Issue No. 85 – Thursday, July 23, 200 2009 9
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INSIDE YOUR FREE RIVERLAND WEEKLY THIS WEEK ...
VACANT TANKS ■ UNCERTAIN: JMA Engineering national sales manager Mark Johnson is concerned the uncertainty in the wine industry will lead to these tanks, near Barmera, remaining empty for the foreseeable future. Photo: JANE WILSON
By BRAD PERRY IN LESS than two years, millions of dollars worth of wine storage tanks in the Riverland could be left empty if the grape crisis continues its stranglehold on the local wine industry.
JMA Engineering national sales manager Mark Johnson, who manages the tanks, said major wineries currently have contracts on the Australian premium wine storage tanks at Barmera and Renmark but have indicated they will not
renew. “They have certainly indicated there is probably no reason to renew the contracts,” he said. “The wineries will just cut back, they are not going to buy it if they can’t sell it. “We are sort of ponder-
ing at the moment what to do.” The Barmera site has 48 storage tanks holding over 12 million litres worth of winegrapes, which are currently used by three major wine companies in the Riverland.
With 18 months left of contracts with wineries who use the facility, Mr Johnson said there is an immediate concern the tanks will be left unused in the future. ■ Continued Page 8
End of trucking dynasty By BRAD PERRY AFTER nearly half a century of service, renowned local trucking company Dyer’s Transport, has decided to sell off its business. The Renmark business ends all ties with customers on Sunday and will be taken over by the Pickering Family Group, which owns businesses in Mildura and Swan Hill. In a statement to the Riverland Weekly, the Dyer family thanked the community for its valued support over the years. Last year three of its members, director Wayne Dyer, brother Michael and father Murray, who is deceased, were inducted into the National Road Transport Hall of Fame. The prestigious award showed the importance of the family business to the community and acknowledged the family as trucking pioneers. At the end of this week, Dyer’s reign on the local transport industry will sadly come to an end. In an article last year, Wayne Dyer said the company was continually battling in an industry swarming with corporate giants. “Things are changing in this world, rapidly,” he said. “The little guy businesses are getting fairly difficult to run.” Mr Dyer was unavailable for further comment prior to print deadlines.
Ombudsman investigation clears council &OR ALL YOUR )RRIGATION NEEDS By LES PEARSON BERRI Barmera Council has been cleared of any wrongdoing following an investigation by the state ombudsman into the process it undertook when adding detail to the 2008/2009 annual business plan. The Berri Barmera Ratepayers Association lodged the complaint over 12 months ago after council
released the business plan for public consultation and then released a second version at a public meeting soon after. It is the second time the council has been cleared of any wrongdoing following complaints from the ratepayers association in the past 12 months. Council chief executive officer David Beaton believes the ratepay-
AND EXPERT ADVICE
ers may have thought council was trying to sneak something through in the business plan. “All we were doing was saying ‘here is some extra information that we’ve got, what do you think of that as an idea’,” he said. “We never went back and formally changed the draft. ■ Continued Page 3
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