As the stench of disquiet rises over Lake Macquarie and its fortnightly bin collections, resourceful charity outlets in the area have been doing a brisk trade in “bin beanies”.
The Hunter manager of Salvos stores, Harold Cleveringa, told Topics the $1 plastic covers had been selling well in Lake Macquarie, where maggots have been having a field day since the council rolled out its Food+Garden=Green=$#!%fight initiative in July.
“We got a bulk donation of them about a year and a half ago,” Harold said.
“We’ve spread them out in our Lake stores and they’re really selling well.”
We’re not surprised. A fortnightly bin pick-up would not cut the mustard in the Topics household.
While ratepayers hold their noses, Lake Mac councillors are holding a workshop this month to review whether to go back to weekly collections.
Where’s the Coast?
More confirmation, if it were needed, that the political and bureaucratic arms of government have no idea where anything is north of the Hawkesbury.
Opposition leader Michael Daley managed to find his way to Medowie on Thursday, so kudos to him.
On his way up, he might have passed the Central Coast, which for some reason the NSW Valuer General’s office thinks is in the Hunter region.
The VG’s office published its 2017-2018 land valuations for the state on Wednesday, partly attributing a 10.7 per cent rise in Newcastle commercial land values to new government infrastructure such as light rail. (Although, in the disturbingly tram-free Central Coast, the same values jumped 12.1 per cent. Go figure.)
Amid the back-slapping was this geographically elastic contention: “Hunter region local government areas: Central Coast, Cessnock, Dungog, Lake Macquarie, Maitland, Mid-Coast, Muswellbrook, Newcastle, Port Stephens, Singleton and Upper Hunter.”
Not only is our southern neighbour on the list, it’s alphabetically first.
This annexation will come as a surprise to the millions of people fleeing the Central Coast every week to live in the Hunter, as reported exclusively in Topics this week. They were living in the Hunter all along!
Speaking of Daley’s visit, it’s unclear to Topics why he chose to re-announce Labor’s policy on free public transport for school students on Thursday in Medowie. This one went around the block (so to speak) when Daley announced it in Sydney on November 12, just after taking over from Luke Foley.
We can understand the attractiveness of the free-travel plan in Sydney, which actually has public transport.
But, as one of the local mums assembled for a photo op on Thursday attested, just getting a bus to turn up at all in Medowie is hard enough, let alone being able to get on one.
WC Fields famously quipped that you should “never work with animals or children”, but Daley proved adept (by political standards) at engaging with both before the press conference, as our photo attests.
Don’t phone home
A young Newcastle tyro has put the waterproof-ness of Apple’s iPhone 8 to the test.
Our teenage hero, circa 15, decided to go out paddling a kayak with a mate on Newcastle harbour recently with his new phone in his pocket.
You can kind of picture the rest, including the excruciating call to his mother (from a payphone).
The phones cost about a thousand bucks.
Topics would love to know if the phone still works, so anyone with scuba gear and good eyesight …