We have received a call and the below correspondence from ACMA with regard to our complaint about television reception in the Berrigan Shire.
"It appears as though Ballarat (Lookout Hill) signals are travelling further than expected due to certain weather conditions, also known as atmospheric ducting, and this is causing interference to the Goulburn Valley or Shepparton services (Mt Major). Atmospheric ducting of TV signals happens when distinctive weather conditions—especially high-pressure systems and still conditions—cause distant broadcast signals to travel further than planned.
These weather conditions that make it favourable for the Ballarat services to cause interference also temporarily enhance Bendigo services (Mt Alexander). These unintended ‘rogue’ signals from Ballarat then interfere with the local Goulburn Valley signals because antennas and receivers can’t differentiate between the local signals and those being ducted from distant TV towers. When this occurs, viewer who perform an auto tune pick up Bendigo services. When the weather returns to normal, the Ballarat and Bendigo services disappear and viewers need to retune to pick up the Shepparton services again. When this occurs, it is best to report the issue to the broadcasters so that they are aware of the issue.
As discussed we have contacted the broadcasters who are aware of the issues with the Goulburn Valley transmitter and are investigating possible options to resolve this issue. They are testing to see if they can get a reliable VHF signal from the Upper Murray (Mt Baranduda) transmitter that the broadcasters may be able to use to rebroadcast and possibly also use as a stable input feed into the Jerilderie and Deniliquin transmitters as the current Goulburn Valley transmitter site is used as an input to these sites and this input feed is also affected by the ducting. However as discussed this issue will take time to resolve.
We can understand this is causing people frustrations but there is little people can do, especially if atmospheric ducting is impacting on TV reception. One option is to attempt to receive the Goulburn Valley services reliably, viewers may need to have a fringe-area high gain UHF antenna located at 10m above ground level to attempt to receive the services reliably. Even then, it is expected that an antenna installer may need to work hard to try to identify a suitable location on the roof that receives all services reliably. Alternatively in some instances viewers can try to get an antenna installer to see if they can receive alternate services by getting reception from an alternative broadcast site possibly the Upper Murray transmitter.
Another option is the government’s VAST service which is an alternative for those viewers who cannot receive adequate reception from existing terrestrial transmitters. The VAST service is intended to provide an alternative reception option for viewers who are unable to get adequate digital television services from existing terrestrial transmission sites. The typical installation cost is around $700-1000 dollars for a VAST installation depending or your location and the hourly rate and equipment costs the installer charges. Information about VAST is available on the ACMA's web site at http://acma.gov.au/Citizen/Consumer-info/My-connected-home/TV-reception/should-i-consider-the-vast-service. More information about TV reception is available from the ACMA’s TV reception hub: http://www.acma.gov.au/Citizen/TV-Radio/Television/TV-reception."
This year marks the third and final year of the Federal Government’s “pause” of indexation of the Council’s Financial Assistance Grant. It is only now that the true impact of this funding cut has had on local communities across Australia, including Berrigan Shire Council. As rural communities with smaller rating bases are more dependent on Financial Assistance Grants to operate, these cuts have affected rural communities disproportionally.
Since 2014/15, the Federal Government has cut nearly $100,000 from Berrigan Shire’s Financial Assistance Grant over the past two years. This is $100,000 that could have been spent on direct service delivery to our community – such as roads, parks and other community facilities. While the Federal Government has proposed the reintroduction of indexation from 2017/18, the “pause” will still see Berrigan Shire up to $1 million worse off over the next four years – as the indexation will be from a lower base amount.
We have had numerous residents contact ACMA and, to date, none have received a satisfactory response. There is a website that ACMA have established that advises residents of the quality of their reception. On this website the whole northern region of the Shire is recognised as having poor coverage, as are areas in and around Tocumwal, confirming what we already know. Attached is the map from the mySwitch website: https://myswitch.digitalready.gov.au/.
The next course of action is to have as many people as possible complain about the state of television reception in the region. If you are affected we ask that you write, email,or fax ACMA with your issue to ensure that we, as a community, are heard. Berrigan Shire Council has also written to ACMA in this regard.
By email: email@example.com
By facsimile: 02 6219 5346
By post: Interference
Australian Communications and Media Authority
PO Box 78
Belconnen ACT 2616
The infrastructure in our towns – things like roads, footpaths and kerb and gutters – is often taken for granted. However, providing these items comes at a cost.
Generally, these items are provided by the initial developer of the land. The cost of providing this infrastructure is then built into the price of the developed blocks. Hence, each property owner has contributed to the cost of the infrastructure outside his or her land.
Over time, our communities’ expectations about infrastructure have changed. For example, most new urban sub-divisions now include kerb and gutter as standard – an item that older sub-divisions often do not have.
As our towns grow, it becomes important to link up this community infrastructure to allow the footpath and kerb and gutter network to work as it should. This often means installing kerb and gutter and footpaths items in the “gaps” created by older sub-divisions without those items.
Given that the cost of providing this infrastructure in newer sub-divisions has been borne by the property owners there – in the purchase price of their land – it is fair that property owners in older areas contribute to the cost of new kerb and gutter and footpaths installed adjacent to their land.
The NSW government recognises this and the Roads Act 1993 allows for Councils to recover up to half the cost of providing infrastructure like kerb and gutter and footpaths from the adjacent landowners via a contributory charge. Like Council rates, this charge attaches to the land and if the land is sold, the charge is then payable by the new landowner. Where kerb and gutter and/or footpath works are only on one side of a street, the Roads Act only allows the Council to charge those property owners on that side – not the other.
The adjacent property owners will generally be required to meet 50% of the cost of the new footpath and/or kerb and gutter. The cost is divided up across the property owners on the basis of their street frontage. Where a property owner has a corner block and therefore two street frontages, this cost may in some circumstances reduce to 25%.
The Council understands paying this charge upfront and at short notice can be difficult. To assist property owners to meet this cost, the Council has a procedure – the “Half-Cost Scheme” that
· Requires the Council to inform property owners about the likely cost of the works in advance, the amount they are likely to have to contribute, and allow them the opportunity to have the Council consider any objections, and
· If the Council decides to go ahead with the works, allows property owners to pay off the charge interest-free over three years.
All property owners are required to contribute to the cost of infrastructure passing their property, either through the initial cost of purchase or via a later contribution. The Council considers that its Half-Cost Scheme provides a simple and fair method of allocating and recovering the contribution to new infrastructure.
Scores on Doors is the NSW food business hygiene rating program that enables consumers to make informed choices about where to eat or shop for food. It drives food safety culture in food businesses and therefore a reduction in foodborne illness.
Scores on Doors gives greater visibility and transparency of compliance by food businesses.
Eating out? Getting food in? Check the Scores on Doors
To help you choose where to eat out or shop for food Berrigan Shire is participating in the NSW Scores on Doors program.
The program gives you information about the hygiene standards in restaurants, pub bistros, cafés, takeaways, hotels, and other places you eat out.
Visible hygiene scores
Scores on Doors is being run by Berrigan Shire in partnership with the NSW Food Authority.
The program will help you choose where to eat out or shop for food.
Certificates on display at food premises give you information about the hygiene standards in food premises at the time they are inspected by one of our officers. Council officers check that businesses are meeting legal requirements for food hygiene.
It’s not easy to judge hygiene standards on appearance alone. The Scores on Doors certificates give you an idea of what’s going on in the kitchen, or behind closed doors.
Consumers can choose
You can check the scores and use the information to choose a business with higher standards.
It’s also good to share this information with friends and family.
Scores on Doors ratings recognise businesses with the highest standards and encourage others to improve.
The aim is to reduce the number of cases of food poisoning which currently affects around 5.4 million Australians every year.
A promotional tile is available for websites, download from www.foodauthority.nsw.gov.au/scoresondoors
You may not have noticed, but Berrigan Shire Council has entered the world of social media. The Council’s social media platforms are a great way to stay in touch with events, activities and other information about the Council and Berrigan Shire.
You can find the Council’s social media platforms at:
· Facebook – Berrigan Shire Council https://www.facebook.com/berriganshire
Berrigan Shire Library Service
Tocumwal Residential Airpark
· Twitter – @berriganshire https://twitter.com/berriganshire
· Instragram – berriganshire http://instagram.com/berriganshire
YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCr8bHRrsqkKSJoWc4hxg2vg (search Berrigan Shire)
Other social media sites relating to Council activities include:
· Berrigan War Memorial Swimming Pool – https://www.facebook.com/BerriganPool
· Tocumwal Swimming Pool – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tocumwal-Swimming-Pool/1485881731688071?fref=ts
· Finley War Memorial Swimming Pool – https://www.facebook.com/finleyswimmingpool
· Barooga Advancement Group – https://www.facebook.com/BAG3644
· Barooga Community Botanical Gardens – https://www.facebook.com/BaroogaCommunityBotanicGardens
Berrigan Shire Council, in conjunction with Moira Shire Council, have put together some informative fruit fly videos. These are each only 2 to 3 minutes long and well worth watching. Tom Brown and Lou Newman provide some great hints and tips - they are well worth watching. The first one is about baiting, the second about netting and the third about what to do if you have an infestation.
DSK Waste Services have asked that residents in Courts please place their bins on the straight part of the road, not on the curved end.
This is to avoid damage to vehicles and the road surface of the court, and for the safety of residents.
A diagram is attached to help explain what DSK Waste Services are requesting.
We thank you for your co-operation
In recent weeks there have been several enquiries and some confusion over the responsibility for property owners in relation to property accesses, specifically around construction and ongoing maintenance of driveways and culverts.
Any excavations/ construction within the road reserve requires consent from the Council. As part of the application for consent, the applicant must provide a Certificate of Currency for Public Liability Insurance to a minimum value of $20 million which indemnifies the person carrying out the works.
Where the applicant employs a contractor to carry out the works, the contractor’s public liability insurance can be used as long as it complies with the requirements. Alternatively, the applicant can apply to their insurance company and establish an extension through their house and contents insurance that covers them for the proposed construction works.
Following the construction of a property access including stormwater access culverts and driveways within the road reserve, it is the property owner’s responsibility for its ongoing maintenance and for rectifying any defects. Failure to rectify defects and hazards on a property access may result in an order being served to the property owner.
The legislation regarding property accesses in the road reserve may be found in the Roads Act 1993. Failure to obtain consent will result in penalties as set out in the Roads Act.
We are amassing a great following on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and now Youtube - so thank you to all who have supported us.
One thing we love about having this connection with you is that we are able to bring you information about what is happening around our wonderful Shire; from upcoming events to good news stories.
Having said that, there is nothing worse than when we hear, after the fact, about an event that we could have featured on our pages.
If you are planning an event, or need to get some information out to the residents of our Shire, please let us know. Keep in mind though, as we are a Government body, there are certain things we cannot cover, and we also can't be seen to be favouring one business over another.