Tuesday 16th, Zedlines

Hervey Bay pearl farmers are calling for the establishment of no-go zones to protect farming areas.

A spokesman for the Aquaculture Industry Federation said leased areas were marked on water charts, but that professional fisherman trawled the regions anyway.

Fisheries Queensland, the state government’s lead policy developer, has said exclusion zones would not solve the problem.

A national poll has found 45 per cent of central Queenslanders consider homosexuality immoral.

This is contrasted with more urban areas, such as Sydney, where disapproval was around 10 per cent.

Gay activist Gary Burns said educating communities was an important step to removing prejudices.

A 0.75 increase on poker machine revenue has been proposed by the Greens party to support problem gamblers.

Seven percent of revenue is already diverted by clubs into community organisations.

However, the Greens believe counselling and support could be provided by the roughly one million dollars raised by the extra tax.

Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale has criticised the Federal Government for failing to support Australian manufacturers.

Mr Pisasale’s comments come after a long-running Ipswich factory announced its closure in late December, leaving 145 workers unemployed.

Manufacturing Skills Australia, the national skills council, said improving productivity and minimising waste would improve profits and sustainability in the manufacturing sector.

The Queensland Police Service’s annual statistical review has revealed a 28 per cent decrease in overall crime over the past ten years.

Despite this, the homicide rate has increase by 19 per cent over the last year. A spokesman for the police said this did not reflect an overall increase, but that last year’s murder rate was unusually low.

A review of the professional standards found roughly a fifth of all Queenslanders did not have confidence in the police force.

The Federal Opposition have opposed a motion by Greens MP Adam Bandt to gauge community support for same sex marriage.

Liberal MP Philip Ruddock said the Opposition would oppose any motion to alter the Howard government’s 2004 alterations to the Marriage act, which limits relations to between a man and a woman.

The motion, which does not seek to alter this act, is currently being debated. However, Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young has announced plans to introduce a same sex marriage bill if a conscience vote is allowed.

The Queensland party has announced plans for a candidate to run for the seat of Cairns in the next election.

Earlier in the year, Queensland party leader Aidan McLindon proposed relocation of poker machines to Cairns, to turn the region into Australia’s gambling hub.

Mr McLindon formed the party after breaking away from the Liberal National party.

Sydney’s Villawood detention centre is facing a possible hunger strike from inmates following the death of an Iraqi asylum seeker.

The man in question was found unconscious in a shower and taken to hospital, where he was pronounced dead. A coronial inquiry will be held into the surrounding events.

A spokesman for the Refugee Action Collective said an ambulance took nearly 45 minutes to arrive, and called for an inquiry into mandatory detention.

Toowoomba Mayor Peter Taylor has given his support for the conduct of his councillors, despite claims of inappropriate behaviour.

An unnamed councillor is currently under review, following a complaint that they were disrespectful towards a member of the public.

The Local Government Act stipulates mayors must be responsible for reviewing all councillor complaints. Mr Taylor said both sides of the argument needed to be investigated.


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