Wednesday, July 1, 2020
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I N S I D E THIS WEEK
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Major upgrades at Woolshed
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Historic buildings at the iconic Jondaryan Woolshed and historical village will be given a significant upgrade thanks to $244,000 in funding announced yesterday under the Coalition Government’s expanded Drought Communities Programme (DCP).
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Member for Groom John McVeigh joined Toowoomba Region Mayor Paul Antonio on site to announce the funding. “The latest funding allocation will go towards improvements to a number of buildings across the site, including the relocation of three existing buildings and repairs, levelling and re-stumping of seven other exhibit buildings within the historic village site,” he said. Continued on page 9 RIGHT: Member for Groom John McVeigh with new Jondaryan Woolshed General Manager Emma Otto and Mayor Paul Antonio.
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OurNews Pty Ltd, publisher of The Clifton Courier, The Allora Advertiser, The Oakey Champion and On Our Selection News, is committed to the communities we serve. Our philosophy is that we are simply guardians of what is, after all, the community’s newspaper - we are caretakers of history for future generations. Whilst we now have some of our weekly publications online, we will continue to offer printed versions of all four newspapers. We are able to do this thanks to the strong support of our readers, the most valued support of our advertisers and the dedication of our loyal staff. We encourage you to support those businesses that advertise in our newspapers, as they enable us to continue our work. Not only that, supporting them will ensure that the towns we serve will continue to prosper.
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THE OAKEY CHAMPION
Box off the Streets returns
Wednesday, July 1, 2020
The popular ‘Box off the Streets’ youth program has recommenced at Oakey with sessions to be held every Monday and Wednesday night at the Oakey Community Centre, opposite the Oakey Library entrance. The program is led by Toowoomba Regional Council Oakey Youth Project thanks to support from the Darling Downs and West Moreton Primary Health Network. The free sessions will run from 4pm until 6pm each night. Personal trainer, life coach and youth worker, Toby O’Regan, will again be providing the boxingbased program for local youth aged between 12 and 24 years. All equipment will be supplied as well as water and snacks. Participants should wear appropriate footwear and clothing for training. Several further hygiene practices will be in place due to COVID-19 including increased hand washing, physical distancing and urging participants to bring their own towel and water bottle. It is expected that the program will still be completed by October with a fundraising boxing events. All local young people are welcome to attend with no experience necessary. ‘Box off the Streets’
Toby O’Regan will again run the youth program at Oakey.
ABOVE: Bruce the kelpie watching the rising sun before a session of sheep shearing begins. - Photo, Mike Hawley of Oakey
originated in Toowoomba as part of the Emerge youth initiatives. Social enterprise organisation, Emerge, has also had a major part in bringing the successful program to Oakey. Oakey community members and groups have also collaborated in the initiative including Oakey State High School, PCYC and the Oakey branch of the QCWA.
Updates from the Toowoomba Region
Pat Pat MP WEIR WEIR MP Pat WEIR MP Member for Condamine
PLEASE NOTE As of last facebook page Tuesday 24th of March at the direction of the
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Biosecurity Advisory Committee We invite your expression of interest by 13 July if you have: • a demonstrated commitment to invasive plant and animal management • the ability to represent and liaise with sections of the community • an understanding of biosecurity and legislative requirements relating to it and • the ability to attend four mourning committee meetings per year.
Due to COVID-19
social distancing Come and meet your local member
rules apply. Enquiries OUTSIDE THE GOOMBUNGEE NEWSAGENCY via phone, email 15 Mocatta Street, Goombungee or online preferred. The Condamine Saturday 29 Februarywith | 9am-12pm restrictions. Electorate Office is
Member for Condamine
(07) 4570 4100 101 Campbell Street, Oakey QLD 4401 PO Box 65, Oakey QLD 4401 email@example.com patweir.com.au /PatWeirMP
Member for Condamine
DAM LEVE LS
GUESS WHAT WE DO??
Expressions of interest invited for Council advisory committees Are you passionate about our Region? We have a number of opportunities for you to be involved and be a voice for our community. All advisory committees play a role in providing advice to Council for consideration in decision making and development of strategies regarding the interests surrounding their committee group.
ABOVE: ‘I’ve got my eyes on you’ taken by Mike Ford. - Photo, Gomaren & Doctors Creek Landcare
• foster a culture of collaboration, resource sharing, strategic planning, best practice and human rights throughout the local youth sector • are keen to support the Regional Youth Leaders and promote a positive image of young people in the community and • are able to attend meetings on the second Thursday of each month (9.30am11.30am). Note that the term for the next RYAC will end in March 2024.
Regional Access and Disability Advisory Committee (RADAC)
We invite your expression of interest by 10 July if you: • can represent the interests of our Region’s disability community and support their participation in social, economic, cultural and civic life Regional Youth Advisory • are able to work within a multi-disciplinary Committee (RYAC) group from a range of professional and We invite your expression of interest community backgrounds by 10 July if you: • foster a culture of collaboration, resource • can represent the interests of our sharing, strategic planning, best practice, Region’s young people and support their and human rights throughout the local participation in social, economic, cultural disability sector and and civic life • are able to attend meetings on the • are able to work within a multi-disciplinary first Monday of each month (10.30amgroup from a range of professional and 12.30pm). Note that the term for the next community backgrounds RADAC will end in July 2022.
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OAKEY’S OWN NEWSPAPER
Wednesday, July 1, 2020
Delays to Oakey Solar Farm 2
Owner of the Oakey Solar Farm, the Foresight Group, has confirmed further delays to the completion of Stage 2 of the project due to two weather events which damaged sections of the site. The independent infra- that this has forced the structure and private equity Foresight Group to reduce investment manager based the value of the project. in the United Kingdom “The Oakey 2 asset confirmed in the latest has experienced further Audited Annual Report construction delays and Financial Statements following storms impacting that Oakey Solar Farm 2 the site, with the expected will not be commissioned connection date delayed until the second half of this to the second half of 2020,” year. the report said. The project was first “As a result, the valuation affected by storm damage in of Oakey 2 has been decreased October 2018 before being by £6.9 million (about rebuilt and set for initial $12.4 million Australian) export in April 2019. to reflect the impact the “The project has commissioning delay will experienced grid have on project revenues. commissioning delays “The Investment Manager following first export is working closely with as a result of initial grid the network operator compliance tests,” the report and project contractors said. to minimise the financial “As a consequence, further impact to the Company.” equipment is expected Foresight Group acquired to be installed on site to both Oakey Solar Farm 1 and address grid compliance 2 in October 2017. issues identified on site, Oakey Solar Farm 1 was resulting in delays to full connected to the grid in commissioning.” February 2019. It was again hit by a Foresight Group has storm in January this signed a 20-year Power year which reportedly Purchase Agreement with affected about 15 per cent of the Queensland Governthe site. ment for energy generated at The financial report stated Oakey Solar Farm 1.
THE OAKEY CHAMPION
State LNP vows to approve New Acland if elected
Shadow Minister for State Development, Andrew Powell, has assured Oakey region residents that the Queensland Liberal National Party (LNP) is committed to making New Acland Stage 3 happen if it is elected to government in October. Mr Powell said the local economy does not need to wait until then with nothing stopping the Palaszczuk Government from approving the project. “The Palaszczuk Government talks about shovel ready projects and there is nothing more shovel ready than this on,” he said. “We don’t need to wait until October 31 to have it approved.” Mr Powell said the LNP is willing to step in, if elected, and approve the project if the State Government refuses to make a decision. Mr Powell visited the New Acland site on Friday and was impressed by the operation, particularly the rehabilitation work being done. Shadow Minister for State Development, Andrew Powell, and Member for Condamine, “The rehabilitation is Pat Weir, inspect rehabilitated sections at the New Acland Mine on Friday. outstanding,” Mr Powell said. on the vital approvals are all for jobs in regional local member Pat Weir and “It’s hard to believe there this mine needs to keep Queensland, sitting on to have Andrew out here was once a mine under all employing regional their hands rather than gave the workforce some that grass. Queenslanders. approve a project that will encouragement that there is “But what I really “The workers I spoke to create hundreds of jobs for support for the project,” Mr can’t get over is the fact the are truly fearful they will local workers. O’Dwyer said. state government is sitting be out of work within the “The Minister and Premier “Our crews have been next six months if something really need to come out sensational throughout this doesn’t change.” here and front up to these process but it has been tough Mr Powell said in the workers and the community on them and their families. current climate, the and explain the real reason “All we are asking from Government should be why they won’t give the the government is some looking at every opportunity approvals.” certainty for the future.” to create jobs, not destroy Acland Mine General If approved the New them. Manager, Dave O’Dwyer Acland Stage 3 project Sixteen community groups in the Groom electorate, including five from the Oakey “We all know the dire said it was great to have will create 187 new and Goombungee districts, will benefit from a share in federal funding to support local state of the Queensland the Shadow Minister visit jobs within the first six volunteers across Australia. economy. the site and speak with the months, 487 jobs within The Oakey Agricultural Federal Member for part of our society, especially “Yet here we have workers. 18 months and inject $7 Pastoral and Rodeo Society Groom John McVeigh said during difficult times. the Palaszczuk Labor “We have always had billion into the Queensland will receive $4,440 for the grants, between $1,000 “Their contribution is vital Government, who say they great support from the economy. mobile shade shelters and and $5,000, and will enable to ensuring that we continue the Oakey Historical organisations in Groom to support families, provide Museum Society was to better support their employment pathways for successful with its volunteers to purchase young people and strengthen application for $2,150 to small equipment, pay fuel, community resilience. Toowoomba Regional Council (TRC) has confirmed that the Oakey Service Centre will be spent on tools and transport and training costs. “We are fortunate in our be re-opening from Tuesday, July 6 with reduced operating days and hours. computer items. “Our region has been region to have a very rich Other successful local significantly impacted by and vibrant volunteer From next week the needed to access the centre collect service through the applicants include: Coronavirus, on-going culture, which contributes centre will only be open on services. Library catalogue at https:// - Kingsthorpe & District drought and other challenges greatly to our quality Tuesdays and Thursdays Residents are urged to toowoomba.spydus.com/cgiProgress Association Inc, this year,” Dr McVeigh said. of life. from 8.30am until 5pm. adhere to social distancing bin/spydus.exe/MSGTRN/ $4,800; “This funding will go a “I thank our volunteers In the following weeks and hygiene practices. WPAC/HOME - Oakey Junior Rugby long way to support and congratulate local further changes will be No plans have been For more information League Club Incorporated, volunteers to continue organisations that have made to increase operating released on the opening of about the TRC COVID-19 $2,600; and their important work in the been successful under our hours but no official times the Oakey Library. response go to: www.tr.qld. - QCWA Goombungee community. latest round of Volunteer have been confirmed. Oakey residents are able gov.au/community-business/ Branch, $4,920. “Volunteers are an integral Grants,” No appointments will be to access the a reserve and community-safety/coronavirus
Funding boost to support local volunteers
Service Centre to reopen
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THE OAKEY CHAMPION
Wednesday July 1, 2020
TO THE PAST
1960: a year of change
In 1960, the Oakey State School saw the dawn of a new era in education for the town. The Head Teacher, Alfred J. Noon, introduced a secondary class at the school.
After being Head Teacher at the school since 1948, he retired at the end of June 1960 and was replaced by Maurice L. Harnell who had been transferred from the school at The Summit. Things really began to happen from that time as
ABOVE: The new Primary and Secondary School badges introduced during 1960.
he oversaw the building of new class-rooms to cater for the influx of students. He was also behind the introduction of uniforms and badges for both primary and secondary students. The new secondary students became known as the "High Tops" and remained at the State School until the new Oakey State High School was opened at the start of the 1964 school year. The year 1960 was also the beginning of the end for smaller schools scattered throughout the local district. The closure of these schools meant more students for Oakey. The first of these was the Tangham School which closed at the end of 1960
Wednesday, September 14, 2016
with a succession of others
The Champion Crossword
ABOVE: The 1960 family school photo of the Weises of Cory Street, Oakey before uniforms were introduced. They are Daphne (Grade 7), Lance (Grade 6), Valerie (Grade 5), Vivienne (Grade 3) and Norma (Grade 1). - Photos courtesy Valerie Weise-Young
- Valerie Weise-Young
in the ensuing years.
OAKEY AND DISTRICT
WEATHER 5 DAY FORECAST
RAIN FROST RISK
LOCAL WEATHER We can expect some slightly warmer conditions over the coming days with daytime highs rising up into the low twenties. These warm conditions won’t last too long with a high chance of frost returning on Sunday.
A cold front and trough may bring gusty winds, rain and storms to southern SA, TAS, VIC and southern NSW, along with alpine snow. Moist onshore winds may produce a few showers over southern WA, eastern QLD and the tropics. High pressure should keep elsewhere dry and settled.
Thursday 2nd July 5th Jul
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Wednesday, July 1, 2020
THE OAKEY CHAMPION
THE OAKEY CHAMPION
Wednesday, July 1, 2020
ALFA launches Export opportunities to flow virtual events from Taiwanese market program
Australian exporters have felt the effects of current health situation, from the downturn but also the opportunities flowing from a new normal.
The Australian Lot Feeders’ Association (ALFA) has announced that, despite COVID-19 set-backs, it will continue to deliver its vital industry training and workshops this year, starting with a Nutrition and Milling Workshop to be held online this July. ALFA’s extensive program of events, workshops and awards are a highlight in the lot feeding sector’s calendar each year, however, restrictions associated with delivering face-to face events during the COVID-19 pandemic have meant a scaled back program thus far this year. With restrictions now easing, ALFA is working towards restoring normality to the program through the newly released program. ALFA President and Bowenville resident Bryce Camm, outlined that COVID-19 restrictions had meant ALFA needed to embrace new ways of engaging with members and the feedlot community. “We have focused on continuing to deliver those core training skills for members in a new format, whilst also injecting some out-of-the-box thinking,” he said. “I congratulate the volunteers on ALFA’s Events Committee who have worked tirelessly to bring this program of events together for the betterment of industry, in such a challenging time. Over the coming
months, ALFA will be delivering an array of virtual events: - Nutrition and Milling Workshop; - “Pop-Up” Webinars, featuring out of the box speakers and topics; and Feedlot Industry Competitions. Whilst this Program will be delivered virtually, it is anticipated that face-toface events will resume in late 2020. The postponed Animal Welfare Officer Accredited Training, supported by Zoetis and MLA, is planned to resume from October, and will be delivered at the remaining scheduled locations. With BeefEx 2020 postponed to 19-21 October 2021, ALFA is organising a separate major industry celebration for early 2021 to help celebrate the 50th Anniversary of ALFA and bring the sector together. Initiatives will be announced via the ALFA website and Facebook page as they are released. For more information on the new program of events and to register for the Nutrition & Milling Workshop, head to the ALFA Website at www.feedlots.com.au
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The SQ Export Hub, delivered by TSBE, hosted a webinar with industry experts aimed at providing information for food and agricultural exporters interested in entering the Taiwanese market. TSBE Export Manager for Food and Agribusiness, Justin Heaven said, “Our region and our exporters are well-placed to take advantage of any opportunities.” “There are now three flights per week leaving the Toowoomba Wellcamp Airport, two flights to Hong Kong and one flight to Singapore,” said Mr Heaven. “These are recognised as international distribution hubs which provide access to many international markets. “There is certainly interest from overseas, with Taiwan being Queensland’s fifth largest merchandise export destination.” Queensland Trade and Investment Commissioner – Taiwan, Patrick Hafenstein was one of the speakers during the webinar. “Queensland currently exports over $235 million of processed food to Taiwan,” Mr Hafenstein said. “Australia has a clean, green and healthy image
which can be leveraged to assist Taiwan, who value food quality and high nutrition.” With the growing adoption of E-commerce platforms and AgTech, there are even more opportunities for Australian businesses. One of the real opportunities is in exporting beef to Taiwan, with their younger generation attaining a taste for beef that was previously avoided by locals. Meat & Livestock Australia’s Business Development Manager – Taiwan, Erica Chiu shared some insights to assist protein producers. “Barbecue meat cuts are in high demand in Taiwan, but it is quite a competitive market,” said Ms Chiu. “Taiwan is a diverse culture influenced from both Asian and European countries, and their demand for Australian products is high.” SQ Export Hub growth centre partner, Food Innovation Australia Limited (FIAL), also participated in the discussion. Growing the share of Australian Food in the
Queensland Trade and Investment Commissioner – Taiwan, Patrick Hafenstein, said the Darling Downs has an unblemished reputation for high quality produce.
marketplace is FIAL’s mission in the food sector, supporting collaboration in industry by sharing knowledge, building capability and creating connections. FIAL is a not-for-profit organisation supported by the Federal Government. FIAL General Manager Commercial, Rod Arenas, said that we need to accelerate commercially driven collaboration to increase our success. “We are very lucky in
Australia as we have a great reputation for quality produce and people are generally willing to pay a little extra for this,” said Mr Arenas. “We can utilise innovation to grow and develop something new and unique to both domestic and overseas markets.” Due to this exceptional reputation for food and agricultural products, and Australian exporters can maximise on available opportunities.
Financial support extended
The Australian Government is continuing its support for drought-affected farming households by extending Round 2 of the $148.5 million Drought Community Support Initiative (DCSI) program until the end of this year.
Minister for Drought David Littleproud said the Government is standing with regional Australia as it deals with the impacts of drought and COVID-19. “DCSI payments of up to $3,000 are already assisting
farming families to meet urgent expenses, including for food, petrol and utilities, and they have let us know how much this extra support has meant to them,” he said. “The injection of money
into rural and regional communities is supporting local businesses which were already struggling financially before the COVID-19 crisis. “The Federal Government is doing what it takes to support farming households through these extremely difficult financial and stressful times.” The Salvation Army and St Vincent de Paul Society are delivering Round 2 to eligible households who live or work in one of the Local Government Areas eligible for the Drought Communities Programme Extension. Since December 2018, the Australian Government has committed $181.5 million in financial assistance to support farming households in drought-affected communities through the DCSI. Head of Community Engagement at The Salvation
Army, Stuart Glover, said this news brings some certainty to family budgets during this period. “The extension of this funding allows us to continue to support farming households who are in need because of this ongoing drought,” he said. “Over the course of this initiative we have assisted over 16,000 farming households across 89 Local Government Authorities. “One of the farmers who we supported in Queensland said, ‘Thank you so much! Last year was a shocker for us with the drought conditions. I didn’t know how we were going to be able to make ends meet. These funds will help us immensely with the ongoing feed/water costs and the bills that just keep coming.’” For more information go to www.regional.gov.au/ regional/programs/droughtcommunities
Wednesday, July 1, 2020
THE OAKEY CHAMPION
Work on track for new fire PFAS Health station precinct at Charlton Study delays
Construction is underway for a multi-million-dollar upgrade to the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) precinct at Charlton. Work started on the new $16.9 million Charlton Fire and Rescue Station and regional headquarters in February. Fire and Emergency Services Minister Craig Crawford said the new facility near the airport on Steger Road, would create more than 50 full-time jobs for the region. “The Palaszczuk Government is starting to deliver Queensland’s plan to Unite and Recover for Queensland Jobs,” Mr Crawford said. “A key part of that is supporting tradition industries like infrastructure. “Infrastructure like this fire station has delivered jobs for Queenslanders and we have a $50 billion infrastructure guarantee to deliver even more infrastructure and support more jobs. “This will be a huge boost not only for the region’s emergency services, but also for the community. “It is wonderful we are able create jobs at a local level whilst building a world-class facility to house the region’s first responders for years to come. “Having the regional headquarters and Fire and Rescue Station under the same roof will enhance the region’s emergency response while also meeting the future needs of the community. “It means our local crews will be able to keep up with the growing
ABOVE: QFES Assistant Commissioner David Hermann, Toowoomba Region Mayor Paul Antonio, Michael McNab, Member for Condamine Pat Weir, Member for Groom John McVeigh. demands of the job.”. The regional headquarters will accommodate personnel from the Fire and Rescue Service (FRS), Rural Fire Service (RFS) and State Emergency Service (SES). Mr Crawford said the final design of the new facility would be carefully considered to ensure it benefited all three services. “QFES takes a holistic approach when responding to disasters such as bushfires, floods and other critical incidents, so it is important for all of our services to be united in their response,” he said. “The new facility is in an ideal location, close to the centre of town and at the junction of major roads and highways which will allow crews
to respond rapidly to all types of incidents across the area. “South west Queensland was no stranger to natural disasters. The region was heavily affected last bushfire season, particularly in Stanthorpe, Millmerran, Pechey and Swanfels. “Earlier this year there was significant flooding in Jandowae and more recently St George. “The Charlton-based regional headquarters will service the entire South West Region from Toowoomba to the South Australia and New South Wales borders,” Mr Crawford said. McNab Managing Director, Michael McNab, said his company was excited to be involved in this project, which would
be a major boost to the local economy. “We expect to have around 80 staff and subcontractors on-site at peak times, with up to 300 people working on the project over the next six months,” Mr McNab said. “The vast majority of these workers will be local to Toowoomba and the Darling Downs, so this project will create an impressive injection into the local economy and construction industry. “We have great talent here locally, and have enjoyed developing excellent partnerships with the best in the business since we opened our doors in Toowoomba 25 years ago,” Mr McNab said. Construction work is scheduled to be finished by the end of the year.
Nominations sought for RADAC
Toowoomba Regional Council (TRC) is seeking nominations to fill 13 positions for the new term of the Regional Access and Disability Advisory Committee (RADAC). RADAC chair Cr Tim McMahon said Council welcomed expressions of interest from people across the region who wished to serve on the voluntary committee. Cr McMahon, who is also TRC’s Environment and Community Services portfolio leader, said the advisory committee’s role was to represent the interests of people with a disability or access issues and inform Council about the extent of these issues and suggested solutions. “I encourage people who want the chance to articulate problems and solve issues to nominate for the vacant positions by July 10,” Cr McMahon said. “It is important for Council to listen to ideas and recommendations from people in the disability sector and from other community groups who often feel isolated or marginalised. “Apart from physical barriers, we need to be mindful of social and
cultural issues that affect how people interact with others. “I also see the committee as a vehicle for promoting a better understanding of these issues to the wider community and upholding the human rights of everyone involved in the disability sector. “The committee provides support and advice to Council around the ongoing implementation of Council’s Access and Equity Plan 2016-21.” Meetings are held on the first Monday of the month from 10.30am12.30pm, except for public holidays. Interested applicants from regional areas are encouraged to apply. Some assistance may be available for transport. Enquiries and/or submission of expressions of interest can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or posted to Toowoomba Regional Council, PO Box 3021, Toowoomba, Qld, 4350. Please outline your previous experience in the
application. Applications close at 5pm on Friday, July 10. The term of the Regional Access & Disability Advisory committee will end in July 2022. Applicants are
encouraged to read through the Terms of Reference and position description. Refer to www.tr.qld.gov. au/advisorycommittees for more information Enquiries can be directed to 131 872.
Due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, the Australian National University (ANU) has confirmed that delays to phase two of the PFAS Health Study has meant that the Cross-sectional Survey and Blood Serum Study report will not be released until mid-2021. The report was initially expected to be released in mid-2020. The final report for the Data Linkage Study has also been delayed from December 2020 to mid-2021. According to a joint statement from Australian Government Chief Medical Officer Professor Brendan Murphy, and Professor Martyn Kirk ANU, COVID-19 stopped any face-to-face activities associated with the study. “The study has been affected by travel restrictions, demand on general practitioners and pathology services, restrictions on non-essential activities and re-assignment of the researchers to urgent work associated with the pandemic,” the statement said. “The ANU Epidemiolical Study area includes
towns of Katherine (Northern Territory), Oakey (Queensland) and Williamtown (New South Wales). “The study will include a cross-sectional health survey and blood serum study, using results from the Government’s Voluntary Blood Testing Program where individual consent was given. “While currently there is limited evidence that exposure to PFAS causes adverse human health effects the Government has funded the ANU Epidemiological Study to provide better understanding of possible health effects. “The results are expected to be broadly applicable to other identified PFAS contaminated sites.” To find out more about the study email pfas.health. email@example.com or go to pfas.anu.edu.au
Volunteers needed at Oakey Historic Museum
The Oakey Historical Museum Society committee is urging local residents with a love of history to consider volunteering at the Oakey Museum. The museum grounds, located at the western end of Oakey on the corner of Ramsay and Bridge Streets, is packed with history of the local region from farming to business and social. The Museum features several historical buildings from Oakey’s past, such as the Byers’ family cottage, Dr EAF McDonald’s surgery and the Lorrimer’s Funeral Parlour.
The committee is currently preparing for the completion of a new extensive shed structure which will house a number of new and improved exhibitions. Committee members are also busy brainstorming for future events and open days at the facility. Anyone who wishes to volunteer or help out in any way is encouraged to call Fay Telford on 0427 623
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Catching up in Condamine WITH
Pat WEIR MP During the last parliamentary sitting week, I asked two Questions without Notice concerning issues that have the potential to affect the local community of Oakey, and rural and regional Queensland.
THE OAKEY CHAMPION
Wednesday, July 1, 2020
Special connection between Army Captain and local koala
Oakey Army Aviation Centre Captain Lawrence Griffiths now has the rare privilege of having a koala named in his honour after he rescued the animal at the Oakey base after noticing that it was suffering from an eye infection. Captain Griffiths contacted RSPCA Wildlife who called Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue. The team, assisted by Army Aviation staff, rescued the koala before having it assessed by veterinarians at the RSPCA Wildlife Hospital at Wacol. Other than a nasty bout of ulcerated conjunctivitis, the nine-years-old koala was found to be perfect condition at a whopping 8kg. Judi Gray from Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue said she was surprised to find a wild koala at that weight considering the ongoing drought in the area. She said it is clear that the Oakey Army Aviation Centre and surrounding bushland is highly suited to koalas. “The Base must be a great place to live as the koala was in very good condition,” she said. Ms Gray said the
koala, then named called Lawrence after Captain Griffiths, was successfully released to the Oakey Base late last month. She thanked Captain Griffiths for his help with the rescue and for keeping an eye on the local wildlife. Ms Gray said the Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue has rescued and released many koalas from the Oakey region. “Earlier this year we released a mother and a baby to the bushland at Arthur Shooter Park,” she said. Ms Gray said if anyone finds a sick or injured koala or other wildlife, they should contact the RSPCA on 1300 ANIMAL (1300 264 625). She said the team will then call her or another wildlife carer to collect the animal. Residents can also take the animal to the local veterinarians who can care for native wildlife.
ABOVE: Captain Griffiths helps to release koala Lawrence. He looked back at the Army Centre employee before climbing up the eucalyptus tree on the Base. BELOW: Lawrence the koala when he was found (left) and after successful treatments at Wacol (right). - Photos courtesy Judi Gray from Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue
I asked the Premier to immediately approve Stage 3 of the New Acland Coal Mine and stop the legal delaying tactics being employed as an excuse to block this major job keeping and job creating project for regional Queensland. The Premier’s reply was very discourteous to the people in the Oakey community who are dependent upon Stage 3 going ahead for their future employment and the survival of their small businesses. This is not the first time I have asked the Premier when the approval for Stage 3 will be given, on every occasion her response has been insulting and derisive. This project particularly whilst we are beginning the recovery phase of the COVID-19 pandemic would contribute significantly to the economy of Queensland and provide job security at this uncertain time, whilst supporting local small business operators. The second question I asked was to the Minister for Police and Corrective Services, Mark Ryan. My question was: Will the Minister guarantee that the rural crime squads throughout Queensland will continue to be fully staffed and fully resourced stand-alone divisions of the Queensland Police Service. The Minister was unable to answer the question. Instead 24 hours later he issued a media statement stating the ‘Stock Squad’ would remain. The information I received from concerned members of this specialist team prior to asking the question was that the future of these vital rural law enforcement squads was looking grim. There removal would have been yet another blow for rural and regional Queensland.
(07) 4570 4100 101 Campbell Street, Oakey QLD 4401 PO Box 65, Oakey QLD 4401 email@example.com patweir.com.au PatWeirMP
Indigenous fire methods investigated
Toowoomba Regional Council (TRC) has resolved to invite the Bunya People Aboriginal Corporation Rangers to its upcoming prescribed burns carried out under Operation Cool Burn, 2020. The resolution moved by Cr Rebecca Vonhoff and seconded by Cr Carol Taylor stated: - That TRC resolves to invite Bunya Peoples’ Aboriginal Corporation Rangers to TRC’s prescribed burns. - That Council consider
a report prepared by officers of how cultural burning could complement the efforts of Council in land management at a future Environment and Community Service Committee. In moving the resolution, Cr Vonhoff said this motion
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cultural burning processes,” she said. “I believe there’s broad support for prioritising fire mitigation and considering approaches that reduce the chance our Region suffers a catastrophic fire.” For more information go to www.tr.qld.gov.au/bushfire
Wednesday, July 1, 2020
THE OAKEY CHAMPION
Jondaryan Woolshed to be revitalised
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Continued from page 1 “This work will not only improve safety, it will also ensure buildings are in the right location to maximise exhibit space and create a more user-friendly experience for visitors.” The upgrades will be overseen by new General Manager Emma Otto who will replace the previous manager Rebecca Pope. Ms Otto said the upgrades will bring new life to the historic village at the Jondaryan Woolshed. “The funding is going to bring life back to this village which will include re-stumping, doing some repair work and general maintenance to make the place safe and beautiful again,” she said. “It is something that we need, over the years buildings get rundown and we have had drought and lots of rain as well. “To be able to recreate this village, it is going to bring so much life back to Jondaryan Woolshed and attract a lot more people.” Ms Otto said works will start as soon as possible on the project. She said it is anticipated that the construction works will be completed by the end of the year. Dr McVeigh said iconic destinations like Jondaryan Woolshed were a vital part of the region’s history and economy. “Jondaryan Woolshed is one of our most treasured tourism and events destinations and I am very
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pleased to see additional funding support from the Federal Government directed towards the maintenance and improvement of exhibits and buildings at the venue,” Dr McVeigh said. “Each year Jondaryan Woolshed receives an average of 20,000 visitors, all of whom make an important contribution to the local economy.” Dr McVeigh said the Drought Communities Programme was helping to keep local economies going even through the tough times caused by the drought. “This program is so important because it helps keep people working, helps keep cash-flow going and ensures that local businesses can keep operating,” he said. “The latest allocation is in addition to more than $221,000 from the Drought Communities Programme last year towards improvements to accommodation facilities at the site. “Both these investments are a great local example of how this Liberal National Government is delivering long-lasting benefits to communities and the agricultural communities on which they depend through investment in both the DCP and our broader drought support package.” Further information on the program and a list of eligible councils is available at www.business.gov.au/dc
Information Centre reopens
The Oakey Information Centre, located at the Oakey Railway Station, will re-open tomorrow after being closed for several months due to COVID-19 restrictions. The volunteer-run facility will open from 10am. Social distancing and registration of contact details will be compulsory for all visitors to the Centre. Hand sanitiser will also be available for use for hygiene purposes. The weekly Community
Cuppa event and Guest Speaker program has yet to be resumed. Anyone interested in volunteering with the Oakey Information Centre is encouraged to contact Eric Haering on 0418 809 391 or Suzanne Haering on 0400 796 571.
THE OAKEY CHAMPION
Wednesday, July 1, 2020
Goombungee Golf Club Oakey Golf Club results
RESULTS Thursday, June 18: Men and Ladies played a Mixed Four Ball Stableford for Tony Sheridan and George Rojahn Trophy. Winners: Gloria Scott and David Cass, 41 points. Runnersup: Garry Mathies and Steve Elfverson, 40 points. Rundowns; Denice Voltz and Garry Shea: Approach: 1/10 Garry Mathies, pin 8/17 David Cass. Pin shot 4/13 and approach 2/11 to Gloria Scott. Sunday, June 21: Men and Ladies played for Jan and Peter Mullins Trophy. Men’s winner: Harry Cover, 40 points. Ladies’ winner: Ann Cass, 36 points. Balls in run down: Carmel Cover, Gary Linane, Gary Herriman, Rodney Mann, Scott Wood. Pins: 4/13 Scot Wood (Eagle Nest), 8/17 Glen Kuhn. Approach men: 5/14 A. Zaneette. Ladies’ approach: 2/11 Val Drowley. Thursday, June 25: Men Single Stableford for a Club Trophy. Winner: Alan Bryce, 36 points.
Rundown: Gary Mathies, Murray McLeod, David Cass. Approach: 1/10 Alan Bryce. Ladies Single Stableford for Janelle Wieck Trophy. Winner: Gloria Scott, 35 points. Runner-up: Jan Mullins on a count back. Pin shot: 8/17 Jan Mullins. Approach: 2/11 Ann Cass. Grade Champions 2020: A Grade, Ann Cass; B Grade, Gloria Scott; C Grade, Rose Edmunds. Overall net winner: Ann Cass. Sunday, June 28: Single Stroke, Monthly Medal for a Club Trophy. Winner men: Rodney Mann, 66 net. Winner ladies: Miah Linane, 69 net. Best Gross men: Matty Burgess, 70. Best gross ladies: Ann Cass, 85. Rundown: Ann
Cass, Mark Peters, Greg Schull, Trent Peters, Gary Herriman, Dave Humphrey, Nino Capuzzo, Damien Peters. Pin shots: 3/12 David Cass, 4/13 Des Duggan, 8/17 Matty Burgess. Approach: 1/10 Mark Peters, 2/11 Dave Humphrey, 5/14 Wayne Muras. Pin shot ladies: 4/13 Ann Cass, 8/17 Ann Cass. Approach: 3/12 Val Drowley. Members Draw No. 16: John Noonan, not present. Next week will be $15. COMING EVENTS Thursday, July 2: Men Single Stableford for a Club Trophy. Ladies Flag competition for Kathy Egan Trophy. Sunday, July 5: Single Stroke, Monthly Medal Patron’s Day. - Murray McLeod
RESULTS Wednesday, June 24: the Oakey Golf Club ladies played an 18 hole Stroke along with the third round of the International Bowl. The winner was Iris Thompson with a 73 net. Runner-up was Joan Fisk with a 74 net. The rundown went to Dawn Bradford with an 80 net on a countback. Front nine was won by Marlene Deans with 16 points The back nine was won by Daphne Webster with 17 points. Marlene Deans defeated Margaret Muir 3 to 2 in the Matchplay. Saturday, June 27 and Sunday, June 28: the members played an 18 hole Stableford, the winner
RESULTS This week the Oakey Social Golf Club played a VSS on the front nine. Pins: B. Fenton, 2; G. Fenton;
B. Lucht; M. Kraka; R. McKenzie; and S. Gilles. Long drives: A grade Moses; B grade - A. Park; 60+ - G. Fenton.
COMING EVENT Next week is a Single Stroke on the back nine. Please get your money in for the Coast trip.
Oakey Social Golf Club notes
being Joan Fisk with 39 points. The runner-up was Yvonne Lebeter with 36 points on a countback. The rundown went to Alan De Ross and Bev Bacon with 36 points. The Men’s Foursomes were not held, as there were insufficient numbers. Patrick Fisk defeated Andrew King 3 to 2 in the Matchplay. Patrick will play the winner of John O’Keefe and Mikey Rietveld.
COMING EVENTS Wednesday, July 1 will be an 18 hole Stroke in conjunction with the first round of the Championships. Saturday, July 4 and Sunday, July 5: members will play an 18 hole Stroke in conjunction with the July Monthly Medal. Reminder that members must ring Dan Norton to book a time slot for Saturday or Sunday due to Covid 19 regulations. - Marlene Deans, Secretary
Oakey Social Indoor Bowls will be starting at the Uniting Church, John Street, Oakey on Monday, July 13 at 6.30pm. It will be a gold coin donation at the door to begin playing. All ages are welcome. No previous experience of bowling is necessary.
COVID-19 government regulations must be adhered to at the gathering including social distancing and maximum numbers in the hall. Contact Val Austin on 0487 319 899 if you are interested in coming along for a friendly game of bowls.
Oakey Social Indoor Bowls Club
Wednesday, July 1, 2020
THE OAKEY CHAMPION
Sustainability key for 2020 Focus on Farms
Environmental sustainability will be a major focus for this year’s Gomaren & Doctors Creek Catchment Landcare Group’s Focus on Farms Photography Competition which has become a popular event across the region. The group is hoping for strong support this year, competition coordinator Jean Gundry saying planning has been slightly different due to the virus. “Our sub-committee had several meetings before Covid thankfully, but since then have had one face to face meeting and a Zoom meeting,” she said. “We have endeavoured to call in to all 75 Primary Schools in the TRC region so we are hoping for a good response from them. “We are looking forward to receiving lots of entries from people living in our region so that we can share with everyone how much we appreciate our beautiful part of the world.” This year’s Landcare Section theme will be ‘Making a Difference,’ with residents encouraged to submit a poster with up to seven photos and a 100 word description relating to the topic. Mrs Gundry said for the first time, the Nicki Laws Landcare category would be open to all residents on the Darling Downs and Condamine Catchment area. “We want back yard gardeners, volunteers, farmers, landcare and other environmental groups to share what they are doing to make a difference in their communities,” she said. “These entries, along with school entries, can be dropped off at the nearest library for collection or at Westridge Photos, Toowoomba, by August 20.” The late Mrs Laws was a well known Oakey local
TRC Youth Advisory Committee
Toowoomba Regional Council is calling on residents with a passion for working with young people to nominate for the Regional Youth Advisory Committee (RYAC). Council is seeking nominations to fill 14 positions for the new term of the RYAC. Applications close on Friday, July 10. Applications from young people from 18 to 25 with a passion for improving outcomes for their regional peers also are welcome.
Meetings will be held on the second Thursday of the month from 9.30am11.30pm, except for public holidays. Enquiries and/or submission of expressions of interest can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or posted to Toowoomba Regional Council, PO Box 3021,
Toowoomba, Qld, 4350. The term of the Regional Youth Advisory committee will end in March 2024. Applicants are encouraged to read through the Terms of Reference. Refer to www.tr.qld.gov. au/advisorycommittees Enquiries can be directed to 131 872.
JOHN McVEIGH MP Federal Member for Groom
ABOVE: The 2019 Focus on the Farms Overall Best Photo winner Jean Gundry with portrait subject Graeme Geraghty. who had a major impact on local land conservation and Landcare activities. For those wanting an easier, hands-free alternative, Mrs Gundry said the competition will now be catering for online entries. “The main difference this year is that we have a lovely new website, so people can upload their images in the Open and Under 18s sections online... no need to print and post.” “Under 18s and schools categories are free and Open and Landcare categories are $5.00 all up so the same price for one or 21 entries.” There will be two new categories this year, ‘Drones images of the Downs’ and ‘On Our Selection: Historical images of farm life from 1800 - 2000’. “One request would be
My l o o h c S
for people to dig out any historical photos they have of farming life on the Downs in the early days (1800’s - 2000) for the On Our Selection category,” Mrs Gundry said. “These images will need to be scanned and uploaded to our website. “They will go on display in the Royal Bulls Head Inn, hopefully during the Carnival of Flowers, and the winner will be decided by popular vote.” The new categories will complement the returning Primary School Category, with the theme of Why We Love Where We Live which will be open to families as well as schools this year. For more information and further details on categories and ways to enter, visit https://gdcclg. wixsite.com/group
“Timely Allied Health for Mob” trial The Morrison Government has announced $690,000 towards a two-year trial project with Carbal Medical Services, a leading Aboriginal Health Service, which is expected to deliver ground-breaking improvements in the delivery of indigenous health care across our region and all going well across the nation. The “Timely Allied Health for Mob” trial will, for the first time, deliver culturally sensitive and timely access to eleven different allied health disciplines within Carbal Medical Services, including for example exercise physiology and diabetic education. It is great news for the delivery of indigenous health in our region and could lead to significant improvements across Australia. Inland Rail on Fast-Track Inland Rail has been identified as one of 15 major projects nation-wide that are on fast-track for approval as the Australian Government makes significant steps to boost our economic recovery from COVID-19. Significant improvements are expected in the delivery times for approvals, as both State and Federal Governments commit to cutting through layers of bureaucracy and cutting down duplication whilst ensuring consultation and proper assessment. This project will mean some 16,000 jobs created in our national economy and $16 billion worth of
economic boost for our nation, with around half of those jobs and around half of that economic boost happening in Queensland. In our region it creates so many opportunities. We already have two private intermodal freight facilities being developed to link in with the Melbourne-to-Brisbane Inland Rail project with Interlink SQ at Charlton supported by Seaway Intermodal and Wagner’s Wellcamp facility, supported by Pacific National. I welcome this important announcement and look forward to seeing significant progress on Inland Rail through our region. Export Flights This month we have seen a two new weekly international freight flights take off from Wellcamp Airport. A second weekly Cathay Pacific freight flight has begun to Hong Kong, as well as a Singapore Airlines flight to Singapore thanks to a mega-export deal for our region under the Government’s $110 million International Freight Assistance Mechanism. Each flight is carrying around a million dollars worth of local produce such as local beef, pork, eggs, fruit and vegetables. The more local product we can get out the door, the more local jobs we can protect and the more export dollars we can generate for the region.
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Wednesday, July 1, 2020
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