Gossip from around the Eurobodalla

Stuart Bammon, of Moruya, has just turned two, much to the delight of his beautiful mummy Beck and handsome daddy Chris.Beck has very proud grandparents, Henry and Jenny Hudson, and of course Denise and Garry Thornton are just as proud.A family picnic was held to celebrate with some serious gold prospecting and camping out. What brave people in this weather!After a three-month break Mark Schuelein is back in town. He has been in Queanbeyan working as a carpenter on a huge house that he said would take your breath away. Seems there is no shortage of pennies around that way.Caroline Smith had a wonderful time at Thredbo. She had a fabulous break with her husband Neil for five days. They took an apartment right on the slopes and the views were breathtaking. She is now back to the grindstone on the treadmill at the gym with her personal trainer Kate Turtianen.Jenny Tweedie has been away in Mittagong for a two-day conference with four other Quota members. They are all from the 35th District. Quota International of Batemans Bay is part of a women’s group that works very hard to raise money for various charities, like the hard of hearing and speech-impaired women and children. If you are interested in joining, please call the president, Carolyn Anderson, on 4471 3313.Renee Egan has just finished her final exams. She is off to Canberra with her Bachelor of Commerce degree in February for a graduate program which is like an internship in an accounting firm. We wish her all the very best. She will be missed in the Bay I am sure.Ron Maxwell and his mate Colin are off to Sydney for the big game tomorrow – the Wallabies vs Wales at the Sydney Football Stadium.Should be a great game, they certainly will have to rug up!Michelle and Dave can now see the light at the end of the tunnel after many weeks of building their new home at Catalina. All last weekend was spent hard at work finishing the final details. Next on the list is the interior design. Michelle says with the experience they have obtained, an audition for The Block TV show may be in order.DYK: When a cake recipe calls for flouring the baking tin, use a bit of dry cake mix instead. There will not be any white mess on the outside of the cake this way.YUK: Smoking is an individual’s right but please don’t just butt where you stand. There are spots around the Bay with hundreds of butts just sitting there looking very unsightly.YUMMY: The winter menus in our local restaurants. Loving the hot soups and exciting menu changes.Mrs Farrington-Smythe has returned from Aspen looking fitter than ever. The outdoor and indoor sports have lifted her spirits somewhat. The Bohemian look is big overseas just now she told us. Does this mean we drag out all our old ‘60s outfits and become flower children again?This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Hillary Clinton, Will Smith…and Anne?

United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has labelled a Eurobodalla lawyer a “hero” for her work against international slavery.Bingi’s Doctor Anne Gallagher was in Washington on Tues-day to accept the Trafficking in Persons Hero award from Dr Clinton, just a week after being named an Officer in the Order of Australia.The US Department of State recognised Dr Gallagher’s “ambitious efforts to strengthen legislative and criminal justice responses to human trafficking in South East Asia, and her substantial contribution to identify the core elements of a comprehensive anti-trafficking model that both prosecutes traffickers and protects victims”.Each year, the US honours individuals around the world who have devoted their lives to the fight against human trafficking. Dr Gallagher is acknowledged as a leading global authority on the law and policy of human trafficking.Guests at the ceremony included anti-slavery campaigner Jada Pinkett-Smith and Will Smith.Dr Gallagher last week was named in the Queen’s Birthday Honours, “for distinguished service to the law, and to human rights, as a practitioner, teacher and scholar, particularly in the areas of human trafficking responses and criminal justice”.Speaking in Washington, Dr Gallagher said the award was “a great honour, particularly to be recognised along with such brave and selfless individuals who have sacrificed so much in their struggle against the exploitation of human beings for profit”.“It is my hope that the award will draw attention to the importance of a strong criminal justice response to trafficking: one that seeks to end impunity and secure justice for those who have been exploited.“This award is awonderful personal compliment, but I see it also as a tribute to what has been achieved in South East Asia over the past decade. While much remains to be done, great progress has been made and that deserves to be recognised.”Celebrating at home in the Eurobodalla were Dr Gallagher’s husband Cees de Rover and their twin daughters Elodie and Ruby.For more than a decade, Dr Gallagher has turned international law on an industry worth more than $30 billion a year.The United Nations estimates 21 million adults and children are victims of human trafficking and forced labour in the sex, agriculture, seafood, clothing and other trades, making $32 billion per year.This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Eurobodalla Ratepayers’ group slams GM decision

The Eurobodalla Ratepayers Association has slammed council’s decision to extend general manager Paul Anderson’s contract for a further five years, criticising both its timing and the manner in which it was done.“While the decision has expensive and long-term consequences for all of the shire, it was taken in secret,” ERA chairman Geoff Plews said.“The terms of Mr Anderson’s new contract have not been disclosed. Information about which councillors supported it is hidden.“Eurobodalla Ratepayers Association is extremely disappointed by the way Mr Anderson’s re-appointment was handled.”Mr Plews said councillors had failed to determine whether other suitable candidates were available and claimed the decision was inappropriately timed, given a new council would be elected in September.He said the “short-sighted decision” could unnecessarily burden ratepayers with heavy compensation liabilities if future councillors wanted to employ someone else.However, Eurobodalla Mayor Fergus Thomson defended the decision and its timing, saying it was made in line with advice from local government authorities.He said there was little point in delaying a decision when it would then have to be made within months of the council election, potentially by newly elected councillors with little knowledge of the general manager’s performance to date.Cr Thomson said to seek othercandidates would have cost about $40,000 and would have involved terminating Mr Anderson’s tenure.Asked why a shorter, 12-month contract could not have been offered, the Mayor said it would likely have been rejected.“No general manager to my knowledge would accept a 12-month contract,” he said.Cr Thomson said a change of council created a “lot of hard work” for a general manager and no-one would expect them to go through that on a short contract, particularly after just receiving an “above average performance review”.But Mr Plews was critical of the general manager’s performance over the past four years, citing staffsurveys and consultants’ reports as evidence.He said an independent survey conducted by council showed council’s relations with the community were extremely poor and public uproar over the local environment plan was just one of many examples.“Mr Anderson has had little impact on the introspective and secretive culture of the organisation,” Mr Plews said. “Nor has he put council in a strong financial position to face future challenges. The new 10-year financial plan shows a long string of future operating deficits, ever increasing rates and charges, and no clear strategy to return council’s budget to balance.“Yet again Eurobodalla Shire has failed to convince Commonwealth and State authorities that this council would use a proper share of infrastructure funding as efficiently as competing councils. Private sector investors are bypassing the shire, local businesses are failing rapidly, property values are declining and many residents must search for employment outside the shire.“Eurobodalla ratepayers willbenefit only when councillors are able to recognise the difference between activity and achievement, with real, measurable, on-the-ground improvements in roads, health services and appropriate environment protection.”This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

More hives hit in bee massacre

Greg Roberts inspect his bee hives yesterday.The damage bill is rising for the shire’s honey-producers, with up to 1200 Eurobodalla beehives now confirmed hits in what has all the hallmarks of industrial sabotage.The mass poisonings first uncovered earlier this week have targeted the hives of major players in the industry at at least 10 sites.Apiarists now fear that whoever is responsible will strike again and beekeepers are being urged to keep a close eye on their loads.Police are leading the investigation but had no comment to make yesterday.Eurobodalla beekeeper Greg Roberts lost just two hives in Murramarang National Park, north of Batemans Bay, but his brother Pat lost 120 at a site on the same road.Mr Roberts fears the culprits oppose beekeepers being allowed to use leased sites for their hives in national parks and state forests. The hives are there to take advantage of flowering plants.Mr Roberts, a past president of the NSW Apiarists Association and former national chairman of the Australian Honey Bee Industry Council, said as many as eight large operators had been hit.“I can’t work it out. It’s as though ghosts have come out in the night,” he said. “They left no footprints, no car tracks, no nothing, but the attacks must have been well planned.“With no footprints, they must have worn special footwear or put rags over their shoes. With so many hives destroyed, it is such amassive thing to do.”Greg Roberts said it would require more than one or two offenders to go around so many different sites.Although backpack chemical sprays or pumps had been discussed as the likely method to distribute the poison, Mr Roberts said aerosol sprays may have been used but this method would have required hundreds of cans.“The attacks are similar in a way to those on logging machinery that was damaged in the past when people went in against logging,” he said.Greg Roberts said he did not believe other beekeepers were involved in the attacks.“There are people who don’t want us in the state forests,” he said.“It would seem that they had maps or even inside information of where the beehives were.”Pat Roberts lost 240 hives at two sites and quickly ruled out disease as the cause of the deaths.“I’ve worked with bees all my life. I know when something has been sprayed (by chemical),” he said yesterday.“Each hive has 50,000 to 70,000 bees.“A lot of the guys didn’t have insurance. I don’t know yet how we stand.”With the loss of so many bees, Pat Roberts said it would be a slow process to rebuild the stocks.“We can’t do anything until spring as we have got to separate them away from other hives, then put in a new young queen. It will take 12 months at least to return to full honey production.”The Environmental Protection Agency and DPI are testing the dead bees and hives for traces of chemical and the results are not expected until later next week.Julian Thompson, EPA acting manager south branch, said staff sampled three beehive sites in the Batemans Bay region.He said apiarists have dozens of beehive sites each to check and had not yet visited them all.This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Track Watch: Miss Ready willing and able

BEFORE launching into the review of the past week’s racing, let’s focus on the exciting full-TAB meeting at the Moruya Jockey Club next Tuesday.The club has been overwhelmed by the 137 nominations received for the seven-event program so we should be in for big fields and highly competitive racing across the card.All the usual facilities will be in full swing at the track and Priors dedicated race-day bus service will be running from the Bay, booking details for which, as well as the sponsors for the day, appear on the Moruya Jockey Club’s promotional poster on page 37.This is the second last meeting of the racing season and all trainers will be out to improve their positions on the premiership tables, the last being the Batemans Bay Cup meeting on Friday, July 13. Interestingly, John Marzol has only two nominations for the day, they both being unraced maidens, and it’s good to see Mark Latta’s name appear once again in the training ranks, also with two untried maiden runners.Unfortunately the final fields for the day will not be declared until today, but can be accessed on the Racing NSW website for your early consideration.Let’s all pray for good weather, with gates opening at the track at 11am and the first race set to jump at 12.40pm.Only a small number of Moruya gallopers stepped out at meetings over the past week but, as always, there was plenty of success and some great performances.Luke Pepper was our only trainer who made the trip to Wagga with just one runner last Friday, that being new stable acquisition Miss Ready.The three-year-old filly by More Than Ready, who was previously trained in town by Gai Waterhouse, had five previous starts under her belt for one third placing.Her debut run for Luke was in the Maiden event over 1200 metres in a field of 14, and she settled near the front on jumping under the patient and confident riding of Brendan Ward.She took the lead into the straight and kept going away from her opposition all the way to the line for an emphatic three lengths win.Despite her previous record, the punters found her in the market and she started at $3.20 near favourite.She was not only ready, but willing and able as well, and I think Luke and the connections are going to have some good times with her as she works through the grades.Keep an eye out for her next assignment.Five Moruya gallopers made the trip to Goulburn on Saturday for the six-event meeting and all ran brilliantly.First to step out were Colbey Hill’s Certino, resuming from a spell and Luke’s Winning Angel, both in the Maiden 1000m sprint.And it was Colbey’s Certino who almost caused a boil over when rattling home late at huge odds to claim a 1.3 lengths second on the line.That was his 20th start, and probably his best to date, and if he can reproduce the same second up he’ll be right in the mix to break his Maiden status.Winning Angel finished mid-field in the event.Peter Afflick’s Worpali was also first-up from a spell when she lined up in the Benchmark 50 (1000m) sprint from an outside gate, and she looked great when flashing home out wide to claim a two lengths third placing under Michael Travers’ guidance.The final race was a Benchmark 60 event over 1300m with Lynda Bundy’s Moorings Royal, ridden by Neil Perryman, and John Marzol’s Mineral Deposit with Kevin Sweeney aboard, both in the starting line-up.Two weeks ago, Moorings Royal returned from a spell at the Goulburn track to record a great third placing and I reported that I was sure both Lynda and Neil would have been delighted with that first-up run as a positive indicator of a good campaign ahead.John’s Mineral Deposit was the punters’ favourite for the race, starting at $3.20, but it was another brilliant ride by Neil for Moorings Royal to steal the limelight at the juicy odds of $17.30 on the tote with a half-neck winning margin. Mineral Deposit finished four lengths behind in fourth.A team of six Moruya runners step out at Canberra today with Steve Stephens’ Olympian and Domidor, both to be ridden by Joe Azzopardi in races two and four, Peekay and Bad Kitty in race six and Blow Up The Pokies and Summer Duck Wood in race eight.John Marzol’s Grey Drama and Our Billy Blue ran at the Randwick meeting, which was transferred to Newcastle on Wednesday but unfortunately both failed to find a placing.Until next week, good luck and good punting.This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Fox forced to shuffle the Tigers’ back

A BIZARRE yet devastating injury to Bay Tigers fullback Nathan Wood has forced coach Deryck Fox to shake up his backline for Sunday’s Group 7 clash against Berry-Shoalhaven Heads.Wood, who has consistently been among the Bay’s best this season, was on the receiving end of a “nasty spear tackle” at Warilla last month, which Fox said led to a fracture in his neck.“He copped a nasty spear tackle at Warilla the other week and what’s happened to the poor fella is that he sneezed in his sleep last week, which actually caused him to fracture a vertebra in his neck,” Fox said.“He’s had an MRI scan, he’s in hospital and he’s going to be out of action for a long while.”With that in mind, Fox will be crossing fingers and toes that star man Willy Newton gets through tomorrow’s representative game against Group 20 unscathed so he can return for the Tigers at centre on Sunday.If fit to play, Newton will be part of a new-look Tigers’ backline, which will include moving Jared Wood-Johnston from second row to five-eighth and Michael Tadich from the halves to his preferred position of fullback.Despite the major positional changes, Fox is confident that it won’t affect the team too much.“What’s happened to Nathan is very unfortunate but what I’ll do is move Michael Tadich to fullback because he comes to us as a highly rated fullback,” Fox said.“I’m going to rotate things a bit, but the people in key positions know exactly how we should be playing.”The Tigers will line up at Mackay Park after an unexpected break, which came in the form of a washout last weekend.Even though that meant the Tigers had to wait another week to see if they could snap their five-game losing streak, Fox suggested it was a blessing in disguise.“It did (come at a good time), actually,” he said.“Willy (Newton) wasn’t right with his ankle and Grant (Roberts) wasn’t right with his knee.”Fox is confident that Newton should be right to play this weekend, but said he couldn’t “see Grant (Roberts) being involved this weekend”.Newton’s inclusion is a major boost for the Tigers – he starred in round two as the Bay beat Berry-Shoalhaven Heads by 42 points.The under 18s kick off Sunday’s action from 1.15pm before the first grade match at 2.45pm.Follow @Dean_Benson14NoneThis story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Roberts ready to bare it on world stage

MEGAN Roberts doesn’t come across as a world champion.Softly spoken and incredibly humble, the Nelligen girl has achieved more in her six years as a barefoot skier than most athletes do in their entire career.So when she heads to Texas in August to defend her open women’s trick world title, she is keen for her feet to do the talking.“I’m excited now, but I’ll be nervous when it gets closer,” Roberts said.“I’m the current open women’s trick world champion, so I guess I do feel a bit of pressure.”With the short winter days and the warm waters of summer a distant memory, Roberts’ opportunities to train on the Clyde River have been limited.So, by her own admission, Roberts’ preparations for the Barefoot World Championships have been less than ideal.“I probably haven’t done as much training as I would’ve liked,” she said.“So because of that I’m a bit unsure (of how I’ll go). Ideally, I should be skiing three or four times a week.”However, the 17-year-old Bay High student braved the shivery conditions last weekend when she went for a training session on the Clyde – an experience she described as “freezing”.“With daylight saving, it’s a bit hard to train down here but we went out last weekend locally and it was absolutely freezing,” she said with a laugh.“So I’m looking forward to the warmer waters.”Roberts won’t have to wait too long to warm up as she is off to Queensland on Sunday for three weeks to train with her coach Gizella “Gizie” Halasz.The world titles don’t get underway until August 27, but Roberts will be heading to the United States three weeks earlier to train in California, where she hopes to “do some other things as well” and even see “a few celebrities”.“I’ll be in Sacramento training for two weeks before I go to Texas so I’ve been googling stuff to look at while I’m there,” she said.But once she gets to the Barefoot Ski Ranch in Waco, Texas, it will be straight down to business.New Zealander Georgia Groen is likely to be her “main competition” over the three disciplines (slalom, jump and tricks) but Roberts knows where her strengths lie and she hopes to make the most of them.“I’m better at tricks because I’ve worked at it more than the other (disciplines),” she said.“But it all just depends on how you ski on the day.”Flying to the US isn’t cheap for a 17-year-old and to help lighten the financial burden, family friend Kelly Hadlow has been doing her bit to help raise money – something Roberts is extremely grateful for.“It’s an expensive trip so I really appreciate it,” she said.“But I should also thank my mum and dad (Denise and Paul) for all of their support.”The barefoot world titles run from August 27 to September 2.Follow @Dean_Benson14NoneThis story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Batemans Bay’s happiest refugee

The gloom of an underground car park is no match for Adil Mohamed’s smile.The former Sudanese electrician may be unable to ply his trade in Australia, but his grin has been lighting up the Village Centre car park in Batemans Bay for months.It will only get wider if money, time and opportunity combine for him to improve his English and requalify in Australia as a “sparkie”.In the meantime, Adil is delighted to have work to support his wife and children, even if it means travelling every week from south-west Sydney.Travelling has been Adil’s necessary friend since he fled north-west Sudan and its fundamentalist government 12 years ago for Egypt.“The government in Sudan did not give any opportunity,” Adil said.Nepotism was rife and jobs went only to “the people who worked with them or belonged to the government”.“My wife was a teacher and had the same problem with the government,” he said.Fearing his family had no future, he made a momentous decision.“I hated this government, so I went to Egypt,” he said. “I really tried hard, I worked hard in Egypt.”After four years, his family joined him and they approached Australian migration authorities.“I gave them all the documentation and after four months I came to Australia,” he said.That was eight years ago and, at first, the language barrier was tough.“If you don’t speak English very well, you can’t find a job,” he said.Language classes at TAFE helped.“Now I can communicate with other people,” he said.But in February, with everyone feeling the economic downturn and jobs scarce in Sydney, he headed south.“I miss my wife and kids, but I have to work and I have to get money,” he said.“I have to sacrifice.”He loves his adopted country.“It is really better than Sudan,” he said.“Australia is a good country. They help all the people. There is no discrimination. People are peaceful.“If you compare this life with other counties, Australia is the best country in the world.“If you need to do anything in Australia, you can, because of the freedom here.”He’s grateful to those who have reached out to him.“I find help from many people here in Batemans Bay,” he said.A fellow worker in the Village Centre “has helped me all the time and given me magazines”.Adil still hopes to requalify in his former trade.“I hope to find opportunities to do my job as an electrician, but I need four years at TAFE,” he said.After attending TAFE, Adil’s wife gained entry to Sydney University and hopes to gain work in children’s services.However, after a 12-year separation, Adil longs to see his mother before she dies.“I miss my mother, she is in Sudan and getting old,” he said.This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Flying foxes pose no health risk: NPWS

National Parks and Wildlife Service has continued to reaasure Batemans Bay residents that the flying foxes roosting in the Water Gardens pose no health risk to humans unless bitten.As a protected wildlife species, anyone who interferes with the flying foxes and their camps is liable to prosecution and large fines.NPWS staff are available to advise and assist any landholder, including the council, who is affected by flying foxes or any other native species.With the Batemans Bay roost on Euro-bodalla Shire Council land, a council director said it would liaise with NPWS about the problem following complaints.Planning and sustainability services director Lindsay Usher said the eastern grey flying foxes were protected under the NPW Act and listed as vulnerable under the Threatened Species Conservation Act.“It is understood that the recent attempt to relocate flying foxes from the Royal Botanic Gardens in Sydney followed a lengthy environmental assessment process, and approvals by both the Federal and State governments,” he said.“Advice provided by NPWS to council in April is that the current population in Bate-mans Bay is present on a seasonal basis and will most likely move on of its own accord.”The NPWS said this week it understood the concerns of the Batemans Bay community and had been working with council to ensure people are well informed about the species and the things that can be done to reduce conflict when living alongside the camps.NPWS acting Far South Coast manager Stephen Dovey said staff had been talking to the community and distributing brochures and posters.Jointly with the council, it has sent letters to residents who live near the flying fox camp.Mr Dovey said NPWS would monitor the colony and continue to liaise with council and residents.“NPWS considers the Batemans Bay colony to be a temporary camp and we believe it is likely to recede once the local food source, flowering eucalypts, diminishes,” Mr Dovey said.“There are a number of options that the council can consider regarding the flying foxes and NPWS will continue to work with them on this issue.”Mr Dovey said one option was for council to apply for a licence to attempt to move them but this would be a last resort and would not be guaranteed of approval.Information is available on the web at www.environment.nsw.gov.au/animals/flyingfoxes.htm.Back in April, just weeks after the colony began moving in in big numbers, NPWS reassured residents that the nomadic mammals would likely move on after feeding on the blossoms of flowering spotted gums.Far South Coast manager Tim Shepherd reassured residents they posed no health risks unless people were bitten or scratched, and he warned people not to handle any injured flying foxes.Although Australian bat Lyssavirus and Hendra virus are associated with flying foxes, the risk of them transmitting disease to humans was extremely low.The NPWS officer said the virus was not spread through droppings or urine and was only transmitted by flying fox saliva coming into contact with an open wound or mucus membrane such as eyes, nose and mouth.Residents worried by the issue can contact park rangers on 4760 8000.This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Bring on the decider

I’M SURE I speak for most when I say that I was extremely proud to be a Blues fan last Wednesday night.In what was one of the most absorbing Origins I can remember watching, NSW prevailed in front of a massive crowd to take the series to a decider.Much like Origin I, it wasn’t a game of the highest technical quality, but it was exactly what fans wanted – tough, fast-paced and non-stop.Robbie Farah was immense for the Blues and missed none of his 63 tackle attempts, which is simply incred-ible when you think about how fast the match was.Young prop Tim Grant was a standout on debut and didn’t look out of place on the big stage – he’s certainly done enough to earn a spot in the decider.What did annoy me, though, was that much of the media coverage post-game centred on Michael Jennings’ play to dislodge the ball from Brent Tate just as he looked certain to score.Yes, it was a brilliant play, but Jennings was nowhere to be seen for most of the match and yet he was all but credited for the victory.Something else that made me laugh was when the Channel Nine commentary team paid tribute to Jarryd Hayne’s “awareness” to put his foot on the ball and set up Josh Morris’s try.Hayne simply lost control after Johnathon Thurston’s intervention and it was just fortunate that the ball landed on his foot. Sure, it was lucky, but hey, we’ll take it!It wasn’t the first mega-hyperbole from Phil Gould and co and it certainly won’t be the last. Bring on game three!A WELCOME DISTRACTION FOR GREECEThe people of Greece had something to cheer about for the first time in a long, long time on the weekend when its football team beat Russia 1-nil to advance to the quarter-finals of Euro 2012.Greece, who caused one of the biggest sporting upsets ever when it won Euro 2004, took the lead through 120-game veteran Giorgos Karagounis just before half-time and then held off wave after wave of Russian attacks to advance past the group stages.Back in Athens, there were scenes of unrivalled joy as fans partied in the streets of the capital for hours on end.From the footage, it would seem anyone selling Greek flags is doing quite well in the economic turmoil.After Greece’s close encounter with the euro, sit back and watch them play havoc at the Euros!SIMPSON JOINS FIRST-TIMERS’ LISTIf you’ve never won a Major before, then now is the time to become a professional golfer.American Webb Simpson became the ninth consecutive first-time Major winner on Monday when he took out the US Open title by one shot over Graeme McDowell and Michael Thompson.Simpson’s overall score after four rounds of one over par (281) shows just how difficult the Olympic Club’s Lake Course was playing during the championships.Jim Furyk was the favourite heading into round four, but three last-round bogeys ended his hopes.Follow @Dean_Benson14NoneThis story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.