Story Archive » Volume 21 » Issue 1 »

January 1, 2014

Holiday makers spend more in 2013, still below 5 year peak

 

 

Estimated expenditure of holiday makers in Alice Springs and Central Australia increased from 2012 to 2013 but is still below the five year peak of 2010. The figures come from Tourism NT. FULL STORY »

Desert Knowledge ‘flagship’ more front than substance?

Senior Desert Knowledge Australia (DKA) staff and its two senior board members have gone to ground as the NT Government’s review of the organisation is entering its final phase. CEO John Huigen and board chairman Fred Chaney have not responded to questions from the Alice Springs News Online, and deputy chairman Harold Furber has refused to answer questions. Meanwhile enquiries by the Alice Springs News Online into the DKA Outback Business Network (OBN), cited as one of its major achievements, suggest that it has more front than substance. There are significant resignations from the organisation and its funding from the NT Government – $900,000 a year – is in doubt as a government-ordered inquiry by Don Zoellner (pictured) is under way. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.
FULL STORY »

Making money while the sun shines

 

The electrical “cake” of Alice Springs is $57.5m a year. How many of these 230,000,000 kilowatt hours annually are from renewable resources, mostly from the sun, how many should be, or could be? That, in a nutshell, were the questions asked by the Alice Solar City 2008-2013 project that came to an end with the release of a handsome book this month. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. PHOTO (from the report): Part of the Araluen array.
FULL STORY »

Booze probes must deal with passive welfare: Elferink

 

 

Any inquiry into alcohol problems should be looking at the effect of passive welfare and be specific to the conditions in the Northern Territory, says NT Justice Minister John Elferink (pictured). ERWIN CHLANDA reports. FULL STORY »

Kangaroo Dundee recognised in the streets – of London

 

 

Someone like “Kangaroo Dundee” could promote interest in the Outback amongst Chinese tourists who are now mostly visiting Australia’s big cities. But not a peep from Tourism NT. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. FULL STORY »

A funny thing happened to me on the way to the tip …

 

 

 

Driving past the new tip shop, having disposed of my ‘domestic waste’, my heart skipped a beat. I’d spotted a thing of beauty, a marvelous, playful, intriguing thing, writes KIERAN FINNANE.

  FULL STORY »

Builders’ insurance review still on the wrong track

 

 

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

 

Residential builders and home owners and builders attended a presentation of the Residential Building Cover review but the presentation was halted halfway through when it became apparent the results of the review did not actually answer any of the concerns of the residential builders present, writes Alice Springs builder Jamie de Brenni (pictured).

 

  FULL STORY »

Offers to purchase first blocks at Kilgariff

 

Applications have been made for the purchase of a “reasonable number” of blocks in Stage One of the new Kilgariff suburb, according to a reliable source. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. PHOTO: Work on the suburb earlier this year.
FULL STORY »

Artists, suppliers still not paid by Mbantua Festival

Some artists and suppliers to the Mbantua Festival in October are still waiting for their money as it appears the organisers have spent in excess of government funding commitments and their own resources. One of the festival’s creditors is musician and performer Jacinta Price (in the centre of the photo, performing at the festival with band and folk singer Bill Chambers). She says Arrulka Business Aboriginal Corporation is in breach of its contract with her. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. FULL STORY »

Inquiry must examine alcohol harms across entire community

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

 

Alcohol related harm affects the whole the community. We believe it is important that this inquiry has a broad remit to examine alcohol related harms across the entire community, writes JOHN PATERSON, spokesperson for Aboriginal Peak Organisations of the NT. FULL STORY »

Safety second on small tour buses?

 

 

Recently there have been two bad accidents on Centralian roads involving small tour buses. Is this happening because the companies operating three day tours are not giving their solitary drivers sufficient down time while on tour? FULL STORY »

Is misuse of alcohol only an Indigenous issue?

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

 

Yesterday CLP Senator Nigel Scullion announced a “broad-ranging national inquiry into alcohol-fuelled violence” and said everything would be looked at, yet today we hear that it will only focus on Indigenous Australians. Are we to believe that yesterday Senator Scullion recognised that grog harm was a whole-of-society issue yet today it’s a race-based issue? This is extraordinary, writes Leader of the Opposition, DELIA LAWRIE.

  FULL STORY »

Federal Parliamentary Inquiry embarrassing for CLP

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

 

It is a sign of the extent of Dave Tollner’s incompetence that the Federal Minister for Indigenous Affairs Nigel Scullion has today intervened in Northern Territory affairs and announced a Federal Parliamentary Inquiry into how to tackle increasing rates of alcohol-fuelled violence, writes Leader of the Opposition, DELIA LAWRIE. FULL STORY »

Tyre gel in Single Female Bicycle Rider’s handbag

 

As a Single Female Bicycle Rider I like to be as independent as self-sufficient as I possibly can and not rely on Bicycle Repair Man, because everybody knows that BRM wears his underpants over his pants and therefore causes shame. FULL STORY »

Crack in CLP ranks on alcohol supply

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

 

The CLP’s Member for Daly Gary Higgins has joined the growing chorus of voices calling for the CLP Government to hold a Parliamentary Inquiry into alcohol misuse. Alcohol-fuelled violence and anti-social behaviour has increased to an alarming level in the Territory and our community is suffering, writes Leadre of the Opposition, DELIA LAWRIE (pictured).

  FULL STORY »

Unfolding mall design

UPDATED with new photos (see FULL STORY), January 2, 11.20am.

 

 

There are still surprises to be discovered in the unfolding redesign of Todd Mall. KIERAN FINNANE comments.  FULL STORY »

Laid bare: what Desert Knowledge is doing, and what it is not

We’re embarking on yet another year as one of Central Australia’s most closely guarded secrets remains, well, closely guarded and secret: What in fact is Desert Knowledge Australia (DKA) actually DOING? Finally a breakthrough: A leak lays bare what that taxpayer-funded organisation is doing – and not doing. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. Photo: 11 of the 13 participants in the 2013 DKA leadership course, as published in the organsation’s newsletter and Christmas message. Names were not given. One thing we know this group did was a worthwhile public art exhibition on the changing face of Alice Springs, which we recently reviewed.

  FULL STORY »

Eight of town’s brightest in Top 20

Alice Springs is well represented in the Top 20 (actually 21)  results for the Northern Territory Certificate of Education and Training (NTCET). The students received their results yesterday. FULL STORY »

Another strategy to get kids to school in remote communities

In the Northern Territory’s remote communities only 13% of kids are attending school 80% of the time, says Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion. 80% is generally regarded as the minimum required to make learning progress. Describing the situation as “horrific” Senator Scullion has announced a two-year strategy to break “the cycle of non-attendance”.

  FULL STORY »

So much for the ‘revitalisation’ of Todd Mall

 

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

 

As the decline of the northern end of Todd Mall continues it’s instructive to look at newspaper advertising from 1968, namely the feature about Murray Neck’s joining Retravision that year, writes historian Alex Nelson, of Alice Springs. FULL STORY »

Report of a near fatal, in the first person

I’ve written many traffic accident reports, beginning in the ’60s as a police roundsman for a daily newspaper in Vienna. All were written in the third person. At about 8:25pm on Tuesday, November 19, 2013, at age 68, I had my first serious traffic accident. So here is my first person account of what happened, what it meant to me, what it made me discover about my family, friends, profession, community. My life in general, really. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. PHOTO: In the Alice hospital about an hour after my near-fatal crash. FULL STORY »

Housing rents as much as some families earn

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

 

The second NT Cost of Living Report, released today by the Northern Territory Council of Social Service with support from NT Shelter, reveals that Territory households pay a greater proportion of their incomes on housing costs than households elsewhere in the country, write Wendy Morton (NTCOSS) and Toni Vine Bromley (NT Shelter). FULL STORY »

The weapon police cannot find is sometimes a car

p2177-Erwin-hit&run-TennSMSloppy procedures in transferring ownership of cars are an obstacle to investigations of serious crimes, including hit and run which is endemic in the NT and carries a penalty of up to 10 years in jail. ERWIN CHLANDA reports – partly from his own experience as a victim. PHOTO: Police searching crime scene of fatal hit and run near Tennant Creek. (Pic courtesy NT Police.) FULL STORY »

Public housing for workers or welfare recipients?

 

 

 

Should we stop providing housing for non residents of our town who do not have a job? In short, should we start using NT Housing to import workers, not welfare recipients, while still of course maintaining a level of welfare housing for community members in proven need? FULL STORY »

Booze gets millions of likes

 

So ingeniously aggressive is the alcohol industry, that they are inducing social media users to promote their product. The Conversation (24/12/13) notes booze pages on Facebook have as many as 10m “likes”. ALCOHOL WATCH # 6 by Russell Guy.

  FULL STORY »