Thursday, October 16, 2008

Shepparton Small Business Close Their Doors

Several small businesses in Shepparton have closed their doors this year unable to sell up and citing rising rates, rental hikes and lack of car parking as key issues. Maude’s CafĂ© owner Tennyson Blake said Shepparton does have some serious problems and Greater Shepparton City Council has lots of propaganda to tell you, it doesn’t.

Contagious Infection Contained at Age Care Facility

The highly contagious gastroenteritis infections seems to have been contained at a Shepparton aged care facility. Elective surgery was put on hold for 24 hours yesterday and Goulburn Valley Health chief medical officer Bruce Warton said the hospital would review the situation today to decide whether to resume elective surgery.

20yr old man jailed for Glassing

A Shepparton county court judge yesterday jailed a 20 yr old man who glassed a man at a Kialla hotel earlier this year, describing him as a volatile, anti-social cretin on this night. Daniel Williams of Mooroopna has been ordered to serve 22 months in a youth training centre.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

SPC Ardmona Rationalisation on Track - Coca-Cola Amatil

According to Coca-Cola Amatil, subsidiary fruit and vegetable processor 'SPC Ardmona', continued to face challenges presented by the ongoing drought, with the company reporting that the restructure is on track. “The rationalisation of the manufacturing facilities in the Goulburn Valley is on target for completion in November and there is a high level of certainty that the forecast savings of $8-10 million per annum from efficiencies and cost savings will be realised from the beginning of 2009.” In terms of Coca-Cola future growth as a whole, CCA will be focusing on new product development to drive category expansion, including Energy & Flavoured Milk, as part of their growth strategy for 2009. The acceleration of their Cold Drink Equipment Investment is also slated as a key goal for 2009, as is the focus on fueling the growth momentum of their alcoholic beverage business.

Outbreak of Gastroenteritis in Shepparton

Several people are in isolation in Shepparton's public hospital because of an outbreak of gastroenteritis. Fifteen people have been treated at the hospital for vomiting and diarrhoea in the past 24 hours. Another six people at the Ave Maria nursing home are also sick. Goulburn Valley Health CEO Greg Pullen says they are trying to prevent the virus from spreading. "There are some patients that are kept in isolation on the medical ward, some on the rehabilitation ward," he said. "We have to limit access to them unfortunately. We try and ensure that the chance of it spreading is completely reduced, but we can't always do that of course, it's a quite spreadable sort of disease."

Police Resources Stretched to the Limit

The past weekend has stretched local police resources with yet another assault claimed. Police are looking for five people involved in two unrelated assaults in Shepparton where a 21-year-old man was kicked and pelted with rocks in Corio Street about 1.00am on Saturday. Four men jumped out of a car and attacked the male victim. The next morning an 18-year-old woman was punched in the face by a man in the Maude Street Mall about 4.00am. Detective Senior Constable Mark Berens says there were some people in the mall area at the time. Police as asking for possible witness’s to either assault and urge these people to contact the Shepparton Police or Crime stoppers on 1300 333 000

Specialist Nurses Headed for Shepparton

SHEPPARTON has been promised one of 44 specialist breast cancer nurses The Nurses are funded by the Federal Government in partnership with the McGrath Foundation and recruited over the next four years. The specially-trained registered nurse would provide vital information and care as well as practical and emotional support to women diagnosed with breast cancer, their families and carers. The Shepparton nurse will be employed by Goulburn Valley Health at the Goulburn Valley Base Hospital.

Water Strategies to Improve Water Management

A proposal to set aside a water reserve each year to ensure irrigation systems in northern Victoria operate even in the driest years is one of a range of new measures considered in the Draft Northern Region Sustainable Water Strategy. Water Minister Tim Holding today released the Draft Strategy, which outlines 57 proposals to improve water management for farmers, communities and the environment in northern Victoria. Campbell Fitzpatrick from the Department of Sustainability & Environment Is encouraging the local community and irrigators to view the Draft Strategy and provide vital feedback

Graffiti Wipeout!

The Brumby Government is helping Victorian communities wipe out graffiti through $300,000 in grants announced today. Police and Emergency Services Minister Bob Cameron said grants of $5000 to $25,000 were open to all Victorian councils to establish graffiti clean-up programs with their local communities.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Man Assaults Woman in Maude Street Mall

Police are appealing for public assistance to help identify a man believed to be involved in the assault of a woman in Shepparton on the weekend. It is believed the 18 year old woman left a nightclub on the corner of Fryers and Whyndham Streets around 4am Sunday morning with a man who she met earlier that night. The pair walked east on Fryers street to the Maude street mall, where they stopped twice, but continued walking when they heard people talking in the Mall. After stopping at the secluded corner of the Mall near the Telstra Tower, it is believed the man punched the woman in the face. She fled an was later treated at a local GP for facial injuries. The man is described as aged in his mid 20’s, 178cm tall, short light brown hair, medium build, fair skin and clean shaven. Anyone with information is urged to call Crime stoppers on 1300 333 000 or the Shepparton police.

Brumby Government $115 Million Drought Relief

Premier John Brumby yesterday announced a further $115 million in drought relief to help rural communities battling the worst drought on record. Mr Brumby said Cabinet yesterday had brought forward a package that would deliver immediate relief for farmers including delivering $82 million in direct support to farmers; $22 million for drought employment initiatives; and $11 million to support drought-affected communities. Victorian Agricultural minister Joe Helper said the package will deliver immediate relief for farmers including direct support, drought employment initiatives plus community assistance.

Mallee Harvest Wheat for Hay not Grain

Hay baling contractors are in the midst of baling thousands of hectares of cereal crops in Victoria's wheatbelt. The region's grain crop was looking good until a hot, dry September killed off any hope of a decent harvest. Baling contractor Russell Phillips and his team will cut 8000 hectares in the southern Mallee this year, double the number of previous years. At the momet, he says, it's more economical for farmers to cut for hay than harvest for grain, but the next concern is what impact the mass hay baling will have on prices.

Police Appeal for Witnesses to Violet Town Fatality

Members of the Major Collision Investigation Unit are appealing for witnesses to a fatal collision in Violet Town last week, which claimed the life of a 53-year-old Noble Park man. Police are hoping to speak to a number of motorists who stopped to render assistance when the white Mitsubishi removal truck struck a tree on the Hume Freeway around 4.40pm on Friday night.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Police Arrest Man after 100kmh Car Chase

A 21-year-old man has been arrested over a police chase in Shepparton, in northern Victoria. Officers spotted a car without number plates at Kialla just before midnight. A chase ensued, reaching speeds of up to 100 kilometres-per-hour in a 50 zone. Police had to call off the chase when the car drove into a forest, but they caught the man after blocking the way out. The unlicensed driver is expected to face a series of charges, including speeding.

Box Hill Man Charged over Goulburn River Attack

A Box Hill man charged with assaulting another man with an axe handle on the banks of the Goulburn River last Wednesday night has been remanded in custody with no application for bail made. 20 year old Lance Piper appeared in Shepparton Magistrate Court on Friday morning charged with intentionally causing serious injury and five other counts of assault.

Nathalia Man Stabbed

A man in his early 20’s has been taken to a Melbourne Hospital with stab wounds following an incident in Nathalia on the weekend. Police were called to a house in Elizabeth St about 1am on Saturday after a man allegedly stabbed in the stomach receiving serious injuries. A police spokesman said no charges had been laid but police were still investigating.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Family Given Accommodation After House Fire

A family has been given temporary accommodation after their Shepparton home was damaged by fire yesterday. The fire started in the Northumberland Crescent house about 11:00am. Most of the damage was in the kitchen which has to be replaced. Country Fire Authority spokesman Peter Bell says the Department of Housing has found the family a temporary home until then. The CFA is still investigating how the fire started.

Locust Plague Hatchings Spread Across the Region

Plague locust hatchings are spreading across the region with the first reported plague locust hatchings have occured at two properties at Stanhope and Dookie near Shepparton, triggering concerns for a severe plague this summer. There have already been widespread hatchings in southern New South Wales, triggering concern of a severe plague this summer. Victoria's Plague Locust Commissioner, Andrew Tomkins, says the consequences can be dire with reports suggesting they could be up to about 20-something thousand at the front end of the band. Farmers are being urged to take control now by contacting the department.

Trapped Kyabram Man Airlifted to Melbourne

An 18yr old Kyabram man has been airlifted to Melbourne after he crashed his car yesterday. The man was trapped in his white early model Mercedes Benz for more than an hour after he lost control on a sharp bend on Cooma Rd at around 5:15pm. The teenager’s legs were trapped before Emergency Services cut him free. Police investigations are continuing into the incident, with speed not being ruled out as a contributing factor. The man was flown to the Alfred Hospital with suspected spinal injuries.

Woman Faces Pre-trial Hearing for Stubbing Husband

A woman who was charged with stabbing her husband to death in July was yesterday directed to face a pre-trial hearing next year. 58yr old Freda Dimitrovski allegedly stabbed her husband, Savas, during a domestic dispute at their Orchard Circuit home. The man was taken to the Goulburn Valley Base Hospital but died the following day. Mrs Dimitrovski sat alone in the front row of Shepparton Magistrates Court while Magistrate Pauline Spencer ordered her to face a 5 day committal hearing due to begin in May next year.

Council Approves Victoria Park Lake Master Plan

The Victoria Park Lake master plan will begin proceedings before the end of the year, after it was adopted at Greater Shepparton’s City Council meeting yesterday. The plan now includes better water quality of the lake and the return of recreational boating. Also approved, was a ban on advertising alcohol as part of council’s outdoor dining policy. Councillor Dallas Turlick moved the motion saying advertising is linked to alcohol abuse, while Councillor Eric Bott opposed the motion explaining the issue with youth is binge drinking and alcohol in the city is a real problem. The ban was voted in favour, 4 - 3.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Two Shepparton Boys Charged over 8 burglaries

Two Shepparton boys have been charged over 8 burglaries in less than a week, adding up to more than $4000 worth of goods. The two boys aged 11 and 12 were arrested on Friday night, with a third boy, aged 14 was released with a caution after an interview. Windows were smashed to break in to sporting clubs, businesses and homes where coins, electrical items and jewellery were taken. The 12yr old was charged with 7 counts of burglary, while the 11yr old was charged with four. The two boys are bailed to appear in a children’s court at a later date.

Thousends March against National Parks along the Murray

A 1,000 strong angry crowd descended on Echuca yesterday in a display of widespread community anger at the implications of the Victorian Environment Assessment Council's recommendations for Murray River red gum forests. Led by Barmah cattlemen riders, rally members marched from Hopwood Gardens to the Echuca Aquatic Reserve to hear first hand of the outcomes that would occur if the VEAC recommendations for more National Parks along the Murray River were implemented.

Local Road Carnage 2 killed 2 Injured

2 People are dead in what’s been a horror weekend on the roads. A 29 year old woman died at the scene of a two car collision in Kialla, Friday afternoon. It is believed a white Holden Rodeo traveling south and a silver Nissan Pulsar traveling north collided just outside the Shepparton Harness Racing Club. Adding to the road toll just a few hours later, a 53yr old man was killed after a truck hit a tree in Violet Town. The passenger died at the scene and the 39yr old male driver was airlifted to the Royal Melbourne Hospital in a serious but stable condition. Continuing the destruction, A 22yr old man has received serious head injuries when he was struck by a utility on Saturday morning. The man was walking with a friend along Durringhile Rd about 2kms north of Tatura in foggy conditions when the Toyota Hilux struck the man, who was believed to have been in the middle of the road. The 35yr old driver from Barmah was uninjured but was badly shaken. Tatura police Senior Constable Ross Adams said the speed of the vehicle was undetermined but the car was travelling in a 100km/h zone. He said the man lost a lot of blood and was taken to the Goulburn Valley Base Hospital before being flown to The Alfred.

Kialla Woman Margaret Vandergulik Pleads Guilty

A Kialla woman standing trial for the murder of her husband of only two days has pleaded guilty to his manslaughter. Margaret Vandergulik was alleged to have murdered Patrick Plumbe, 60, at their Glenrowan home on April 28, 2005, one day after he changed his will making her the sole beneficiary of a $1 million superannuation fund. Mr Plumbe's charred body was later found behind the steering wheel of his burnt-out ute, beside Wangaratta-Devenish Road, near Wangaratta. After his funeral, Vandergulik is alleged to have told her former lover, Shepparton man Tony Calandro, she killed Mr Plumbe during an argument. On Monday, Justice Murray Kellam told jurors Vandergulik had pleaded guilty to manslaughter. The jury was then instructed to deliver formal verdicts of not guilty to murder, and guilty to manslaughter. Last week prosecutors announced they would not proceed with the case against Vandergulik's son Michael, who had also been charged with murder. A pre-sentence hearing for Mrs Vandergulik will be held in Wangaratta on November 3.

Friday, October 3, 2008

One Person Dead In Kialla Two Car Collision

One person is dead and the Goulburn Valley Highway closed in both directions after a two car collision in Kialla on Friday afternoon. It is believed a white Holden Rodeo travelling south and a silver Nissan Pulsar travelling north collided just outside the Shepparton Harness Racing Club around 12.45pm. The driver and sole occupant of the Pulsar, a woman believed to be aged in her late 20s, died at the scene. The driver and sole occupant of the Rodeo, a 55-year-old man, was taken by road ambulance to the Goulburn Valley Highway with non life threatening injuries. The Highway was closed in both directions for several hours while police examined the scene. Police will prepare a report for the Coroner.

Kialla Woman Maraget Vandergulik Confesses Murder

A Kialla woman who allegedly murdered her husband in April 2005 after she was made the sole beneficiary of his $1 million estate confessed to a former lover she killed him during an argument. 61yr old Margaret Vandergulik told her former lover, Tony Colandro, she had an argument with her husband, Patrick Plumbe to which he hit her with a chair, and she pushed him, resulting in him falling and hitting his head. Crown Prosecutor Peter Rose said Mrs. Vandergulik’s son insisted they put the dead body into Mr Plumbe’s ute and drive it into a tree and set it on fire. Mrs. Vandergulik has pleaded not guilty to murder.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Customs Arrest Illegal Chemical Importers In Shepparton

Customs investigators in Victoria have arrested and charged two men and one woman with importing a commercial quantity of border-controlled precursor chemicals. Further examination of the package allegedly identified approximately 112,000 tablets that tested positive for ephedrine, a precursor used to manufacture methamphetamine. A 23-year-old man, 18-year-old man and a 20-year-old woman, all from Brunswick in Melbourne, were arrested on Monday in Shepparton. Customs investigators, with the assistance of officers from Shepparton police, executed Customs search and seizure warrants at two residential premises in the Shepparton area on Monday. The 23-year-old man was arrested by Customs, remanded in custody overnight and released on bail yesterday. The 18-year-old man and 20-year-old woman were also arrested and released on bail. All three are due to appear in the Melbourne Magistrates Court on 12 December 2008. The maximum penalty for this offence is 25 years imprisonment and/or a $550,000.00 fine.

Give Up Prohibited Weapons without Penalty

UNWANTED or illegal weapons and guns can be handed in to North East police stations this month without risk of a penalty. The Victoria Police firearms amnesty month aims to reduce the number of weapons available in the community. The weapons that can be handed in to police stations include unregistered and prohibited firearms, as well as knives, knuckle dusters and swords. But people with military ordnance such as hand grenades, should not move them, instead contacting police to arrange for safe disposal. Sen-Sgt McIntosh also urged people to use common sense when handing over weapons. Almost 19,000 handguns, valued at more than $20 million, were handed in to police during a six-month Victorian Government buyback in 2003 with Shepparton handing over 1403 handguns over that period. Most firearms were crushed, while some were retained for the Victoria Police forensic ballistics library or for inclusion in a museum.

Mooroopna Police Station Need's More Officers

After meetings with members from the combined service clubs of Mooroopna and the President of Mooroopna Blue Light, State Member for Shepparton Jeanette Powell is again calling on the State Government to review staffing numbers at Mooroopna Police Station.The Mooroopna police station has 4 full time and 1 part time officers. Three of five officers have taken stess leave in the last 10 months and have not been replaced. With an enormous strain on station resources, it closes at 4pm each day and at times when there is no-one there to man the station. According to Ms Powell. The Government needs to review the number of frontline police officers working, taking into account those who are on leave and the number actually needed to adequately police all five stations that are serviced from Shepparton station.

Murray Golburn Water Allocations Increased

Seasonal allocations for the Murray and Goulburn systems were increased in the 1 October update announced by Goulburn-Murray Water yesterday. The Murray system now has an allocation of 13% of high-reliability water shares and the Goulburn system has 9%. All other northern Victorian water systems remain at zero allocation. Acting Managing Director Ian Moorhouse says the catchments are drying and inflows are declining. The lack of rainfall, together with recent higher temperatures and strong winds, is not a promising sign for the coming months.

Enroll Now for Shepparton Council Elections

The Victorian Electoral Commission is urging Shepparton residents to be correctly enrolled for local council elections before this Friday's deadline. Enrollment forms must be received by the VEC before 4pm on Friday to ensure registration for the elections which will be held in November. Victorian Electoral Commissioner, Steve Tully says anyone aged over 18 who are not on the electoral roll or recently changed address must submit a new enrolment form urgently