Crunch … Bulldog Josh Jackson is slammed in Friday’s game against Manly.JAMIE LYON believes Manly can still mount a title defence even if a calf injury rules him out of Friday’s elimination final at Allianz Stadium.

Injuries and probable suspensions are sure to test the Sea Eagles’ depth after a brutal loss to Canterbury at ANZ Stadium on Friday night. The fallout from the opening night of the play-offs include:

❏ A calf injury that forced Lyon off in the first half;

❏ Co-captain Jason King being placed on report for a high shot on Aiden Tolman;

❏ Steve Matai also being placed on report, for clocking Kiwi counterpart Sam Perrett high;

❏ Joe Galuvao in doubt with a calf injury;

❏ An injury cloud over forward Tony Williams following reports he hyperextended a knee.

Lyon limped off after just 25 minutes, forcing NSW utility Jamie Buhrer to cover for him in the centres.

”Not sure – hopefully it settles down well and we’ll see how it is,” Lyon said of his chances of playing this week. ”I was just going to sprint off and felt something go. I would have rather have been out there but these things happen. Hopefully it’s not too bad … Definitely, it’s not the best. We’ve got to grin and bear it, and hopefully the [scan] results are good.”

Asked if the premiers could rebound with so many stars in doubt, the former NSW and Australian representative said: ”It’s going to be tough but we’ll still field a strong team. We’ll come out firing next Friday and hopefully we’ll put in a good performance.”

The Sea Eagles face the prospect of having both their centres ruled out, meaning Buhrer will probably take one of the spots.

”I think he did a good job tonight and if he gets that opportunity next week I’m sure he’ll be able to handle it,” Lyon said. ”We’ll just have to wait and see how many troops we’ve got next week.”

Perrett has no memory of the Matai incident – and large patches of the game – that left him with a sore jaw. ”To be honest, I don’t remember a whole lot,” he said. ”I copped a whack in the head. I just can’t remember patches. I’ve got a sore jaw. I guess he got me somewhere there … I guess I was on autopilot.

”I felt fine, but just memory-wise I just had glimpses of the game, pictures and bits and pieces.”

Asked if Matai deserved to be suspended, he replied: ”He got put on report? I don’t know, I’d have to see it. It’s never nice anyone getting suspended but I guess I’d have to see it.”

Matai has 46 carry-over points and a 70 per cent loading from two previous charges, meaning a grade-one charge will rule him out for two weeks.

”It was a tough, physical game,” he said on the Manly website. ”It didn’t look too bad to me.”

Galuvao hopes for a swift recovery, saying: ”I’m pretty confident I’ll be out there next week. I think I’m just more old than anything. I got a sore calf as well and they took me off for precautionary reasons. I’ve got scans on Monday.

”I’m not ruling myself out. We’re all professional players and need to do what we do, do the rehab.”

Manly came into the match as premiership favourites but the Bulldogs now have that mantle, firming into $3. After defeating Des Hasler’s former team, his side enjoys a two-week break and is one victory away from a grand final appearance.

However, the Sea Eagles, who will need to win three on the trot, are not discounting their chances of becoming the first team since the 1992-93 Brisbane Broncos outfits to go back to back in a unified competition. ”We’ve faced adversity like this all year,” Galuvao said. ”We’ll get in on Monday and prepare as normal. All the boys are mentally tough and it’s what we’re known for.”

Tolman, who was awarded man-of-the-match honours, did not want to be drawn on the hit by King.

”Not too much,” he said of his recollections. I was a little bit dazed but that’s just part of the game. To be honest, it doesn’t really bother me. The judiciary is there to handle that sort of stuff.”

Twitter – @proshenks

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Mulloway answer is obvious

October 10th, 2018 / / categories: 苏州美甲学校 /

There’s something seriously wrong when our fisheries managers call for public submissions to help save the mulloway (aka jewfish) while letting commercial fishers take big breeding specimens in their nets.

We’ve campaigned here before, but the beach-haul fishery on the north coast supposedly chasing sea mullet nets an awful lot of mature 20-30 kilogram female jewfish.

Boxes upon boxes of the fish are put through the fish co-operatives every year. The bycatch of beach-haul netters, some 500 kilograms allowed to each fisher annually, seems to be the target instead.

Meanwhile, you can see hundreds more dead juvenile jewfish floating on the surface after their prawn trawlers empty their nets around estuary mouths.

More than once I’ve seen a stream of dead jewfish float past on the Hawkesbury. These fish aren’t counted in the catch rates.

I’ve also watched a local pro pick boxes of school jewfish out of his gill net while moored at Brooklyn. Anglers, on the other hand, are allowed to keep only two fish over 70 centimetres in length and no more than five over 45 centimetres. To catch a big jewfish is no mean feat. It’s a measure of great skill and a pinnacle of one’s fishing career.

The Department of Primary Industries concedes that mulloway have been overfished and a recovery program is required to help rebuild the population to a sustainable level.

It’s asking anglers to have their say on mulloway. Doubtless we will be restricted some more, but what the DPI needs to do is look at unsustainable commercial fishing practices instead. The mulloway recovery web page links from

Our central coast stringer Scott Thorrington has been taking more big kingfish on the deep reefs on jigs and live baits. Line-snipping leatherjackets hunting in packs are proving costly, however.

Colleague Paul Minto was scoring snapper, morwong and flathead out wide before the wind came up. Reef fishing has been pretty good all the way south to the Hump near Stanwell Park. Aussie salmon schools are around the headlands and beaches, while big black drummer are patrolling the washes. Bread berley and bait will be their undoing. We also hear of a good early run of lobsters on the kelp beds.

Hawkesbury reports are rare, but there’s generally more talk of flathead and flounder in most estuaries. That said, it’s the luderick that is omnipresent, with some real thumpers about.

As if to prove as much, Harbour guide Stuart Reid had a cracker week on the luderick around the mouth of Middle Harbour and at Sow and Pigs. Middle Head is a better option for land-based anglers.

Rippling schools of Aussie salmon have been parked between The Heads, especially midweek, while trevally are holding in the deeper holes, including those in Botany Bay.

There have been some big whiting mooching around Manly and doubtless other harbour beaches.

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Religion, according to Law

August 8th, 2018 / / categories: 苏州美甲学校 /

Benjamin Law: ‘I find humour in discomfort’.A self-confessed Catholic atheist, a politician who once called for a religious monument to be built on Mt Bartle Frere and an author is at home discussing Marcel Proust as he is bodily fluids.

All debating the Bible and whether reading it, is good for you.

In public.

What on earth could go wrong?

A whole bunch of things, according to Brisbane Proust-discussing, bodily fluid aficionado, author Benjamin Law.

“I find humour in discomfort,” Law said.

“And the fact that Germaine Greer and Bob Katter are on the same side, on the same team, I think is going to be just hilarious.

“I have a feeling that even though they are on the same team, they are going to contradict each other while me and [fellow debaters] Richard Holloway, Jacqui Payne and Rachel Sommerville just smile along smugly with our hands behind our backs.”

Whether the audience watching the Brisbane Writer’s Festival Great Debate tonight shares that smug smile is yet to be seen, but Law said at the very least it opens the topic up for discussion.

“I quite like the Bible; I spent 12 years at a Christian school,” he said.

“I’m not religious myself, but it is an interesting book. I think that people should read it; I just don’t think it is necessarily good for you.

“The debate topic is that reading the Bible is good for you and [my argument] is that it is good for you, but only if you have religious and theological authorities to put the Bible into context for you, to translate it as a guide for good modern living.

“If you just pick up the book and read it, which is how most people read text, it is not going to be necessarily a healthy outcome.”

Which brings Law to a topic close to many writers and readers hearts; context.

“Context is everything. You can’t read Huckleberry Finn, or any of the books by Mark Twain now without coming across the N-word,” he said.

“These are really lovely books, but words which were acceptable then are not acceptable now and as a child, you can’t just read Mark Twain books and come across the N-word and think that is OK.

“You do need someone explaining to you that these were written in a very certain cultural context in a very certain period in time.”

And the same goes for the Bible, he said.

“I think even if God looked down at the Bible now, he’d probably think it was a little bit dated and it was probably worth updating for the 2000th anniversary edition,” he said.

“It is not just about providing context, it is about debating context as well, which is exactly what we are doing on Saturday night.

“I never think it is a great idea to say ‘here is a text’ and say ‘here is how you must digest it, or interpret it, or apply it to your life’. There needs to be a level of free will and critical analysis too.”

As a member of Queensland’s small but passionate author’s club, Law is used to critical analysis, both of his work and his state.

But with the Brisbane Writer’s Festival in its 50th year and the recent show of support for Queensland’s literary scene after the axing of the Premier’s Literary Awards by the new government, Law remains proud of his home state’s “incredibly supportive and really tight” writing scene.

“One of the reasons I have stayed in Brisbane, even though a lot of my friends have moved on to Melbourne to become writers, is that there is a really great scene here,” he said.

“You’ll go to book events or go down the street and there is Nick Earls and there’s [brisbanetimes苏州美甲学校.au columnist] John Birmingham, some of the really great Australian writers out there and they are just so easily accessible.

“It has always been a really great supportive scene and even with an institution like the Premier’s Awards being cut, the writing and the publishing community is robust enough to make an award of their own and I think that is a testament to the people’s passion in this town for writing and literature.”

Which leaves Law feeling that writing and its Newtonian result, reading, is in a pretty good place in 2012.

“There has just been this glut of books, fiction and non-fiction, it has just been so good, internationally and Australian,” he said.

“There is nothing like reading a book and to me, it really doesn’t matter if you are reading it is a paper back or reading it on your e-reader, the thirst for good writing hasn’t diminished at all.”

More information on the Brisbane Writer’s Festival can be found at the BWF website.

Benjamin Law’s second book, Gaysia: Adventures in the Queer East, is out now.

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From the dockyards to the dock

October 9th, 2019 / / categories: 苏州美甲学校 /

Jason Clare … launched a crackdown on waterfront crime.The war against organised crime on Australia’s waterfront has secured a series of high-profile arrests that police say have smashed alleged drug networks operating through Sydney’s ports.

In the past three months, the Polaris taskforce – the Australian Federal Police-led operation that involves the Customs Service, NSW Police and associated agencies – has arrested four Sydney waterfront workers, two men with connections to the docks and a former wharfie.

While the four cases are not connected, all the men are before Sydney courts on drug charges and are yet to enter pleas.

Police, who spoke to The Sun-Herald on the condition of anonymity, said they remained wary of an entrenched culture of corruption, nepotism and silence on wharves.

”The waterfront is where Australia is most vulnerable and Polaris is working at ways of reducing that exposure,” an officer said. ”It’s a slow grind but we’re getting there.”

But Dean Summers, a Maritime Union of Australia organiser who handles waterfront security concerns, said: ”It’s ridiculous. This bagging, this trying to suggest we’re all crooks and gangsters and, in the past, terrorists, just doesn’t wash.”

He added: ”The wharves are largely a sterile environment. It’s boxes moving across the tarmac. To suggest it’s a dark and dingy festering den of criminality is just off the page.”

Police admit they have an endless battle against ”dark networks” that operate through the ports. The NSW Crime Commission has detailed that after several arrests, and cash and drug seizures, a Mexican cartel had simply ”set up a new stream of supply within months”. In part, it is because ”disproportionately large profits can be obtained for illegal drugs in Australia”, they wrote in last year’s annual report.

But a tiny fraction of containers are checked. Statistics from the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service show more than 2.2 million containers are imported each year, 70 per cent of them coming to Melbourne and Sydney. Of these, the Customs Service X-rays 101,500 and physically examines 14,000 containers each year.

In May, the Home Affairs Minister, Jason Clare, launched a crackdown on waterfront crime. But he declined to comment on container check ratios and police allegations that the union, a big supporter of the Labor government, was a problem for the nation’s border security.

In May last year, David Samuel Perry, 45, a former Queensland branch assistant secretary of the union, was sentenced to a year in jail for allegedly lying about helping a syndicate to smuggle $170 million worth of drugs into Australia. Mr Summers, however, said he had never seen any criminal activity in his time working for the union.

”Our members are by and large honest, hard-working men and women who just want to go to work.”

Mr Clare’s reforms include new obligations for maritime and aviation security identification cards for stevedores and at customs depots, warehouses and for brokers who use the Integrated Cargo System. But last month the government’s Office of Best Practice Regulation ”assessed this decision as being non-compliant with the Australian government’s best practice regulation requirements”. Mr Clare did not respond to emailed questions and declined requests to be interviewed. In a statement, his spokesman said that since inception in July 2010, Polaris had made 20 arrests resulting in 113 charges, seized more than 12 tonnes of illicit substances and precursor chemicals for drugs, 119 tonnes of illicit tobacco and 92 million cigarettes, preventing the evasion of about $77 million in tax revenue.

Mr Summers said increasing the security requirements for waterfront workers was a misplaced policy.

”I don’t know if you understand how invasive that card is already. People have to undergo an ASIO background check, AFP check and an immigration check. If they are suggesting that’s not good enough, well, they need to speak to those agencies.”

Mr Summers said the union was disappointed it was left out of negotiations about the reforms.

”People working in shipping companies, or those people who have real effective control of terminals, they don’t have to have background checks,” he said. ”A lot of ports in the country don’t even have security on them.”

In July, Asciano, the company that runs the Patrick wharf, announced plans to replace 270 of its 511 Port Botany workforce with automated straddle carrier technology by 2014. A spokeswoman said: ”We have always and will continue to work together with the relevant law-enforcement agencies in order to appropriately address crime and review potential vulnerabilities.”

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WHEN the existence of the listening device warrant 266, containing 114 names, landed on the front page of The Sydney Morning Herald on April 13, 2002, there was an immediate outcry from serving and former police.

Many were experienced detectives. They knew it was extremely unusual, if not unheard of, for so many names to be on the one warrant. A warrant lasts for only 21 days before it has to be renewed. How on earth, the critics asked, could an undercover officer, M5, possibly bug the conversations of so many people in such a short time?

The outgoing police commissioner, Peter Ryan, sought to defuse a potentially explosive situation. The next day he appeared on 60 Minutes and essentially told viewers it was all above board. He said the undercover officer, M5, “was going to a function at which a lot of people would be present and therefore he may be talking to a hundred people, all of whom had to be named in the warrant”.

He was asked: “So it wasn’t an investigation of 110 odd individuals?”

Ryan: “Oh no. If I was at that function, my name would probably have been on the warrant too.”

In other words, just because you were on the warrant didn’t mean you had done anything wrong.

There was one problem. The warrant was granted on September 14, 2000 – the day before the opening of the Sydney Olympics. There was no chance a major police function would have been held in the following 21 days. Indeed, Strike Force Emblems – the report of which The Sun-Herald reveals today – found there was no such function during the span of the warrant. Emblems investigators tried to find out who had advised Mr Ryan. On the face of it, he had been seriously misled. It is not clear who advised him.

On June 30, 2003, Cath Burn – who is now a Deputy Police Commissioner but had been a key officer within Special Crime and Internal Affairs – had a formal record of interview with Emblems investigators. They asked Ms Burn if she knew how Mr Ryan had arrived at his explanation of a function.

“I have no idea why he said it,” she replied. ”I’d say he wasn’t briefed.”

Question: Well, is that statement [about there being a function] true? Answer: No.

Q: Why would he make a statement such as that? A: I don’t know. You’d have to ask him. Q: Do you know who briefed him? A: I have no idea.

Ms Burn told Emblems that Mr Ryan’s explanation had been openly discussed with Operation Mascot – a long-running inquiry into police corruption – and that he had been given incorrect information.

At the time of this interview, Emblems investigators were not aware of a two-page briefing note about listening device 266 written by Ms Burn on April 13, 2002, the day the Herald story appeared and the day before Mr Ryan’s 60 Minutes interview. The Sun-Herald has seen a copy of that briefing note. Marked “Highly protected”, it appears at odds with Ms Burn’s answers in her formal record of interview almost 14 months later.

In it, she says: “It was the procedure to include on the warrant names of people who were likely to be spoken to by the informer [M5] whether they were targets, suspects or persons of interest. This did not extend to every person the informer would come into contact with, just those where it was likely the conversation would be recorded (eg. At a function).”

In a 12-page annexure to her briefing, she goes on to describe a function. She lists the 114 people on the warrant and, one by one, gives reasons they were on it. Next to 30 names, Ms Burn had written “King send off list”, indicating they were expected to attend a farewell for detective Jim King, which M5 had in fact helped organise.

The Sun-Herald has established that King’s small farewell drinks in fact took place in June 2000 – three months before listening device 266 was approved by Justice Virginia Bell in the NSW Supreme Court. In addition, it has established that at least 20 of the 30 named on the list did not attend the function because they barely knew King or didn’t know the farewell was on.

“Never went, never invited, never would have gone,” said one officer who was supposedly going.

Ms Burn said yesterday she had no comment but wanted to clarify that she was a sergeant in SCIA and never its commander. However, in 2002, she signed her briefing note as ”acting commander” of the Special Crime Unit within SCIA.

Mr Ryan, meanwhile, wasn’t at Jim King’s send-off, either. But it turns out that even he and his then wife did not escape SCIA’s scrutiny. They were placed under physical surveillance at the Marriott Hotel, where he often drank with colleagues.

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I was cleared – Brammer

October 9th, 2019 / / categories: 苏州美甲学校 /

Mal Brammer … former assistant police commissioner.THE former assistant police commissioner Mal Brammer, a former commander of Special Crime and Internal Affairs, yesterday strongly rejected any allegation of wrongdoing.

He said he was ”not aware of any legitimate and tangible findings that applications for search warrants, telephone intercepts and listening devices were falsified by some SCIA officers”. He said he was not aware ”of any personal vendetta by any officers within SCIA” towards the then head of homicide, now a deputy commissioner, Nick Kaldas.

Responding to a finding by a strike force that he had been ”untruthful”, Mr Brammer said a review by two senior officers subsequently ”found there was no evidence I did so. No adverse finding now exists in that regard.”

Mr Brammer said for the past decade, Fairfax Media had ”undertaken a speculative campaign of trial by media towards me particularly based on innuendo and hearsay, to the point of being somewhat blinkered and vindictive”.

”I am well aware of the agenda and who is driving it and why it is occurring currently,” Mr Brammer said.

In regard to the findings of strike forces Sibutu, Tumen and Emblems, he said: ”I have not had material evidence made available to me regarding the alleged findings to justify comment.” But he said he believed Sibutu ”evolved from coerced misguided opinions”. Criticism of him by Operation Banks was based on a ”misguided report and the unsubstantiated opinions” of a senior officer.

He said the Commissioner, Andrew Scipione, in a previous role as commander of SCIA, ”had key executive responsibility” for the Operation Mascot inquiry into alleged police corruption, including the Kaldas matter.

Neil Mercer

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WITH the start of the school this year came a change in uniform for Riley* – a skirt. The 15-year-old, born a male, no longer wanted to feel trapped in the wrong body. Supported by her parents and the public high school she attends, Riley decided it was time to take the step of “transitioning” to a female.

While there are no official statistics in Australia on teen transsexuals, some professionals working in the area of gender identity have noted an increase in the number of transgender young people.

Riley, who tells her story in today’s Sunday Life, says she gained the confidence to begin the transition after going online and discovering there were other people who shared her experience. Her online support group, True Colours, had just 25 members several months ago. More recently, though, a new member was joining every week.

“I definitely have seen a change in the number of transsexual people coming out and being so proud and happy with themselves since my family first started looking for trans-connections for me about five years ago,” Riley says.

Elizabeth Riley, a Sydney counsellor who has been working with transsexual teens for nearly two decades, says more young people are coming forward, and parents are getting better at supporting them.

“Twenty years ago parents had never heard of transsexual teens and they had no way of getting their heads around it, and the kids had no words to express it, there was almost no way of coming to grips with it and talking about it,” she says. “The gay and lesbian community is much more normalised now and I guess the next step is transgender.”

Rebecca Reynolds, the managing director of the inner-city support group Twenty10, has also noticed an increase in people dropping into the centre to discuss gender identity. She cautions that this does not mean the issue is ”getting any easier” to deal with and transsexual teens living in the suburbs need more support.

Riley, who wants to help people understand transsexualism, says she wants to be accepted for who she is because being transsexual to her is not a lifestyle choice.

“No one would have chosen this torture in life,” she says. “We’re not here to provoke you. We’re here to live just like you are.”

* Surname withheld.

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Guest of honour … Barry O’Farrell.BARRY O’FARRELL was the guest of honour at a Liberal Party function at which property developers were urged to make donations – and yesterday party bosses were forced into making a humiliating promise to refund $5000 taken at the event.

It is the second time in a week that a Liberal fund-raiser held at Candelori’s Italian restaurant in Smithfield has landed the state government in hot water. The Sun-Herald revealed last week that Anthony Roberts, the Fair Trading Minister, was the star turn at a lunch at Candelori’s in April when western Sydney property developers bid $2000 for private lunches with him.

Mr O’Farrell, as the then opposition leader, was the keynote speaker at Candelori’s in July 2010 when Vic Cavasinni, the owner of Cavasinni Constructions and Beechwood Homes, handed over $5000 towards the Liberals’ 2011 election campaign.

Under NSW laws, political parties are forbidden from accepting property developer cash.

The Premier yesterday insisted he was unaware developers attended but the Liberal Party pledged to return Mr Cavasinni’s $4750 cheque and ask the NSW Electoral Commission to investigate the matter.

Mr O’Farrell said in a statement: ”I had no role in issuing the invitations for the 2010 event organised by the Liberal Party and was unaware developers were present.

”Like all Liberal Party functions I attend, I expect the organisers to fully comply with all legislation regarding political donations. I have brought in the nation’s toughest campaign finance laws, which I might add were opposed by Labor.”

Returns lodged with the Election Funding Authority show Cavasinni Constructions Pty Ltd gave $4750 to the Liberal Party in Smithfield in the financial year to June 30, 2011.

A Liberal Party spokeswoman said the donation would be returned and the matter referred to the NSW Electoral Commission but added that Mr Cavasinni had been asked if he qualified as a property developer before his money was accepted and he said he did not.

Mr Cavasinni told The Sun-Herald he only became aware ”a few months ago” that he was ineligible to donate but would not comment any further.

Both functions were hosted by Smithfield Liberal MP, Andrew Rohan, whose electorate office is metres away on the Horsley Drive.

Linda Burney, Labor’s deputy leader, called on Mr O’Farrell to strip Mr Rohan of his preselection in Smithfield. ”Andrew Rohan is clearly up to his neck in it and, frankly, people like that don’t belong in the Parliament,” Ms Burney said.

”Barry O’Farrell needs to explain how Andrew Rohan was ever pre-selected in the first place and rule out endorsing him as the Liberal Party’s candidate at the next election. The people of Smithfield deserve to have a local MP they can have confidence in and after this week it’s clear the Member for Smithfield doesn’t fit the bill.”

Mr Rohan’s office did not return calls. The local press reported at the time that David Clarke, MLC, leader of the Liberal right, was also at the lunch with his factional ally, Marie Ficarra, MLC, Mr Rohan and Mr O’Farrell.

The most political damage from the Candelori’s lunches has so far been to Mr Roberts, who fronted the April lunch at which Mr Cavasinni and two other developers, David Masterton of Masterton Homes and Peter Fowler of Fowler Homes, bid $2000 to have lunch with him.

The episode became the focus of Labor’s question time attack last week and Mr O’Farrell was forced to ask the Electoral Commission to investigate.

The Liberal Party has insisted those cheques were never cashed after an alarm was raised that the businessmen qualified as property developers. Despite that, Mr Roberts hosted Mr Masterton and Mr Cavasinni for separate lunches at Parliament House just months before a review of the Home Building Act.

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Death flats marketed as ‘fire proof’

September 12th, 2019 / / categories: 苏州美甲学校 /

The Bankstown apartment block that exploded in flames last week leading to the death of one Chinese woman and critical injuries to another, was specifically marketed to the Chinese community.

The Euro Terraces, also known in Chinese as the ”European Garden”, were promoted as the first luxury apartments built in Bankstown on a Chinese real-estate investment website, which also featured a photo of its developer, Diab Finianos.

A glowing review of the upmarket apartments said they were constructed using a new technique, Architectural Framing System, which had ”good fire and shock proof” qualities and complied with certification standards of the Architectural Association of the United States.

It was reported in The Sydney Morning Herald yesterday that the roof which covered an interior atrium in the building may not have been in plans that were approved by the council. The private certifier who oversaw the development said he would not have approved the building had the roof been in the plans.

The NSW Fire Services Commissioner, Greg Mullins, has said that, because of the enclosed atrium, thick black smoke amassed outside residents’ doors hindering their access to internal fire escapes.

Fire broke out in the building on Thursday morning. One woman known as Connie died after jumping from the window of a fifth-floor apartment to escape the flames. The second woman, Yino Jiang, 27, is in a critical but stable condition in Liverpool Hospital.

A man who went missing after the fire has been found. Jianwei ”Jason” Zeng apparently managed to escape the fire before disappearing, but presented himself to Surry Hills police station. Police said no charges would be laid.

Residents of the West Terrace building were allowed back into their homes briefly yesterday to collect clothes, food and other necessities.

Ahmed and Maha Hamy, both 29, collected their bridesmaids’ dresses and groomsmens’ suits from the apartment of Maha’s mother Nadia, where they had been stored before their wedding yesterday.

They had barely slept and were still in the same clothes as the day before. They were worried the clothes would smell like smoke.

“We are so stressed out,” Maha said.

The building is one of a number built in the Bankstown area by Mr Finianos’s family-owned and run company, the Silky Group which has been in the industry for 30 years.

A police spokesman said the apartment block will this week be assessed by council and structural engineers to determine the structural integrity of the building.

Coronial inquiries are continuing into the cause of the fire.

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Moore win could benefit Greens

September 12th, 2019 / / categories: 苏州美甲学校 /

Lord mayoral candidate … Angela Vithoulkas.A THIRD straight term as lord mayor of Sydney for Clover Moore would be a bittersweet victory that could open the door to the Greens taking her seat in State Parliament.

Cr Moore was confident of being returned to Town Hall as 4627 candidates vied for positions on the state’s 150 local councils holding elections yesterday.

The race for City of Sydney, which was also being fought by Christine Forster, the sister of the federal Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott, among others, will spark a critical state byelection with a Moore victory.

Under laws introduced by the O’Farrell government, state MPs will no longer be allowed to wear a second hat as a councillor after yesterday’s election. That has forced a number of MPs to step down from councils while Cr Moore chose to instead forgo her seat in Parliament.

The Liberal Party will now go all out to win her state seat of Sydney in a byelection but The Sun-Herald understands the move may backfire, with Liberal polling suggesting Cr Moore’s vote will largely migrate to the Greens.

Liberal sources said polling suggested the 53 per cent to 47 per cent two-party preferred margin that Cr Moore claimed victory with over the Liberal candidate, Adrian Bartels, in last year’s election would be replicated by the Greens.

The state battle will be between two former City of Sydney councillors – Shayne Mallard, the openly gay Liberal who has been endorsed to run, and the Greens candidate, Chris Harris.

Antony Green, the ABC’s election analyst, said the result would be tighter than the Liberal Party polling suggests but he agreed Labor would run a distant third.

Cr Moore is expected to endorse Alex Greenwich, who leads the group Australian Marriage Equality, which supports same-sex marriage.

Cr Moore said re-election would be ”bittersweet”. ”Eighteen months ago, the people of Sydney voted me in for a four-year term and I should be able to see out that term,” she said.

Federal Liberal frontbencher Malcolm Turnbull joined the sister of his former rival for the party leadership on the hustings in Potts Point yesterday. Ms Forster is the No.2 candidate on the Liberal ticket, alongside lord mayoral candidate Edward Mandla.

Mr Turnbull denied speculation about fresh leadership tensions with Mr Abbott last week.

”Some people have said so but Tony and I don’t think there’s any tension,” he said.

Mr Turnbull said he thought the Liberals would increase the number of seats they held on council from one to at least two.

”I think Clover’s obviously the favourite, Ed Mandla’s the underdog, but we’ll see … I think this will be a very good Liberal vote in this election,” he said.

Ms Forster was more confident: ”I think Edward’s going to give Clover a great shake.”

Other candidates in the race for lord mayor were Living Sydney candidate Angela Vithoulkas, Irene Doutney of the Greens, Labor’s Linda Scott and the Sex Party’s Zahra Stardust.

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Fighting dirty to clean up town

September 12th, 2019 / / categories: 苏州美甲学校 /

The car of a mayoral candidate was stolen and torched, another vehicle belonging to a council candidate had its tyres slashed, while other candidates were accused of skulduggery as voters went to the polls in local government elections.

Leo Kelly, a former mayor of Blacktown who is standing again as a Labor councillor, woke up to find the tyres slashed and lamented that it was an ”unhealthy sign” of what had happened to local politics in western Sydney.

A vehicle owned by the Greens’ mayoral candidate for Ballina Shire Council, Jeff Johnson, was stolen on Wednesday night. Its burnt out shell was later found an hour’s drive away.

And the Liberal team in Strathfield have been breaking the council ban on political posters on power poles. In the last days of the election campaign, posters for the Liberal team led by Giuliano Vaccari suddenly appeared on power poles across the leafy inner-west suburb, including some right in front of the council chambers.

The independent mayor, Paul Barron, told The Sun-Herald that the Liberals had been told to take them down and they had not done so.

In Fairfield, there were several reports of independents trying to benefit from the Liberal brand, recycling old election posters and slogans using the word Liberal.

Former state Liberal candidate turned independent for Fairfield, Dai Le, was reportedly using her old state election campaign posters with stickers over the Liberal logo.

Candidates running on an un-endorsed ”independent Liberal” ticket in Penrith were also seen to pop a large number of balloons bearing the slogan ”Think Liberal”. Mark Neeham, the state director of the NSW Liberals, said the party would consider disciplinary action if any members running as independents had used the party to promote their candidacy.

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Speaking of drafts and delays …

September 12th, 2019 / / categories: 苏州美甲学校 /

THE Premier, Barry O’Farrell, and

the Transport Minister, Gladys Berejiklian, are chatting before a press conference when they are joined by Duncan Gay, the Roads Minister.

Gay: Hi, Glad. Hi, Premier. Well, folks, here it is, the transport master plan, hot off the press. I’ve got a whole boxful.

O’Farrell: Look at these little beauties, would you? Eighteen months in the making. This, dear colleagues, is what the O’Farrell government is all about.

Berejiklian: Navel-gazing?

O’Farrell: No!

Gay: Glossy wish-lists that we won’t be around to deliver on?

O’Farrell: No! This is tangible evidence of a government getting on with the job. This is a plan. A long-term plan. In fact, this is more than a plan, this is a MASTER plan. We are the masters of the universe … of plans.

Berejiklian: Labor released quite a few transport plans, too, Barry.

O’Farrell: Those were written on the backs of envelopes before a press conference. This is different.

Berejiklian: How so?

O’Farrell: For a start, this wouldn’t fit on the back of an envelope. Look at it. It’s 368 pages and weighs two kilos.

Berejiklian: So I guess we don’t need any more plans.

O’Farrell: Correct.

Gay: What about Nick Greiner? Isn’t he announcing a plan in a few weeks?

O’Farrell: Er, yeah. Well, for the moment, this is the plan. Now look, the press is going to want to drill down into the minutiae of this thing. They love pesky details.

Gay: You mean like how we’re going to fund any of it and what we will build first?

O’Farrell: Exactly.

Berejiklian: How about I just keep rabbiting on about Labor’s 16 years of failure regardless of the question?

O’Farrell: That’s why I love you, Glad. And for God’s sake, Duncan, don’t mention the word ”tolls”.

Gay: But the plan commits us to a trial of network-wide distance tolling.

O’Farrell: See this word ”draft” in front of ”plan”? We’re at a draft stage and nothing is set in stone. Nothing is current government policy. I love that phrase.

Gay: OK, but I think they will want to know why there is no reference to a second Sydney airport.

O’Farrell: That’s an easy one. I will not impose more aircraft noise on our most important marginal electorates – I mean the people of western Sydney – and I am very much committed to high-speed rail to Canberra.

Berejiklian: But there’s no reference to high-speed rail in the plan.

O’Farrell: Hmm, you don’t think I seem committed enough?

Berejiklian: It’s a 20-year master plan, Barry. This is going to guide everything we do until, well, until Greiner puts out his plan.

O’Farrell: Duncan, hand me that red pen. I’m sure one more dotted line on this map won’t hurt.

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THERE is no conclusive evidence Lyme disease caused by ticks exists in Australia – that is if you believe the NSW Health Department website.

But try telling that to sufferers of the disease planning to rally outside the department’s offices in North Sydney on Friday. They are calling for recognition of the disease, which they believe affects as many as 200,000 people across the country.

They say there should be more research, increased accredited testing processes and education for doctors to recognise, test and treat both early- and chronic-stage Lyme disease.

The protesters will include outdoor workers in national parks who have contracted the disease and are backed by the Public Service Association. The PSA’s industrial officer, Geo Papas, said: “It is outrageous that our government health authorities have buried their collective heads in the sand over this issue.

”This is a public interest issue and I call on the NSW government to initiate a public inquiry into this disease with a view to recognising its existence, educating medical professionals in its detection and treatment so as to minimise the impact it has on the lives of workers and the general public.

“I would not like to be someone who contracts this disease in NSW in the course of their employment because of the changes to the workers’ compensation legislation, as you would have to fund your own legal challenge on the basis of a disease that is not recognised by government health authorities.”

The protest organiser, Danielle Ryan, a 29-year-old project manager, was bitten by a tick at Mona Vale in 2002 and has suffered symptoms for 10 years without diagnosis. In May last year, she was finally diagnosed with chronic neurological-stage Lyme disease. She said: ”The chronic pain I have suffered from later stage Lyme disease was the most horrible time of my life, especially being unable to walk at one stage at the age of 28 without explanation. Most doctors treated me like I was some kind of psychotic crazy woman wanting attention. My family and I have been through hell and back over this.

”I had one of the leading infectious disease specialists in Sydney tell me, ‘You can’t have Lyme. It’s not here.’ I’m now trying to sell my house to move to the UK for a few months for treatment where they actually recognise Lyme disease and want to help patients get better.”

The director of health protection in NSW, Jeremy McAnulty, said an expert panel convened last year found there was no conclusive evidence of locally acquired Lyme disease but that the disease would be monitored.

The Health Minister, Jillian Skinner, said in a statement to The Sun-Herald the department was staffed by ”recognised specialists in monitoring and evaluating potential public health risks and developing appropriate responses when necessary”. A team of experts dealing with the potential incidence of Lyme disease ”has my total support”.

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