Party politics have always been a part of the town …

Comment on Town Council riven by conflict, lack of leadership by Alex Hope.

Party politics have always been a part of the town council, and to pretend otherwise because the allegiances are not in the open is to fool yourself.
It would be much easier for all if the allegiances were declared.
What is interesting in this Council is that for once the CLP-aligned members are being given a run for their money!

Recent Comments by Alex Hope

West Macs fire mitigation critically inadequate: Scientist
@ Steve Brown: So just to clarify your argument Steve, are you advocating that fire control in Central Ausrtalian national parks should rely on grazing by cattle?
Are national parks not designed to protect and preserve native fauna and flora?
How can they fulfill that function if they are overtaken by a weed which supplants native grasses and wild flowers, and is in turn controlled by cattle?
In which case, how will are parks be any different to our pastoral leases?
Am I missing something here?
You must surely have noticed the blocks on Ilparpa Road which have had the buffel eradicated, where native grasses and wild flowers flourish in season, and how different they are to those where buffel has taken over?


Adelaide’s Indigenous gallery out of the starting blocks
Did anyone consider trying to gain a consensus from Aboriginal people across the nation on where a national Aborignal art gallery should be placed?


West Macs fire mitigation critically inadequate: Scientist
@ Steve Brown: Isn’t there a big contradiction here Steve?
“Buffel is here. We need to learn to live with it. Buffel does little or no harm, improves our soils, lessens run off and raises overall food production enormously.
“Because it contains more energy it also burns hotter than native grasses, destroying native trees and shrubs as a result.”
There was a fire on the hill behind my place in town about 16 years ago in the winter. It was partially colonised by buffel. Where there was buffel, ironwoods, witchetty bush and other acacias, and cassia / Siennas were all killed.
Where there was no buffel the shrubs and trees were scorched but for the most part foliage grew back. Buffel made the fire much more destructive.
On the other hand patch burning buffel for firebreaks and destroying native vegevtation in the process is counterproductive.
Oh, for the buffel grass equivalent of the cactoblastis beetle which controlled the prickly pear


Don’t mess with our treasures, says Alice
Great article Alex.
Perhaps you would have the energy to write a follow-up with the sad story of the attempts to preserve the Drive-in site?
It seems to have a jinx on it, there have been so may owners and proposals drawn up over the years, from Steiner School to eco village to transport yard with a few in between, but as yet nothing has happened except the destruction of the old infrastructure.
The other heritage story worth re-telling is of the demolition of the Rieff building in the CBD,ironically authorised by an Aboriginal minister with responsibility for heritage listing, so that an Aboriginal company could redevelop the site.


Miners are spreading myths, says environmentalist
@ Hal Duell: The editor asked me to clarify my earlier post, in that as per the CLC website FAQs the budget for the Land Councils is decided by the Aboriginal Affairs Minister using Aboriginal Benfits Account funds, which are in effect royalty payments from mineral extraction on Aboriginal land.
So there is a connection between mining and CLC funding, but increased mining would not directly “swell the coffers”.
The NLC and CLC websites are worth perusing if you want to understand their responsibilities and limitations, and also the amount of work they are doing in community development, a lot of which is funded using royalty payments from the associations receiving royalties.
This includes activities like the Walpiri Education Trust (providing top up funds for education in their region) and the operational funds for the swimming pool at Yuendumu.
The Purple House has also received a lot of royalty money, enabling people to go home for dialysis … thereby reducing pressure on services for the patients and their families in town.
CLC is one cog in a large machine, and should be given credit for the positive things it does do, without expecting it to fix all the social problems resulting from our inability to create a social and political framework which could embrace two cultures with fundamentally different priorities.
And @ Paul Parker: Sorry, I don’t work for CLC, so I cannot answer your questions in detail.
However I understand that in general housing is not a land trust responsibility, rather the houses are vested in the NT Housing Commission.
Since the Intervention the land trusts do receive rent for facilities on land leased from them, and I have heard that in many cases the funds are put to community purposes for local facilities, funeral funds etc, but this is only hearsay.


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