AN EPA Accredited Auditor has been Outraged by the Plan to dig up Sydney Harbour’s toxic sludge

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WESTERN HARBOUR TUNNEL: Source: Environmental Impact Statement

From local commentators

-mirrors community concerns in St Peters when Westconnex trashed the joint there

-The State Govt has also ignored the old coal mines under the sludge. The proposed pipes may well be placed over unstable “ground” and crack.

FROM Carrie Fellner’s report in the SMH about the expansion of the privately owned Hong Kong Consortium MTR Metro … and its twin tunnels linking Rozelle with the Warringah Freeway in North Sydney

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https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/i-m-outraged-secrecy-over-plan-to-dig-up-sydney-harbour-s-toxic-sludge-20200317-p54awm.html

It looks like more of the same from NSW INC with this project running roughshod over communities in their path … this time dredging toxic sludge, and tunnelling …

‘Thousands of tonnes of toxic sludge containing cancer-causing chemicals is set to be dug up from the bed of Sydney Harbour, under plans for the Western Harbour Tunnel that one of the state’s leading contamination experts fears do not protect the public, including fishermen and families who swim in harbour pools.

It comes amid revelations the exact concentrations of the chemicals in the sludge will remain secret after the NSW government ruled that a report containing the information was “commercial in confidence” and should not be released to the public.

Dr Bill Ryall, a leading environmental consultant, has raised the alarm bells over a plan to dredge up part of Sydney Harbour to put in place a new Western Harbour tunnel.
Dr Bill Ryall, a leading environmental consultant, has raised the alarm bells over a plan to dredge up part of Sydney Harbour to put in place a new Western Harbour tunnel. CREDIT:DEAN SEWELL

Dr Bill Ryall, who worked as an EPA accredited auditor and has been involved in some of the city’s most significant contamination clean up efforts at Homebush and Barangaroo, has now decided to speak out, slamming the decision to withhold the “critical” report.

BECAUSE Dr Ryall is unable to assess the risk to human health or the marine environment with dangerous toxins from industrial activity and storm water built up over 150 years on the harbour floor

-past studies have shown the tracts of sediment are worse than Tokyo Bay or New York Harbour

chemicals include dioxins, hydrocarbons, tributylin, polychlorinated biphenyls, pesticides, heavy metals and PFAS

-under an EIS the sludge will be dredged for tunnels to be laid along the bed of the harbour

-workers would have to dig up a heavily polluted layer of sediment 1.5 metres deep

.using two pre-fabricated tube tunnels lowered onto the sea floor between Birchgrove and Waverton

SINCE the report remains ‘commercial in confidence’ how can the community be assured that some 760,000 cubic metres of sediment would not be affected by contamination?

DESPITE a risk assessment finding that buried contaminants posed a high risk. What management actions would render them low risk?

HOW is it acceptable that up to 1300 cubic metres of contaminated sediment particles would be lost to the harbour waters … to be ingested by fish, crustaceans and oysters?

WHY is the NSW Government not ensuring adherence to its legislation requiring developers to report contamination to the EPA?

-carry out a detailed investigation

-have remediation action plans signed off before releasing an EIS to the public

IS the secrecy about eliminating the costs in excess of $100M for treating sediments and disposing of the contaminated wastewater?

AND … inevitable odours of ‘rotten egg gas’ from wet acid sulfate soils during removal of the sludge!

Dr Bill Ryall has concerns over contamination.
Dr Bill Ryall has concerns over contamination.CREDIT:DEAN SEWELL

HOW has the FIRB escaped Scrutiny? About Alinta … and a Black Box that needs an overhaul

FOLLOWING all the Australian Assets, Property, critical Infrastructure that have gone offshore … largely to CHINA (the PRC), how is the proposal that the FIRB be allowed to continue to function, and to merely properly investigate systems, cyber security and data protection?

IT would seem the better alternative … to save what is left of Australia’s National Estate … is to disband, to dissolve the FIRB and subject this body to even more investigation … and enforce appropriate penalties

THE FIRB together with the FID have betrayed Australia and its Constituents by their very function through formulating mitigations (conditions) allowing the sell-off of our National Estate!

A ‘black box’ that needs an overhaul: how has FIRB escaped scrutiny?

Adele Ferguson
By Adele Ferguson

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It was August 2019 and anti-government protests were reaching a flashpoint.

Planes were being cancelled, trains suspended and roads barricaded in the worst political crisis since Britain handed control of Hong Kong to China more than 20 years earlier.

FIRB chair David Irvine visited Alinta owner Chow Tai Fook last year as the company's presence grew in Australia.
FIRB chair David Irvine visited Alinta owner Chow Tai Fook last year as the company’s presence grew in Australia.CREDIT:LOUISE KENNERLEY

*In the midst of the chaos, Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) chairman David Irvine hopped on a plane to visit key operators in the region, including the Chinese-owned Chow Tai Fook (CTF), a multibillion dollar conglomerate owned by one of Asia’s richest and most powerful families, the Cheng family.

*Irvine’s interest in CTF was its connections and clout in the region Henry Cheng Kar-shun was a member of the powerful political legislative advisory body in the People’s Republic of China – and its growing presence in Australia, which involved FIRB.

*CTF was given approval to buy Alinta Energy for $4 billion in April 2017 on the proviso it would satisfy a series of conditions that weren’t made public.

A year later it was given approval to buy the $1 billion Loy Yang B, an electricity power generation plant in Victoria which generates almost one-fifth of Victoria’s power.

*It had also moved into the casino business after buying a stake in Star Entertainment then forming a joint-venture with Star to build a $3 billion Queen’s Wharf Casino project in Brisbane.

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Play video0:56Brake quizzed over FIRB secrecy

Treasury’s Roger Brake faces opposition questions about the inner workings of the Foreign Investment Review Board and its decisions.

Leaked internal documents supplied to The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald by a whistleblower reveal that a month after Irvine’s visit to CTF – and almost three years after the takeover was approved and FIRB conditions imposed Alinta management was scrambling to form a plan and timetable to meet some of those conditions.

The documents reveal that it appointed auditing firm EY to prepare a proposed scope of an independent external compliance audit that would be sent to FIRB for approval by September 23, 2019. (The scope of the audit and selection of EY as the auditor had to be approved by FIRB as part of the secret FIRB conditions.)

The documents show that at the time FIRB approved the sale, Alinta’s internal privacy controls and cyber security were grossly inadequate and certain conditions weren’t even close to being met.

Even as late as June 2019 Alinta’s internal privacy controls and systems for protecting the personal information of their 1.1 million customers remained deficient, according to an internal audit conducted by EY.

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The report said Alinta’s privacy wasn’t managed in a co-ordinated way, collection and consent of personal information was lacking in key areas, access to personal information wasn’t adequately monitored and controlled and at times “doesn’t meet the requirements of privacy laws”.

This week privacy and energy regulators moved to investigate Alinta after revelations in The Age, Herald and ABC’s 7.30 of the risk to customers due to “reckless” cyber security and data protection systems.

The poor controls raised questions about the type of due diligence that is conducted by FIRB before it recommends a foreign takeover of critical infrastructure. Given the poor controls continue inside Alinta, it raises other questions about the quality of monitoring and enforcement.

*Until the Alinta privacy scandal – which has triggered multiple inquiries by privacy and energy regulators – FIRB, which falls under Treasury, has largely managed to escape scrutiny.

*This all changed in a parliamentary committee hearing on Thursday evening when Roger Brake, the division head of the foreign investment division of Treasury, was asked by Senator Deborah O’Neill to explain the inner workings of FIRB and the processes it went through in approving Alinta.

Senator Deborah O'Neill grills Treasury official over who really runs FIRB.
Senator Deborah O’Neill grills Treasury official over who really runs FIRB.CREDIT:EAMON GALLAGHER

*After a tortuous exchange, including Senator Rex Patrick describing some of the shirking of questions as “contemptuous of parliament”, it became clear that FIRB operates in the dark.

It is Treasury, not FIRB, which is responsible for auditing, monitoring and enforcing conditions of foreign sales, including Alinta to Chow Tai Fook. But how it does it is unclear.

*Questions specific to Alinta were declined on the basis it was confidential under the protected information section of the act and it was therefore an offence to disclose information obtained or disclosed. This included the conditions of sale. *

❌

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg declined to respond to questions.

Illustration: Richard Giliberto
Illustration: Richard GilibertoCREDIT:

Professor Allan Fels, a former chairman of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) described FIRB as a black box and said the scrutiny was long overdue.

“It should be reviewed, its practices and procedures should be brought into line with those other regulators,” he said.

“I don’t mind if the very final decision is made by the Treasurer as to whether to approve it or not but the report to the Treasurer, the conditions and details, should be made independently of political processes and be fully available, open and transparent to the public.”

Professor Fels said FIRB wasn’t a regulatory body and wasn’t independent, politically.

“It is not transparent and you don’t know the reasons or the nature of its decisions and when it imposes conditions, they generally don’t release them to the public,” he said. “And it doesn’t seem to have the power or resources to enforce or follow up its decisions.”

Rich lister and energy baron Trevor St Baker has experienced firsthand FIRB’s processes and lack of transparency.

A business he was involved in, Delta Electricity, lost out on a bid for Loy Yang B to CTF in late 2017.

St Baker told The Age and Herald he was still unsure why his bid failed.

He said Delta Electricity was told that a condition of FIRB approval was that Loy Yang couldn’t be more than 47 per cent foreign-owned. Delta’s consortium was 67 per cent Australian-owned and the rest was owned by US investors.

Then FIRB announced that CTF had been granted approval to buy Loy Yang B, which is 100 per cent Chinese owned.

St Baker said he was never given an explanation for the decision or why the rules changed for CTF.

“We were never told why we were limited to less than 50 per cent foreign ownership when a 100 per cent foreign-owned company received FIRB approval,” he said.

St Baker said Delta Electricity was the only majority Australian bidder for Loy Yang B power station which was critical generation infrastructure under the government’s announced policy requiring majority ownership. “Not just majority directors on the board of a foreign-owned company,” he said.

St Baker said he heard that FIRB believed critical generation infrastructure applied to power stations greater than 1200 MW in generating capacity, whereas Loy Yang B was 1170 MW generating capacity.

Current Time 0:55/Duration 1:16Loaded: 100.00% Fullscreen

Markets singularly focused on coronavirus outbreak

One of Australia’s biggest energy companies has put the privacy of its 1.1 million retail gas and electricity customers at risk due to “reckless” cyber security and data protection systems.

Markets singularly focused on coronavirus outbreak

“I’m not sure that Victorians would think that Loy Yang B was not critical generation infrastructure,” he said.

Whatever the case, he described the decision as frustrating and that FIRB needed to be more transparent and upfront and consistent with the decisions it makes.

It costs millions of dollars to mount a takeover offer, including paying for due diligence and arranging financing, which is why more clarity from FIRB was required, he said. “Otherwise, there will always be a suspicion as to how a decision comes to be made if transparency isn’t there.”

His views are echoed by a series of businesses, lawyers and corporate advisers who have dealt with FIRB and believe it needs to be overhauled.

A series of FIRB decisions meant three out of five of Victoria’s electricity distributors and two out of three of its gas distributors were controlled by Cheung Kong.
A series of FIRB decisions meant three out of five of Victoria’s electricity distributors and two out of three of its gas distributors were controlled by Cheung Kong.CREDIT:JAMES ALCOCK

The spotlight on FIRB comes as Australians have become increasingly uneasy that the country’s dairy assets, land and key infrastructure operations, including ports, wires and poles, have been sold to foreign companies.

The rising number of power blackouts, ballooning customer complaints and soaring energy bills hasn’t helped appease their concerns.

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The FIRB was set up in 1975 as a non-statutory body to advise and make recommendations to the Treasurer on large foreign takeovers and critical infrastructure. Treasury’s foreign investment division provides secretariat services and is responsible for the day-to-day administration.

Its role and functions are determined by the treasurer of the day, its governance is a matter for the treasurer, rather than being set out in any legislation.

The treasurer has sole discretion of the appointment of members of FIRB and sets the minimum and maximum size of FIRB.

FIRB consists of seven members and a chairman and relies on the foreign investment division of Treasury to do the work on foreign takeovers such as Alinta and provides that advice to the FIRB, which then makes a recommendation, which goes to the treasurer, who then decides. That division has 57 staff.

In January 2017, after some of the worst blackouts in South Australia over the preceding few months, the Coalition released a statement announcing the establishment of a Critical Infrastructure Centre that would “develop co-ordinated, whole-of-government national security risk assessments and advice to support government decision-making on investment transactions”.

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The press release titled Keeping Australia’s critical infrastructure securesaid: “With increased privatisation, supply chain arrangements being outsourced and offshored, and the shift in our international investment profile, Australia’s national critical infrastructure is more exposed than ever to sabotage, espionage and coercion.”

👿

Then a few months later some key assets were sold to foreign interests. They included Alinta, and the $7.4 billion sale of power line, gas pipeline and power plant group DUET to Cheung Kong Group, which meant three out of five of Victoria’s electricity distributors and two out of three of its gas distributors were controlled by Cheung Kong.

👿

There was also the sale of Loy Yang and a series of Hunter Valley coal, rail and port assets to Yancoal, whose major shareholder is China’s Yanzhou Coal Mining Company.

👿

In 2017-2018, FIRB made decisions on more than 11,000 proposals worth $163 billion, with $16.6 billion manufacturing, electricity and gas assets. Of all the proposals, it knocked back only five.

👿

In February 2018, the Coalition announced that all future sales of electricity transmission, distribution and generation assets would attract ownership restrictions or conditions for foreign buyers.

👿

A month later, the then prime minister Malcolm Turnbull passed legislation to safeguard Australia’s critical infrastructure.

The problem was the horse had already bolted.

👿

Alinta has highlighted the need for FIRB to properly investigate systems, cyber security and data protection.

As FIRB chairman David Irvine, said in a speech last November, FIRB sees data protection as part of national security. “We look at the way in which we can establish conditions that assuage or at least go some way towards mitigating any security or other concerns,” he said. “By and large foreign investors including China investors have been prepared to accept those conditions.”

What he didn’t say was how effectively FIRB then monitored those conditions.

In response to a series of questions FIRB said the Foreign Investment Division (FID) within Treasury undertakes an extensive consultation process within government to assess proposals. “Where any national interest concerns are identified in that process, FID works with consult partner agencies such as the Critical Infrastructure Centre in the Department of Home Affairs to formulate mitigations (conditions).

It declined to comment on Alinta and its compliance issues. “We can confirm that Alinta Energy is engaging constructively with FIRB to implement remedial activities endorsed by FIRB. Remedial activities will be completed by Dec 2020.”

CTF said in statement it had noted the recent media coverage.

“We work closely with FIRB and have always co-operated with FIRB and respected applicable Australian regulations and requirements.” It said Alinta was looking into relevant matters and the Alinta board had its full support to take any appropriate and timely action required.

For now FIRB remains a mystery.

CORRECTION

A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Alinta closed the Northern power plant after it was bought by CTF. The plant was closed by Alinta’s previous owners. 

Adele Ferguson

Adele Ferguson is a Gold Walkley Award winning investigative journalist. She reports and comments on companies, markets and the economy.

COMMENTATORS VIEWS …

-And to be told by this excellent research by Adele, that an Australian firm willing to invest in Australian assets is then undermined and outbid by kowtowing to foreign buyers makes no sense if it was to be seen as a logical and fair – but if it is seen from the nefarious, secret, underhanded perspective it seems to have been, then every Australian must start being alarmed AND alert.

– A lady of Indonesian ancestry (but an Australian citizen) who lived close by told us that the rental house next door to us was owned by her sister back in Indonesia but the title is in her name. That scenario is very common in Australia and not even visible to the FIRB.

It would be interesting to run a report on Australian citizens born in other countries who owned say 10 houses or more.

– Selling off basic industries to overseas owners such as electrical generation and supply is idiotic. We have a government obsessed with national security and passing legislation that threatens free speech and information flow but sell off important entities to overseas owners. Fundamentals such as electricity, water, gas and communications should be considered to be held as essential to our national security

– Another Treasurer Morrison FAILURE.  Does it ever end ?

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-Critical infrastructure should never be foreign owned. In fact, critical infrastructure shouldnt be private/corporate owned. Successive governments have sold our assets to temporarily boost their budget bottom line. Then its gone.

-Agree, when we sell majority interests in critical infrastructure to abroad, we effectively hand substantial economic control to a foreign entity. Then again, buying australian economic controls is seems a lot easier as well as cheaper than military invasion.

It’s a bigger risk to the country than corona virus

SOURCE: https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/a-black-box-that-needs-an-overhaul-how-has-firb-escaped-scrutiny-20200306-p547h3.html#comments

News Corp, Nine accused of closing AAP to damage competitors

Paul Hamra, managing director of The New Daily, said start-up media newsrooms with limited resources relied on AAP to help cover breaking news around the country.

“As a customer of the service, no one thought to contact us to discuss options, such as increased syndication fees, restructured offerings or equity,” Mr Hamra said.

“ … I get the impression News Corp and Nine just want to set up their own newswire service instead, with their own content, controlling more of the market and restricting access for new Australian journalism ventures.

THE MEAA said …

“ … today’s reports suggest a more sinister motive: The closure is designed to deliberately harm their print and online rivals who subscribe to AAP for news about politics, sport, business, courts and crime, and for breaking news.

“The fact that they didn’t put AAP up for sale indicates News and Nine simply wanted AAP shut down.”

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https://caanhousinginequalitywithaussieslockedout.com/2020/03/03/the-dumbening-deepens-with-aap-shutter/

News Corp, Nine accused of closing AAP to damage competitors

The New Daily@TheNewDailyAU

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Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp and fellow media giant Nine have been accused of closing news agency, Australian Associated Press, to damage their smaller competitors.

After repeatedly asserting that unfair competition from tech companies  Google and Facebook brought about AAP’s demise, new reports indicate News Corp and Nine might have had a more cynical motive for closing the decades-old news agency and putting hundreds of staff out of work.

AAP management announced on Tuesday that, after 85 years of servicing the Australian media industry, the news service would close on June 26.

About 180 jobs will be lost from AAP’s editorial arm, with hundreds more expected from other divisions.

On Thursday, The Guardian reported that AAP chairman Campbell Reid, who is also a News Corp executive, told AAP staff that Nine and News Corp were tired of subsidising a breaking news service for their competitors.

Mr Reid was quoted as telling staff in AAP’s Melbourne bureau that News Corp would develop its own breaking news service.

It has also been reported that Nine is considering a similar move.

Mr Reid reportedly said that News Corp was “committed to the supply of breaking news”, adding “we don’t have to supply it for everybody else in Australia who’s telling us that they don’t want it”.

news corp aap
Some 180 journalists around Australia will lose their jobs. Photo: AAP

ACCC monitoring

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has not announced an investigation, but confirmed on Thursday it was looking into the closure.

“The ACCC is aware of the announced closure of AAP and is keeping abreast of potential issues that may arise,” it said.

A spokeswoman said it would need to find that competition would likely be lessened to raise concerns.

The New Daily, The Guardian, The Daily Mail and the former Fairfax regional mastheads now controlled by Antony Catalano all rely on AAP for breaking news and photography.

Former ACCC chairman Allan Fels told The New Daily that while it was unlikely a legal problem with AAP’s closure could be proved, it would diminish competition and was a “landmark moment in the history of Australian journalism”.

Dr Fels said AAP has long formed the backbone of much of Australia’s journalism, particularly smaller newspapers, and was also quite an important ingredient for News Corp and Nine.

“It covers things that often the major newspapers aren’t resourced to do and it provides material for countless smaller newspapers,” he said.

“I’ve been saying for a while that public-interest journalism is shrinking as we speak. But this is a spectacular example.”

Paul Hamra, managing director of The New Daily, said start-up media newsrooms with limited resources relied on AAP to help cover breaking news around the country.

“As a customer of the service, no one thought to contact us to discuss options, such as increased syndication fees, restructured offerings or equity,” Mr Hamra said.

“We might have paid more – so, I hear, might have other customers, which could have helped the AAP business model. But no one asked.

“I get the impression News Corp and Nine just want to set up their own newswire service instead, with their own content, controlling more of the market and restricting access for new Australian journalism ventures.

‘Sinister motive’

The Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance on Thursday said News Corp and Nine “must answer for the decision to shut AAP”.

News Corp and Nine said the reason for shutting down AAP was that it was no longer financially viable and had been damaged by the proliferation of free news on social media and digital content aggregators,” MEAA federal president Marcus Strom said.

“However, today’s reports suggest a more sinister motive: The closure is designed to deliberately harm their print and online rivals who subscribe to AAP for news about politics, sport, business, courts and crime, and for breaking news.

“The fact that they didn’t put AAP up for sale indicates News and Nine simply wanted AAP shut down.”

The loss of the extensive news coverage provided by AAP means consumers around Australia will lose a trusted, reliable, accurate and impartial source of vital information.

“The media bosses responsible for the decision to shut AAP should pledge to employ any AAP editorial staff who want to remain in journalism,” Strom said.

Government action

Dr Fells called on the government to step in to help smaller media organisations. Photo: AAP

Dr Fels, who is chairman of the Public Interest Journalism Initiative, said public-interest journalism was shrinking and AAP’s closure was a “spectacular example”.

He said declining local journalism meant less court reporting and matters of concern to the local community, and called on the government to step in. Dr Fels flagged tax breaks, subsidies, scholarships and training support as potential ways to boost journalism.“It’s a fact that in the UK, Canada and parts of the US, and France as well, the government has been stepping in to protect the continuation of journalism, to give it some boost, especially local journalism,” he said.

SOURCE: https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/national/2020/03/05/news-corp-nine-aap-accusations/

Vietnamese company buys three cattle stations, with plans to expand into cotton and tourism

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THERE we go again, selling the farm

WHY not it’s all up for grabs!

WHAT does the FIRB stand for?

IS it

-‘Foreigners Interest Reinforcing Buyups’

Or
-‘Foreign Interests Retaining Buyouts’

Or FIRB =
Failure, Indifference, Rubberstamp, and Betrayals *

Q Can Australia buy up Vietnam, and do what we like?

A We tried before and failed and they are not going to allow us to have another go!

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David Irvine, FIRB; all but five foreign investment proposals approved by FIRB …

P.S. …

‘The purchaser will look into growing cotton and building tourism to diversify its international interests.’

Growing cotton … what about the environment of the Northern Territory and Western Australia … to take more than its share of Our Water … as they vertically integrate their tourism … fly in tourists by their Vietnamese airlines … with their own guided bus tours and tourist shops … and stay in their own accommodation …

HOW long before the Australian workers become redundant and are replaced by foreign Visa Workers?

Vietnamese company buys three cattle stations, with plans to expand into cotton and tourism

NT Country Hour

By Daniel Fitzgerald

Updated 5 March 2020

a winding river with a hill and sunset in the background.
Auvergne Station, near the WA-NT border, is one of three Top End properties bought by a Vietnamese firm. (Facebook: CPC)

A Vietnamese agricultural company has settled a deal to buy three Top End cattle stations, covering 732,900 hectares and with 60,000 head of cattle, more than 12 months after a contract was signed.

Key points:

  • A year after signing a contract, Clean Agriculture and International Tourism settles a deal to buy two NT and one northern WA cattle stations
  • The Foreign Investment Review Board and the Vietnamese government needed to approve the deal worth $130 million
  • The purchaser will look into growing cotton and building tourism to diversify its international interests

The Auvergne and Newry Stations, along with Western Australia’s Argyle Downs Station, are now in the hands of Clean Agriculture and International Tourism (CAIT), a subsidiary of the Vietnamese-owned TH Group.

The deal to buy the properties — including the land, stock and plant — from Consolidated Pastoral Company (CPC), was worth $130 million when the contract was announced in January 2019.

After approvals from both the Foreign Investment Review Board and the Vietnamese government, one of the biggest Top End land deals in recent history was completed in late January, with most of CPC’s workforce continuing with CAIT.

A man, wearing a blue shirt, stands beside a cattle yard
CAIT representative Steve Petty says the company is taking a “slow and steady” approach to developing the properties. (Carmen Brown)

What is Clean Agriculture and International Tourism?

CAIT is controlled by the TH Group — a Vietnamese agricultural company that runs around 45,000 dairy cows, producing around 40 per cent of the country’s fresh milk.

The TH Group has rapidly expanded in the past few years, investing heavily in high-tech dairy machinery, and in 2018 put $US630 million towards a milk processing plant in Russia.

TH Group’s chairwoman, Thai Huong, has previously been listed by Forbes magazine as one of Asia’s most powerful businesswomen.

Kununurra-based Steve Petty is a director of CAIT and the company’s representative in Australia.

Dr Petty said the company saw the purchase of the CPC properties as an opportunity to expand into pastoralism, cropping, and tourism.

“It’s a move to diversify their international interests into other areas,” Dr Petty said.

“They know cattle from their existing dairy business … they see what the potential is in northern Australia, and they are quite excited about what can be done in this area.”

six people on horseback crossing a rive with a hill in the background.
Clean Agriculture and International Tourism now owns 732,900 hectares of land in the NT and WA. (Facebook: CPC)

Plans to consolidate cattle and develop cropping

While the company has plans to develop cropping on the pastoral properties, Dr Petty said consolidating and developing the cattle business would be the primary focus.

“It is a pretty good base that CPC have left there, and the plan is to build on that foundation,” he said.

“[CAIT] will then work to look at opportunities for agriculture that would involve improved pasture, and then into some level of cropping.

“The key place would be Auvergne, where there is a lot of potential.

“But there is a lot of work that needs to be done with the respective agencies for approval before taking that step.

“Further down the track there might be some involvement in tourism but that might be a three or five-year time frame.”

In the short term, CAIT aims to focus on growing forage crops such as sorghum, before following the lead of several other Top End stations by looking at cotton. *

“There is interest in the cotton area — there is a lot of work going on in the Territory and the Kimberley into opportunities. So they will look closely at that [in the future],” Dr Petty said.

“There is quite a bit of research that still needs to be done in terms of what is going to be economic and what makes sense.”

Emily Bryant drafts cattle in the yards at Auvergne Station.
All the managers and most of the staff previously employed by CPC are now working for CAIT. (ABC News: Kristy O’Brien)

Slow and steady approach to development

Dr Petty said the company was taking a slow and steady approach to the development of the three properties, in consultation with the NT Government.

“The NT Government has, to date, been very supportive of development in these areas but also very focused on what the regulations are, what is permissible, and what the potential environmental impacts or implications of a development [could be],” he said.

“So I think that between the NT Government and the CAIT group, it is going to be an evolution rather than any revolution.

“I think that is healthy for the NT and healthy for the company as well.”

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SOURCE: https://www.abc.net.au/news/rural/2020-03-05/vietnamese-companys-plans-for-top-end-cattle-country/11951422

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Michael Pascoe goes back over the maths on government grant rorts

There are things that urgently need federal money – an increased Newstart allowance, social housing – that should take precedence over pork barrelling.

Read more on the Rort Score so far … then Share! And tell others …

Michael Pascoe goes back over the maths on government grant rorts

Michael Pascoe wonders how trustworthy the Morrison government is when its proved it’s taken advantage of the public purse. Photo: AAP/TNDANALYSIS

Michael Pascoe

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I was lazy. I stopped counting politically rorted federal grant programs when I got to $1.1 billion.

I should have kept going to reach $8.1 billion.

That’s the total for 11 federal programs that have serious question marks – or worse – over their ethics, probity and basic governance.

That’s $8.1 billion of taxpayers’ money at the disposal of politicians who can’t be trusted not to use it for pork barrelling their way into government.

It makes Clive Palmer’s $83 million anti-Labor campaign look cheap.

In fairness, not all of that $8.1 billion has been spent – yet – and not all of it rorted.

But having watched the Morrison government so comprehensively raid the public purse, there’s no reason to believe they would spend the rest more responsibly.

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg and Prime Minister Scott Morrison in Parliament on Monday. Photo: AAP

Now, when Australia is facing a potential financial crisis courtesy of the coronavirus, Scott Morrison is only sloganeering about possible “targeted, modest and scalable” financial assistance for the economy.

Mr Morrison’s office, the Cabinet Expenditure Review Committee and the Liberal Party’s campaign headquarters have proven to be adept at the targeted and scalable use of public money to get re-elected, but there was nothing modest about it.

When I added up a little over $1.1 billion in rorted programs last month, I was only trying to make a point about an inconsequential Liberal senator’s complaint about the size of the ABC’s annual budget.

That’s why I stopped.

But the rorts and rackets have kept rolling in over the past week or so, demanding a full accounting.

The score so far:

  • $102.5 million for the infamous Community Sport Infrastructure Program, the straw that broke the pork barrel’s back because the government defrauded sporting club volunteers who were misled into thinking the projects would be chosen on their merits, not political expediency
  • $150 million for the coalition’s spectacular “regional” swimming pools, that just happened to be overwhelmingly in Liberal seats, including $10 million for the region of the North Sydney pool
  • $272 million Regional Growth Fund most of which was dished out in a hurry just before the election and no prize for guessing which colour electorates overwhelmingly pocketed the largesse
  • $841.6 million for the Building Better Regions Fund. This loot is spread over four years, so I erred on the side of caution the first time round in only counting the election year splurge – but we all know better now
  • $200 million in government advertising in the lead up to the election – an unprecedented level of self-promotion with your money
  • $2 billion for the ironically-named Climate Solutions Fund. This poorly-administered handout for the favoured few is of dubious worth to begin with. It runs for 10 years, so I originally counted only one year’s worth – but in the spirit of rorting, what the hell, throw the lot in
  • $4 billion Urban Congestion Fund incorporating the $500 million Commuter Car Park Fund that followed the usual pattern of being mainly poured into coalition marginal seats
  • $300 million Drought Communities Program – another one where the government ignores its own criteria and hands out money without regard for eligibility
  • $220 million Regional Jobs and Investment Package – ministers rejecting 28 per cent of the recommended applications and approving 17 per cent without recommendation
  • $22.65 million for the Stronger Communities Program, and
  • $22.65 million for the Communities Environment Program.

These last two don’t discriminate.

MPs of all stripes get to play with taxpayers funds here – $150,000 for each program in each of our 151 electorates.

Your local MP has to invite or endorse applications – the sort of structural corruption you would perhaps expect in the wilder parts of the Papua New Guinea political system.

The $8000 for a sailing club barbecue in Scott Morrison’s electorate is as good an example as any of federal politicians local big-noting with taxpayers funds.

It’s tacky, it stinks. It’s not what a federal government should be doing.

bridget mckenzie senate inquiry
Bridget McKenzie’s role in handing out the sports grants will be examined by a Senate committee. Photo: AAP

This invites a bigger question about these political acts of noblesse oblige – politicians are too busy trying to buy elections to consider what principles might be involved in making free with other people’s money.

For example, Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack was delighted to open the new Sunshine Beach Surf Club in the electorate of Barnaby Joyce’s little mate, Llew O’Brien.

With the help of $2.5 million from the taxpayer, the club has built a flash bar, restaurant and event centre on its brilliant site overlooking the Sunshine surf.

Oh yes, there are better facilities for the life savers, cadets and nippers as well.

The previous bar and restaurant were more modest, very much Sunshine rather than neighbouring Noosa, yet still a fine spot.

I wonder how other bars, restaurants and events centres in the area feel about having to compete with such generously government-funded opposition?

That should be particularly galling for the Coalition’s IPA “small government” faction.

The best thing the Adventures of Bridget McKenzie could achieve is a re-think of federal government’s responsibilities.

The “they all do it” excuse isn’t good enough any more.

There are things that urgently need federal money – an increased Newstart allowance, social housing – that should take precedence over pork barrelling.

SOURCE: https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/national/2020/03/03/michael-pascoe-liberal-grants-costs/?utm_source=Adestra&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Morning%20News%20-%2020200303

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Sports grants scheme gave money to club in Scott Morrison’s electorate that had already built facility

The Government decided to give the Sans Souci Football Club $50,000 for a building that was about to be opened by the state Liberal MP

Sports grants scheme gave money to club in Scott Morrison’s electorate that had already built facility

Exclusive by political reporters Jack Snape and Matthew Doran

Updated 26 FEBRUARY 2020

.VIDEO: A Sport Australia promotional video (ABC News)

RELATED STORY: ‘Definitely a regional facility’: How North Sydney Council won a $10m pool upgrade grant earmarked for regions

RELATED STORY: Has Eric Abetz just accidentally handed Labor its smoking gun on sports rorts?

RELATED STORY: ‘Significant shortcomings’: PM’s chief bureaucrat weighs into sports grants scandal

RELATED STORY: Six secrets of the Government’s ‘dodgy’ sport grants hidden in the leaked spreadsheet

A club in Scott Morrison’s electorate was given $50,000 for a building that had already been built — and the Prime Minister’s office was told about it before he attended a media event at the ground.

Key points:

  • The Government decided to give the Sans Souci Football Club $50,000 for a building that was about to be opened by the state Liberal MP
  • The club was awarded the grant on April 3, 2019, but the local council said the project was officially opened on April 6
  • Guidelines for the program stated projects that had commenced work were ineligible

Although guidelines for the sports grants program stated projects that had commenced works were ineligible, the Sans Souci Football Club facility — located in Mr Morrison’s electorate — was about to be opened by the local state MP when the Sport Minister decided to award it money.

A spokesperson from the Prime Minister’s office (PMO) said the project had been assessed by Sport Australia as eligible and it was the responsibility of the applicants and Sport Australia to ensure projects met the criteria.

Hundreds of pages of emails have been tabled in the Senate providing unprecedented insight into the $100 million pre-election sports grants cash splash and the $150 million Female Facilities and Water Safety Stream program.

They include an email between the Prime Minister’s and then-sport minister Bridget McKenzie’s offices prior to the Sans Souci media event.

“It is worth noting that the club initially missed out on the first two rounds of funding under the Community Sport Infrastructure grant program,” the email stated.

“The club was subsequently funded in round three.

“During the intervening period, the club has fundraised and the project is almost completed.”

Scott Morrison dribbles a soccer ball alongside children on a suburban soccer field

PHOTO: Scott Morrison appeared at a media event in July 2019 to mark the awarding of a grant for a soccer club in his electorate. (Supplied: Facebook)

The club sought $50,000 in the scheme as part of an $80,000 project for a clubroom and awning, according to the leaked spreadsheet.

Georges River Council stated the project was completed by April 6, 2019, and the club contributed $80,000 to the project alongside council and state government funding.

The $50,000 Commonwealth grant was given under round three, for which funding decisions were made on April 3, 2019 — three days before the opening was held.

A post by local state Liberal MP Mark Coure on April 9 marking the “official opening” of the building stated, “Sans Souci Football Club players are thrilled with the final outcome”.

The club declined to comment.

Eligibility not job for PM

Sport Australia provided a list of 1,943 eligible projects to the minister’s office in November 2018.

But after the Government decided to expand the scheme to subsequent rounds, decisions to fund Sans Souci and others under round three weren’t made until April 2019, by which time work on some projects had commenced without Commonwealth funding.

The Prime Minister’s spokesperson said the Sans Souci project was approved for funding by the then-minister for sport based on its assessed eligibility by Sport Australia.

“After Sport Australia assessed the projects and the minister approved them, Sport Australia worked with the recipients to develop their funding agreements,” the spokesperson said.

“It was the responsibility of the applicants and Sport Australia to have ensured all projects met the eligibility criteria.”

Georges River Council and Mr Coure opened the new Claydon Reserve facility on April 6, 2019.

We’re committed to improving the facilities available for our community and on Saturday we officially opened the Claydon Reserve Amenities building!

We’re pleased to be delivering several new amenity buildings, which are in various stages of construction across the Georges River area. Each building includes a referee room, home and away locker room, facilities for men, women, ambulant and parent bathrooms, a storage room and a canteen.

We hope you enjoy using this great new facility!

“The Government expects all organisations that apply for taxpayer funding to comply with the guidelines and eligibility criteria of those programs,” the government spokesperson said.

“The Minister for Sport is not aware of any advice from Sport Australia regarding eligibility of the Sans Souci Football Club.”

A total of 136 emails about the scheme went to and from staff in the Prime Minister’s office between October 2018 and April 2019, according to information released by the Audit Office on Wednesday.

Versions of the spreadsheet used to award grants were circulated four times with the Prime Minister’s office between February and April 2019.

Those communications included “input on which applications should be awarded funding”, according to a statement from the Audit Office.

Female facilities confusion

Heavily redacted emails tabled in the Senate show the scramble happening behind the scenes to figure out the process for managing the $150 million Female Facilities and Water Safety Stream (FFWSS), and specifically which department would manage the funds.

What’s all this talk about sports grants? The whole saga explained


Claims of sports rorts are all over the news. Get up to speed quickly with the year’s biggest political scandal — who did what, when, and why people are angry.

The project has been heavily criticised by Labor and members of the crossbench for having no formal guidelines or tender process, with some recipients learning through the media they were about to be handed millions of dollars.

The Coalition has defended the project, arguing the funding was outlined in the 2019 federal budget and it allowed the Government to deliver election commitments.

Emails show that as late as September 2019, concerns were being raised the money had still not been transferred from the Infrastructure Department to the Health Department, where responsibility for sporting projects lies.

“The pools are not yet formally finalised as coming to us,” a government official wrote to another on August 8, 2019.

“If you are informing people that they are coming to us (which is expected) do you mind also saying it’s in progress to that outcome to give us half a chance to respond — otherwise I’m going to get bombarded and have no formal information or directive to be able to manage these requests.”

The ABC understands that among those enquiring about the program were major sporting organisations.

Emails dated in July include reference to lists of projects that “do not include those identified previously by PMO to be delivered out of the pools and female change rooms funding”.

The marginal Coalition electorates of Corangamite in Victoria and Pearce in WA received $60 million alone, or 40 per cent of the entire funding pool, from the project announced by the Prime Minister in March 2019.

The bundle of emails were presented to the Senate after the Upper House ordered the Federal Government to produce correspondence relating to the program.

The Senate inquiry hearing into the original $100 million sport grant scheme continues on Thursday when Sport Australia will appear.

A submission to the inquiry from Gippsland Ranges Roller Derby Inc, whose application was rated 98 out of 100 by Sport Australia but was not funded, stated: “We believe there is a significant trust deficit that needs to be remedied.”

Contact Jack Snape

SOURCE: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-02-26/sports-grants-scott-morrison-club-got-money-already-built/12001522

Emails reveal Morrison office’s role in $100 million sports grants program

The first round of $28.3 million was announced in December 2018, the second round of $32.3 million was announced in March 2019 and the third round of $40 million was announced in April 2019, giving the government a boost at the May election.

Emails reveal Morrison office’s role in $100 million sports grants program

David Crowe
By David Crowe

February 26, 2020

View all comments

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has rejected new claims of corruption in the government’s $100 million sport funding program after new documents revealed his staff exchanged 136 emails with colleagues about where the money was spent.

Mr Morrison insisted his office did not decide any grants and merely made “representations” to former minister Bridget McKenzie over the projects that should receive money.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison.CREDIT:ALEX ELLINGHAUSEN

But Labor leader Anthony Albanese told Parliament the new details from the Auditor-General showed closer involvement by the Prime Minister’s office than previously claimed.

“This rort knows no bounds,” Mr Albanese told Parliament, before the government used its majority to block a Labor motion claiming the Prime Minister was involved in the “corrupt” scheme.

Weeks after a scathing audit report on the program, the Auditor-General shed new light on the contact between Mr Morrison’s office and the ministerial staff who created a colour-coded spreadsheet to help decide grants.

Labor has declared the scheme corrupt on the grounds the spreadsheet tracked applications according to their electorate and thereby used taxpayer funds to help the Coalition win seats at the last election, a claim the government denies.

Mr Morrison has rejected claims his office ran the program, arguing Senator McKenzie was the decision-maker and responded to suggestions from his advisers.Play Video

Authorities concerned about COVID-19 cases outside China

Play video1:24Morrison distances himself from sports rorts scheme

The PM says Nationals MP Bridget McKenzie had ‘ministerial authority’ over the sports grants program.

“All we did was provide information based on the representations made to us as every prime minister has always done,” Mr Morrison said last month.

Australian National Audit Office official Brian Boyd also told a Senate hearing earlier this month the audit did not show that projects that came directly from the Prime Minister’s office were more successful than those put to Senator McKenzie’s office by members of Parliament.

Challenged by Labor in Parliament on Wednesday, Mr Morrison cited a former grants scheme overseen by Mr Albanese to argue Labor had been worse.

“The Leader of the Opposition is trying to throw mud when he sits in an absolute swamp,” Mr Morrison said.

"This rort knows no bounds," Anthony Albanese said.
“This rort knows no bounds,” Anthony Albanese said.CREDIT:ALEX ELLINGHAUSEN

ANAO said there were 136 emails between the Prime Minister’s office and Senator McKenzie’s office about the program in the six months before 11 April last year, the day the writs were issued for the federal election and the government went into “caretaker” mode.

The emails involved two “key staff members” in Mr Morrison’s office and three “key staff members” in Senator McKenzie’s office.

The details from ANAO counter some of the claims made about the program in a submission from Phil Gaetjens, the Secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and Mr Morrison’s former chief of staff.

While Mr Gaetjens said he was told Senator McKenzie never saw the colour-coded spreadsheet, the ANAO revealed she had attached part of the document in correspondence with Mr Morrison.

“On 10 April 2019 the minister wrote to the Prime Minister attaching printouts of two worksheets within the spreadsheet – the list of projects she intended to approve for round three funding and the worksheet with the summary tables (of distribution by state, political party and electorate),” the ANAO said.

Senator McKenzie also signed a formal brief to Sport Australia on April 11 with a printout from the spreadsheet to make sure her decisions on the grants took priority over the independent agency.

The first round of $28.3 million was announced in December 2018, the second round of $32.3 million was announced in March 2019 and the third round of $40 million was announced in April 2019, giving the government a boost at the May election.

RELATED ARTICLE

Phil Gaetjens, Secretary of Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, says a controversial sports rorts scheme was not politically motivated.
GOVERNMENT GRANTS

Morrison’s top bureaucrat defends his report on sports rorts

The ANAO has previously revealed there were 28 different versions of the colour-coded spreadsheet, raising questions over which version Mr Gaetjens relied upon in his report into the scheme last month.

Mr Gaetjens said his analysis showed that political considerations were not the “primary determining factor” in Senator McKenzie’s decision to approve grants.

“There is persuasive data that backs up the conclusion that the minister’s decisions to approve grants were not based on the adviser’s spreadsheet,” he said.

Mr Gaetjen’s submission to the Senate inquiry cited a spreadsheet based on information from Sport Australia in September 2018 while the ANAO referred to a spreadsheet based on information from Sport Australia in November 2018.

David Crowe

David Crowe is chief political correspondent for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age.

SOURCE: https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/emails-reveal-morrison-office-s-role-in-100-million-sports-grants-program-20200226-p544n5.html

NSW Libs wedged on Anti Corruption Measure

Image may contain: 1 person, suit

In the lead-up to the May 2019 Election … The Coalition raked in the most donations from the property sector … in fact eight to one!

We know where the Morrison Government’s allegiances lie. He will do everything he can to block this motion’.

NSW Liberals wedged on anti-corruption measure

By Leith van Onselen in Australian Property

February 25, 2020 

A fortnight ago, we reported that the NSW Government is attempting to block developers from running for local councils, however, the motion was blocked by Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s representative, Alex Hawke.

Federal MP Alex Hawke was key in blocking a move within the NSW Liberal Party to ban property developers from seeking preselection for local government elections.

Federal MP Alex Hawke was key in blocking a move within the NSW Liberal Party to ban property developers from seeking preselection for local government elections. CREDIT:ALEX ELLINGHAUSEN

Now, the NSW Labor Opposition is attempting to wedge the Liberals by introducing legislation to ban property developers and real estate agents from serving as councillors:

Labor's bill is being spearheaded by local government spokesman Greg Warren.

Labor’s bill is being spearheaded by local government spokesman Greg Warren.CREDIT:BRENDAN ESPOSITO

It will be Labor’s second attempt in three years at pursuing such a ban, after the government voted down a similar bill in the upper house in May 2017.

Labor’s push is designed to capitalise on a stalemate within the Liberals, after the party’s state executive, its key governing body, last month voted down a motion to ban developers from seeking preselection for the September local government elections.

Federal minister Alex Hawke, who is the Prime Minister’s representative on state executive and a powerbroker in the party’s centre right faction, opposed the proposal at the meeting on January 31.

A source on state executive, who revealed details of the meeting on the condition of anonymity, said Mr Hawke spoke against the motion “at least a dozen times”…

The meeting exposed a factional divide on the issue, with the party’s moderate and right factions backing the proposal. But it needed 90 per cent support to succeed and was blocked by Mr Hawke’s centre-right group…

“There is a view held in the community that property developers holding office in local government poses an obvious risk as they could influence planning decisions which may have direct relevance to their business dealings, or those of colleagues and family,” the motion said.

Recently we learned that political donations from the property industry favour the Coalition about eight to one, according to Australian Electoral Commission figures.

The Coalition raked in the most donations from the property sector, by far. Photo: Sitthixay Ditthavong

We also know that Prime Minister Scott Morrison worked for six years as a research manager for the Property Council of Australia.

We know where the Morrison Government’s allegiances lie. He will do everything he can to block this motion.

Leith Van Onselen

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.

SOURCE: https://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2020/02/nsw-liberals-wedged-on-anti-corruption-measure/#comments

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Traffic Program poured BILLION$ into COALITION Seats before May Election

Catherine King MP@CatherineKingMP·It’s a rort on a nuclear scale! How can the PM justify 83 percent of the $3 billion Urban Congestion Fund going to Liberal seats or target seats? He can’t! #auspol

Traffic program poured billions into Coalition seats before election

Analysis has revealed 83 per cent of cash doled out under an Urban Congestion Fund went to Coalition-held seats and those targeted by the Government in the lead up to the May election.

Annika Smethurst, National political editor, The Sunday TelegraphSubscriber only|February 23, 2020 12:00amClosePauseLoaded: 64.42%Current Time 0:06/Duration 1:17FullscreenNOW PLAYINGResumePopulation growth poses infrastructure challenge1:17UP NEXT

Infrastructure Australia has warned a new wave of investment is needed to ensure roads and public transport, schools, water, electricity and health services support people’s

VIEW Source Link for Video

The $4 billion Urban Congestion Fund was designed to reduce traffic gridlock and remove bottlenecks that slow down commuters.

But an analysis of more than 160 projects funded under the scheme reveals 144 projects83 per cent — were located on roads in Coalition or marginal Labor seats that the government thought it could win.

In NSW, more than 76 per cent of the $541 million allocated went to projects in Liberal-held seats or marginal Labor electorates.’

Of 160 projects funded under the scheme, 83 per cent were located for roads in Coalition or marginal Labor seats that the government thought it could win.
Of 160 projects funded under the scheme, 83 per cent were located for roads in Coalition or marginal Labor seats that the government thought it could win.

In Western Sydney, the Coalition couldn’t find any traffic bottlenecks to fix in the safe Labor electorates of:

-Blaxland, Chifley, Fowler, Greenway, Parramatta, Werriwa and Watson.

But more serious problems in the battleground of:

-Lindsay — which it won

-with the Penrith area picking up four projects worth $118.5 million

-6 projects totalling more than $80M funded in Liberal marginal seat of Banks and $50M in Warringah

‘In an echo of the so-called “Sports Rorts” scandal that saw Bridget McKenzie forced to step down as a minister, while more than 20 urban seats held by Labor missed out entirely, not one Liberal-held marginal city seat missed out.

Construction has started on just four projects, with 70 to start this year.’

Labor’s infrastructure spokeswoman Catherine King accused the government of using billions for its “own political purposes. Picture: AAP
Labor’s infrastructure spokeswoman Catherine King accused the government of using billions for its “own political purposes. Picture: AAP

-applications are not subject to a competitive grants process unlike sporting grants

‘Instead state governments, local councils and federal MPs can make representations to the government for funding. It is not known how many local and state governments requested funding in Labor seats but the government said only one Labor MP — Graham Perrett from the marginal seat of Moreton — asked for cash.’

-the government submitted two-thirds of the projects were election commitments

-Catherine King accused the government of using billions for its “own political purposes”.

SOURCE for full report: https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/nsw/traffic-program-poured-billions-into-coalition-seats-before-election/news-story/5aef0996c7b3c250b8eb46655bda420d

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The Australian Property ‘Family’ …

The Australian Property Mafia … Part 1

WHO ISTHE DON’?

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Photo: Harry Triguboff: The Urban Developer

On searching we found this description:

“The Don is the head of the organisation … a dictator who has the power to order anything and everything from anyone in the ‘Family’.”

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Photo: The Urban Developer on Meriton entering the Melbourne market.

Harry Triguboff … could he have instigated the Property Ponzi?

THE Founder of Meriton, Australia’s most prolific apartment developer, Harry Triguboff.

When interviewed on ‘One Plus One’ by Jane Hutcheon when she enquired if Harry had a hand in the way the Sydney landscape has changed he responded:

“Well, since I am not a modest person I say I had the biggest hand in it because I devoted myself to Sydney. I did a little bit in Queensland, but absolutely I am Sydney!”

In an interview with Robert Harley from the Australian Financial Review in October 2016 Harry said he was not worried about the oversupply of apartments … ‘There will be oversupply when rents are going down … ‘Then I will bring in more migrants’. Said Mr Triguboff!

View:

https://www.afr.com/property/phil-lowe-he-worries-me-a-bit-says-triguboff-20161019-gs5vg8

Apparently the Federal Government does not set the Migrant quotas! But the Don does!

THIS is how Harry, it seems, has been able to continue to source his client base from China and its 1.4 Billion population when interviewed by the AFR in July 2017 Harry said:

“The problem with Australians is they are very slow. They ask their lawyer, they ask their financial adviser, they ask their family, they ask everybody. The Chinese don’t ask anybody, they come off the plane, buy their unit and go.

View:

https://www.afr.com/property/sydney-apartment-market-suffering-poststamp-duty-hangover-harry-triguboff-says-20170711-gx8or7

So Harry not only runs NSW through the Urban Taskforce Australia, but through his business model in high immigration and economies of scale!

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Property billionaire Lang Walker says greenfield estate areas are particularly undersupplied. Photo: Edwina Pickles

IS LANG WALKER ‘THE LIEUTENANT’?

The Lieutenant is described as the second-in-command in the organisational hierarchy of the Australian Property Family … the M.fia?

His level of authority varies … is that because others too from the developer lobby groups, the Property Council of Australia, the Urban Taskforce Australia and the Urban Development Institute of Australia … are all ready to stand in for The Don (the Boss) at any given moment?

It could be that Lang is the second most powerful man in the M.fia. However, the Boss is the only one that has power and authority over the Lieutenant (the UnderBoss).

IF the Don dies (86) … normally the UnderBoss would take the reigns … but hey he doesn’t look to be far behind? Oh, he’s only 73 or 74 … all that wealth, power and authority is ageing …

Image may contain: 2 people, people standing

Photo: Daily Telegraph

DOES it seem that The Mob are ensuring Sydney runs out of land having driven the Librats Population Ponzi? As they promote ‘the end of the backyard‘! Their population Ponzi has fuelled the explosion of apartment precincts across Sydney … and land is expected to run out within a decade!

When billionaire developer Lang Walker talks property, everyone listens. In June 2019 Lang’s hot tip for the future … Masterplanned Communities of house and land packages … the consequence sadly … the destruction of the Koala habitat, urban fringe farmlands of the Macarthur and Wollondilly.

Lang: ‘Now those old-time big blocks have been cut into three …

Are greenfield areas (the Greenfield Housing Code allowing lots as tiny as 200M X 6M wide) under-supplied because they cannot meet the foreign demand? Cough … cough …

https://caanhousinginequalitywithaussieslockedout.com/2019/06/20/lang-walker-propertys-4-6b-man-tips-masterplanned-communities-as-the-next-boom/?fbclid=IwAR0JXiQv47iVo8iCfMNVi8eLuXxnej1TYktcOQ-BFKCrkCR41kyvHxgsw7Q/

With China’s Country Garden developing in Wilton

https://caanhousinginequalitywithaussieslockedout.com/2019/10/31/nsw-government-urged-to-hit-pause-on-major-housing-development-described-as-lung-cancer-for-sydney/

And China’s Dahua in Bardia and Menangle Park

https://caanhousinginequalitywithaussieslockedout.com/2019/12/04/shanghai-based-developer-dahua-sells-1000-lots-in-sydney-south-west/

THIS SUMMER’s Bushfires have shredded core koala habitat, the campaign to protect the crucial colony west of Sydney has become even more important!

IT is up to the People of Australia to demand a stop to The Mob’s overdevelopment and destruction for their foreign buyer market … time to Lobby … it can start in your street! And spread across the Nation … there are still more of us than ‘the $uits’

WHO IS ‘THE CONSIGLIERE’ … the Advisor, or Counselor?

The Right-hand Man, is it Meriton’s General Counsel, Joseph Callaghan?

Because Joseph is very powerful in the Meriton organisation, he must be a close and trusted friend and confidant of the Family Boss, The Don, for strategic information, diplomatic counsel, and sound advice.

The Consigliere is someone who the Boss trusts and goes to for advice, counsel or information regarding the organization, operations, or businesses.

Unlike the underboss, the consigliere is chosen solely for his abilities and the amount of vast knowledge, and intelligence he possesses. Generally, only the boss and underboss have more authority than the consigliere in the property family … the m.fia …

The Consigliere is very powerful in the command hierarchy, he is the “third in command”.

THUS … a summons was filed in the Land and Environment Court of NSW against four respondents – the Premier of NSW; the Minister for Planning; Secretary for the Department of Planning & Environment and the Greater Sydney Commission.

AND a Media Release was issued!

Closing with the threat …

‘There is a bigger picture here. A thriving residential construction industry is a key indicator of the economic success of NSW, but both sides of politics seem to be in a race to the bottom when it comes to stirring up anti-development sentiment. They show no real leadership on this issue and I tell you one thing, they’re going to miss the stamp duty when it’s gone.”

VIEW:

https://www.medianet.com.au/releases/173381/

THE DON … using the threat of the loss of stamp duty coffers to maintain the enormous wealth of the Property Titans (the M.fia … )as they destroy where we live … with high-rise slums or terraces as many as 10 on a 600M2 lot … meaning Millions X Sewage … as the Communists displace our Communities …

NEXT PART 2 THE CAPOREGIMES (The Captains)

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