It is budget day for the NSW Government! Excited?
Privatisations have supercharged NSW finances, with Treasurer Dominic Perrottet set to announce an expected surplus of $4.5 billion for 2016-17 when he delivers his first budget on Tuesday. Visit our website during the day for updates on the budget, as it is handed down about midday.
WEATHER: Partly cloudy. Morning fog. High (70%) chance of light showers about the Lower Hunter, slight (30%) chance elsewhere. Light winds. Daytime maximum temperatures between 15 and 19.
► Nearly three years ago, Sayle Kenneth Newson demanded to know the truth about what happened to his then girlfriend, Lake Macquarie woman Carly McBride.
He would offer $10,000 cash as a reward. He would maintain a Facebook page that encouraged tip-offs from the community. And he would speak candidly to the media about how the couple’s lives were just “taking off”.
On Monday, police alleged Mr Newson knew the truth all along: that he had killed Ms McBride. Read the full report.
► The first section of the first stage of the Lake Macquarie Transport Interchange, at Glendale, will be officially opened to traffic this Friday at 10am. Take a look.
► Maitland MP Jenny Aitchison has called on the state government to contribute more money to upgrade Testers Hollow, taking into account the cost of the April 2015 super storm. Read on.
► With a flair for floristry and an ability to create beautiful bouquets, Lili Robinson is highly regarded and admired for her work at WOW flowers.
And now her reputation as a talented florist is quickly spreading throughout the Hunter, having been named the 2017 Floristry Trainee of the Year at the Hunter Regional Apprenticeship and Traineeship Advisory Committee (HRATA) Awards for her efforts during her Certificate III in Floristry. Read on.
► NSW MLC and the Greens spokeswoman for koalas Dawn Walker met with residents at the Mambo Wanda Wetlands and Tomaree Headland on Sunday.
The fragmentation of the Mambo Wanda Wetlands was of particular concern to Ms Walker. More here.
State of the nation
Need a national news snapshot first thing - well, we have you covered.
►Albury: A rare albino wallaby and her joey has been spotted out and about near the Border. Parks Victoria ranger John McDonald said the wallaby had been living in the same region for five years. Read on.
► Tamworth: TWO Tamworth schools are set to benefit from a multi-million-dollar cash windfall to be announced in Tuesday’s state budget.
The Leader can reveal Tamworth Public School and Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School will receive funding for extensive upgrades including new classrooms and learning centres. Read on.
► Mount Isa: The office of Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove has released a Facebook video of his visit to the Cloncurry Show on the weekend.
The video features some aerial shots of Cloncurry and surrounds plus highlights from his speech formally opening the pavilion on Saturday. More here.
► South Australia: A man has died after a quad bike crash at Wompinie near the New South Wales border.
Just before 11pm on Sunday, June 18, police were called to a private road on Wompinie Station near Cockburn after a 37-year-old man from the station had crashed while riding the bike. More here.
► Port Macquarie engineer and surfer Dale Carr has a joke about how he got bitten on the "fart gun".
But there was nothing very funny about his experience one August afternoon in 2015, when he was attacked by a 2.7 metre shark, about 150 metres from the shore at Lighthouse Beach.Read on.
► Australians fear foreigners and robots, the governor of the Reserve Bank says, creating the "real crisis" in the economy of record low real wage growth through increased competition.
Speaking at the Crawford Australian Leadership forum in Canberra on Monday, Philip Lowe also took aim at the ongoing gridlock of the Australian political system, blaming it for lost opportunities and stifling economic growth. Full report here.
National weather radar:
Faces of Australia: Mitch Oxborrow
MITCH Oxborrow was the first at a sodden Magic Park for a recovery session on Monday night.
The 22-year-old had a smile on his face and a spring in his step. It was complete contrast to the midfielder’s final training session at Perth Glory in May. Read on.