia. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


Cranking up the economy while having a ball

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Volunteering is a great part of the social life in Alice Springs while pumping millions of dollars into the town. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. Photo: The sea battle of the Henley on Todd is the climax of an annual event that attracts a crowd of 4000.


Harts Range garnet mine in trouble

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The project, which employs about 20 staff on-site, has been put on care and maintenance, reports The West Australian.


CDP work for the dole scheme gets a hammering

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The Community Development Program is a product of inadequate consultation, has bureaucratic processes many don’t even understand, is punitive without benefits and ignores private enterprise as an alternative: That’s what academics and politicians, including Chansey Paech (pictured), are telling the Senate’s Finance and Public Administration Committee. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


How will you keep me out of the camps, Walter?

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Town councillor Jacinta Price elect hits back at Tangentyere boss Walter Shaw.


Let the gas flow, says Nigel Scullion




Even Michael Gunner’s Federal leader says so, writes the NT’s CLP Senator.


Four more years of same-same

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Council elections: So much for the need of fresh blood to make the town tick: Headed up by re-elected Mayor Damien Ryan the conservatives seem to have it in the bag, what’s more, with a succession plan in place. ERWIN CHLANDA comments.