Good to see the coverage that these issues are getting …

Comment on Pine Gap: Important talks but who was listening? by Jonathan Pilbrow.

Good to see the coverage that these issues are getting in the Alice Springs News Online.
Regarding the Alice Springs Town Council Policy No 111 on Pine Gap: Up until about three weeks ago, the policy No 111 contained the following words at the bottom of the policy “Refer to attached document ‘Joint Defence Facility Pine Gap’ that supports this policy via important background information”.
There was, however, no document attached to the policy three weeks ago; and the reference to the attachment is no longer contained in the policy.
A web search for the attachment has proved elusive.
I think that it is vital that the Alice Springs public have access to the background information that has informed the current Alice Springs Town Council policy in relation to Pine Gap.

Recent Comments by Jonathan Pilbrow

Youth crisis: broken window of tolerance
Thanks Rainer for your most insightful and helpful article.
Re: “All professions who engage with youth should receive basic training so that they are trauma informed.”
Do all police receive training in trauma informed practice?
If not – this would seem to be one immediate priority that could be actioned.


Who put Anzac Oval on the agenda as site for art gallery?
Thanks Maya. Good comments. I cannot believe that Anzac Oval is under consideration as an option. Why would we rob Peter to pay Paul?
Putting the Indigenous Art Gallery at the Desert Park will add to and enhance that space, without getting rid of an existing asset.
But to take away Anzac from the rugby and rugby league communities makes no sense; and even if some green space is retained it will never be the same.
If the NT Government is determined to house the Indigenous Art Gallery within or near to the CBD, surely there are some other options to explore – even if it costs more to gain access to land. What about the old Melanka site? Or the vacant land next to the Ghan, on the Stuart Highway (corner of Whittaker St).
And how about some real consultation with the community. Start out with a blank slate, not predetermined options – and consult the community, especially Arrernte people, about what might be the best place to house the gallery.


Town council’s unanimous ‘no’ to fracking
Fantastic that Alice Springs Town Council is unanimously supporting the moratorium. Congratulations to all involved.


Seniors concessions praised, but questions about tiers
It would be very interesting to know the source for the figure referred to in relation to “Power and Water bills making up 44% of current household bills” – and whether this figure refers to all Territorians, or just seniors.
The recently released ABS Household Expenditure Survey Figures (for the period 2015-16), show that in the Northern Territory, electricity and water and sewerage expenditure, on average represents 3.65% of a household’s weekly expenditure on goods and services.
This figure is based on an average figure of $44.72 per household per week spent on electricity and $17.40 per week on water and sewerage (which equates to a combined figure of $3224 per year).
Households with solar PV panels, who may pay very little for electricity bills, are included in the calculations for the electricity expenditure figure, so the average paid by households without solar may be slightly higher than the 3.65% of weekly expenditure.
The figure of 44%, therefore, remains somewhat of a mystery.


Question mark over $15m government racing funding
Great Question, 15MILLION. Why does the Government provide this level of funding to Thoroughbread Racing Northern Territory?
Imagine what this money could be used for instead – investment in housing; schools; health services; early childhood services.
What kind of society do we really want?


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