Easter 30.3.2013

Termites are presumably the reason why this tree has a little fence around it

Termites are presumably the reason why this tree has a little fence around it. Compare the diameter of the fenced area with the height of the tree. Smart management or looking for a laugh?

Beautiful weather for an Easter break. Been reading about the growing mess of the Regional Gallery?

I presume you’ve caught up with the irony apparent in the lack of support for the gallery redevelopment from Cr Andrea Rufo who holds the balance of power in Council.

The story in the Herald says:

THE Newcastle Art Gallery redevelopment appears doomed after key independent Andrea Rufo signed a rescission motion that would put the expansion on hold for several years.

The motion, flagged by the Newcastle Herald on Tuesday, was lodged in the early hours of yesterday morning by lord mayor Jeff McCloy, Liberal Lisa Tierney and Cr Rufo.

If successful, the council would effectively withdraw its support for the gallery redevelopment and shelve it “until council has achieved an operating surplus”.

That won’t be until at least 2017 – even after drastic budget cuts – according to a January council memo that detailed internal financial projections.

By that time, the city will have defaulted on the conditions of a $7 million federal grant, which is already gathering interest in a council account, and could be forced to hand the money back.

Labor councillor Tim Crakanthorp said doing so would be ridiculous.

“If we hand that money back we are very poor economic managers,” he said.

Cr Rufo was recruited to the election campaign by the former Lord Mayor John Tate and his wife, both great supporters of the gallery.

How appalled must they be that he’s attracted to Lord Mayor McLiberal’s bizarre approach to gallery redevelopment funding which is to give away $14 million and have nothing to show for it.

I was at a meeting where Mr Rufo was introduced to ‘Community 1 Independents’ standing for Council election last year and I recall him saying ‘Jeff McCloy is very well-respected around town’ and I couldn’t stop myself ask a loud incredulous ‘why?’ with a disparaging whine in my voice. How to win friends and influence people.

I eventually found some of the views of the company as appalling as the company found me.

And please download and watch this beautiful film: Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea. Much more important than anything close to home.










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