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Without Prejudice


Without Prejudice by award winning wrtier Christos Tsiolkas
World premiere Street Independent
Aberrant Theatre in association with The Street Theatre presents Without Prejudice, two works by Christos Tsiolkas directed by Catherine Langman

A middle-aged man paces a police lockup. A young boy faces interrogation. Who gets to decide what really happened between them?
An ordinary family of Aussie battlers eagerly await the arrival of their new son, a war-orphan ordered over the Internet. But little Mohammed/Brad turns out to be not quite what they ordered!

Without Prejudice is a double bill of one-act plays, Carburettor and The Trauma Report, by acclaimed Australian writer Christos Tsiolkas (Loaded, The Jesus Man, Dead Europe). Carburettor, first seen in the 2005 hit show Six Pack, is Tsiolkas’ searing portrayal of a taboo relationship and its aftermath. In the surreal, comic carnage of his new work The Trauma Report, Tsiolkas turns the microscope on the terrorist in all of us.
By turns bitingly funny, menacing and tender, Without Prejudice brings an electrifying, no-holds-barred night of theatre to The Street.
WRITER Christos Tsiolkas
DIRECTOR Catherine Langman

Location Street 2
Preview Wed May 30
Season Dates 31 May – 16 June
Meet The Makers Tues 5 June @ 6pm

Young Followers


Young Followers by Mark Taylor. Photo by Silas
The Street Theatre and ANU Drama Department present
Young Followers
By Mark Taylor

It starts with kids in combat fatigues, crew-cuts, boots, belts, buckles and lots of spare time. One night the morals officer appears. Someone has taken their problems to the outside. The whistleblower, a rogue cadet, must be found. And everyone at school kicks downwards.

ACT Writer Mark Taylor visits The Street for the first time wrestling with the human motivations and power relationships at the heart of bastardization in military training in our Defence Force.

Kabu Okai-Davies directs this confronting production probing the ‘accelerated deconstruction’ of officer cadets, ritualised dehumanization in military training, and the power of the pack. Welcome to John Foster’s story. It’ll rip your guts.

Writer Mark Taylor
Director Kabu Okai-Davies
Lighting Design Jan Wawrzynczak

Preview Wed 23 May
Season Dates 24 – 27 May

Gungahlin's Weather is now guaranteed!


Gungahlin''s unofficial Weather Guru - Darren Giles
The WORD on the Weather .
by Darren Giles
Gungahlin Weather Centre

Gungahlin’s weather is now guaranteed!

The Gungahlin Weather Centre has been providing Gungahlin residents with a unique local weather service since it began operating from Ngunnawal, back in January 1998.

Over the years, the Weather Centre has grown to keep pace with the ever increasing population of Gungahlin (now nudging the 30,000 mark), and now provides live weather updates every 5 minutes via the Gungahlin Weather Centre web site (www.gungahlinweather.com).

The Weather Centre web site, which records all major weather elements including; temperature, rainfall, humidity, barometric pressure, wind speed and so on, also provides locals with a unique daily weather forecast, specifically for Gungahlin.

Gungahlin Weather Centre operator, Darren Giles, started the centre out of frustration of the lack of weather information available for Gunaghlin residents in the Canberra press.

The web site is visited by thousands of locals and visitors each month, and now there’s another good reason to log on and check it out – the Gungahlin weather comes with a guarantee!

Each day, the forecast temperature range for Gungahlin is posted on the web site. There’s a monthly prize on offer if the weather guarantee is broken. This occurs if the actual recorded minimum and maximum temperatures (when combined) differ from the forecast by more than 5.0°c on that day.

The monthly competition is open to everyone (not just Gungahlin residents). To join in the fun, register for the Gungahlin ‘Weather Guarantee’ today. Simply click on the ‘weather guarantee’ logo on the home page.

Epicorp incubating innovation


Epicorp is an information and communication technology commercialisation centre committed to turning great science into profitable business. The fund’s experienced managers help connect great ideas to market opportunities through the provision of seed funding and on-going business support.
From its inception in 2001, Epicorp has established its credentials as a successful centre of commercialisation excellence. Its high-value portfolio includes a number of investments spun out from quality Australian centres of research. Epicorp’s portfolio encompasses areas within ICT as diverse as media editing and wind resource assessment to broadband telecommunication and highly-precise global positioning.
Epicorp has a particular interest in the early-stage commercialisation of research from the country’s pre-eminent centres of innovation. Epicorp works closely with Australian’s major research institutions. The Australian National University (ANU), Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), National ICT Australia (NICTA) and the University of Canberra (UC) are all Epicorp’s owner members.

Epicorp is supported by an $4.57m, ITC incubator program (ICTIP) grant from the Federal Government Department of Communications, Information Technology and The Arts (DCITA), a supporting grant from the ACT Government, and the provision of buildings by CSIRO.

Epicorp’s objectives are to:

Create a strong high technology commercialisation system for the Australian Capital Region, under common ownership and management, involving the Region’s research institutions and supported by Government and the private sector;
Draw together the relevant resources and players in the Region;
Foster and support the commercialisation of technology and knowledge from ANU, CSIRO, UC, NICTA and industry within the broader Australian Capital Region community; and
Complement other commercialisation initiatives.
Epicorp delivers assistance to new-start and spin-off ventures in two ways:

Through the implementation of a tailored Incubator Program designed to assist businesses to commercialise IP; and
Through the provision of seed funding to suitable Epicorp incubator businesses.
Epicorp portfolio companies make a difference. They employ talented IT professionals, contribute to Australia’s ICT export balance and reflect global best practice in the areas of business management and corporate governance.

Intial enquiries regarding seed funding or incubator tenancy can be made to:

Business Manager
Epicorp Limited
GPO Box 2166
Canberra, ACT 2601

401 Clunies Ross Street
Acton, ACT 2601
61 2 6229 1700

Time for Disclosure


Due to a very successful debunking campaign since for over 60 years the words ‘UFO’, ‘Flying Saucer’ and ‘Extraterrestrial’ have invited ridicule, laughter, even harassment…until now.

With the Internet, Freedom of Information and a new generation of free thinkers, there is a rapidly growing movement to have world Governments disclose what they know about UFOs & ETs and to declassify the advanced energy production and propulsion technologies they have developed from recovered ‘flying saucers’, and yes they are very real.

“Not only has the alien secret been closely guarded, it has been ruthlessly enforced.” The Hon. Paul Hellyer, former Deputy Prime Minister of Canada.

Part 1 – It Doesn’t get any Better.
See the amazing 2 hour Disclosure DVD revealing the testimony of dozens of Government, Intelligence & Military witnesses who come forward to discuss UFO events and projects from their first hand experience.

With commentary by Disclosure Project founder Dr. Steven Greer, see current and ex-employees from the NSA, CIA, Pentagon, US military, FBI, NRO and NASA, plus private contractors working on ‘black-budget’ projects – Col. Phillip Corso, head of foreign technology, The Pentagon; Professor Ted Loder; Lt. Col. Charles Brown, USAF pilot, Project Grudge Investigator; John Callahan, senior FAA official (accidents and investigations); Edgar Mitchell and Gordon Cooper, former astronauts; Merle Shane Mc Dowel, US Navy, Top Secret SCI clearance, Zebra Badge; Brigadier General Stephen Lovekin, National Guard, JAG Eisenhower, White House.and many more.

This film is a great start for those who wish to bridge the credibility gap once and for all.

Part 2 – Guest Presenter from Queensland, Diane Harrison/Frola.
Internationally recognised UFO researcher Diane Frola is a positive and vibrant lady. Diane is editor of ‘Hard Evidence’ magazine and co-editor of the ‘Ufologist’ magazine as well as the National Director of the Australian UFO Research Network (AUFORN) which links the Australian UFO community and encourages the sharing of UFO information between groups. In 1998, Diane and her husband Robert Frola, started a UFO Free Call National Report a UFO Hotline: 1800 77 22 88. Diane has also appeared in TV, radio and newspaper interviews.

In 2001 she was invited to be the representative for the Disclosure Project (USA). She opted instead to start the Australian Disclosure Project in 2002. In 2003 Diane co-hosted the first ‘International Scientific & Metaphysical Symposium’ in Brisbane. In June 2007, Diane and Robert will host the 2nd I.S.M.S. Conference in Sydney.

“I think it’s long past time to open this up to the public.” Edgar Mitchell, Apollo astronaut.

Part 3 – The Implications and What we can do About it.
In the third part of this event we discuss some of the implications resulting from full disclosure, including – ending poverty, unlimited clean energy production, world peace, commerce, religious & spiritual, ending pollution, and much more. No politician will risk taking the lead on this. It must come from, indeed, it IS coming from ordinary people. Learn how we as responsible citizens can, and must, lead the leaders. Now is the time for disclosure!

TIME: 12:00 noon to 6:00 pm
COST: $60 includes light refreshments
VENUE: Om Shanti College, upstairs Griffith Shops, Barker St., ACT
BOOKINGS & INQUIRIES: Grant Robb, 0422 957 422

This event is not backed by any particular religious, scientific, political or other groups.



Presenting the inaugural Craft ACT Bingo Night. The only art game in town where anyone can win a prize. A night of Legs Eleven, 2 Little Ducks, 66 Clickety Clicks and where 1 Fat Lady will tempt all stamping enthusiasts to come and try their luck. Bingo and lucky door prizes of useful and perhaps not so useful things and a special mystery prize will all be up for grabs at Craft ACT’s Bingo extravaganza.

Saturday 12 May at 6pm till late

Canberra North Bowling Club / McCaughey Street TURNER

Entry: $2 / open to all Craft ACT members, friends and general public
Please contact Craft ACT for bookings



Craft ACT and the Canberra Contemporary Art Space present a compact half day seminar focusing on professional development for artists. This seminar is designed to provide practitioners of all levels with up-to-date information relating to the development and maintenance of a successful professional practice. Join professionals in their field as they share their knowledge and experience.

1pm – 2pm: Marketing and Promotion with Su Hodge, Director of Canberra Arts Marketing
2pm – 3pm: Internet Presence with Avi Amesbury, artist and Communications Manager of Craft Australia
3pm – 4pm: Retail with Heather Herring, Manager of Merchandising, National Gallery of Australia
4pm – 5pm: Grant Writing with Barbara McConchie, Executive Director of Craft ACT and David Broker, Director of Canberra Contemporary Art Space.

Monday 7 May at 1pm – 5pm
Craft ACT: Craft and Design Gallery, Lvl 1, North Building, 180 London Circuit CIVIC
Please contact Craft ACT for bookings 02 6262 9333

SERIES 3 – Conversations with Local Artists


3 nights of conversation and discussion revealing the stories of three Craft ACT Accredited Professional Members, focusing on each artist’s work and the benefits and influences of having a practice based in Canberra.

Series 3.1 – conversations with Bev Hogg, ceramic artist
Wednesday 2 May at 6pm – 7:15pm / Craft ACT

Series 3.2 – conversations with Paull McKee, textile artist
Tuesday 8 May at 6pm – 7:15pm / Craft ACT

Craft ACT: Craft and Design Gallery
Lvl 1, North Building, 180 London Circuit CIVIC
t: 02 6262 9333
Series 3.3 – conversations with Klaus Moje, glass artist
Thursday 10 May at 6pm – 7:15pm / Craft ACT

Craft ACT: Craft and Design Gallery, Lvl 1, North Building, 180 London Circuit CIVIC

Shared equity eases entry to housing market


12 April 2007


Chief Minister Jon Stanhope today announced a range of shared equity schemes to help people on low-to-median incomes realise the dream of home ownership.

The schemes are part of the ACT Government’s Affordable Housing Action Plan. They will be available to Canberrans in public housing and community housing, those in transition from private rental to home ownership, and first home buyers.

Shared equity schemes allow homebuyers to purchase a share of their home in partnership with a finance provider. Homebuyers are able to increase their share of equity as their financial circumstances improve.

“Flowing from the Action Plan we will see a range of shared equity schemes introduced into the ACT,” Mr Stanhope said today. “The private rental expansion program, through which we aim to introduce an additional 200-400 private rental dwellings to the market, will incorporate a shared equity element, with the potential for on-selling to eligible tenants.

“Community Housing Canberra, which the Government is helping to expand significantly, will also offer shared equity programs to eligible tenants. Housing ACT proposes to introduce a shared equity program for existing tenants on incomes of $50,000 or more. Eligibility for this program may broaden over time as Housing ACT acquires a range of affordable house and land package products.

“A number of commercial lenders have recently announced shared equity loan products and the Government will encourage more lenders to offer appropriate services. It will also seek expressions of interest from not-for-profit providers to introduce a shared equity scheme for eligible home buyers, particularly first home buyers. This will particularly benefit those who purchase the new house and land packages which were also announced today.”

Mr Stanhope said shared equity and land rent schemes offered genuine choice to those wanting to enter the market.

“Under this Action Plan, homebuyers will have the choice of shared equity or land rental schemes to ease entry into the market. Many will also benefit from the increased threshold for stamp duty concessions and from the greater range of affordable house and land packages,” Mr Stanhope said.

Statement Ends
Media Contact: Penelope Layland 6205 9777 0438 289 714 penelope.layland@act.gov.au
Paul Kindermann 6205 1690 0403 600 955 paul.kindermann@act.gov.au

Government, industry to join forces to deliver more private rental properties


12 April 2007


In an Australian-first, the ACT Government will join forces with institutional investors to significantly boost the supply of private rental properties, Chief Minister Jon Stanhope announced today.

The initiative is part of the Government’s wide-ranging Affordable Housing Action Plan.

“Today I announce an innovative and creative proposal to work with institutional investors to develop and rent between 200 and 400 private rental dwellings,” Mr Stanhope said today. “We have the land available and will shortly seek expressions of interest from the market with the aim of forming partnerships to package financing, tenancy management and asset maintenance services. We are particularly interested in receiving proposals that incorporate shared equity initiatives and eventual sales to residents.

‘We believe this is the first proposal of its kind in Australia and are keen to work with industry to bring it to fruition. It has the potential to be a genuine win-win, delivering a significant boost to private rental stocks at a time when the rental market is extremely tight, while giving investors an adequate return on their investment.”

The Chief Minister indicated the dwellings could be in a single development, or spread across a number of areas. To achieve mixed tenure, the overall size of the development or developments was likely to be in the order of 1,000 dwellings.

Mr Stanhope said with vacancy rates at 1.6% in the December Quarter of 2006 and the median rent on a three-bedroom house the highest in the nation at $330 a week, innovative ideas such as this were vital.

He said the supply of rental properties would be further boosted by significant growth in the community housing sector, with an additional 250 affordable rental dwellings over five years. Tenants would also benefit from additional support for tenancy advocacy services.

“These initiatives will significantly increase the supply of rental properties, providing greater access to affordable rental accommodation for moderate-income households, and ensuring that tenants’ interests are well-represented,” Mr Stanhope said.

Statement Ends
Media Contact: Penelope Layland 6205 9777 0438 289 714 penelope.layland@act.gov.au
Paul Kindermann 6205 1690 0403 600 955 paul.kindermann@act.gov.au

Land rent scheme opens door to home ownership


12 April 2007


Potential home buyers will find it easier to enter the market, thanks to a new scheme that will allow them to buy their home while paying rent for the land on which it sits, Chief Minister Jon Stanhope announced today.

The scheme, unique to the ACT and possible thanks to the ACT’s leasehold system, is part of the Government’s Affordable Housing Action Plan.

“This option will greatly reduce the cost of home ownership for those wanting to enter the market,” Mr Stanhope said today. “Land rent payments would be about a quarter of the mortgage cost of buying a block, potentially reducing their housing costs by hundreds of dollars a week.

“With the introduction of the new affordable house and land packages announced as part of the Action Plan, these costs can be cut even further – bringing home ownership within the reach of many more households on low incomes.”

The Chief Minister said the rent could initially be set at a concessional rate calculated to cover the development and infrastructure costs. Owners would be able to purchase the land from the Government at any time as their circumstances improved. If homebuyers sold the house, the ACT Government would contract with the new owner to take over the land rental agreement or to purchase the land.

“This scheme takes advantage of the ACT’s land leasehold system, and makes buying a home a possibility for many people who may previously have felt it was out of their reach,” Mr Stanhope said. “Many first home buyers will be able to take advantage of the land rent option and buy a house for the same outgoings or less than it would cost them to rent an equivalent house.”

Statement Ends
Media Contact: Penelope Layland 6205 9777 0438 289 714 penelope.layland@act.gov.au
Paul Kindermann 6205 1690 0403 600 955 paul.kindermann@act.gov.au

More affordable house and land packages on way


12 April 2007


The ACT Government is to increase the availability of new house and land packages in the $200,000 – $300,000 price range, Chief Minister Jon Stanhope announced today, part of a suite of measures that will give more Canberrans an entrée into the housing market.

The initiative is part of the Government’s Affordable Housing Action Plan, which was released today.

The Chief Minister said the Government would ensure that blocks in the $60,000 to $120,000 price range – well below existing market prices – were available, to enable an exciting new range of affordable housing options to be made available to Canberra homebuyers.

“We believe demand for this type of housing will constitute around 15% of the market over the next few years,” Mr Stanhope said today. “With the decline in household size and the growth of one- and two-person households, we expect the demand for stand-alone two-bedroom housing will grow. It is already one of the forms of housing most often requested by Housing ACT clients and is also popular in other cities.

“The Government is committed to high-quality design and will commission architects to design a range of examples of the new housing form. We will construct new demonstration villages and estates so that Canberrans can see for themselves what is possible in the way of truly affordable housing before making the big decision to purchase.

Mr Stanhope said the cheaper blocks and house-and-land packages would not affect the value of the investments made by Canberrans who had already entered the market. The blocks in question were considerably smaller – in the range of 200 to 300 square metres – and the homes to be built on the new, affordable blocks would differ in design and size from regular suburban houses too.

The Chief Minister said the initiative would also give investors who wanted to enter the market the opportunity to provide genuine rental properties for little more than $200 a week.

“This will open a new range of choices for both owner occupiers and investors, targeting areas of unmet need in the market,” he said.

Statement Ends
Media Contact: Penelope Layland 6205 9777 0438 289 714 penelope.layland@act.gov.au
Paul Kindermann 6205 1690 0403 600 955 paul.kindermann@act.gov.au

Multi-million-dollar expansion of community housing


12 April 2007


A $40 million injection of equity through title transfers and a revolving $50 million loan facility are highlights of a major expansion of community housing in the ACT announced by the Chief Minister today as part of the Government’s Affordable Housing Action Plan.

The initiatives announced today will see the stock of community housing properties held by Community Housing Canberra increase by about 250 within five years and 500 within a decade.

Community housing is typically rental housing for low to moderate income-earners or households with special needs. It is managed by not-for-profit community-based organisations whose operations are at least partly subsidised by government.

“Community housing is a small but important element of the housing sector, meeting important social needs and providing critical support to people experiencing housing stress,” Mr Stanhope said today. “The Government is strongly committed to seeing the sector grow so it can deliver a greater number of affordable dwellings to Canberrans on low incomes.

“To achieve this, the Government will help Community Housing Canberra (CHC) restructure as a supplier of affordable housing, building significantly on its current role as a tenancy manager. The Government has worked with CHC to develop an innovative growth strategy and financing model that will see it become a major provider of social housing in the ACT, serving Canberrans on low incomes who are generally not eligible for public housing.

“The model involves an injection of $40 million of equity, through the transfer of the titles of 135 properties currently managed by CHC; the provision of a revolving $50 million loan facility at Government borrowing rates, and ensuring the supply of land to enable CHC to meet future needs. The result will be an additional 500 affordable dwellings over the next five years, increasing to more than 1100 over the next decade. Of these, CHC will retain about 250 dwellings for rental over five years, increasing to 470 over 10 years. The remaining stock will be sold to fund future developments by CHC, adding to the overall supply of affordable housing and rental stock. CHC will offer eligible tenants the opportunity to purchase a share in their dwellings through a shared equity program.

Other reforms to community housing include a $3.2 million capital subsidy over three years. Some of this subsidy has already been drawn down. In addition, three quarters of the transferred stock will be redeveloped within five years and all of it within seven years.

“These are significant reforms which will transform community housing and help hundreds of Canberra families access affordable high quality rental properties,” Mr Stanhope said.

Media Contact: Penelope Layland 6205 9777 0438 289 714 penelope.layland@act.gov.au
Paul Kindermann 6205 1690 0403 600 955 paul.kindermann@act.gov.au

Bold plan to address housing affordability


12 April 2007


Chief Minister Jon Stanhope today released a comprehensive action plan to make housing more affordable in the ACT. The plan includes measures aimed at home ownership, private rental, public housing, community housing and supported accommodation.

“Access to safe, secure and affordable accommodation is one of the most basic of human needs, and the dream of owning a home is one shared by most Canberrans,” Mr Stanhope said. ” Changes in the housing market over the past five years, driven by sharp increases in demand, have made this dream more elusive for many Canberrans, and this has placed greater pressure on the private rental market and on public and community housing services. Today I announce a wide-ranging plan to help Canberrans at all points on the accommodation spectrum, from home-buyers and private renters to those in public and community housing.”

Mr Stanhope said the Affordable Housing Steering Group established last year had found that while the ACT performed well on housing affordability surveys, due to our higher-than-average incomes, the data masked the fact that some Canberrans were in housing stress. House prices had doubled in six years and the ACT currently had the lowest vacancy rates and the highest median rents in Australia.

The Government was making it one of its highest priorities to help those struggling to get their foot in the door of home ownership, or having problems securing appropriate rental accommodation.

Key initiatives in the plan include:

. new house and land packages priced between $200,000 and $300,000;
. regular englobo land sales;
. over-the-counter sales of affordable housing blocks;
. a major expansion of community housing that will deliver an additional 480 affordable dwellings over five years;
. an initiative to increase the supply of private rental dwellings by 200- 400 homes in the first instance;
. land rental and shared equity schemes, including for public and community housing tenants;
. targeted stamp duty concessions.

The Action Plan was developed in consultation with stakeholders. A high-level team headed by the outgoing Executive Director of the Master Builders’ Association, Mr David Dawes, will oversee its implementation. Copies of the plan are available at www.actaffordablehousing.com.au and Canberra Connect shopfronts.

Media Contact: Penelope Layland 6205 9777 0438 289 714 penelope.layland@act.gov.au
Paul Kindermann 6205 1690 0403 600 955 paul.kindermann@act.gov.au