Owners Judith and Bob Little get excited after being anounced the 2017 Clarence Valley Business of the Year

YEAR IN REVIEW: Biggest headlines of August 2017

AUGUST 1: WARNING GRAPHIC: THE extent of Lynette Daley's intoxication at the time of a sexual act, which allegedly caused or played a significant part in the cause of her death on a beach north of Iluka, will be a key factor in the Crown's case against Adrian Attwater and Paul Maris.

Mr Attwater is charged with manslaughter and aggravated sexual intercourse without consent over the Clarence Valley woman's death, while Mr Maris is facing charges of aggravated sexual intercourse without consent and accessory after the fact to manslaughter.

AUGUST 2: A TRIPLE zero phone call made by manslaughter and rape accused Adrian Attwater has been described in court as "too little too late" and a "panicked response" to the death of Clarence Valley woman Lynette Daley.

AUGUST 3: IMAGINE waking up to 180-degree views of the Clarence River. They don't come up often, but there was a property for sale in Yamba that many could only dream of owning. However, river frontage like this comes with a hefty price tag.

Listed for $3.2 million, the property was the most expensive house for sale in the Clarence Valley at the time.

AUGUST 4: THE outcome of a recent RSPCA raid at no-kill animal shelter Happy Paws Haven may not be known until the owner next appears in court.

On Monday, RSPCA inspectors investigating a formal complaint about a concern for animal welfare visited the site on Tindal Rd, Eatonsville, to assess the condition of animals. It is believed no cats or dogs were removed from the site.

AUGUST 5: A FORMER coalmine worker who received burns to a quarter of his body hopes a penalty handed down to a mining firm will make the industry safer. Ben Nelson used to love working in coalmines, Brisbane Magistrates Court heard, but after he was engulfed in flames in a 2012 Collinsville accident, it was "physically and mentally impossible" for him to go back.


AUGUST 7: OWNERS of SPAR Maclean Bob and Judith Little were over the moon at being announced the 2017 Clarence Valley Business of the Year.

"We couldn't do it without our staff. They are our greatest asset," Mr Little said after accepting the award at the Clarence Valley Business Awards in Yamba on Saturday night.

AUGUST 8: POLICE say officers who shot and killed a man during a confrontation on a Grafton street were "textbook" in their response.

NSW Police have erected a crime scene on North St, Grafton following an alleged shooting incident.
NSW Police have erected a crime scene on North St, Grafton following an alleged shooting incident. Matthew Elkerton

Three officers - a sergeant and two constables - were involved in the stand-off with 45-year-old Grafton man Christopher McGrail after they were called to a disturbance at a unit on Turf St just before 3.45pm on Sunday.

Northern Region Commander and Assistant Commissioner Max Mitchell said during a press conference outside Newcastle Police Station at 11am yesterday that police deployed OC spray and a Taser before the officer shot the deceased.

AUGUST 9: ANYONE who has owned a pet will know it can be harder to find rental accommodation, but Steven Nicholls knows this better than most.

Finding a permanent and affordable place to stay for him and his best mate, a red kelpie called Ozzy, proved so difficult it led to a 15-month stint sleeping in his car or a tent. Everywhere he applied for accommodation he was turned down, many times because they didn't allow pets, but getting rid of Ozzy just wasn't an option.

AUGUST 10: A MAN facing multiple charges including kidnapping and assault has been extradited from Grafton and taken to Brisbane Watchhouse.

Detectives from Brisbane's Acacia Ridge Criminal Investigation Branch sought extradition following investigations into the alleged kidnapping of a woman at Darra.

AUGUST 11: THE friend of a man whose Toyota Prado was stolen from a Grafton Base Hospital carpark has thwarted the car thief's plans to use the vehicle as his own.

Grafton man Stephen Fuller, 46, was sentenced to six months' jail in Grafton Local Court over the theft of the vehicle, as well as stealing a phone and cards from a nearby house.

AUGUST 12: A MAN has been charged with dangerous driving causing death over a horrific crash in June which resulted in the death of a Nana Glen man.

Bradley Wilson, 23, was the passenger of a Holden Commodore which left the road and crashed into a tree on the Orara Way about 8.50pm on Saturday, June 3.

The 46-year-old male driver, who was believed to be related to the victim, received minor injuries and was taken to Coffs Harbour Health Campus for mandatory blood and urine tests. Police from the Mid North Coast Crash Investigation Unit started inquiries, which resulted in charges being laid at 4.30pm on Thursday.

AUGUST 14: MARTY Wall watched from his camp site in a clearing near Station Creek Rd as horse trailers rolled in on Saturday morning.

Each person was greeted with a handshake and thanks, and then left to gather their horses. Locals and interstate travellers alike, young and old, some with horses, others with bikes and some even setting out on foot to help find Marty's father's horse, Ben.

Search for missing horse Ben in Yuraygir National Park.
Search for missing horse Ben in Yuraygir National Park. Rachel Vercoe

The bid to find Ben, who has been lost in the national park near Station Creek since the tragic death of his rider Allan Wall last week, has captured the attention of the community after a social media post asking for assistance to find the still-saddled horse went viral.

AUGUST 15: NORTH Coast Football has cracked down on a Yamba junior soccer team playing a Down syndrome boy as its 12th man. For two years, the Yamba under-14s have played Marc Stillhard as a 12th player, despite the rules of the game stipulating a maximum of 11 players a side can be on the pitch at one time.

Marc's mother Enid Reichler-Stillhard said for two years teams in the competition had been willing to waive the rule, allowing Marc to play a full game as a 12th player, without disadvantaging his team.

Marc Stillhard high fives and opposition coach as he leaves the field after a game of football with the Yamba under-14 team.
Marc Stillhard high fives and opposition coach as he leaves the field after a game of football with the Yamba under-14 team.

But that situation has changed following a complaint to the organising body, North Coast Football, which has issued a statement stipulating all games must be played with 11-a-side teams.

AUGUST 16: ROBERT Black and Josh Allen were outgoing, bright young men, both into sport, popular in the community, even a bit cheeky.

Both were diagnosed with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, a brain stem glioma, and in a little over a year the 21-year-old and 16-year-old were gone.

AUGUST 17: THE safety net is wearing thin at Clarence Valley Council, with the Grafton depot contingency budget dwindling.

In a report presented at Tuesday's council meeting, it was detailed there was only $30,045 left in the contingency budget for dealing with ground works and ground conditions.

AUGUST 18: PASSIONATE pleas were heard in the Maclean Council Chambers as councillor Jason Kingsley called on his counterparts to remember the work that had gone into the redevelopment of Jacaranda Park.

The painstakingly long and in-depth planning process to create a playground that was inclusive of all children has come to an end.

AUGUST 19: THEORETICAL numbers have caused Clarence Valley Council's long-term financial plans to hit a stumbling block. The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal has requested the council change its estimated rate pegging of 2 per cent to 2.5per cent in its application for a special rate variation.

General manager Ashley Lindsay says while this won't change anything for the years council has an SRV in place, it could affect rates after the SRV finished.

AUGUST 21: WHILE Clarence Valley firefighters tackle the first big blazes of the season, flames are being fanned over fears a restructure within NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service will leave our national parks at greater risk of a bushfire tragedy.

The government department, however, says the restructure will result in more staff on the front line.

AUGUST 22: THE FIRST sods have been turned on a multi-million dollar infrastructure project which will one day house the fourth-largest community in the Clarence Valley.

Serco CEO Mark Irwin, Minister for Planning Anthony Roberts, Luke Grant from Corrective Services NSW, Minister for Corrections David Elliot, State Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis and NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro turn the first sods for the new Graqfton jail at Lavadia.
Serco CEO Mark Irwin, Minister for Planning Anthony Roberts, Luke Grant from Corrective Services NSW, Minister for Corrections David Elliot, State Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis and NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro turn the first sods for the new Graqfton jail at Lavadia. Clair Morton

Minister for Corrections David Elliot was among those who travelled to the site of the planned Grafton Correctional Centre for the ceremony.

AUGUST 23: THE Clarence Valley was mourning a man who died in a single-car rollover at Junction Hill yesterday. The 24-year-old victim, who has not yet been named, was a passenger in the rear seat of a Holden Astra that left Back Lane and struck a drain at about 12.45am.

Paramedics attended and treated him but he was trapped and died at the scene.

AUGUST 24: A CLARENCE Valley woman found guilty of the serious neglect of "starving" horses at her Buccarumbi property will be sentenced next month.

Rosalie Smith appeared unrepresented during a Grafton Local Court trial, which continued yesterday, over one charge each of aggravated cruelty upon an animal and failure to provide proper and sufficient food and nutrition, and two counts of failure to provide veterinary treatment, one relating to parasitic infection.

AUGUST 25: A REVELATION that more than $40million would be needed to bring the Clarence Valley's local roads up to scratch has renewed calls by the NRMA and Clarence Valley Council for funding support.

The NRMA released its annual Funding Local Roads report, which showed a $1.96billion funding backlog was needed to bring NSW's local roads up to a satisfactory condition.

The report found the north coast accounted for nearly a quarter of that deficit, with the Clarence Valley coming fifth on the list of north coast councils requiring the most money, at $43.68million.

AUGUST 26: THE future of hundreds of Pacific Highway workers is in limbo after a primary contractor, Ostwald Bros, abandoned the project.

Ostwald Bros was contracted by tenderer Seymour Whyte Constructions to carry out early works on the Grafton bypass between Glenugie and Tyndale. But yesterday, deserted machinery was all that remained at the worksites. The Daily Examiner has been told as many as 200 highway workers have already lost their jobs.

AUGUST 28: A CRASH in the Clarence Valley on Saturday morning has ended in tragedy for a 44-year-old man.

Just before 8am, emergency services were called to the Pacific Highway, Cowper, after a two-vehicle collision. A Holden Colorado utility and Ford utility crashed head-on, resulting in the Ford driver's death. In the Holden, the male driver and female passenger, both 19, were treated at the scene.

AUGUST 29: A MOTORCYCLIST died after a Holden Commodore ploughed into his bike at Waterview Heights. Preliminary investigations suggest the 60-year-old motorcyclist was travelling west on the Gwydir Highway when his bike was struck by a blue Holden Commodore turning from the highway onto Hillview Dr.

The rider was ejected from his motorcycle and landed almost 40m from the collision. He died on the way to hospital.

AUGUST 30: WITH NO space left to grow in its current location, it's time for a new high school in the lower Clarence, according to a new group.

The New High School For Lower Clarence collective is asking the community to lobby government about the urgent need for a new purpose-built facility at a new location, equipped with the latest teaching resources and facilities.

AUGUST 31: THE NEXT stages of the Pacific Highway upgrade are running on schedule, according to Transport Minister Darren Chester.