David Crisafulli faces off with protesters over asset sales

June 2, 2014 – 11:50AM

Amy Remeikis

State political reporter

Local Government Minister David Crisafulli leaves after a showdown with protesters at Parliament House.

Local Government Minister David Crisafulli leaves after a showdown with protesters at Parliament House. Photo: Amy Remeikis

They say that it is not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog.

And if there is one thing Local Government Minister David Crisafulli has shown over the past two and a bit years, it’s that he’s not afraid to storm in where angels fear to tread.

With nearly 100 angry union organisers and members yelling outside the Executive Building onMonday morning, Queensland’s government ministers opted for a different route to Cabinet, choosing the safer, quieter, back door option.

Protesters speak out against asset sales at Parliament House.

Protesters speak out against asset sales at Parliament House. Photo: Amy Remeikis

Except Mr Crisafulli.

As the Electrical Trades Union, Services Union, United Voice and Queensland Council of Union members made their anger at upcoming asset sales known, Mr Crisafulli stood across the road waiting for the lights to change.

He strode forward, his eyes on the media, both his briefcase and advisors trailing behind him.

Aware of the reaction his appearance would bring, he chose his doorstop spot, just to the left of the protesters and let the shouts and chants wash over him.

“Our assets – NOT FOR SALE, our assets – NOT FOR SALE, our assets – NOT FOR SALE.”

Never shy of a camera, Mr Crisafulli took the chance to indulge in his favourite pastime- dishing out soundbite zingers in defence of the government.

“Well they’re in luck,” he said with a wry smile.

“We are not selling the poles and the wires, but we have a big debt issue we have deal with and I only wish that yelling and screaming would fix it.”

With the yelling and screaming continuing around him, he launched forward, ushered into a sidedoor by

security

.

“Did you get the message?” a union organiser yelled after him.

But Mr Crisafulli had said his piece.

The government will say a lot more on Tuesday when it will formally announce its asset sales plan – the budget it wishes it could hand down ahead of the election, but can’t.  A vote-for-us-and-we’ll-do-this wish list. It’s determined to have something positive to sell in what will be an otherwise dry, fairly depressing account of planned spending.

The ETU is just as determined to de-rail the government’s plan.

“What the LNP government is trying to use is their overwhelming majority to ram this through,” state organiser Stuart Traill said.

“The important part today, and the rest of the Not4Sale campaign through to the election, is to hold the LNP to account, to get out to these seats and to educate people about the pitfalls of privatisation.

“… The LNP have not listened, they haven’t listened from Redcliffe, they haven’t listened through the Strong Choices campaign and they are not listening now. The majority of people oppose privatisation, but they are still ramming it through.

“The only way we can stop it now, is by running the Not4Sale campaign right across the state to prevent the LNP from getting a mandate.”

 

Source : The Brisbane Times

Same, same but different: Brisbane, California

June 1, 2014

CameronAtfield

Brisbane Times and Sun-Herald journalist

The fire hydrants in Brisbane, California, are painted in a community art project reminiscent of the traffic signal boxes in Brisbane, Queensland.

The fire hydrants in Brisbane, California, are painted in a community art project reminiscent of the traffic signal boxes in Brisbane, Queensland. Photo: Cameron Atfield

It’s a long way to travel just to end up in Brisbane.

The small Californian city of Brisbane – pronounced “Bris-bain” by locals – sits about 13 kilometres south of San Francisco, nestled between San Francisco Bay and San Bruno Mountain in San Mateo County.

But for Australian Brisbaneites, it’s a 12-plus-hour flight over the Pacific Ocean, a one-hour connecting flight and a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it turn-off from the main highway connecting San Francisco to its airport.

 Councilmember Ray Miller and Mayor W. Clarke Conway outside Brisbane City Hall in California.

Councilmember Ray Miller and Mayor W. Clarke Conway outside Brisbane City Hall in California. Photo: Cameron Atfield

Helped by its mountainous geography, Brisbane, population 4300, is a small country town in the midst of one of the United States’ great metropolises.

Walking through the streets of Brisbane, the “City of Stars” nickname rings true with almost every house and business adorned with stars – some several metres across.

In the lead-up to Christmas, the stars are lit, which would make an impressive sight on the slopes of San Bruno.

Visitacion Avenue, the main street of Brisbane, California.

Visitacion Avenue, the main street of Brisbane, California. Photo: Cameron Atfield

Fire hydrants are painted to look like characters – a community art project not dissimilar to (the Australian) Brisbane City Council’s Artforce traffic signal box painting.

If ever there was an example of small-town America, this is it.

SItting in the comparatively modest City Hall, Mayor W. Clarke Conway told Fairfax Media the city was “fiercely protective” of its small-town feel.

Almost every home and business in Brisbane, California, is adorned with large stars that are lit up in the lead-up to Christmas.

Almost every home and business in Brisbane, California, is adorned with large stars that are lit up in the lead-up to Christmas. Photo: Cameron Atfield

In fact, that was the city’s entire reason of existence.

“There was a push for ‘urban renewal’ here, which basically meant a lot of high-density development,” he said.

“The people here wouldn’t stand for it and they voted for incorporation (as a city, in 1961) to have that say.”

Even the graffiti artists are partial to stars in Brisbane.

Even the graffiti artists are partial to stars in Brisbane. Photo: Cameron Atfield

The battles have continued, with Brisbane residents successfully fighting off proposals to shave the top of San Bruno Mountain for a housing development, with the spoil used as landfill in San Francisco Bay for further development.

Situated as it is, just 15 minutes from downtown San Francisco (traffic permitting), such pressures are sure to remain.

The small-town feel of Brisbane is personified in Mayor Conway, whose father Ernest Conway was one of the city’s five founding fathers and the doctor who delivered him, Salvatore Joseph Guardino, also served as the city’s mayor.

The fire hydrants in Brisbane, California, are painted in a community art project reminiscent of the traffic signal boxes in Brisbane, Queensland.

The fire hydrants in Brisbane, California, are painted in a community art project reminiscent of the traffic signal boxes in Brisbane, Queensland. Photo: Cameron Atfield

Brisbane is also a city proud of its links to Brisbane, Australia.

“It’s a real big town, little town thing,” Mayor Conway said.

“It’s also a real conversation starter, particularly with Australians.”

The relationship between the two cities was once vibrant, but has suffered from a lack of enthusiasm from the Australian end since Clem Jones’s terms as lord mayor came to an end in 1975.

Much to the disappointment of the Americans.

The Californian Brisbane’s former mayor, councilmember Ray Miller, visited the Queensland capital in 1974 with his wife, and then-mayor, Anja Miller.

“We were the honoured guests at the Warana Festival – it was a great experience,” he said.

“There weren’t a lot of woman mayors at the time in Australia, so when my wife and I got there, they didn’t know what to call her.”

Mr Jones, who died in 2007, is an almost-revered character in Brisbane, California.

“Everybody knows Clem Jones,” Mayor Conway said.

“I remember he visited when I was at school one day and it was such a big deal – ‘the lord mayor of Brisbane is here!’.”

There is a school of thought that the man who named Brisbane, realtor Arthur Annis, did so in a tribute to the Queensland capital, although there is also a theory it was named after popular newspaper columnist Arthur Brisbane.

Councilmember Miller said he hoped to see the links between Brisbane, California, and Brisbane, Queensland, strengthened.

“I did get an invitation to (Lord Mayor Graham Quirk’s) installation, so obviously we’re still on a list somewhere,” he said.

Comment was sought from Cr Quirk, but the request went unanswered.

And while many Australian Brisbane residents may be unaware of their American namesakes, it seems many in the greater San Francisco Bay area share that ignorance.

“I’ll often tell people I’m from Brisbane and they say they don’t know where that is, but I tell them they’ve probably driven through the City of Brisbane,” he said.

“If they’ve driven from the airport to San Francisco, they’ve driven through Brisbane.”

One gets the impression that’s just how the people of Brisbane like it.

Source : The Brisbane Times

Winter is coming…at some point

June 2, 2014 – 12:44AM

Amy Remeikis

State political reporter

Winter is coming….but the Seven Kingdoms may have a declared ruler for the iron throne before it reaches south east Queensland.

The calendar may have slipped into winter, but cold fronts are no closer to hitting the sunshine state than last month, although the weather bureau is predicting some showers as a south-easterly onshore flow coats the south east over the coming week, with a possible thunderstorm hitting the ranges.

But as for the cold?

BOM meteorologist Matthew Bass couldn’t say for sure.

“As we go into next weekend, the flow will tend to be more southerly, so the chances of showers really reduces,” he said.

“Temperatures will cool down a little bit, they’ll get down to about 24, which is still above average, but is on that trend towards winter.”

Monday is predicted to hit 26, Tuesday, despite its showers, should reach 27, and then the temperature should drop by a degree each day until Saturday, when the mercury will hover around 24.

“Nights will be a little bit above average as well,” Mr Bass said, predicting temperatures between 16 and 13

degrees

across the week.

“At this stage, there is no sight of any significant cold fronts down south to bring up a really strong cold outbreak, so winter is still not in the next week – perhaps beyond that.

“There has been a lack of significant cold fronts crossing the south of the country, so we have generally been stuck with easterly winds off the Coral Sea which are a bit warmer than the south of Victoria where the cold fronts come from.

“So that is why we have been seeing these above average temperatures.  And we have had a high pressure ridge over the country and that has helped to keep, particularly over the inland, skies clear and temperatures up during the day.

“Until we get some strong cold fronts, there is not going to be much of a change.

“There will be a cold front at some stage, but we can’t say when.”

Source : The Brisbane Times

Pedestrian hit by bus in Brisbane Central Business District

June 2, 2014 – 11:29AM

Kristian Silva and Scott Beveridge

A woman has been taken to hospital in a stable condition after being hit by a bus in Brisbane’s CBD.

The incident occurred on the corner of Queen and Creek streets just before 8.50am on Monday.

It is believed the woman was crossing the road when she was struck by the bus, which was turning into Creek Street from Queen Street.

A pedestrian has been hit by a bus in the Brisbane CBD.

A pedestrian has been hit by a bus in the Brisbane CBD. Photo: Sophie Walsh/Nine News

An ambulance spokeswoman said the woman in her mid 30s was taken to the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital in a stable condition with arm and leg injuries.

A person from the bus was also treated for shock.

Police closed Creek Street, between Queen and Elizabeth streets, while paramedics treated the woman.

Buses on Queen Street were diverted to Edward Street, while Creek Street services shifted toEagle Street for about two hours.

Brisbane resident Guiseppe Vilettri, who did not see the incident but was at the scene, said the lights at the intersection did not allow pedestrians enough time to cross the road.

Mr Viletteri claimed he had lodged several complaints with Brisbane City Council to check the traffic lights at the intersection “but they never did anything”.

“The lights are flashing too quick and bus driver, when he turned left…[the lights] do not give you enough time for the pedestrian to get across,” he said.

Comment has been sought from Brisbane City Council.

 

Source : The Brisbane Times

Lucas Salles poderá estrear hoje no CQC

Existem boas possibilidades do Lucas Salles, novo repórter do “CQC”, estrear já no programa desta segunda-feira (2).
Está tudo na dependência dele conseguir finalizar a sua primeira matéria a tempo.

 

Flávio Ricco com colaboração de José Carlos Nery

Thais Melchior é Diana, a protagonista de “Vitória”, novela que estreia hoje na Record, em substituição a “Pecado Mortal”. O primeiro capítulo, exibido para executivos do canal na sexta-feira passada, impressionou a todos

Flávio Ricco com colaboração de José Carlos Nery