AWAs a thing of the past? Not at CrimTrac: Ad for The Deputy Chief Executive Officer … Support is a key member of the CrimTrac Executive and plays an integral part in shaping and implementing the strategic directions and focus for the Agency and in directing the achievement of its outcomes. The role provides advice and expertise with particular emphasis on corporate functions, finance, information technology and governance of the agency and its projects. The position also provides high quality strategic and operational advice to the CEO, the Minister and the CrimTrac Board of Management. Eligibility The successful applicant will be required to undergo a Commonwealth Security Clearance. Notes Total remuneration around $220,000 pa (to be negotiated through an AWA including salary, employer superannuation, executive vehicle, parking and performance pay).

SBS Independent. The website today seems to be under some “reconstruction”, which someone has foolishly posted live before complete. The description of SBSi’s commissioning practice is the pertinent part. SBSi has, since its creation in 1994, commissioned in two areas – drama and documentary. This very page of the website states that “SBSi has secured a significant niche in the Australian production arena. Its commissioned works have been widely recognised through film and television awards and acknowledged by broader community response throughout Australia and overseas.” However, scroll down the page today and you find the following: SBSi commissions feature films, drama series, animation, single documentaries, and documentary series. (Replace with: SBSi commissions … programs for broadcast on SBS Television. To find out more about each SBSi commissioning area please click on: SBSi Drama SBSi Entertainment SBSi Documentary SBSi Factual Entertainment) Clearly, the “Replace with” indicates a change is in progress, and none of the now four areas listed to “click on” yet have active pages linked. The removal of references to feature films, etc., and replacement with “programs for SBS Television” suggests that SBSi is about to abandon its successful history of working in partnership to commission features and documentary films, and to refocus on producing programs for SBS TV, including “entertainment” and “factual programming”. Doubtless this last category, which is distinguished from documentary, reflects the shift in focus at SBS and the appointment of Denise Eriksen. What this means for SBSi’s partnership with the FFC, or for the $7million p.a. Special Production Fund from the federal government for Australian features, is anyone’s guess. But the clandestine shenanigans at SBS obviously continue, and management seems determined to throw the baby out with the bathwater when trying to make SBS more “popular” (read, chase ratings). Certainly, SBSS needs rethinking and reorienting in the face of digital television and online competition, but why on earth are management messing with SBSi, whose commissioned programs have won over 450 national and international film and television awards, and almost single-handedly propped up the production of innovative Australian drama and documentary programs while commercials and the ABC have increasingly relied on imported English-langague programs? And, more importantly, why are they doing so under a veil of secrecy and misinformation?

Bathurst’s new Hospital obstetrics beds cut from 14 to 7 compared with old hospital bed allocation and no desk space for doctor to write up patient notes (plus 2 floater beds that are always likely to be taken up by emergency needs).

I live in Perth. On 9 Nov 2007 my niece was on the Qantas Perth-Sydney jumbo flight. Some minutes from touchdown on descent into Sydney, power was lost to all engines. She was in business class and felt it as a sudden ‘jerking’. The pilot subsequently informed passengers that this was what had happened and that they had managed to restart engines and the plane was now OK. The main reason for the message from the pilot seemed to be to warn and reassure passengers that when they landed they would see a large number of fire engines etc following the plane. The return flight from Sydney-Perth was cancelled. I don’t know how serious this incident was or whether it was reported on at the time. This week (coincidentally?) I heard a news report of a problem with the Perth Sydney jumbo service – it apparently had a priority landing in Sydney because of a ‘strange odour’ in the cockpit.

Re. Your article on the OzJet 737s, you may like to put a link on Crikey to this legendary series of reports. I think it has merit in that that it makes gripping reading for anyone interested in bast-rdry by big companies as well as flying. It took a very long time for Boeing to fix the rudder issue, which caused in flight problems for at least two 737s in this country, one flying over the Grampian for Ansett, and an Australian Airlines flight on approach to Canberra.

Peter Fray

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