Quitting MP saves Labor from by-election

Emma Husar has accused “nasty, faceless” Labor figures of plotting against her and will quit politics at the next federal election after the MP’s staff claimed she bullied them.
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Her western Sydney seat of Lindsay, which she holds with a margin of 1.1 per cent, will be hotly contested between Labor and the Liberals at the election due by May 2019.

An emotional Ms Husar said she threw up when she heard one former staff member’s claim she exposed herself to a fellow federal Labor MP.

“Enough is enough, I’m going to do this on my terms,” she told Nine News on Wednesday.

“They’re not going to let people just keep pummelling me the way they have for the last three weeks, with no evidence, no facts and just vexatious, malicious allegations that are just designed to smear me.

“I don’t know that my reputation will ever recover.”

Lawyer John Whelan has been investigating the complaints of Ms Husar’s 22 former staff, with his report due to be handed to NSW Labor by Friday.

They include claims she bullied and sexually harassed staff in her electorate office and diverted Labor funds into her personal bank account.

The first-term MP accused Labor figures of orchestrating the campaign against her and compromising the investigation by leaking details.

Ms Husar says some in the party resented her election because she had not come through the party machine.

“I had not done my Labor Party apprenticeship,” she told Nine.

“It was smashed into my face.

“A few nasty, faceless people can ruin someone’s career, almost completely smash it to pieces.”

In the Nine interview, she said she “threw up” when she heard an allegation she exposed herself to Labor frontbencher Jason Clare while he played with his young child in his office.

Ms Husar and Mr Clare say the incident did not happen.

“When I heard that in the initial assessment I threw up,” Ms Husar said.

“It doesn’t just allege that I did something wrong to a grown up but there was a child in the room and that’s absolutely the lowest part of what’s gone on here.”

She thanked Labor leader Bill Shorten for backing her.

“He’s always backed me, always believed in me and will continue to believe in me; that won’t change. He knows the person I am, the good that I’ve done.”

Liberal frontbencher Mitch Fifield said the Labor report needs to be made public, after claims Mr Shorten’s office knew about the investigation.

The Labor opposition leader maintains neither he or his staff knew anything of the investigation until journalists contacted his office for comment.

“This has been a very difficult period for Emma and her family. I respect the decision she’s made,” Mr Shorten said.

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Walsh closer to arrival at Wests

SOON: Wests recruit Luke Walsh playing for the Penrith Panthers in 2013. Picture: Brendan EspositoLuke Walsh is set to arrive home in Australia on Friday but Western Suburbs coach Matt Lantry says he’s not willing to risk the former NRL playmaker this weekend despite being down on troops for Saturday’s crucial clash withMaitland.
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Lantry saideven with the Rosellas’“injury toll” it “wasn’t worth the risk” to put 31-year-old Walsh on the park against the ladder-leading Pickers less than 24 hours after landing off a day-long flight from France.

It means the now retired Catalans Dragons halfback and former Knights and Panthers general will more than likely have a “dip” for Wests, currently locked in a battle to make next month’sNewcastle Rugby League finals, against Kurri and Macquarie in the last two rounds.

“At this stage of the season, and with the situation we’re in, we don’t want torush anyone,” Lantry said.

“It’s not worth the risk, especially with how much we have too play for the next few weeks.”

Walshsigned with junior club Wests on the eve of the 2018 mid-season transfer deadline after damaging ankle ligaments and retiring from the English Super League in April.

His unavailability for the Rosellas has beeneased somewhatby returningfive-eighth Ryan Stig, who had no case to answer this week despite being put on report in Saturday’s 20-12 loss to the Bulldogs at Kurri Sportsground.

Wests captain Mark Taufua has been suspended for one match after taking the early guilty plea on Wednesday for a crusher tackle.

The 23rd-minute incident saw play stop for around half-an-hour as Kurri winger Ben Edwards was treated on the field. He wastaken to John Hunter Hospital by ambulance, but was later cleared of a major neck injury and won’t play this weekend.

Lantry said Taufua was set to be replaced in the Rosellas front-row by Viko Puliuvea with Felise Taufaaoout injured and Uti Baker shifting to lock for the sidelined Warren Schillings.

The coach said Stig would start from the bench with Jordan Worboys and Chad O’Donnell to partner in the halves. Reigning player of the year Ryan Walker and centre Brad Tighe are also out injured.

Regular winger Willis Alatini looks set to slot in at fullback like he did at late notice onthe weekend after Walker (hamstring) pulled out in the warm-up.

Liam Wilkinson may now have a more permanent role at hooker with Chris Knight possibly out for the remainder of the season.

Wests are equal fourth on the competition ladder, two points behind upcoming opponents Maitland and two points in front of sixth-placed challengers Kurri.

RELATED:Walsh cleared in time for stint at Wests

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Five in race for 2019 Lakes coaching job

POSITION: Outgoing Lakes coach Todd Edwards. Picture: Josh CallinanLAKESpresident Paul Jeffries expects to make a final decision in the “next little while” after interviewing each of the five applicants left in the race to coach the Seagulls in 2019.
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Jeffries said the nominations had been “whittled down” over the last week and Lakes officials would forma small sub-committee before making a “recommendation”to the board.

“We’re pretty happy [with the applications],” Jeffries told the Newcastle Herald on Wednesday. “Hopefully we can announce someone sooner rather than later.”

It comes as current Seagulls coach Todd Edwards, who has been linked with former club Cessnock for next season, was recently granted leave from the second year of his contract on compassionate grounds.

ROUND 14 FIXTURES: Macquarie v Kurri Kurri, Maitland v Western Suburbs (Saturday); South Newcastle v Cessnock, Central Newcastle v Lakes (Sunday).

* STILL on the coaching front and Kurri Kurri have yet to announce whether or notRon Griffiths will stay on at the Bulldogs beyond 2018.

* NEWCASTLE Rugby Leagueadvertised on Wednesday for 2019 Rebels representative coaches, including a new women’s tackle position.

While unsure of exact details of how it wouldwork, a Rebels women’s tackle team has been puton the agenda but not to replace the already establishedladies league tag.

Marc Glanville has looked after the Newcastle ladies league tag side the last two campaigns.

Phil Williams, who was last week announced as coach of clubside Central for next year,and Macquarie’s Adam Bettridge are the incumbent senior and emerging men’s Rebels mentors.

* SOUTHSwill mark the ninth anniversary of Sleapy’s Day at Townson Oval next Saturday (August 18).

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Restoration breathes life into 1940s Georgetown home

Restoration breathes life into 1940s Georgetown home LABOUR OF LOVE: This three-bedroom home in Georgetown has been restored to its former glory.
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ORNATE: Kellie and Don Ivory reused as much of the original materials and features as possible to refresh this tired home.

MODERN TOUCH: They opened up the back of the residence while retaining its classic charm.

This three-bedroom home in Georgetown has been restored to its former glory.

This three-bedroom home in Georgetown has been restored to its former glory.

This three-bedroom home in Georgetown has been restored to its former glory.

TweetFacebookDomain it was “pretty much in original condition” when they found it.

“Everything was basically as it was when it was built, which was good because then you could restore what was true to the house,” she said.

“We loved all of the original features and wanted to restore those. We hadn’t done arestoration before –restoration takes a lot longer. “

Kellie Ivory

They reused as many of the original materials as they could. The windows were taken out, restored and put back in. The front door was stripped right back and the bell cleaned up.

“I feel like the house owns those things and you don’t really have the right to come in and strip it bare,” Kellie said.

Robinson Property’s Cveta Kolarovski is marketing the home, which has an open scheduled forat 12.30pm on Saturday.

A price guide has not been set but offers are expected either side of $900,000.

It still has three bedrooms but has been modernised with two bathrooms, open plan living and a kitchen that opens to a covered entertaining deck.

Related content: School’s out for this unique Adamstown apartment

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Howard steps up for Dragons in new era

Howard steps up for Dragons in new era CHANCE: St George-Illawarra Dragons recruit Mel Howard in Merewether on Wednesday before heading to training in Sydney. The 25-year-old will be part of next month’s inaugural Women’s NRL Premiership. Picture: Josh Callinan
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TweetFacebookNewcastle Herald.

“Mum saidI watched and I was like ‘they suck, I want to play’. The next week I played and scored a try first run.”

The now 25-year-old playmaker hasn’t looked back since.

Howard has hopped around a few other codes –rugby union, touch football and hockey –and doubled up with the Maitland Pickers a few winters back but this year dedicated herself to rugby league.

She played solelywith CRL Newcastle in the 2018 Women’s NSW Premiership and helpedguide NSW Country to glory at the National Championships on the Gold Coast in June.

It’s a move which has paid dividends and changed her life.

After recently being approached by the Dragons, Howard opted to give up afull-time PE teaching position at Singleton High School and revert to a casual role rather than turning down the sporting contract.

“This [Dragons]wasn’t really something I could say no to, so it never really crossed my mind,” she said.

“But obviously it’s pretty hard giving up full-time work considering how hard it is to come by in PE. Hopefully next term I can at least get part-time work back, but there’s plenty of casual work around as well so it doesn’t worry me too much.”

Howard knows the Women’s NRL Premiershipcould be the start of an ongoing chapter in her sporting story, one which she never thought would actually eventuate.

“It’s pretty crazy we can play in the NRL,” she said.

“I would have never thought it would be an option for us girls. I think if it goes well this year they will try and grow it into the future andhopefully make it more teams and a longer season.”

Howard will be one of seven CRL Newcastle players in the month-long Women’s NRL Premiership, which starts on the first weekend in Septemberand runsalongside the men’s NRL finals series until the decider at SydneyOlympic Stadium.

She will be joined at the Dragons by Holli Wheeler and Hannah Southwell. The Sydney Roosters have Isabelle Kelly and Kylie Hilder. The Brisbane Broncos picked up Caitlin Moran and Jayme Fressard, who both won’t feature on the field because of season-ending knee injuries suffered recently.

Two-time World Cup champion, long-time NSW representative and dual international Bec Young wasn’t announced in any of the four, 22-player squadsbefore the July 31 deadline despite being part ofthe national top-40 list earlier this year.

Muswellbrook 18-year-oldBrydie Parker was recruited by the Roosters on the back of the women’s ID talent day on the Gold Coast in May.

PREVIOUS:Kurri wingerEdwards cleared of major neck injury

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Perry keen for more women’s Test cricket

Belinda Clark award-winner Ellyse Perry has called for more women’s Test cricket to be played.Star Australian all-rounder Ellyse Perry has called for more women’s Tests and has urged some of the other leading cricket nations to get on board.
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Perry says the game needs to build on the success of the Women’s Big Bash League and international T20 matches and there is plenty of talent in the world outside of England who can play Test cricket.

“I certainly think there’s other countries in the world that are up to that standard and have been for a number of years … countries like New Zealand, South Africa and India, they’ve got to want to do it as well,” said the 27-year-old.

Speaking ahead of Australia’s three-match T20 series against New Zealand that begins at North Sydney Oval on September 29, Perry said more cricket at a professional level would help quicken the sport’s development.

“The best players in the world are playing consistently all year round,” she said. “Over the last 12 months, in particular with T20 cricket, the average total scores for teams has just gone through the roof and I think it’s a real marker for the next couple of years.”

That development was clear over the English summer which saw records smashed in women’s cricket with England posting a new international T20 high score of 3-250, eclipsing New Zealand’s record by 34 runs.

The Trans-Tasman series will give the women’s team much needed preparation before the World T20 tournament in November.

Perry smashed a double ton in the Test against England last year at North Sydney Oval and the venue is also a happy hunting ground for young gun Ash Gardner, who scored the fastest ton in the WBBL.

“The world T20’s not that far away … and being able to play New Zealand, which is one of the top T20 teams in the world is going to put us in good stead for that,” said Gardner.

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Malaysia ex-PM pleads not guilty to graft

Malaysia’s former prime minister Najib Razak has pleaded not guilty to money laundering charges as the country’s new government looks for answers to how billions of dollars went missing from a state fund 1MDB during his term.
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Dressed in a grey suit, Najib appeared calm as three charges of money laundering were read out at the Kuala Lumpur high court on Wednesday. He pleaded not guilty, and was granted bail.

Najib has also pleaded not guilty to three charges for criminal breach of trust and one charge for abuse of power that were levelled against him last month.

The money laundering charges relate to electronic transfers amounting to 42 million ringgit ($A13 million) from SRC International, a former 1MDB unit, into Najib’s personal bank account.

The offence carries a penalty of up to 15 years in jail and a fine of not less than five times the value of the proceeds of any illegal transfers, or five million ringgit, whichever is higher.

Najib was accompanied by his children as he arrived at the courthouse in a four-car motorcade. He left after the proceedings without speaking to the media.

“SRC, at the time of the so-called happening, was no longer a part of 1MDB. So it’s got nothing to do with 1MDB…,” Najib’s lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah told reporters outside the court.

SRC, created in 2011 by Najib’s government to pursue overseas investment in energy resources, was a unit of 1MDB until it was moved to the finance ministry in 2012.

When asked if he thinks the case was a witch-hunt, Shafee said: “My client and I hope that’s not the case”.

High Court Judge Mohamad Nazlan Mohd Ghazali said a decision on when the trial begins, and on a gag order issued last month to stop public discussion of the case, would be made on Friday.

The scandal at 1MDB fully erupted in 2015 after media reports that hundreds of millions of dollars from 1MDB were diverted to his personal accounts.

Najib has consistently denied any wrongdoing, maintaining that those funds were donations from a Saudi royal, and that the bulk of them had been given back.

1MDB is being investigated by at least six countries, including Singapore, Switzerland and the United States, over alleged money laundering and graft.

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Aust bid for 2021 Women’s Rugby World Cup

Rugby Australia chief executive Raelene Castle wants Australia to host the next women’s World Cup.Rugby Australia chief Raelene Castle is confident of delivering a record-breaking women’s Rugby World Cup, if Australia wins hosting rights for the 2021 tournament.
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Castle has announced Newcastle and the Hunter region in NSW will host the tournament, if the bid is approved.

The bid will be submitted on Friday with the World Rugby Council expected to announce the successful applicant in November.

Castle anticipated a number of other nations would bid for the tournament,

Castle expected four or five other nations, including New Zealand, to bid for the the tournament, which has never been held in the southern hemisphere in the eight times it has been contested since 1991.

“We know our Kiwi friends over the ditch are putting a bid forward so it’s important to make sure we get out there, promote our bid and the professionalism and opportunity we have here in this market,” Castle said.

The bid is part of the NSW government’s 10 World Cups in 10 years strategy, with Sports Minister Stuart Ayres predicting it could potentially inject close to $23 million into his state’s economy.

Castle felt NSW and Australia’s track record in hosting major sports events would stand the bid in good stead.

“The confidence to raise the commercial support and governmental support is a really important part of our history,” Castle said.

“They (World Rugby) will have confidence that we are going to be able to deliver a successful tournament and really take the women’s World Cup to the next level.”

Matches would be played at Maitland No.1 Sportsground and Newcastle Sportsground No.2, which have a capacity of up to 6000.

The final would be held at the Newcastle’s McDonald Jones Stadium.

‘With two boutique stadiums it will feel really full and the girls will have a great experience, regardless of what countries are playing,” Castle said.

“At the McDonald Jones Stadium we’ve got a chance of 40,000 people in there which would break the world record for a women’s rugby game.

“We want to make sure we draw the biggest crowd ever to watch a women’s World Cup final and hopefully to watch Australia play in that final.”

Castle said World Rugby had not committed to staging a women’s World Cup in the southern hemisphere but she was upbeat.

“They also understand the importance of making sure that the game develops right across the world, so I would expect that’s a huge advantage for us,” Castle said.

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Surfrider Foundation Australia puts Hunter beach on ‘endangered waves’ list

NIGHT VISION: Concept art showing how South Newcastle beach skate park will look at night. Surfrider Foundation Australia is placing South Newcastle on its national list of “endangered waves” over plans to build a skate bowl on the beach.
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A group of local surfers is waging a campaign against the skate bowl’s location after Newcastle City Council and the state government announced an $11 million plan to revamp Bathers Way at South Newcastle.

The surfers fear backwash from the concrete bowl, which juts out onto the sand, will ruin waves at high tide and be susceptible to storm damage.

The council said in June that coastal engineering experts had used 25 years of tidal data to ensure the structure would withstand storm swells andhad considered how it would affect sand and wave movement.

The South Newcastledevelopment also includes a skate park on the Bathers Way promenade, blue lighting, a kiosk, outdoor gym, shade shelters, a widened pathway,tiered seatingand indigenous art installations.

The state government is contributing $5 million to the project.

The Surfrider Foundation has joined the surfers’ crusade against the project infringing on the beach and is in the process of adding South Newcastle to its “endangered” list.

The other beaches on the list are Stockton, Bells, North Narrabeen, Sunshine Coast’s Double Island Point and Martha Lavinia on King Island in the Bass Strait.

Foundation board member Craig Macintyre said skaters were “kin” to surfers but the skate park should be contained to the Bathers Way promenade.

“Hard infrastructure on any beach is not the answer,” Mr Macintyre said.

The beach’s inclusion on the endangered list was based on local surfers’ concerns and not a technical assessment of the project.

Surfrider Foundation Australia puts Hunter beach on ‘endangered waves’ list South Newcastle beach skate park

The existing skate park at South Newcastle beach.

South Newcastle beach skate park

South Newcastle beach skate park

The existing skate park at South Newcastle beach.

South Newcastle surfers Mick Wilson, left, and Bernie Wilson are opposed to the skate park’s location. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

TweetFacebook South Newcastle beach skate park The council is working on plans for the development before submitting them to the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage. It hopes to start work on the project within a year and finish it in 2021.The OEH’s classification of the proposal will dictate whether it requires a development application.

Stockton is listed on the foundation’s online list of threatened surf breaks because beach erosion “has meant that for a majority of the year the waves are reduced to a shore-dump”.

Surfrider Foundation Australia is part of a worldwide not-for-profit organisation dedicated to protecting waves and beaches.


Newcastle’s big blue beach bowl | VIDEO (2016)End of an era:Skate park’s demise is a sign of the times(2017)Another piece of the puzzle added to Bathers Way(2018)Skaters excited by new designThe Herald’s opinion

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Developers face fine over Vic Nylex site

The owners of Melbourne’s Nylex clock silos are facing hefty fines unless they clean up the site.A property development group which owns Melbourne’s historic Nylex clock silos site on the banks of the Yarra River has been given three weeks to carry out clean up works or face hefty fines.
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But Caydon Property Group said the threat of asbestos exposure to workers is among the reasons slowing progress at the site which is in line for a $1 billion overhaul.

The home of the well-known neon Nylex sign has been repeatedly vandalised over the past nine months, with fires in November and July causing significant damage to buildings.

The state government on Wednesday gave Caydon 21 days to take action or fines of up to $773,000 could be issued.

Failure to adequately secure the Nylex site is a breach of the Heritage Act which requires that the owner must not allow that place to fall into disrepair, Planning Minister Richard Wynne said.

A range of measures including fencing, signage, locks and security patrols are in place to secure the site, Caydon’s Jarrod Stratton said in a statement.

“The works suggested by Heritage Victoria cannot be undertaken without exposing workers to risk from asbestos and buildings damaged by fire, and we are keen to meet with Heritage Victoria to achieve a workable resolution to their concerns,” he said.

The site was established in the 1850s with the silos used to store malting grain used in beer production.

A proposed redevelopment, including residential apartments, is in the pipeline for the Cremorne address.

Mr Stratton said Caydon has been waiting more than 12 months for City of Yarra to endorse plans, allowing works at the site to begin.

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