JOHN ELFERINK: "How are we to deal with the $5.5 billion projected debt left to us by Labor?"
It's time again for a treasurer to perform the Northern Territory's annual miracle: achieving so little with so much.
Prepped by all the hand wringing about black holes, the public is fearing the worst. Savage Power Water Corporation (PWC) hikes have already given a taste of what may be ahead.
Yet the NT, with less than 1% of Australia's population, gets 5.4% of the nation's GST. More than half the NT Budget, $2.7b, is from the GST. The Feds are also kicking in $3.4 billion over 10 years through Stronger Futures.
Add to that the millions in Federal welfare payments, and massive funding to NGOs performing – some poorly – state and local government-like functions, and we have an administration awash in public money. ERWIN CHLANDA comments. "How are we to deal with the $5.5 billion projected debt left to us by Labor?" asks government frontbencher John Elferink in reply.
PHOTO: Part of the new Alice Springs power station at Brewer Estate – an expenditure of the "black hole" Power Water Corporation.
The NPY Women’s Council topped the Indigenous Incorporated category at the 2012 Indigenous Governance Awards for its strong leadership in promoting the health, safety and culture of women in the Ngaanyatjarra, Pitjantjatjara and Yankunytjatjara lands, writes Jenny Maklin MP, Minister for Indigenous Affairs.
If they were mayor for a day, they'd introduce an adult curfew – no, just kidding. In fact this group of young locals didn't raise strong objections to a youth curfew. Asked to think about the pros and cons, they came up mostly with cons but certainly not howls of protest.
They were a dozen students from the town's high schools – Centralian College, St Philip's, OLSH and Yirara – involved in the Youth Desert Leadership Program.
In a workshop hosted by Desert Knowledge Australia and the Alice Springs Town Council, the students also discussed how to make the centre of town more attractive to young people. One proposal is that the government buy the vacant Melanka block and turn it into a park where young people could hang out at night. Pictured: Mayor Damien Ryan talks to youth leaders at yesterday's workshop. From left they are Tyrell Swan, Russell Modlin (Yirara teacher), Naomi Ingamells and Rachel Dash. KIERAN FINNANE reports.
After travelling alone overseas, including in southern Morocco, ESTELLE ROBERTS returned to Alice, grateful for its relative safety. Her confidence has been undermined by a near miss with an intruder and after learning of the brutal rape of a local woman who had left a party that Estelle would have gone to had she been here. Pictured: Sunset off Morocco's Atlantic coastline – beautiful, but hard to appreciate when you're being hassled by local men with their stereotyped ideas of western women. Returning to Alice was a relief ... at first.