After several years of Acting Directors-General, the WA Department of Indigenous Affairs finally has a permanent head in Patrick Walker, recruited from his role as Petrol Price Commissioner for the ACCC. But with Treasurer Buswell breaking up the Departments of Industry and Resources and Consumer and Employment Protection to create a new Department of Commerce, Walker is the top tip to head it. So what of DIA – yet another acting DG?

The way Defence are trying to get around the noise impact issue of the JSF is by separating the infrastructure Environmental impact statements from that of the aircraft itself. No point having approved the facilities and not approve the aircraft seems to be the justification … Australia has also paid for two JSF test flights to ascertain the noise impact. This is also a problem in the USA.

Airservices advertised for Retired Air Traffic Controllers to apply for a series of refresher courses. The closing date was the 8th August 2008 I understand they received in excess of 100 applications, there was talk of a six week refresher course and then field placement. I understand they have organised two en route courses for sometime in early and mid 2009 I find it difficult to understand that with the current staffing problems that Airservices did not fast track the re employment of the retirees.

The Federal Treasurer has, at the urging of Tabcorp, asked the Australian Racing Board to write a submission as to why corporate bookmakers should be banned from offering “tote odds”. Tabcorp owns only two of the three totes (the other being owned by Tatts) but offers the same “best tote” product through its new luxbet operation.

Peter Fray

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