From lettuce to lobsters and everything in between, Harvard Farmers’ Market vendors dish on the fruits of their labor.
Areas in north Queensland, such as Townsville still represent good value according to Haesley Cush.I TRAVELLED up to North Queensland this week where many of the locals were still basking in the warm glory of the mighty Queensland Maroons win only a week ago.I started in Airlie Beach where the victory was a welcome reason to celebrate after cyclone Debbie had crashed into town soaking the green shoots that had just started to sprout in the real estate market following the resources boom fall out.From Airlie we drove to Townsville. It managed to dodge the Debbie bullet but with some hard industrial closures last year the town’s road back to recovery was one of the slowest in the far north.Surely any person interested in property is looking for the next big thing. So when I was talking to the agents in both towns I was digging for value or any indicators to help gauge what the next few months might have in store.In Airlie there are some really strong investment signs.More from newsMould, age, not enough to stop 17 bidders fighting for this home3 hours agoBuyers ‘crazy’ not to take govt freebies, says 28-yr-old investor3 hours agoThe signs are looking positive for north Queensland according to Haesley Cush (pictured).In most natural disasters there are usually two sides to the situation. The devastation of Debbie has meant an increase in jobs. Trades people are flocking to the town and there is a huge amount of work to be done to get the town back to its previous glory.The extra people coming to town, combined with a decrease in available properties (as a consequence of the storm damage), has seen rental prices increase.House prices have obviously been low in north Queensland in recent years. So these low prices when matched to low vacancy and rising rents are very good signs. These indicators should interest savvy and local investors looking to take advantage of the value.Property investment explained…Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 1:15Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -1:15 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD540p540p360p360p270p270pAutoA, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenProperty Investment Explained01:15Similarly, Townsville prices have stayed low. The only indication of market movement has come from a decrease in the days a property is on the market.Townsville currently has construction and jobs coming too. There is talk of the building of a new stadium, a solar plant, a battery factory, and staff for the Adani mining company and its associated work is starting to be recruited.While some pockets of Australia are significantly over stimulated, far north Queensland still represents great value and with the available work in many of the area’s towns, in my opinion it won’t be long before these regions start to see price rises.
…”Grave miscalculation” by top management – GAWUSugar production has slumped to its lowest in 25 years, and the Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU), while criticising the Guyana Sugar Corporation’s (GuySuCo) management for the state of the industry, has pointed out this is no justification for the non-payment of Annual Production Incentive (API).This was disclosed at GAWU’s end of year briefing where it was noted that 2016 was “a dismal year” which included many setbacks that affected the workers.GAWU’s General Secretary Seepaul Narine told the media that while production reached over 200,000 tonnes in 2015, this year’s numbers were the lowest since 1990.“Instead of sugar production continuing to climb from a high of 231,000 tonnes in 2015, it slumped to 183,652 tonnes,” Narine disclosed.He explained that problems in the sugar sector where heightened when the second crop took 18 weeks to complete, which is five weeks beyond its original stipulated timeframe of 13 weeks.Narine further pointed out that the 183,652 tonnes was a far cry from set target of 242,000 tonnes, which was affected by El Niño earlier this year.“Clearly there was a grave miscalculation by the industry’s top management and this requires a full examination given the context of Government’s inputs and various interferences,” the General Secretary said.However, GAWU stressed that attaining a lower target does not justify Government’s non-payment of the 2016 Annual Production Incentive (API) which spurred protests during this year. Workers had also called for increased wages.“When you had the lowest production in the industry in 1990 at 129,920 tonnes, workers were awarded five days’ pay and in 2013, when the production had been at a similar level, workers had also been awarded five days’ pay,” Narine pointed out.Alluding to the progress of the Labour Ministry’s interventions for conciliation talks between GuySuCo and the unions over workers’ API, Narine revealed that the matter was declared deadlocked.November 2016 was the first time in 64 years that API was not awarded to sugar workers. Additionally, in a statement issued by GAWU on Friday morning, it was noted that the non-payment of wage increases for 2015 and 2016 represented yet “another blow” to livelihood of over 18,000 workers across the sugar belt.“No Government, since our political independence in 1966, has ever been so unfair to sugar workers,” the statement noted.Other key issues the Union highlighted were sacking of 11 Demerara Timbers Limited (DTL) workers who were reportedly sacked for picketing at their employer’s head office in October and the denial of paid release by the Sugar Corporation for its workers to attend GAWU’s Congress.GAWU also lambasted Government’s commitment to collective bargaining in the public service, noting that many concerns surrounding de-bunching and various allowances are still “outstanding”.“Collective bargaining is but empty talk and trade unions are simply side-lined,” pointed out.Reflecting on the surprise 2017 National Budget that was approved earlier this month, GAWU is of the belief that some of the its imminent measures, especially through the categorised implementation of the Value Added Tax (VAT) on water and electricity, will only bring “great hardships” on the country’s “overburdened” working class. The Union while extending New Year’s greetings to all Guyanese cautioned that “hard times” are ahead for the country’s working class.
It was heartbreak for Wales on Wednesday, as they were knocked out of Euro 2016 by Portugal.Cristiano Ronaldo scored and assisted in four second-half minutes as Chris Coleman’s men were denied a place in the final. After live coverage on talkSPORT, the Sports Bar’s phone-in with Andy Goldstein and Jason Cundy had a passionate caller. A proud Welsh fan reflects on the tournament, where his nation exceeded expectations in France – listen above! Click here to download the weekly podcast for Andy Goldstein’s Sports Bar Best Bits from iTunes.READ MORE: Euro 2016 – How Wales players fared in the semi-final defeat to Portugal – including Gareth Bale, Hal Robson Kanu and co.