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Insight into CH Council

Circular Head mayor Daryl Quilliam on King Street ahead of the council forum.
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FOR the first time, those interested to find out more about how the Circular Head Council works will have the forum to do so.

Next Thursday night, as a part of the council’s usual workshops, prospective councillor candidates can ask the mayor and councillors questions about how the council runs, what is expected of them and whatever else they need to know.

Circular Head mayor Daryl Quilliam thought it was a good practice and not only did this question-answer forum provide an understanding for those looking to stand for council, but it provided a transparency for the community.

“It came from councillors’ desire to encourage more people to stand for council,” Cr Quilliam said.

“The more people who know how council operates the better – and there are plenty of people who don’t know how council operates.

‘Anyone who wants to come along and understand how council operates is welcome, not just interested candidates,” Cr Quilliam said.

At the workshop, general manager Tony Smart and Cr Quilliam will talk about council and outline the things the council does.

This will be followed up with the public asking councillors what they want to know.

While Cr Quilliam invited anyone interested, he was keen to see more young people stand for council.

“We are getting older rather than younger and a diversity of people means all parts of the community are looked after.

“Nobody is too young, anybody who has a view on the community should put their hand up.”

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Doctors need to swot up on end-of-life laws: research

Research suggests that some doctors do not understand laws regarding the withholding and withdrawing of life-sustaining medical treatment. Photo: Jim RiceAustralian patients are at risk of being killed or saved when they do not want to by doctors who do not understand laws regarding the withholding and withdrawing of life-sustaining medical treatment, research suggests.
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A survey completed by 867 doctors in Victoria, NSW and Queensland in 2012 and 2013 found ‘‘critical gaps’’ in their legal knowledge that could expose them to criminal charges including murder, manslaughter or assault if they act against a patient’s wishes.

A report on the survey, published in the Medical Journal of Australia on Monday, said on average doctors correctly responded to three out of seven questions about laws regarding end-of-life care. The questions covered the validity of advance directives and consent from and the authority of substitute decision makers. Participants included doctors who specialise in geriatrics, intensive care, oncology, palliative care, kidney, respiratory and emergency medicine.

‘‘Our findings strongly suggest that doctors in a speciality involving end-of-life decision making should improve their knowledge of the law, in the interests of their patients and for their own protection,’’ wrote the authors from the University of Technology in Queensland, Southern Cross University and University of Queensland.

The researchers, led by Professor Ben White, director of the Australian Centre for Health Law Research, said almost 40,000 adult deaths occur each year across Australia following a medical decision to withhold or withdraw life-sustaining treatment.

Doctors play a critical clinical and legal role in the provision of medical treatment at the end of life. For example, a doctor must assess whether a patient has the capacity to make a treatment decision, determine who the authorised decision maker is if the patient does not have the capacity, and know whether a person’s previously expressed wishes comprise a valid advance directive that must be followed.

The researchers said failure to comply with the various state and territory laws relating to these matters could have significant consequences for patients who could have their lives ended wrongly through unlawfully withheld or withdrawn treatment.

‘‘Conversely, life-sustaining treatment may be unlawfully provided; for example, despite a lawful refusal of treatment through an advance directive or by a substitute decision maker. This may infringe a patient’s legal right to bodily integrity, and cause patients to survive with poor quality of life, which they had sought to avoid.’’

‘‘For medical professionals, criminal responsibility could arise for murder or manslaughter (where treatment is withheld or withdrawn unlawfully) or for assault (where treatment is provided without appropriate consent or authorisation).’’

The researchers called for more uniform laws across Australia to make it easier for doctors to be educated about them. But for the moment, they said a lack of knowledge would not excuse doctors from liability.

‘‘Claims of civil liability may also flow from such actions, along with disciplinary or coronial proceedings,’’ they wrote.

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Kitchen spy: Philippa Sibley

These days Australia’s ”dessert queen”, Philippa Sibley, rolls her eyes at the mention of her hugely successful Snickers dessert, which featured on MasterChef. As a chef with nearly 30 years’ service at lauded kitchens in London, France and Melbourne (est est est, Luxe, Ondine and Albert Street Food & Wine), the pastry pigeonholing tends to wear thin.
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In between dreaming up monthly menu concepts for her latest venture, Prix Fixe in Melbourne’s CBD, Sibley shares her home kitchen with 15-year-old son Donovan, three cats and her ”crazy” poodle, Molly.The staples

My pantry There’s always lots of tea, heaps of nuts, seasonal fruit, baked beans in ”halfie” tins (for the perfect portion) and lots of Sirena tuna for couscous salads. One of my absolute bêˆte noirs is rice, so I love this pre-cooked microwaveable Tilda basmati. It just tumbles out and doesn’t get gluggy. Other staples include Cobram Estate olive oil (the classic flavour extra virgin is really good for cooking because it doesn’t burn), Campbell’s chicken stock, spices, risotto rice and Jazz apples – the perfect size and always really crunchy. And I like Murray River salt because it’s Australian, relatively inexpensive and tastes great.

My fridge We always have zucchini, spinach, cheese and tomatoes in the fridge for Donovan to make olive oily-garlicky kind of Mediterranean ”spoon food”. I love Burgen rye bread for breakfast (it has a lovely, dark molasses flavour), which I have with avocado, lemon and maybe some ricotta, and I like Lurpak spreadable butter – I can’t stand rancid, yellow butters. You’ll always find Vegemite, loads of vegies (most of which get chucked, unfortunately), and I keep plenty of bolognese, soups and spanakopita handy in the freezer.I’m cooking

Last night’s dinner was a big chunky soup from my own cookbook: barley, pumpkin, leek and pancetta with parmesan. But I replaced the barley with buckwheat, which I have a bit of a thing for at the moment. Generally, when I cook at home, I make one-bowl-wonders.My inspiration

It’s incredibly hard to put your finger on. Last night I woke up because I couldn’t sleep and wrote down a whole bunch of ideas for revisiting some of my signature dishes. And sometimes it’s discovering new ingredients, as I did recently with amazing Japanese pressed four-leaf-clovers and edible wrappers from a company called the Good Grub Hub.Most unforgettable meal

When Anthony Bourdain came to Melbourne to shoot his A Cook’s Tour series [in 2001], we had a big crab feast at the Flower Drum, dinner at Ondine and a crayfish and steak barbecue here. He’s a hilarious, Simpsons-quoting, pop culture dude. I’ll never forget him telling us that eating the still-beating heart of a cobra was ”like eating an angry oyster”.Secret vice

Smoked or tamari-roasted almonds with really good chocolate. I don’t have a sweet tooth but if it’s there, chocolate only lasts a couple of days in the house.My toolkit

I’m a real stickler for super-sharp knives so I’ve got a combination of Wusthof Trident, Sabatier and Global; there’s my chintzy Iittala Marimekko serving bowls (I collect them) and I don’t know where we’d be without Microplanes (just be sure to put them back in their plastic sleeves so they don’t get blunt). And I use a DeLonghi Nespresso machine for my morning coffee. The trick is to double up and do two shots.Recipe stalwart

Clafoutis. It’s the best dessert ever: a batter of eggs, cream, nut meal and fruits (traditionally cherries). Bung it together in 10 minutes, bake it and serve warm with ice-cream. It’s tender and delicious and one of those things you can pull out of your hat.Favourite

My late father’s pepper grinders. I designed them and he made them for est est est and Luxe. He was an amazing wood turner and he used authentic Peugeot mechanisms. Arranged all together, they look like a little family.Discovery

Madame Flavour tea, blended by a woman from Mount Best in Gippsland, Victoria. It’s delicious and one of those teas you can keep topping up with hot water.I’m drinking

Rosé´ at the moment. I’m not a big red drinker because of the histamines and I get bored of drinking white after a couple of glasses. On a Saturday night our bartender at work will make a special Negroni for me – I love bitter. Otherwise, I drink one strong latte a day and tea: a very strong Twinings English Breakfast, always two bags, with milk.

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ICAC:Artist Rex Newell likely to be called to testify

Artist Rex Newell ICAC: August 2014 archive Operation Spicer
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ARTIST Rex Newell is expected to be called to give evidence at a corruption inquiry about the painting he gave to Charlestown MP Andrew Cornwell’s father.

As reported, Mr Newell has told the Newcastle Herald he gifted the painting to Brien Cornwell on the understanding it was to ‘‘raise money for the Liberal Party’’.

However Mr Cornwell’s son, Andrew, told the Independent Commission Against Corruption last week it was only by chance the painting was ‘‘regifted’’ as a Christmas present to developer Hilton Grugeon, as he and his wife didn’t like it and had kept it in their garage.

Mr Grugeon is alleged to have insisted he pay the Cornwells for the painting, giving $10,120 in what Mr Cornwell jnr said he suspected was an attempt to ‘‘curry favour’’.

Counsel assisting the inquiry Geoffrey Watson SC told the inquiry on Monday: ‘‘There’s been a development over the weekend which at this stage I based partly upon some investigations undertaken by the Commission last Friday and also partly upon press reports on the weekend’’.

It was ‘‘very likely’’ the artist would need to be called, possibly this week.

‘‘…Depending on Mr Newell’s evidence it may be necessary to recall some other witnesses,’’ Mr Watson said.

Kitchen spy: Philippa Sibley

Dessert queen Philippa Sibley. Photo: Wayne Taylor The staples: microwaveable Tilda basmati rice. Photo: Wayne Taylor
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The staples: Philippa Sibley always has heaps of nuts in her kitchen. Photo: Wayne Taylor

The staples: Philippa loves Burgen rye bread for breakfast. Photo: Wayne Taylor

Favourite: Philippa designed these pepper grinders and her late father made them. Photo: Wayne Taylor

Secret vice: chocolate only lasts a few days in Philippa’s house. Photo: Wayne Taylor

The staples: Jazz apples are the perfect size and very crunchy. Photo: Wayne Taylor

Toolkit: Philippa collects Iittala Marimekko serving bowls. Photo: Wayne Taylor

Discovery: Madame Flavour tea, blended in Gippsland. Photo: Wayne Taylor

Drinking: bored of white wine, Philippa is on the Rose at the moment. Photo: Wayne Taylor

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Josh Reynolds’ meltdown a case for NRL to consider yellow- and red-card system

The brain explosion that led to Canterbury five-eighth Josh Reynolds facing a third judiciary appearance in six matches was the worst since the one that ended Travis Burns’ NRL career two years ago and should encourage the game to consider a yellow- and red-card system like football’s.
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While NRL officials were satisfied with the way referees Gerard Sutton and Alan Shortall dealt with Reynolds’ behaviour on Friday night, this column has been told they would have supported a decision to send the NSW Origin playmaker off for tripping former Bulldogs teammate Ben Barba in the 41-10 loss to Brisbane at Suncorp Stadium.

The force with which he struck Barba in the right ankle after being side-stepped by his opposite number before later hitting Alex Glenn high should also have negated any benefit of the doubt Reynolds may have been afforded for earlier lashing out at Broncos skipper Sam Thaiday with his feet after being tackled.

In isolation, the Thaiday incident could be dismissed as lacking any real malice, but the way he acted afterwards, including his violent kicking of a chair in the dressing room after finally being despatched to the sin bin, suggested Reynolds was in a rage from the outset of the match.

He was placed on report for all three on-field incidents but only spent three minutes in the sin bin after being despatched by Sutton for his 77th minute high shot on Glenn.

However, if the NRL had a similar on-field disciplinary system to football, Reynolds would have been shown a yellow card for kicking Thaiday in the head and then sent off after receiving a second yellow for his trip on Barba – culminating in a red card.

The match-review committee charged Reynolds for both of those incidents but senior NRL officials considered the tripping offence to be worthy of a straight red card on its own.

Some within the game have compared Reynolds’ meltdown to the way Burns self-destructed while playing for Penrith against Sydney Roosters in 2012.

Burns, who was also a self-confessed “niggling player”, was released by the Panthers after receiving a 12-match ban for a chicken wing on Roosters forward Mose Masoe and a high shot on Martin Kennedy that resulted in him being sent off and becoming the first player in NRL history to be charged with an intentional high tackle.

Like Reynolds, Burns seemed to lose control of his emotions during the match and was a ticking time bomb before being given his marching orders in the 71st minute for the tackle that broke Kennedy’s nose.

Penrith coach Ivan Cleary said Burns’ role had been to “try and fire up his teammates” but admitted he had gone too far, and it appears Reynolds was attempting to do the same thing for a Canterbury team that had been struggling without him for all but three matches since round 10 because of Origin commitments and suspension.

After successfully having a dangerous-throw charge from Origin I downgraded, Reynolds received a three-match ban for a shoulder charge on Will Chambers in the series finale and had only returned in the previous weekend’s 22-16 loss to Penrith.

Bulldogs and NSW teammates enjoy playing with Reynolds because of his passion and competitiveness, and he has been good to deal with from a media perspective.

However, he appears to have become frustrated by the lack of energy and intensity within the team during their four-game losing streak and the 25-year-old went too far on Friday night in his attempts to lift those around him.

Canterbury skipper Michael Ennis said on Monday Reynolds was “certainly not a player who goes out there to get involved in those kind of incidents” but he was clearly “frustrated” after watching the team slump from equal first before his suspension to eighth place.

“You get that feeling, I think anyone does whether you have been out injured or out suspended or whatever the case is and your team has lost a couple of games, that you really want to try and turn it around for them,” Ennis told Sky Sports Radio.

“I think that is probably where Josh was at. You saw the incident where he kicked the chair, that was probably that frustration where he felt like he was finally back in the team, we didn’t get the win and to compound that he was placed on report a few times and felt like he had let us down.”

Having faced only one judiciary charge in four years before this year’s Origin series, Reynolds has also let himself down and will have more time on the sideline to consider his recent behaviour.

Twitter: @bradwalterSMH 

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Best pregnancy care in the country

Antenatal fan, Tammy Hall and Ulla.Pregnant women in the Mountains are receiving some of the best care in the country, according to a government report released last week.
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The Nepean-Blue Mountains Medicare Local (NBMML) catchment area topped the rankings for antenatal care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and rated second for non-Indigenous women.

The report, Healthy Communities: Child and Maternal Health 2009-2012, highlights how children’s health outcomes can vary widely depending on where they live.

It found that 80.5 per cent of pregnant Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women in the Mountains area received at least one antenatal visit in the first trimester, the best performance of 61 Medicare Local catchments across Australia.

Early antenatal visits are important for monitoring the health of mothers and babies, for early detection of any complications and are strongly associated with good child health outcomes.

The percentage of non-indigenous women in the Mountains area who had at least one antenatal visit was 85.5 per cent, which was second in the rankings and on par with Sydney’s more affluent North Shore and Northern Beaches.

First-time mother Tammy Hall, from Wentworth Falls, said the antenatal services in the Mountains had been invaluable for her.

“We had a caseload midwife and did the four-week course at the hospital where they prepare you for the birth,” she said. “It was really useful.”

She was pleased, too, to have the same midwife every time she went to the hospital.

“It was also really nice to form some friendships with other women who are having their first babies. We go to mums groups and all the babies are at the same stage.”

Chairman of the NBMML board, Dr Shiva Prakash, said the report showed this area is punching above its weight in antenatal care.

He credited the Mountains-based Aboriginal Healthy for Life program and its partners with much of the success. “Healthy for Life is a program for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people run by their own people and is widely recognised as a blueprint for closing the gap between outcomes of indigenous and non-indigenous Australians,” said Dr Prakash.

“The excellent results are also a direct result of the antenatal share care arrangements that have been in place across the area for many years. It is a testament to the long-standing commitment of GPs in the area and the close and effective working relationship between local doctors, Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District, the Blue Mountains and Penrith Women’s Health Centres and the Aboriginal Coalition leading the Healthy for Life program.”

“The report also highlighted how important locally relevant strategies are to improving better health,” Dr Prakash said.

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‘Blessing in disguise’: Hawks resigned to finishing outside top three

FOURTH PLACE: Hawks captain-coach Tim Mortimer and his troops are all but resigned to finishing fourth after their loss to Bathurst St Pat’s on Sunday. Photo: JUDE KEOGH 0601hawks2ORANGE Hawks’ Group 10 premier league minor premiership dream was dashed on Sunday as the two blues lost a tough battle to now competition leaders Bathurst St Pat’s.
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Typifying the close nature of the 2014 competition, the 30-26 loss that shattered Hawks’ nine-game winning streak not only cost the Orange side a shot at the minor premiership but also virtually eradicated its top-three chances as well.

Slumping to fourth after the loss, Hawks now sit three points behind St Pat’s and one point behind Mudgee and Cowra – the latter had the bye last weekend and was consequently gifted third place with Hawks’ defeat.

Hawks must beat Bathurst Panthers in this weekend’s final round to have any chance of sneaking back into the top three, but with Cowra scheduled to tackle the lowly Blayney Bears and Mudgee having the bye the two blues are all but resigned to playing an elimination semi-final the week after.

Two blues’ captain-coach Tim Mortimer was left to lament his side’s lack of discipline after the loss and highlighted St Pat’s line speed as crucial.

He went on to say his troops know exactly how much the defeat looks to have cost them, adding he hopes it will act as a catalyst for his side’s assault on the post season.

STORY: St Pat’s take top spot as they end Hawks’ winning streak

“Pat’s got up out of defence really quick. They make you really work hard,” Mortimer explained.

“Our discipline wasn’t too great so we ended up fatiguing ourselves … I know the boys are a bit sad, it’s quiet there in the sheds, all we can do is turn this into a positive for us.

“By round five or six we were in the bottom two or three … just to be in the finals is a great effort after that.

“We’ve had a good run and now it’s time to get our heads right for the finals.

“This might be a blessing in disguise.”

With Orange CYMS tackling St Pat’s this weekend Mortimer’s men will also somewhat handle their cross-town rivals’ fate.

If Hawks win on Sunday, CYMS hang onto fifth spot. If Panthers win, CYMS need a victory over the competition leaders to feature in the play-offs.

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Reynolds faces four week sanction

Josh Reynolds may not play again before the finals as the Bulldogs five-eighth faces up to four weeks on the sidelines after being hit with two judiciary charges following his brain snaps in the Bulldogs’ 41-10 loss to Brisbane on Friday night.
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Reynolds was not the only player to earn the ire of the match-review committee after nine players were charged. South Sydney’s George Burgess (two games), Junior Paulo (three) and Sam Tagataese (four) all face multiple weeks out.

Reynolds’ unravelling could still cost his team dearly, after the Bulldogs slid to eighth on the premiership ladder following four consecutive losses, and are in real danger of missing a finals spot. With 88 carry-over points, Reynolds will miss three weeks with an early guilty plea to both charges. He was hit with a grade-one dangerous contact with feet charge for striking Sam Thaiday, while his trip on former teammate Ben Barba had him charged with a grade two.

He was given a reprieve for his high tackle on Alex Glenn that resulted in his sin-binning. It is the fourth time Reynolds has been charged in recent games after facing the judiciary following Origin I. He had only recently returned from a three-game ban for a shoulder charge in Origin III.  Canterbury officials indicated following Friday’s game that they would consider fighting the tripping charge with the defence that he tried to grab Barba before striking him with his foot.

Reynolds felt he had let his teammates down. “I might have the nickname ‘grub’ but I don’t go out there to do those things,” Reynolds sad after Friday’s game.  “If anything, I felt like I let the boys down. It’s hard, if the fans feel like I let them down, then so be it.

“I don’t go out there to do it on purpose. Sometimes, the way I play, passion comes out the wrong way. I don’t mean to do that. I go out there to play my game.” The Bulldogs have until midday on Tuesday to lodge a plea.

The Rabbitohs have their own anguish, as Burgess is in danger of missing the next fortnight after he was charged with a chicken-wing tackle that forced Manly’s Steve Matai from the field. Teammate Issac Luke won’t miss a game for his part in the tackle, despite being charged with a grade one.

Luke said he spoke with Matai on the field after the tackle.

“I saw him go down and I tried to make sure he was all right,” Luke said. “He said he was sweet, so I carried on with the game. There’s no history between me and Steve. He is one of my countrymen. We love getting into each other. Me and Kieran Foran are the same.

“It wasn’t deliberate.”

Manly’s Josh Starling was also whacked with two grade-one charges, and faces one to two weeks on the sidelines. Carry-over points will cost Tariq Sims a game, while Tim Glasby and Dan Hunt will escape charges with early guilty pleas.

Judiciary charges:

–         Josh Reynolds (tripping, dangerous contact with feet) three to four games

–         George Burgess (unnecessary arm/shoulder pressure) two to three games

–         Issac Luke (unnecessary arm/shoulder pressure) zero to one game

–         Josh Starling (dangerous contact, unnecessary head/neck pressure) one to two games

–         Tim Glasby (careless high tackle) no games

–         Tariq Sims (unnecessary head/neck pressure) one game

–         Junior Paulo (dangerous throw) three to four games

–         Sam Tagataese (dangerous throw) four to six games

–         Dan Hunt (careless high tackle) no games.

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High cholesterol a killer in Blue Mountains

Residents of the Blue Mountains region and outer western Sydney are among the most likely to suffer from high cholesterol than anywhere else in the country according to a report released by The Heart Foundation last week.
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The geographical snapshot of cardiovascular disease (CVD) found the region – which includes the Blue Mountains, Penrith, Richmond to Windsor, and St Marys – had the highest rates of cholesterol in Australia at 57 per cent, meaning more than one in two adults have high cholesterol.

The region also had the seventh highest rate of CVD in Australia at 30.5 per cent, more than 29.5 per cent higher than the national population at 21.5 per cent, said Kerry Doyle, Heart Foundation NSW Chief Executive.

“We know that prevention is the key to reducing the rates of CVD in NSW.

“It’s more effective and less expensive than a cure which is why we are calling on individuals to take their health into their own hands and see their GP for a heart health check.”

High blood cholesterol is a major health concern in Australia.

Too much cholesterol in the blood causes fatty deposits to gradually build up in blood vessels. This makes it harder for blood to flow through, which can cause a heart attack or stroke.

According to the Heart Foundation the factors that increase the risks of serious problems associated with high cholesterol include smoking, having high blood pressure, being overweight or having diabetes.

The CSIRO is carrying out research to develop strategies for reducing cholesterol levels

For more details go to: www. csiro.au/Outcomes/Health-and-Wellbeing/Prevention/ CholesterolFacts.aspx.

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