The process of allowing non-pastoral uses of cattle land, such as tourism and horticulture, is under threat of turning into red tape, says the non-pastoral use permit process, under the NT Pastoral Land Act," says the CEO of the National Farmers' Federation, Tony Mahar (pictured).
With 65 employees, nearly 70% of them Aboriginal, Ingkerreke Commercial is on the leading edge of Indigenous business.
"Aborigines are an integral part of our community and that means they are an integral part of our workforce," says manager Scott McConnell (below) . Aborigines want work but are looking for respect: "They don't need wash-down stations" on the approach roads to Alice Springs – a swipe at Councillor Steve Brown's proposal for “Welcome to Town” centres. On the other hand, young job seekers have expectations like Rock stars, says Mr McConnell. ERWIN CHLANDA reports from the launch by Regional Development Minister Alison Anderson of the draft Indigenous Economic Development Strategy 2013-2020. Ms Anderson (at right, centre) is picturedwith Kym Nolan, Director, Indigenous Economic Development, and Bridgette Bellenger, Executive Director, Regional Development.
There has been a massive increase in the number of volunteer bushfire fighters in Alice Springs.
"Vollies" captain Shawn O'Toole says until earlier this year there were about five or six volunteers. Now there are about 40, taking part in training.
Meanwhile warmer weather and winds are creating dangerous fire conditions although Grant Allan, of Bushfires NT, says close to three quarters of the town's periphery are secure now because recent blazes have already consumed the extraordinarily high fuel load there.
And the Department of Lands and Planning says it will not prosecute for a loading infringement of a truck driver taking a grader to a blaze north of town to stop a fire advancing towards buildings in a quarry.
The department has not yet responded to questions from Alice Springs News Online about any liability the government may have for fires starting along roads it has responsibility for, and that may enter pastoral land, causing losses of fodder, man-hours fighting the fires and expenses for the use of graders and possible damage to them.
Members of the Hayes pastoral family say of the multitude of fires they had to fight this year, all but one had come from public roads. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. Picturedgetting the low-down from Shawn O'Toole (second from left) on the pump mounted on an "operational vehicle" are "vollies" (from left) Diane Chanut, Wayne Phillips, Alan Leahy, Katherine Hastie and Nikolas Sestokas.