Fees way too steep
I'm a mobile food business operator from the ACT who attends various festivals, markets, other events and shopping centre pop-up shops throughout the ACT and NSW.
I'm interested in having a stall in the Shoalhaven. However, the fees from the Shoalhaven City Council (SCC) are the highest in the region and, as such, it is very discouraging. The NSW Food Act doesn't provide for an actual licence fee. Thus, councils can charge for licence application fees and inspection fees. I don't have a problem with that. What I object to is the cost of an application fee. The SCC charges a non-refundable $239. That is totally out of step with surrounding councils.
The application licence fee from surrounding councils is as follows: Kiama, $95; Shellharbour, $115; Wollongong, Nil; Wingecarribee, Nil; Eurobodalla, Nil; and Queanbeyan-Pelarang, Nil.
For what reason does Shoalhaven City Council charge so much for an administrative assessment?
I offer low-risk, pre-packaged foods (I am not a manufacturer). The fees charged by SCC are exorbitant, do not encourage business and are totally outrageous.
A. Rigg, Gungahlin ACT
The heat is on
The Bureau of Meteorology’s annual report showed Australia posted its third warmest year on record in 2017, with NSW enduring its hottest year since records began.
NSW is now experiencing climate disruption with more heatwaves, bushfires and rising sea levels on the way.
There is clear evidence changes in our climate are happening more quickly than previously thought and there is increased urgency for climate action.
The recent heatwave is what our future feels like if we don't stop burning coal and move rapidly to 100 per cent renewable energy.
We’ve seen this state government move rapidly and decisively when it’s acting in its own interest to build a new motorway or privatise yet another state asset. Now we need the same sense of urgency and purpose to restore a safe climate.
J. Field, Greens MP
Pets suffer in heat
It’s hot and getting hotter. While we struggle to cope, let’s not forget our companion animals.
PETA receives reports every year about animals who suffer horrifying deaths during the summer months. Never leave an animal in a parked car in warm weather, even for short periods with the windows slightly open. On even a 30-degree day, the temperature inside of a car parked in the sun can reach 54 degrees in just minutes.
Dogs need their exercise, but in summer, it's best to do that early in the morning. Think about the surfaces they will be treading and try to walk on grass or in the shade. You have shoes; they do not. Make sure they don't pick up any dropped food – it spoils fast in hot weather. Avoid exercising in the heat of the day – some dogs will keep running until they go into heatstroke. Dogs can also get sunburnt, particularly if they are pale in colour or like to bake their tummies. You can use sunscreen, but not the ones with zinc or salicylates as they can be toxic if licked.
D. Bellamy, PETA Australia
Our cops are tops
A big thank you to the wonderful police officers on duty on the weekend in Bomaderry at about 3am. Thank you for rescuing my silly dog who escaped the yard during the storm. Rather than stay safe and warm in our home, she preferred to run away and then wander the streets. We searched for her until about 1am. It is as important to thank you for all the small things that you do along with the major crime issues that you deal with daily. That is why we appreciate you so much.