Tuesday 14th of July 2020

don't give gladys to gladys...


New South Wales' new Minister for Women Tanya Davies has come under fire for her pro-life stance on her first day in the job.

After being sworn in this afternoon, the Member for Mulgoa was needled about her stance on the issue at a press conference, leading to a stiff exchange with new Premier Gladys Berejiklian in front of the cameras.

It is Ms Davies' first ministerial position. She replaced the experienced Pru Goward, who held the portfolio for more than five years.

"Personally I am pro-life ... but in my role I am there to support all women and I will support all women, and I will listen to all women and I will take on board all the stakeholders' comments and feedback ... and ensure the best outcome for all women is secured," Ms Davies said.

Claire Pullen from the Women's Electoral Lobby said most people in NSW did not share the minister's view.

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meanwhile, selling poles and wires...

But Ms Berejiklian issued an unusual order on April 20 last year by telling Ausgrid to convert its long-term debt to short-term debt. It is like paying off your 30-year mortgage by maxing out your credit card.

No sensible company would do this. Indeed, Ausgrid's annual report said Ms Berejiklian had to issue a direct order to the Ausgrid board because holding so much short-term debt falling due within months broke the company's own prudential guidelines. Usually the company cannot have more than 25 per cent of its debt fall due in the next 12 months.

Need to explain

Ausgrid duly bought back $3.7 billion of its $8.6 billion of long-term debt between April 20 and September 15 last year when its annual report was completed. It might have bought more after that date.

Opposition energy spokesman Adam Searle said Ms Berejiklian needed to explain "why the government directed Ausgrid to load itself up with extra debt, contrary to the company's own policies".

The company posted a $500 million "market-to-market" book loss on the transactions. As a result, last year for the first time Ausgrid posted the $251 million loss and also for the first time failed to pay a dividend.

But this book loss is not a good way to assess if Ms Berejiklian's order was a good call. Ausgrid was always going to have to record a book loss buying back its bonds. This is because the value of Ausgrid bonds had for some time been much higher than their maturity value, which is their book value. The price of bonds varies inversely with prevailing interest rates. As interest rates fell over several years, the price of Ausgrid bonds had risen.

Read more: http://www.afr.com/markets/debt-markets/gladys-berejiklian-made-a-strange-call-on-ausgrid-4b-debt-20170124-gtxmj3#ixzz4XIjpFJT7 
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it was pure deceit...

The NSW Government will push ahead with forced council amalgamations in the city, but will walk away from regional council mergers that are currently in court, the ABC understands.

A special cabinet meeting was held this morning to discuss the contentious issue and it is now being debated in a joint partyroom meeting, with an announcement expected later today.

The ABC understands the Government will abandon any further mergers in regional areas that remain pending.

But it will move ahead with the remaining five mergers in metropolitan Sydney, unless they are successful in their court battles.

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It has to be said that "council amalgamations" had NOTHING TO DO with saving cash or whatever but had to do with stopping council regulations from delaying the stupid WestCONnex project. This is why that in order to keep a certain amount of sauce béchamel, HerSelf has now decided to be lenient with the Councils in Country NSW where — oh the pain of it — the Nationals, the "friends of Gladys", were being hit for six in the gonads because of council mergers. Meanwhile, your rubbish bin will become the next distractional battleground as to whom is responsible for not emptying it. The process of merger was pure deceit from the start and we knew that.

May you wilt, Gladys.

it was evil, not god, you moron...

Yesterday's Sydney train meltdown has been described as "an act of God" by New South Wales Transport Minister Andrew Constance, who says furious commuters will not get a refund.

Key points:
  • The Minister has asked bureaucrats to explain yesterday's network meltdown
  • He says frustrated customers will not receive refunds
  • The Opposition Leader has described Sydney's train system as "third world"


Mr Constance has issued a please explain to Sydney Trains bureaucrats about why the system has been "a mess" for the past 48 hours.

Sweaty commuters in the Harbour City have vented their frustration about the issue on social media, complaining of widespread delays and overcrowded carriages.


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God does not exist. Evil does not exist. The train problem was a government FUCUP, or as it is known in the army — a SNAFU. It is the duty of governments to plan for "acts of gods" and other likelihood of crap...

meanwhile, the NSW government did not do its job...

The company building the troubled Sydney light rail project has accused the New South Wales Government of misleading it before it signed up for the project, court documents have revealed.

Key points:
  • The Spanish company building Sydney's light rail is locked in a legal battle with the NSW Government
  • The $1.1 billion lawsuit relates to power and water infrastructure which was affected by the project
  • The project is overbudget and behind schedule


Spanish sub-contractor Acciona Infrastructure Australia has filed proceedings in the Supreme Court against Transport for NSW (TfNSW) for "misleading and deceptive" conduct. 

The company is seeking more than $1.1 billion for the "loss and damage" it says it has suffered.

Acciona said it was "induced" by TfNSW to enter a contract to build the CBD light rail from Circular Quay to Randwick and Kingsford on a "false premise". 

In documents tendered to the court, the company alleged it was made to believe electricity provider Ausgrid had reviewed and accepted the treatments of its utilities, but it had not. 

"Acciona … were prevented from communicating with Ausgrid in relation to how changes to utilities owned by Ausgrid were to be dealt with as part of the project," the documents state.

"Acciona were reliant upon TfNSW to ensure that utility services treatment in relation to Ausgrid was appropriately dealt with."


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What does this all mean? Simple. Ausgrid has some power-lines under the tramway tracks that should have been 'removed" or relocated before the tramway lines were constructed. Not having done so delayed the construction of the tramway. Same capers with the water supply and the effluent collectors.

Meanwhile the tramway line is going fine — a couple of years behind schedule and a couple of light-years behind transport efficiency, considering it's a 1920's technology trying to operate 100 years later.


Read from top...

train spotting...

The first bill from contractor Downer EDI came in at $43 million — that is just for the construction of signalling works and modifications across the rail network.

The Government still has to change 20 stations to accommodate the new inter-city fleet, which means cutting away at the platforms and tunnels that are too narrow and too low.

The Opposition said platforms at Blue Mountains stations, such as Linden and Warrimoo, are too short for the new trains, which would be up to 205 metres long.

Cost could rise to $3.9 billion, Auditor-General says

Opposition transport spokeswoman Jodi McKay said the Government "needs to be honest about how much this is going to cost".

"We know they have forked out $43 million — we want to know what else is to come," Ms McKay said.

Last year the NSW Auditor-General warned that the total cost of the project would rise to as much as $3.9 billion.

This would take it well above the Government's projected saving of 25 per cent.

"They have made a right mess of this," Ms McKay said.

"We said from the beginning these trains should have been manufactured in NSW, so they fit the tracks and tunnels and we don't have this excess cost."

Other trains can get to the Blue Mountains

Transport Minister Andrew Constance said the Government always knew they would need to work on the Blue Mountains line, as the trains were bought to fit the whole network.

He does not agree the cost will blow out.


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Gus had been made aware of this potential problem BEFORE the NSW trains were even put to "tender". The locally made trains would have been calibrated for the existing lines while the train "off the shelf" made in South Korea DID NOT FIT THE SPECIFICATIONS (including engine power in relation to electricity supply, I believe)... The changes to the platforms may not accommodate the older trains... The locally made trains would have also employed a lot of workers... but my sources suggested the Liberal (CONservative bullies) NSW government did not want "that".




stealing someone else's seat...

An ugly stoush is brewing in the NSW Liberal Party as Treasurer Dominic Perrottet mulls a pre-selection challenge on frontbench colleague Ray Williams.

Mr Perrottet holds the seat of Hawkesbury, but the ABC understands he is on the brink of nominating for Mr Williams' neighbouring seat of Castle Hill, which sits on about double the margin.

Senior Liberal sources have warned of "armageddon" within the party if Mr Perrottet puts himself on a pre-selection collision course with the Minister for Multiculturalism.

Several powerbrokers have been pressuring Mr Williams to retire to make way for Mr Perrottet as part of a factional deal involving the pre-selections for a number of seats.

But Mr Williams is digging his heels in, telling the ABC he is "absolutely" nominating for his own seat.

"I am committed to continuing to represent the people of the electorate that I have lived in all my life," Mr Williams said.

"They've returned my loyalty by making it one of the safest Liberal seats in the country.


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Read from top.

more crap in the lib refuse dump...

A civil war has broken out in the NSW Liberal Party, with frontbench MP Ray Williams demanding Treasurer Dominic Perrottet quit cabinet.

Key points: 
  • NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet confirms nomination for frontbench colleague Ray Williams' seat 
  • Mr Williams refuses to stand aside and calls on the Treasurer to resign form cabinet 
  • Mr Williams threatens a spill motion on Tuesday morning if the Treasurer refuses 


The duo are on a preselection collision course after Mr Perrottett confirmed this morning he is challenging Mr Williams' for the blue-ribbon seat of Castle Hill, after the Multicultural Minister refused to retire after weeks of pressure from Liberal party powerbrokers. 

Mr Williams issued an explosive media statement calling for Mr Perrottet to step down as deputy Liberal leader following a tense phone call between the two this morning.

He threatened to move a spill motion against the Treasurer on Tuesday morning if he refused. 

Mr Williams said he had spoken to many colleagues about the issue in the last 24 hours.


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sound overall but has faults that could bring it down...

An independent report has found multiple design and construction faults led to damage at western Sydney’s Opal Tower.

The newly-built tower in Sydney Olympic Park was evacuated on Christmas Eve after cracks were found in the building, sparking fears it could collapse.

The NSW government-commissioned report found that while the building was structurally sound overall, horizontal support beams in the building were of inferior strength and were not compliant.


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I don't know the code, but in building stuff like an apparment block, there would be some hefty margins of safety for all the components. That some bits be of inferior strength means many things — from design code being faulty, that the design is faulty, that the building of components is faulty, but even then, they would have to be of MAJOR inferior strength to create PROBLEMS such as those noted at the Opal Tower.

For the government to say that it is sound overall but with faults of "inferior strength" is a bit like a second car dealer telling you the duco and general conditions of his ware are perfect but mentions the engine needs a bit of attention... The dealer does not tell you the engine is about to blow up (or has already blown up). 

In major buildings there are many people responsible for its construction:

The promoter/developer(s).

The architect(s)

The engineer(s)

The quantity surveyor(s).

The builder(s) which include:

Site surveyors

Pile drivers

Steel formworkers

Concrete manufacturers

Concrete pourers

Concrete pour inspectors (who test the quality of the mix)

Scaffolding engineers and constructors

Crane operators

Safety inspectors

The building code engineers and architects

The insurers






general workers


Somewhere something went wrong between engineering, architecture and building to have "horizontal support beams in the building were of inferior strength and were not compliant". This is more than a major problem. Which of the suppliers and inspectors goofed?


Read from top. Blame Gladys and her happy "demolish perfectly good stadiums" attitude...

demolishing its air quality policy...

The Berejiklian government has abandoned a long-held commitment to adopt a statewide policy on air pollution after years of planning that included a state summit on the issue.

The decision to drop a standalone clean air strategy has sparked anger from communities living near major sources of pollution, such as coal-fired power stations, who say without an overarching strategy they can have no confidence their air quality will improve.

Public consultation for a statewide framework to reduce toxic air and the health problems it causes commenced in 2016, culminating in a clean air summit in Sydney in 2017.

The event was labelled a “vital step” toward a 10-year plan – known as the Clean Air Strategy – and the government promised the strategy would be released later that year.

But the government says instead of developing a standalone framework it will now absorb air quality management into other environmental and industry policies.


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I saw a few pigs amongst the flock of flying wild ducks... Read from top.