Sunday, September 20, 2020

The freedom of the press still furnishes that check upon government which no constitution has ever been able to provide – Chicago Tribune.

Home Issue 50

Issue 50

Steve Brown survives fall, escapes council censure

 

Councillor Steve Brown (pictured), who is an electrician, fell seven metres while working on a power pole on Saturday.
He suffered extensive bruising and a broken bone in his foot, but comprehensive tests in the Alice Springs hospital revealed no serious injuries.
Cr Brown also says he was last week exonerated by the council, meeting behind closed doors, over remarks he made about Alice Water Smart, a local group formulating rules about water use. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.

LETTER: Alice second best in two speed tourism economy, says Minister

The Northern Territory now has a two speed tourism economy, with the Top End remaining strong while Central Australia is faltering, writes Matt Conlan, Minister for Tourism and Major Events.

Let's solve some problems in this time of rest and reflection

Here's an invitation to celebrate this time of rest and reflection with an exchange of ideas about how to solve the problems – intractable so far – of this beautiful place we live in. It seems inevitable that some uncomfortable views will be articulated. Let's have the courage to do it.
This invitation is directed to a panel of people whom we have found to have a keen commitment to Central Australia, as well as the ability to articulate ideas.

Sister's government to turf out brother's council?

 

NT Health is planning a super clinic for Papunya and has told the MacDonnell Shire to move out of the the building the two organisations are currently sharing in the remote community.

The issue is delicate because the the shire President, Sid Anderson, is the brother of Alison Anderson, a front-bencher in the government that is turfing him out. (Both are pictured at right.) ERWIN CHLANDA reports.

Police presence cuts turnover of pub by 40%

The owners of the Gapview Hotel say their turnover has dropped around 40% since there has been a highly visible police presence – as there is at all takeaway liquor outlets. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.

Sands in Todd more stable than you think (re-published with Maxine Cook's comment)

 

The river bed of the Todd is more stable than many assume. I have two photos taken from exactly the same vantage point on Meyers Hill (originally called Nannygoat Hill). The first was by John Flynn in 1926. I took the second this year. In my photo there is a prominent "island" covered in buffel grass on the eastern side of the riverbed. This island is also observable in Flynn's photograph, although it was devoid of vegetation at the time. ALEX NELSON comments.

 

At left: John Flynn's photograph, held by the National Library of Australia.

LETTER: Sticking our heads in the sands of the Todd (re-published with Maxine Cook's comment)

It is remarkable how little comment there has been to mark the recent expiry of the 20 year moratorium that had prevented the construction of a flood mitigation dam on the Todd River north of Alice Springs, says letter-writer ALEX NELSON. He summarises what is known about the town's susceptibility to flooding and notes that the Imparja headquarters (pictured above) would be inundated by more than a metre of water above ground level in a 100 year flood. The Civic Centre and the Alice Springs Public Library are equally at risk.

River management: the struggle to get long-term action (re-published with Maxine Cook's comment)

 

The popular misconception about sand being taken out of the Todd River is that this is done as a flood mitigation measure, deepening the channel to allow a greater volume of water to flow within the banks. In truth, it would take major works  to achieve this, including the removal of causeways and the re-location or re-laying of services that are under the river.

The works that are undertaken are better described as "channel improvement" to prevent channel migration and bank scouring.

The Town Council's Director of Technical Services, Greg Buxton explains that this is done "to ensure the river doesn't change course and endanger the properties close to the existing river banks."

However, works at Heavitree Gap are seen as a priority and would contribute to reducing the threat of flooding. "Silt, fines and sand" deposited at the gap by flows have "grassed up" with couch and kikuya, matted into a solid mound (pictured) that now stands well above the Bloomfield drainage line.  These conditions could lead to the river breaking its banks in a Q20, let alone a Q100.

Extensive works removing sand and weeds were done to address this very same problem at the start of the decade, so why hasn't there been regular maintenance? KIERAN FINNANE reports.

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