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IN the interests of AUSTRALIA … And Our Heritage, Culture, Urban Bushlands, Neighbourhood Character and Our Communities what we have left of our Heritage Estates must be preserved … protected from inappropriate development!

THIS article reveals the lengths that some ‘awfulizers’ will go to

IN view of Clrs Kim and Zhou having broken ranks with the Labor Party on this crucial issue … the way forward has been paved for Clr Trenton Brown to vote for the Pro-Heritage Policy as proposed by Mayor Jerome Laxale!

‘the rot set in’ during the terms of Mayors, Artin Etmekdijian and Colonel Bill Pickering

DO the anti-policy protaganists demonstrate any ethics or morals whatsoever?


-they abuse council staff and have flooded Council with a tsunami of emails; yet demand responses

-they allege it is their right to sell out to a ‘cashed-up’ * property developer

-ignore the community rights of the Heritage Home Neighbours; to devalue their Heritage homes with inappropriate development; and rob them of their amenity

*Would that be ‘Black Money’ awash in Australian Real Estate since the FIRB ruling allowed developers to sell ‘new homes’ overseas particularly in China?

-black money is awash because the second tranche of the AML Legislation has been shelved for more than 12 years

the Morrison Government exempted the Real Estate Gatekeepers from Anti-money Laundering Laws in October 2018 (the second tranche AML Legislation)

AND the NSW Liberal Coalition Planning Law Changes for higher density residential development have facilitated not only big developers but the ‘family developer’ to ‘landbank’ our streets!

RELATED ARTICLE: ‘Australian Heritage … Threatened by Overseas Ascendancy … Clashes and Eviction at Ryde Council’

View photos of some Heritage Homes under threat and also examples of inappropriate development across Ryde!


THE CRUCIAL VOTE of one councillor could decide the fate of the most controversial policy to have ever come before the City of Ryde Council.

With the council apparently deadlocked over the proposed heritage listing policy, Liberal Clr Trenton Brown has until the December 10 council meeting to decide whether he will break ranks with his own party and vote for the policy as proposed by Mayor Jerome Laxale and his Labor team and backed by conservative voters in heritage dominated streets in Eastwood and Denistone.

*Labor Clr Dr Peter Kim has broken ranks with his own party and has spoken against the policy alongside Independent Clr Simon Zhou.

Should Councillors vote in support of positions they’ve adopted at previous council meetings, Clr Brown’s vote with the casting vote of Mayor Laxale could decide the issue.

‘And it could decide the issue once and for all because I will not subject staff to the kind of abuse they have received on this issue ever again,’ Mayor Laxale said.

‘We’ve already lost 20 per cent of our heritage homes to property developers and if councillors want to do something to save heritage homes and protect communities from inappropriate development they will have this one chance to do it and only this one chance.’

Trenton Brown has a strong, personal love of heritage homes and significantly he did not join Clr Kim, Clr Zhou and Clr Jordan Lane (Lib) to stand and applaud anti-policy speakers at last Tuesday night’s council meeting.

He even copped criticism from anti-policy supporter Qian Wang for not responding to her emails.

‘These anti-policy supporters have created a tsunami of emails,’ Clr Brown said.

‘These people do not understand the policy and when you do not understand something you have fear.’

Councillor Brown is also sceptical about claims from both sides that they represent the silent majority of ratepayers and he backed research by the newspaper which has found some of the so-called ‘statistical surveys’ by anti-policy supporters to be way off the mark.

‘I think the case is that most residents do not know about the policy or what it is trying to achieve.’

What he will concede is that the council has inherited ‘a poisoned challice’ from the regimes of former Mayors Artin Etmekdijian and Colonel Bill Pickering who were strongly opposed to a council role in heritage home protection.

Letters to ratepayers in 2010 told them their homes would never be heritage listed.

‘I do not support what Bill Pickering did, these letters have no currency in my mind, none at all.’

Mayor Laxale has even gone as far as to question whether or not these letters are legal.

‘They are certainly open for challenge in the Land and Environment Court’, the Mayor said.

One possible outcome is that Clr Brown will vote against the line taken by the Liberal team and support the heritage policy, albeit with his own amendments.

He revealed to the Weekly Times that he is studying similar policies in other council areas, particularly neighbouring Hunters Hill.

The problem he faces is that both sides of the issue have made the debate a moral and ethical one.

Anti-policy supporters say they are defending ‘the rights’ of a home owner to have the sole and only say on a home they own.

If that means getting a good price for selling a heritage home to a cashed up property developer to knock down, then so be it.

‘This (proposed) heritage policy is violating home owners’ rights. Heritage is just crap hitting the fan,’ resident Jian Wang told Tuesday night’s council meeting.

Pro-Heritage supporters argue that the destruction of heritage homes in heritage streets lowers the price on heritage homes in the entire street and will destroy the character of a heritage suburb.

They say most property speculators do not live in the area and regard heritage homes as no more than plastic pieces on a Monopoly board.

It maybe these words of one Denistone resident that will ultimately influence Clr Brown’s vote.

‘I have very happy memories here of the connections I made here and how my children have found a home in this safe, friendly and beautiful neighbourhood,‘ Janelle Ingham told the council meeting.

We don’t look at our home as how much money we could make from it in five years time because this is our community and you can’t put a price on that.

‘Yet we are seeing an erosion of community and we are protecting our community.’

SOURCE: The Weekly Times (RYDE) 4 December 2019



WILLOW GROVE Heritage building to be destroyed for Powerhouse Museum

THE NORTH PARRAMATTA RESIDENTS ACTION GROUP has lobbied for the museum to be built in North Parramatta’s Fleet St heritage precinct instead of the flood-prone riverbank site

THAT is practical … it’s ‘commonsense’ … why invite problems … and waste funding to have to retrieve contents and the structure of a Powerhouse Museum from a flood prone area?

IS the Agenda of this NSW Coalition Government to remove from the records any references to Our Past? Our Australian Heritage … ?

Having demolished the projects of the 30-year-old Bicentennial project south of Cockle Bay including the monorail, the award-winning Convention and Exhibition Centre and the Sydney Entertainment Centre and IMAX cinema …

Yes, a mere 30 years old! To remove all records of Our Australian History, Culture …

Why? Because this government can … how nasty …

DOES Gladys live in the Willoughby LGA? Artarmon?

NOTE …  0 NEW DWELLINGS FOR ARTARMON …. Even Hunters Hill will have 150 new dwellings;  Mosman 300 and Woollahara 300 ‘new homes’

ONLY 260 NEW DWELLINGS PER YEAR ARE PLANNED FOR THE ENTIRE WILLOUGHBY LGA including Chatswood and St Leonards … lobbying by North Shore media/lobby group




Willow Grove heritage building to be destroyed for Powerhouse Museum

A grand, Victorian-era building in Parramatta is to be destroyed to make way for the Powerhouse Museum.

Joanne Vella,

Parramatta Advertiser

December 6, 2019

Gladys Berejiklian is expected to make an announcement about the Powerhouse Museum soon.
Gladys Berejiklian is expected to make an announcement about the Powerhouse Museum soon.

Bulldozers are soon expected to obliterate the state heritage-listed Willow Grove after Premier Gladys Berejiklian reversed her decision to preserve it for the construction of the $767 million Powerhouse Museum.

The North Parramatta Residents’ Action Group (NPRAG) has said multiple sources and leaked government documents show Ms Berejiklian has opted to demolish the 1870s-built

Italianate villa at Phillip St.

St George’s Terrace, on the corner of Wilde Ave and Phillip St, could also be demolished for the museum, which is expected to be completed by December 2022.

Willow Grove is on the chopping block. Picture: Angelo Velardo
Willow Grove is on the chopping block. Picture: Angelo Velardo
St George's Terrace is likely to be destroyed too. Picture: Angelo Velardo
St George’s Terrace is likely to be destroyed too. Picture: Angelo Velardo
The museum, which could be known as the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, is coming to Parramatta.
The museum, which could be known as the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, is coming to Parramatta.

NPRAG spokeswoman Suzette Meade said the decision came after the museum’s final six architects had an option to retain the former maternity hospital but were planning to announce its demise soon.

“We’ve been told that this decision has already been made, no doubt to be dropped out as people enter their Christmas breaks in the hope of avoiding scrutiny,’’ Ms Meade said.

“If this is true, it’s a disgrace.

“Clearly, it’s a big concern for the people of Parramatta that our heritage is being disrespected.

“Western Sydney heritage seems to be second rate and I think they should expect quite a kickback from the community.’’

North Parramatta Residents’ Action Group members at Willow Grove last July protest against demolishing Willow Grove. Picture: Danny Aarons
North Parramatta Residents’ Action Group members at Willow Grove last July protest against demolishing Willow Grove. Picture: Danny Aarons

The group has lobbied for the museum to be built in North Parramatta’s Fleet St heritage precinct instead of the flood-prone riverbank site when then premier Mike Baird announced the museum for Parramatta in 2015.

A spokesman for Arts Minister Don Harwin said the government would not respond to any of the Parramatta Advertiser’s questions.

Parramatta state Liberal MP Geoff Lee did not comment on heritage concerns but said he understood the winning design for the museum would be announced shortly.

“I look forward to seeing the final design,’’ he said.

“Parramatta deserves world class arts and cultural institutions and that’s what the NSW Government is delivering.”

Heritage campaigners gather outside Willow Grove last year, calling for Parramatta MP Geoff Lee to help save the heritage-listed property. Picture: Danny Aarons
Heritage campaigners gather outside Willow Grove last year, calling for Parramatta MP Geoff Lee to help save the heritage-listed property. Picture: Danny Aarons

A Parramatta Council spokesman said it had previously written to the State Government requesting the heritage significance of Willow Grove and St George’s Terrace was considered in the museum’s development process.

“Willow Grove and St George’s Terrace are important local heritage sites and our community feels strongly about protecting them,’’ the spokesman said.

Last year, the Parramatta Advertiser reported that the government would save $43 million by demolishing Willow Grove and St George’s Terrace.

Willow Grove was used as a maternity hospital and the state-listed St George’s Terrace is considered historically and aesthetically significant as an example of modest Victorian period terraces.

The group is calling on the premier to reverse her decision.

“If Willow Grove was in Willoughby there is no way this would be happening,’’ Ms Meade said.

“This is an appalling start to what was promised as a move towards cultural funding equality; another bonus for developers.”

National Trust of Australia’s Parramatta branch president Cheryl Bates said demolishing Willow Grove would mean Parramatta lost another link to its important historical past.

“The National Trust does not understand how a building considered worthy of a heritage listing, using the accepted criteria for listing, can now simply be disregarded because a new use is considered more appropriate,’’ she said.





AUSTRALIAN HERITAGE … threatened … Clashes and Eviction at Ryde Council

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A fine example of a Ryde Heritage Home!

Australian Heritage needs protection! Craftsman built …

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Heritage home purchased by ‘family’ developer

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A Home in Denistone …


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Robbing Australian families of Mid-Century Homes; their communities, their neighbourhood

WHERE is the respect?

ABSOLUTELY no respect for the Ryde Council Guidelines by those among the Anti-Heritage Policy Supporters

-by registering bogus submissions

-even resorting to violence!


THIS – what can only be described as a – ‘MOB’ are not interested or remotely interested in the Heritage of Ryde … in what the Incumbents of Ryde value … our Australian Communities … Urban Bushlands … Neighbourhood Character and HERITAGE!

AMONG the Anti-Heritage Policy Supporters … Gung Zhi, Wei Wei Wang, Guanjing Ruan, Silvestro Lauria, and Pei Cheng and dozens more … what do they value … do they value anything apart from their ‘Own Prosperity’?

WHERE did this deliberate FEAR AND INTIMIDATION CAMPAIGN derive from within our major parties particularly the Liberal Party? Pulling the ‘Race Card’to reshape the Australian Society for their own ends … no less …

TO demolish Our Heritage, Our Mid-Century Homes, Our Australian Communities, Our Urban Bushlands and beautiful Vistas to replace with this FUGLY CRAP development! That like their manufactured goods will end up in landfill … in the not too distant future …

WHY … because of GREED … they have been granted the opportunity to greatly enhance their wealth with NSW Planning Law changes to increase density either with high-rise tower precincts or the Medium Density Housing Code of terraces, townhouses, villas, triplex, duplex … with as many as ten terraces on a 600M2 lot!

TO RUN ROUGHSHOD over Australian Communities … with Exempt and Complying Development whereby the neighbours have no say!


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The Weekly Times 4 December 2019




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CAAN Photo: Fugly fortress-like townhouse/apartment development Marsfield; out of character with the area

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CAAN Photo: December 2019: Ten Townhouses have replaced one cottage and a market garden …

Australian Heritage homes craftsmen built are being demolished for fast-tracked prefab built dwellings; built by foreign workers


10 X the load on water and sewerage; waste; and on power; greater Co2 emissions from construction using concrete, glass, steel and ongoing use; and 10 x fuel for vehicles

These developments are not for the Australian community; largely for the overseas buyers seeking an opportunity to launder black money … and to gain a ‘Permanent Resident Visa‘ with Medicare benefits close to the Mandarin/CCP city of Chatswood … (FIRB ruling 2009; May 2017 Budget Reg. 100% sell-off ‘new homes’ overseas particularly in China)

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CAAN Photo: This could be described as the ulitmate IMPOSITION on a mid-century estate in Ryde …. who would buy either duplex?

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CAAN Photo: Chinese Greenland Lachlan’s Line, a blight on the horizon for many Kms; Chinese Country Garden in the background; another blight also at North Ryde looming over the village of North Ryde. Can only be described as cheap developments …

NO AML LAWS for the Real Estate Gatekeepers to adhere to …

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Building Confidence Report: Implementation Plan

Publication Date: 

March 2019

Building Confidence Report: Implementation Plan [1.24MB PDF]  [8.63MB DOCX]

Following an independent assessment of problems in the building and construction industry, the Building Ministers’ Forum (BMF) has developed a roadmap for reform.

This implementation plan aims to restore community confidence in Australia’s building and construction industry.

It sets out:

  • national priority reforms
  • a summary of reforms underway in each jurisdiction
  • planned reforms and proposed timeframes for each jurisdiction
  • industry involvement in the process

Read more

Contact us



Building Confidence: Building Ministers’ Forum Expert Assessment

Improving the effectiveness of compliance and enforcement systems for the building and construction industry across Australia

Publication Date: 

April 2018

 Building Confidence: Building Ministers’ Forum Expert Assessment [4.4MB PDF]  [1.2MB DOCX]

The Building Ministers’ Forum (BMF) requested an expert assessment of the effectiveness of compliance and enforcement systems for the building and construction industry.

The BMF appointed Professor Peter Shergold AC and Ms Bronwyn Weir to co-lead the assessment. Our department provided assistance.

Broad stakeholder consultation was undertaken to consider issues impacting the effective implementation of the National Construction Code.

The report provides a package of reforms to establish a national best practice model for compliance and enforcement.

Terms of reference

Read more

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Hijacking …Critical Building Reforms Bill hits roadblock

THIS REPORT was published in the SMH on 20 November 2019 … with NSW Parliament shutting down shortly thereafter … the government pulled the Bill as it faced defeat on significant changes proposed by Labor and the Greens …

WHY hasn’t this been pursued by the wider Media? 

WHY let the Berejiklian Government off the hook … just because Parliament has shut down for the Christmas vacation?

HOW many more Opal, Mascot Towers will it take for this Bill to be legislated?

HOW many more faulty, cracking, leaking/mouldy, combustible towers will there be?  And with some built on toxic sites85 per cent of ‘new homes’ are defective on completion!

HOW many suicides with home owners unable to meet the cost of rectification? 

HOW many more fatalities for construction workers on these dodgy sites?


‘Hijacking’: critical building reforms bill hits roadblock

By Lisa Visentin

November 20, 2019

The Berejiklian government proposed reforms to the state’s building industry are in disarray, after it abandoned an attempt to pass key legislation by the end of the year.

The long-anticipated reforms will not be debated in the upper house this week, after the government pulled the bill as it faced defeat on significant changes proposed by Labor and the Greens.

*Under amendments moved by the Greens, the government would be forced to establish an independent building commission to support the work of building commissioner David Chandler, who was appointed in August.

Angry owners outside Opal Tower in Sydney Olympic Park.Photo: Dominic Lorrimer

*Labor’s amendments proposed setting up a professional engineers’ registration scheme.*

*But the government is unwilling to countenance these changes, with Better Regulation Minister Kevin Anderson accusing Labor and the Greens of “hijacking [the bill] for their own selfish political agenda”.

“This is not the right time to score political points, we can offer consumers a better deal right now that gives us a chance to turn this industry around. Labor and the Greens have no right to deny them that deal,” Mr Anderson said.

*Former NSW treasury secretary Michael Lambert, who led a landmark review into the state’s building regulations in 2015, said it was “essential” for the government to establish a building agency that was “properly skilled and resourced”.

*“The building commissioner needs resources, and he hasn’t got it,” Mr Lambert said.

*A critic of the government’s proposed reforms, which he described as “piecemeal”, Mr Lambert said the Labor and Green amendments also weren’t sufficient to restore confidence in the building industry.

*“They need a full package of reforms to give people confidence,” Mr Lambert said. “The government should release a comprehensive plan which includes the implementation of my reforms and the reforms in the [2017] Shergold-Weir report.”

*Mr Lambert made 150 recommendations in his 2015 report, about half of which have not been implemented.

The government’s bill, which Mr Anderson introduced into NSW Parliament last month, forms a key part of its response to the crisis of defective apartment buildings, which led to evacuations of the Opal Tower at Olympic Park and Mascot Towers in Sydney’s inner south.

The bill includes a “duty of care” provision that is designed to give homeowners who buy defective apartments an easier path to pursue damages. It will also create a registration system for the industry, while developers will be forced to comply with “declared” building designs.

*But the political standoff has cast doubt over the bill’s future. With Thursday the last parliamentary sitting day of the year, the bill won’t be debated until 2020.



NSW building reforms ‘step one of 100’ to restore confidence in sector

*Labor’s spokeswoman Yasmin Catley said the Opposition would not back down.

“This bill is full of empty promises, but with amendments the bill will at least deliver some peace of mind to homeowners,” Ms Catley said.

“They’ve promised tough new laws yet they won’t bring them to a vote in the Parliament.”

Greens MLC David Shoebridge said the government’s reforms were “never going to be a serious fix to the quality and confidence problems” in the construction industry.

“The government will now head into 2020 offering nothing to long-suffering residents of Opal or Mascot Towers or any of the ordinary homeowners facing ruin through no fault of their own,” Mr Shoebridge said.

The creation of a statutory building commission was a key recommendation of a NSW parliamentary inquiry into building standards, which was chaired by Mr Shoebridge.




RENTERS go back to the Wet Sarong as Landlords dodge Energy Efficiency Obligations

ASK yourself, do you think these landlords voted for SCOMO?

Ask yourself, do you think these landlords will do anything to improve the energy efficiency of their properties?

Ask yourself will SCOMO do anything for renters?

Ask yourself will you vote for SCOMO, and his lot at the next Election?

Renters go back to the wet sarong as landlords dodge energy efficiency obligations

By political reporter Nour Haydar


A woman looks at the camera inside a living room

PHOTO: Renters like Leanne are limited in how they can minimise their energy use. (Supplied)

RELATED STORY: Why the coal sector is so excited about Australia’s move to ‘clean’ hydrogen

RELATED STORY: Power bill pressures vs emissions vs reliability: Behind the new election battleground

Leanne has tried just about everything to keep cool in her rental apartment during Canberra’s scorching summers.

Key points:

  • Charities want landlords to improve the energy efficiency of their properties
  • Renters are limited in how they can become more energy efficient
  • More than half of Australia’s rental properties are rated poor for energy efficiency

“I’ve tried a number of things, bubble wrap in the windows and aluminium foil but that doesn’t look appealing from the outside,” she said.

“On some of those really hot evenings, I’ve gone to my room with a wet sarong, I’ve wrapped wet towels around my feet.”

Leanne, who didn’t want her surname revealed, is electricity and energy conscious, but sometimes has little choice except to pump on the air conditioner as the afternoon sun sears through her bedroom and living room window.

“There are afternoons where there really is no option but to use the air conditioning [but] the poor insulation in the property means as soon as I turn it off any effect of that is lost,” she said.

For tenants with landlords who are unwilling to make changes, there are obvious steps that can be taken to help avoid higher power bills and reduce your carbon footprint.

Like closing curtains during the hottest part of the day, choosing fans over air conditioners, setting air conditioners at 25 to 27 degrees Celsius on hotter days and sealing gaps and cracks to keep the cool air in.

But small changes like these can only do so much when the overall energy efficiency of a rental property is poor.

Of Australia’s more than 9 million homes, the majority rate below three stars for energy efficiency under the Nationwide House Energy Rating System (NatHERS).

NatHERS data is not the most comprehensive but it does show that the energy performance of older Australian homes is well below that of newer properties.

A zero-star rating means the “building shell does practically nothing to reduce the discomfort of hot or cold weather” while 10 stars indicate the “home may not need any artificial cooling or heating to keep you comfortable”.

Research also shows renter-occupied properties are far less likely to have insulation, rooftop solar and window treatments than owner-occupied homes.

Products designed to reduce energy use

PHOTO: Leanne has used fans, seals and blankets to reduce her energy use. (Supplied)

*Ahead of last month’s Council of Australian Governments (COAG) energy meeting, 40 housing and charity organisations renewed calls for state and federal governments to commit to implementing minimum energy efficiency standards for rental properties.

Director of Better Renting Joel Dignam said such standards would improve the reliability of the national energy grid, reduce pollution and have financial and health benefits.

“What we’ve seen in other countries approaching this is it might say things like you’ve got to have ceiling insulation, you’ve got to seal drafts and have a heater or cooler in the living area,” he said.

“These are changes that home owners will always benefit from doing themselves but the reason they are not happening in old rental properties is because the landlord who is responsible — who would be paying the cost — isn’t getting the benefits.”

Energy ministers instead reaffirmed their support for a plan outlining a “trajectory” towards achieving zero energy and zero carbon buildings — including minimum standards — which will be considered down the track.

The ACT Government has previously pledged to introduce legislation for minimum energy performance requirements in rental properties by 2021.

Victoria is also currently consulting on plans to introduce minimum rental standards, which will be progressively introduced to give landlords time to make changes to their properties.

Heating standards will be introduced first, with the majority of energy consumption in Victorian homes spent on heating.





A bone on cracked earth at a property near Walgett, NSW, which has been affected by years of drought.

A bone on cracked earth at a property near Walgett, NSW, which has been affected by years of drought. CREDIT:ALEX ELLINGHAUSEN

PERHAPS with the Peel having been sucked dry … that dehydration is already causing acute changes in brain function for some?

Tamworth sucks rivers dry. Demands 40,000 new migrants

By Unconventional Economist in Australian EconomyFeatured Article

December 5, 2019 | 48 comments

The NSW regional city of Tamworth is currently facing Stage 4 water restrictions, with the Chaffey Dam at just 15.6% capacity after experiencing record low inflows.

Today, The SMH reveals that Tamworth has sucked the Peel River dry:

The once-proud Peel River – also described as a “glorified creek” by those who know and love it – is the lifeblood to the city of 62,000, which is heavily dependent on agriculture and was facing the prospect of running dry in six months without urgent intervention…

Mayor Col Murray said the city had no groundwater and had run out of alternatives.

“You can’t truck water to a city like Tamworth, it’s just not an option,” he said. “You would have to have a B-double load of water unloading every six minutes, 24/7. That’s just not practical – you wouldn’t have trucks available and … where would you get the water?”…

Tamworth mayor Col Murray at the opening of Chaffey Dam in 2016.

Tamworth mayor Col Murray at the opening of Chaffey Dam in 2016.CREDIT:GARETH GARDNER

Hilariously, Tamworth’s authorities are determined to lift the region’s population from 62,000 currently to over 100,000 as quickly as possible:

At this rate it will take Tamworth until about 2073 to reach the 100,000 population target.

The local government area grew by just under 1 per cent from 2017 to 2018, Australian Bureau of Statistics data shows. Tamworth Regional Council has an ambitious plan to shave at least three decades off that.

“We need to increase the growth rate to a bit over 2 per cent,” acting mayor Phil Betts said. “It is an ambitious target but it’s possible…”.

Mayor Col Murray

 Mayor Col Murray

Tamworth Mayor Col Murray also believes that a growing population is needed to solve Tamworth’s water crisis:

While water is a major concern for the city presently, the mayor said a growing city would demand government investment in a greater security.

“I would argue we have got no chance of increasing our water security without having population growth,” [Mayor Col Murray] said.

“That’ll force it to happen.

“I have absolutely got no concerns that there’ll be water for the future, providing we have got the plan and got the population growth to strengthen it.”

You cannot make this stuff up. Tamworth is already running out of water. But somehow we are not to worry about the extra demand that would come from 40,000 (60%) more people, especially in light of climate change, which is expected to lower rainfall and increase evaporation.

Remember, Tamworth is located far away from the ocean, meaning that water desalination is not available.

Water scarcity remains the elephant in the room of the population debate, and the key issue that ‘Big Australia’ boosters deliberately ignore, including Tamworth Mayor Col Murray.

Tamworth also illustrates the lunacy of the Morrison Government’s ‘migrants to the bush’ policy. Sending thousands of people to the interior of the driest continent on earth is a clear recipe for disaster.

Unconventional Economist

Leith van Onselen is Chief Economist at the MB Fund and MB Super. Leith has previously worked at the Australian Treasury, Victorian Treasury and Goldman Sachs.




Unimaginative TERRACE-Style Houses given Green Light for Oran Park

Again a proposal for 131 homes on lots ranging from 200M2 to 350M2 … the Greenfields Housing Code introduced by former Planning Minister Roberts allows for lots as tiny as 200M X 12M wide

-does not allow for tree corridors for wildlife

-nor shade for these homes!

WILL this development proceed prior to the installation of infrastructure?

A precedent has been set about streets too narrow for garbage trucks!

THE Villa World rapid sales of the first terrace houses would not happen to be due to overseas sales, would they? AND if there was not so much overseas competition lots could be a minimum say of 400M2, couldn’t they?


‘Unimaginative’: Terrace-style houses given green light for Oran Park

A $43 million development has been given the green light for Oran Park – in Sydney’s southwest — despite stinging criticism from a former mayor.

Daniel McGookin, Macarthur Chronicle

December 3, 2019

An artist impression of Arena – the approved $43 million development.
An artist impression of Arena – the approved $43 million development.

A major $43 million development in the heart of Oran Park has been given the green light, despite being blasted as “unimaginative” by a former Camden mayor.

*More than 100 terrace-style houses, featuring 131 homes in total, will be delivered on small blocks just walking distance from Oran Park Podium and the future train station.*

The terrace-style houses will be built on blocks ranging from about 200 to 350sq m.
The terrace-style houses will be built on blocks ranging from about 200 to 350sq m.

To be known as ‘Arena’, the project was approved by a Joint Regional Planning Panel on Monday on the back of stinging criticism from Camden Liberal councillor and panel member Lara Symkowiak.

“I think its an overall poor outcome and I believe our future residents deserve better,” she said. “A whole row of flat roofs in the same style is poor.”

Lara Symkowiak.
Lara Symkowiak.

Cr Symkowiak, who voted against the development, also raised concerns about how garbage trucks could manoeuvre through the narrow streets and said the design could have been “significantly improved”.

The development was ultimately approved by the rest of the panel, made up of property lawyer Justin Doyle, town planners Bruce McDonald and Julie Savet Ward, who believed the development was appropriate and would bring housing choice to the region.

A three-bedroom terrace-style house is expected to be priced about $650,000, based on the current market.

Villa World senior development manager Murray Simpson said the company had already built close to 60 terrace houses in Oran Park.

*“The first terrace houses we delivered sold out very quickly which is a great indicator,” he said. “We think they look great and we have received a great deal of positive feedback.”

Mick Owens.
Mick Owens.

General manager of Greenfields Development Company and developer of Oran Park Town, Mick Owens, said the project would take advantage of all the growing suburb has to offer.

“It gives people a different housing choice,” he said. “We are pretty happy with the style of design, quite a lot of thought has gone into it.”

Construction is expected to begin late next year.





MANY disgruntled buyers were forced to settle this weekunable to find spare cash for legal action against JQZ

AND with 35 BUYERS joining in a Class Action against JZQ … their complaints would not seem to be unsubstantiated … having waited 2 years for their home … to discover any of the following were missing:

a study

a nature strip measuring 13 sqm instead of the 30 sqm courtyard

-a 45 sqm courtyard reduced to 12 sqm

-a 37 sqm backyard sliced back to 15 sqm

lost a study with the balcony split into two parts

Ramgate Park, Prime apartment blocks: Off-the-plan buyers furious at changes to units

Furious homebuyers who purchased off-the-plan apartments in two Sydney unit blocks claim the Chinese-backed developer failed to build entire rooms and courtyards as promised — replacing them with communal nature strips.

Danielle Gusmaroli, The Daily Telegraph

December 4, 2019

The Ramgate Park development in Kogarah. Picture: Richard Dobson
The Ramgate Park development in Kogarah. Picture: Richard Dobson

Furious homebuyers who purchased off-the-plan apartments in two Sydney unit blocks claim the Chinese-backed developer failed to build entire rooms and courtyards as promised — replacing them with communal nature strips.

*Many disgruntled buyers were forced to settle this week, unable to find spare cash for legal action against JQZ, the developer of the Ramsgate Park development in Kogarah and Prime towers in Macquarie Park.*

Buyer Freddy Yang sits on the nature strip, where he says the courtyard of his Kogarah unit should be. Picture: Richard Dobson
Buyer Freddy Yang sits on the nature strip, where he says the courtyard of his Kogarah unit should be. Picture: Richard Dobson

*But at least 35 buyers are joining forces in a class action to demand contracts are ripped up and their deposits refunded, rejecting offers of a 2 per cent discount or a replacement apartment by JQZ.

The buyers have been in discussions with their lawyers Colin Biggers and Paisley this week after being told by the developers they cannot cancel their purchases.

*Buyers at Prime have also complained to Fair Trading accusing JQZ of issuing misleading and deceptive contracts.

Recruitment consultant Neke Rezitis bought a two-bedroom apartment with study off the plan at the 530-unit Ramsgate Park development two years ago.

She discovered upon inspection last week the study did not exist, although the apartment size remained the same.

“We met with the developer last week and they offered me 2 per cent off the commercial price — that’s $15,000 but the extra room itself if I were to sell is worth at least $80,000,” she said. “They can stuff their 2 per cent — I want my deposit back.”

The finished Kogarah apartment building. Picture: Richard Dobson
The finished Kogarah apartment building. Picture: Richard Dobson

Buyer Freddy Yang has been given a nature strip measuring 13 sqm instead of the 30 sqm courtyard he thought he was getting.

“I don’t want to sit on a patch of grass I can just about get a deck chair on. I paid for 30 sqm courtyard — how am I supposed to sit and enjoy a coffee and life on a piddly patch of green?” he said. “I don’t want this apartment, I want my deposit back.”

Financial manager John Flinn said his 45 sqm courtyard had been reduced to 12 sqm while chef Sean Fan has had his 37 sqm backyard sliced back to 15 sqm.

The original plans of Sean Fan’s unit with a 37 sqm backyard, which was sliced back to 15 sqm.
The original plans of Sean Fan’s unit with a 37 sqm backyard, which was sliced back to 15 sqm.

*Marina Lee, who has bought an apartment in the Prime development, said: “I’m in the class action, I’ve lost a study and my balcony has been split into two parts, it’s now completely useless. This is not the apartment I agreed to buy.”

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CAAN Photo: August 2019; Prime by JQZ Macquarie Park

Lawyers for JQZ, which describes itself as a prestigious Australian-Chinese developer, say the majority of prospective buyers are happy.

“We are delivery (sic) what was promised and there has been no contrary evidence provided to us or our lawyers other than unsubstantiated statements or opinions,” a lawyer for the firm said.

“If the area of the lot being purchased is reduced by a certain percentage (usually 5 per cent or more), the purchaser is entitled to cancel the contract and get a full refund.

“If there is a substantial change in the property described in the contract, then we also allow the purchaser to cancel the contract and get a full refund of their deposit.”

Wang and Sean Fan are upset over losing space on their unit. Picture: Richard Dobson
Wang and Sean Fan are upset over losing space on their unit. Picture: Richard Dobson




New award set to give teachers a pay rise

New award set to give teachers a pay rise

Anna Patty
By Anna Patty

Updated December 5, 2019

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NSW teachers returned to work on Thursday morning after accepting a pay rise under a new wages agreement which will also put an end to more experienced teachers being paid less than newer ones.

The NSW Teachers’ Federation said its members who attended stop-work meetings around the state voted overwhelmingly in favour of accepting the Department of Education’s offer of a 2.5 per cent salary increase from January, followed by 2.28 per cent in 2021. There will also be a 0.22 per cent increase in superannuation in 2021.

NSW teachers are expecting a pay glitch to be addressed as part of negotiations of a new wages deal with the Department of Education.
NSW teachers are expecting a pay glitch to be addressed as part of negotiations of a new wages deal with the Department of Education.CREDIT:ISTOCK

Teachers who were earning up to $14,000 less than colleagues with fewer years of experience because of changes to the statewide pay scale can also now expect that anomaly to be fixed by 2021.Advertisement

Teachers who entered the profession after a new pay scale was introduced in NSW in January 2016 were taking seven years, instead of nine, to reach the top level which pays $109,427. This meant that teachers who started after 2016 were being paid more than those with more years of experience.

NSW Teachers’ Federation president Maurie Mulheron said teachers would now transition from the old nine-year scale to the new seven-year pay scale over the life of the new wages award.

“The anomaly has been resolved once and for all,” Mr Mulheron said.

In an email sent to staff on Monday, NSW Department of Education Secretary Mark Scott said his wages offer would resolve the transition issues affecting pre-2016 teachers. He said he hoped teachers would deem his offer “to be fair and reasonable, and this will result in the 2020 school year starting with a new award in place”.

One teacher who recently moved from the public school system to teach in a Catholic school said he was now being paid at least $10,000 more.

Another teacher who started in mid-2015 said the pay anomaly had meant he was paid $76,031 under the old scale and that if he had started six months later, he would have been paid $90,236 under the new system.


Thousands of NSW teachers are being paid less than teachers with less experience because of anomalies in a new pay scale.

Pay glitch sees teachers paid less than those with less experience

“If I’d followed the same career path six months later, I would be on roughly $14,000 more than I am now after working for four years,” he said.

NSW Secondary Principals’ Council president Craig Petersen said paying teachers less money for more experience had been inherently unfair.

“Where people have the same experience and the same qualifications, it seems wrong to be paid at two different levels. We welcome the department coming to an agreement to rectify that,” he said.

NSW Minister for Education Sarah Mitchell said the government was “committed to resolving this pay disparity and that’s what we have done”.

“I am pleased the NSW Teachers Federation Executive have endorsed the terms of settlement,” she said.

Anna Patty

Anna Patty is Workplace Editor for The Sydney Morning Herald. She is a former Education Editor, State Political Reporter and Health Reporter.