“Pathetic” is a good description for someone too gutless to …

Comment on Salt mine: Alice needs to grasp a major opportunity by Steve Brown.

“Pathetic” is a good description for someone too gutless to put their name to a comment.
Legitimate questions come with a legitimate verifiable names – happy to answer any of those that I can.
I won’t however answer tawdry obvious push propaganda, questions that treat Alice Springs News readers like a bunch of fools!
You should direct questions about the mining process to Tellus Salt, they have been very open throughout the process to date, regularly and openly consulting the public through a series of public presentations.
The last of these were in open council and before media just a couple of weeks ago … hence my letter asking the question that should be on everyone’s lips if this project goes ahead and it appears to be very much on track to do so.
What does our community gain from it? Is there opportunity for us? What do we as a community do take advantage of the available opportunity?
Or are we simply going to be bystanders watching a wonderful natural resource disappear much like Northern Gas.

Steve Brown Also Commented

Salt mine: Alice needs to grasp a major opportunity
@ Jimmy: As always he is pushing propaganda and half truths.
The salt mine business case is based on the mining and sale of salt the space created by that activity is available for storage and as such makes up “part” of the business plan.
Storage in a salt mine is a logical natural fit as salt deposits are considered to be the world’s most stable geological formations which have zero connection to water bearing aquifers.
We know that because salt can’t exist in the rock form where there is water.
This salt is five hundred million years old. That’s twice the age of other well know salt deposits, making this mine arguabley the world’s safest storage location and certainly much safer than an wherever waste products are presently stored.
The mine will have space available for storage for all kinds of products, clearly we will be relying on our Government to regulate what the stored waste can consist of.
That regulation can occur under the Mining Act or whatever Act Government chooses, governments write acts, Jimmy.
It could even occur under a specifically written Act called “The Chandler Salt Mine Act of 2017”.
However, in all the discussion we should not lose sight of the existence of waste products of almost infinite variety that require safe storage until the world finds another way to deal with them.
Nor should we ever lose site of our combined responsibility for those products! All in all just another very urgent reason for Government to get publicly involved in this project.


Salt mine: Alice needs to grasp a major opportunity
@ Alex: Just because we made a stupid short sighted mistake once before doesn’t mean we a destined to repeat that same mistake over and over.
We are humans we are supposedly in possession of a level of intelligence that allows us to view our mistakes and learn from them.
There is no comparison however between Tanami, some 600 km, away and a mine project that could drive its staff to work from town if there was good all weather access.
The salt mine is quite prepared to go ahead without that access in fact I think they prefer the FIFO option.
I’m suggesting that we negotiate an outcome that is more beneficial to the region so that we aren’t eventually left with no gain and a big hole! I’m suggesting we legislate FIFO, making it much more difficult to base projects on its use.
At the same time we negotiate the funding for the road, a road that we need anyway, regardless of the mine.
I’m suggesting we leverage the absolute maximum outcome for our community from this project. If we can’t achieve that in the final analysis we certainly should be questioning whether or not we want this project.
Further to all of that, the salt mine is not the only project close to town currently considering its options for staffing.
So right now is a very good moment for a new government to set some direction and to show some willingness to make deals that maximise outcomes for all parties.


Salt mine: Alice needs to grasp a major opportunity
Sigh. It’s no bloody wonder our town struggles to lift itself off the deck when you read comments like some of these. I guess that’s why you won’t put your names on your posts. A tiny little bit embarrassed? Completely understand why you would be.
The salt mine doesn’t need the road. They are quite happy to run a fly in fly out operation and in fact would like an excuse to do so. They are sealing the necessary operational transport route to the rail head, some 10 km.
Alice Springs needs the road sealed if we want to attract the workforce to be permanently based in our town, growing our economy!
Along with that workforce we also get the local business boosting ability to provide services. And we get to be involved in the tourism and ornamental side of the salt mine.
The road will not only serve the mine. It will serve the pastoral industry, the tourist industry, it will also provide all weather access to the community of Titijkala.
It will provide all weather access to the off-road facility facilitating the establishment of a vehicle testing industry, already in the wind.
It will provide access to the proposed blocks and tourist facilities at Ooraminna. It will provide all weather dust and rut free access to the Finke track or at least the first 100 km of it, to the date farm, to future business.
Yes! This is a service road that we must eventually seal anyway.
In fact, the NT Government has just very short sightedly clawed back the funding for the first 20 km of it, otherwise work would be already underway!
Why wouldn’t we want the jobs for our kids? Try and understand the earnings from this project into our town over a 25 year period, extrapolate that out to a couple of hundred years of rates on two hundred houses. 200 high income wage packets into our economy every week!
The extra jobs over and above the mining jobs in service industries the extra bods in our community organisations!
The facts are that if we a clever enough if we move fast enough the Alice stands to gain mightily from this project.
The alternative, if we think it’s all OK to sit around on our non-contributing proverbials worrying that someone might get something for nothing, while contributing somewhere around nothing ourselves, I guess we’ll get what we deserve as well.
A big fat nothing.


Recent Comments by Steve Brown

Gallery: Council did not say boo
It is time we all recognised that Aboriginal people are equal individual Australians and can speak for themselves, having as many and varied opinions on subjects as the rest of us.
Too much consultation, too much discussion is not a healthy thing. It leads to bogged down confusion, exacerbates division and generally leads to nowhere, no result.
That’s why we have a system of a democratically elected government, to make decisions on our behalf.
In the case of the gallery they have selected their site and are sticking to their decision, good on them for that much at least.
Let’s now see if they can actually produce something on the ground. I must say I really do have doubts, however time will tell.
The important thing about living in a democracy is to understand that while you push your argument for all its worth during the discussion, at the end of the process, when the decision is made, win or loose or draw you must put self interest aside accept the result and out of respect and in the interest of your community’s advancement.
Fall in behind the a decision reached by a majority government.
If you don’t like what they have done kick them out at the next election!


Gallery: Council did not say boo
Polls are run in attempt to gain community feeling on a subject, not to make the actual decision.
If we ever reach such a farcical state where that occurs, the country will simply cease to function.
The important thing to take into account from the polls, petitions and rallies is not the results for and against, but the numbers that participated.
Of the small number who did, on every occasion except for the councils latest fascicle attempt, which was clearly hacked, the numbers were well below 2000.
Divided about 50-50, a thousand each out of a town of 28,500 residents!
In planning or decision making those who do not show an interest one way or the other are counted as supportive!
A thousand against equals a tiny 3.5% of the population! Not at all sure we would want to base any decision making on that!
Further, council only exists under the Territory’s Local Government Act.
It is in fact owned wholly and solely by the Territory Government which makes it a matter of protocol in such circumstances that the Territory Government takes the lead and makes the decision.
The council’s role is to advise and lobby on behalf of and in the interests of its own future role but not to stand in the way of a government of which council itself is actually a part!
In light of that fact the council’s decision to be site neutral and simply to work with government to achieve the best possible outcome for our community is absolutely the correct position, just a shame they didn’t explain it to the community!
Oh, and the Territory Government does not have to “resume” that which it already owns to start work on it!
So council would be well advised to ingratiate itself making certain it is part of design committees and project implementation, committees where they will be in the best possible place to influence the final outcome.


Anonymous donation doesn’t fix conflict of interest for council
There were very important representations made to the Prime Minister by community organisations grateful for a very rare opportunity to put their case directly to the top.
I attended a round table with police talking about child abuse, DASA talking about a huge increase in ice abuse in our community.
I was there to talk about the need to look after our street kids and the provision of a 24/7 drop in centre. I know Red Tails and others also contributed.
The Prime Minister talked about putting together a regional plan. That was the level of discussion going on.


Anonymous donation doesn’t fix conflict of interest for council
One of the primary roles a council performs for its community is public relations, meeting greeting guests, trying to give a friendly welcoming all round good impression of the community.
Acting like a sales person if you like, in selling the benefits of our community to the world.
Individuals, businesses, governments of all persuasions from all levels are lobbied.
Considering this role, do we seriously think spending $1400 on greeting the leader of the nation is an issue?
Wouldn’t you think that greeting the distributor of the vast amounts of government funding this community receives would be just plain respectful good manners?
I am utterly appalled ashamed at the actions of four small minded disrespectful councillors who cannot put aside petty personality politics for five minutes to support the greater interest of this community.
It is an indictment of the farcical electoral system which throws up such narcissistic individuals who clearly place no value on the gains of our community, simply intent on creating obnoxious, always contrary mayhem to cover a contemuously lazy and disrespectful approach for the role to which were elected.


Price, Turnbull should pay for town council function: Cr Banks
I cant believe the disrespectful “entitled” commentary around this subject, really?
We are a small town in the centre of Australia, one of thousands of small towns in this country, the Prime Minister of our nation shows enough interest in our community’s struggles to take time out and visit to discuss advancing our region through the establishment of a regional plan, so very much in the interests of every Centralian!
And yet we get a couple of non contributing councillors who couldn’t be bothered fulfilling their own expected role as councillors, but still with their hand out for a similar amount every month, whingeing about a lousy 1400 dollars to facilitate and respectfully greet the leader of our nation!
Of course council should facilitate the Prime Minister and his departments meeting greeting, facilitating important visitors to town is a primary role for councils everywhere.
I’ll bet you a penny to a pound that there are councils of small towns all over this country who would shell out considerably more for the same opportunity, because it is in the interest of their constituents!
And if you don’t understand that then I can only suggest that you don’t belong anywhere near our council!
Further in recent months I have noted a continuous flow of disinformation from certain councillors, claims of bullying, not being invited to events and recently claims that having to officially apologise for non attendance is some kind of bullying isolation of the few.
What utter garbage. The line of code of conduct charges against one councillor came from council staff not other councillors because that councillor is a disrespectful loud mouth whose comments are often very disrespectful of staff.
Whether those code of conducts were upheld is completely irrelevant, what is relevant is the fact that staff felt the need to make them in the first place!
It is their only form of defence when they are impinged, it points, very pointedly I believe, to who the bully in the pack is.
Further, some councillors simply aren’t contributing, not giving the very large commitment the role requires, not bothering to show up for meetings, not having read their notes when they do.
The requirement to register their apologies is so that the public gets to see for themselves who is contributing to the nitty gritty plain boring hard work and who is taking a free ride and using the councillor role to grandstand trying to sell the idea they are actually contributing to our community. I hope local media will also keep a firm eye on this.


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