ON THE 10th of February the Jacaranda Hotel held the wake for Tracey-Lee Schuhmacher.
We would like to thank all the local businesses, family, friends and general public for all their help in making the day a very special event for such an amazing, inspirational young lady.
The day was very touching and moving for all. Thank you to everyone who attended and helped make the day as special as Tracey-Lee was in her own way.
This has meant so much to Graeme Schuhmacher (Shoey) and family knowing they have so much love and support from the local community of Grafton now and into the future.
May your memories of Tracey-Lee live forever in your hearts.
Jodi Marshall, Scott Stephens, Grafton
Flash flooding risk
SO BILL Dougherty likes to show off his local knowledge (DEX 23/2) re schools being closed last Friday. I am sure he no longer has children at schools.
The weather bureau had predicted falls of up to 200mm, so I guess the problem was the chance of flash flooding closing roads during the day which could cause problems for children getting home after school. As a parent who lives out of town I was grateful for the decision.
It is easy to be wise after and the good news is no-one was hurt.
Election and gasfield
THE State Election is fast approaching. On March 28 we go to the polls again to cast our vote to decide who will run the State of NSW for the next four years.
In the Northern Rivers, the biggest political issue over the past four years has been the threat of industrialisation and destructive and polluting activities which inevitably accompany invasive gasfields.
We have fought to save our region - at Glenugie and Doubtful Creek and then at Bentley. The famous Bentley Blockade resulted in the suspension of Metgasco's exploration licence which was to allow drilling to a depth of 2.1km through the soils, rocks and aquifers of this beautiful and productive valley, so typical of the Northern Rivers.
It was the pressure exerted by the community on the NSW Liberal National Government which caused them to suspend activity. It was not an act of benevolence on the part of the NSW Government- without people-power the drilling rig would have moved in.
Over 95% of people in the Northern Rivers do not want to live in a gasfield. Tourism and primary industries in our region will suffer irreparable damage and our properties will become devalued and unsalable - who would buy a house in or near a gasfield?
Now is our chance once again to have our voices heard loud and clear - in NSW we have a system of Optional Preferential voting.
Under this system, numbering one box is permitted. However, there is a very good reason why this is not a good choice. If you do number only one box and your choice of candidate does not receive 50% + one of the total votes in the first count, your vote is "exhausted'" and you have, in effect, wasted your vote.
To ensure that your vote counts, you must number every box.
You do not have to follow the how to vote card of any political party or independent candidate.
You are the one who is allocating preferences. Your preferences are the ones that matter.
Who you vote for on election day is, of course, your personal choice. However, to vote for a gasfield-free Northern Rivers, you will need to give your LAST preference to the party who is least supportive of the community's clearly expressed wishes to remain gasfield free.
We want a gasfield ban, not a gas plan!
Rosemary Joseph, Bentley