JOURNALIST Elizabeth Farrelly in Saturday’s Sydney Morning Herald spoke of Ted Mack’s true independence in his political career.
He worked in all three levels of government but she spoke particularly of his grassroots approach as mayor of North Sydney.
At his first-ever council meeting as mayor he put forward four recommendations: that the mayoral Mercedes be sold, with funds going to a community bus; that spare council land be made available for public housing; that all council meetings be open to the public unless for legal reasons (in the eight years he was mayor council did not once move to a closed session) and; a series of “dignifying and scale-preserving” amendments to the residential flat code, which was a step towards North Sydney’s now renowned village feel.
These four small grassroots measures of equality, efficiency, open government and urbanism framed his career.
Orange is now (thankfully) heading towards its next council election. My sincere hope is that we have candidates who are prepared to stand and act independently and who have a grass roots approach to how our town should be managed.
Party politics is not the way to go people. Vote for candidates who have confidence, not ego, who listen and interpret well and believe in the history of our town as well as its future.
QUAD BIKE SAFETY REBATES
I WRITE to ensure your readers are aware of the rebates available to help increase quad bike safety across our state.
Like your readers, I am deeply concerned about the number of quad bike deaths and injuries and I have been saddened by the recent deaths.
Since 2011, 112 people have lost their lives in quad bike accidents nationally, with 30 of these tragedies occurring in NSW.
Those figures are totally unacceptable.
The NSW Government’s Quad Bike Safety Improvement Program, introduced last July, gave farmers access to a one-off rebate to buy helmets, undertake training, retrofit safety equipment to existing quad bikes, and/or buy a safer side-by-side farm vehicle.
Earlier this month, we doubled the rebate to $1,000 for the purchase of a side-by-side vehicle, $500 for the retrofitting of safety equipment to an existing quad bike, and $90 for the purchase of an approved helmet.
As many farmers have more than one quad bike, they can now also apply for two rebates, meaning they can be eligible for up to $2,000, rather than the original $500 if they are buying side-by-sides.
Further information is available from www.safework.nsw.gov.au and I really encourage your readers to visit the website and find out what they can do to reduce their risk of death or injury.
Matt Kean, Minister for Innovation and Better Regulation
IT’S NOT ABOUT NAPLAN
THE last thing that parents should consider when deciding when to send their child to school is how they may handle NAPLAN testing.
How they will cope emotionally and psychologically should be the main considerations. Every child is different so there is no set rule.
As a parent, deep down you will know if your child is ready or not to begin their education journey.