Home' The Loxton News : March 4th 2015 Contents The Loxton News, Wednesday, March 4, 2015 -- 7
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DATE FOR A
The Riverland's Premier
IS COMING SOON
Zara Kay, daughter of Scott Johnston and
Leticia Kroemer, of Monash, was born at
the Loxton Hospital Complex on February
17. A little sister for Deejay, 1.
Time running out for rail line
by Pamela Perre
A local MP says the State
Government must either
push to get more producers
using the Mallee rail line,
or conduct major roads
upgrades to prepare for extra
traffic -- before its possible
closure in August.
The Tookayerta to Tailem Bend
line -- which almost closed last
year -- was given a year-long
reprieve by track owner Genesee
& Wyoming and user Viterra in
Member for Chaffey Tim
Whetstone said, with the cut-
off date fast approaching, the
Government must move to make
local roads safer.
"I spoke with Viterra about
whether or not they'd be signing
another agreement with Genesee &
Wyoming (to keep the line open),"
"But they won't be doing that
until July or August, so there con-
tinues to be that uncertainty about
whether the rail will continue.
"We need to look at new custom-
ers for the rail line."
Last year, the State Government
announced it would provide $2.3
million to upgrade the Karoonda
Highway, in the case of the line's
closure. However, Mr Whetstone
said more preparation was neces-
"We need to have the state and
federal governments look at a
long-term strategy about how they
are going to accommodate more
trucks on the road," he said.
A lack of customers may be the
least of the rail line's concern,
with a recent report revealing $700
million was needed to upgrade
the Pinnaroo to Tailem Bend, and
Tookayerta to Tailem Bend lines
to an acceptable standard for bulk
Mr Whetstone said the State
Government should take a "seri-
ous look" into the figure, which
was presented in the Freight Study
and Rail Operations Investigation
report commissioned by
Regional Development Australia
Murraylands and Riverland.
"$700 million almost makes the
rail lines unviable," he said.
"(While) I don't think any gov-
ernment is going to invest for one
customer, if the State Government
was serious it would look at other
options to have more customers on
Rose Justine, daughter of Jessica-Marie
Teague and John-James Kendall, of
Pinnaroo, was born at the Loxton Hospital
Complex on February 19.
McKenzie Ella, daughter of Ryan and
Donna Felder, of Loxton, was born at the
Loxton Hospital Complex on March 1. A
little sister for Nate, 4.
Police issues to be in the spotlight
Police and justice issues will
be in the spotlight next week
when a shadow minister visits
Loxton as part of a regional
Shadow Minister for Police,
Correctional Services and Justice,
John Gardner, will be in Loxton on
Tuesday as part of the two-day tour.
Hosted by Member for Chaffey Tim
Whetstone, Mr Gardner will meet with
a number of community members,
including local Neighbourhood Watch
He will also speak with stakeholders
around important issues within his
Shadow portfolios, such as domestic
violence while he is in the region on
Tuesday and Wednesday.
"I'm looking forward to meeting
with Riverland and Mallee locals to
discuss their concerns about public
safety and hear their ideas about how
services can be improved," he said.
"To gain a proper understanding of
issues it's always best to take the time
to visit and listen to those working at
"That's vital as we are both working
on holding the Government to account
now, and as we're developing policies
that will deliver better outcomes for
the people of South Australia into the
Mr Whetstone said many issues
around police, correctional services
and justice in regional areas are "vast-
ly different" to those in metropolitan
areas and he is pleased Mr Gardner is
visiting the region and speaking with
"The local community is pivotal
in assisting police to keep an eye on
neighbourhoods and helping to reduce
crime, so I look forward to John
being able to meet with people in the
Riverland and Mallee to discuss the
positive role local communities play in
public safety," Mr Whetstone added.
Shadow Minister for Police, Correctional Services
and Justice, John Gardner, will be in the region next
week, as part of a tour-day tour of the Riverland.
by Stephanie Gropler
The Senior's Information
Technology Trial iPad
classes finished last month,
with almost 100 local
residents taking part in the
The classes, which were ran
by local Ed Davey, began in
April, 2013, as a joint program
between the Loxton Waikerie
Council and Murray Mallee
Aged Care Group (MMACG)
and were designed to engage
senior rural Australians with
"It was a trial that we thought
would probably only last six
months. But, it started off in
April, 2013, and has gone right
through to nearly the end of
February, 2015," Mr Davey said.
"There has been a huge
amount of community interest
and that is why it has lasted so
The MMACG offered the
training opportunity to council
via an Australian Government
Department of Health and
The trial saw classes of five
to seven students meet at the
Loxton Public Library for two
hours each Tuesday for six
Mr Davey has tutored 15
courses and a total of 96 stu-
dents, with that number made
up of 23 men and 73 women,
with all participants retired or
"When one course finished,
another one started. It has just
been rolling on," he said.
Students were initially given
an iPad with internet access as
part of the trial. However, Mr
Davey said he saw an increase in
ownership of iPads.
"As the course and months
have ticked by, more and more
people have been coming along
with their own iPad because for
a Christmas present or birthday
present, their family has bought
them an iPad," he said.
"Some students were famil-
iar with desktop or laptops.
But, not many people had
much exposure to tablet com-
In the classes, Mr Davey
taught local residents how to
email, Skype relatives and
friends and "surf the internet".
Computing classes for seniors wrap up
At the final Senior's Information Technology Trial iPad class at the Loxton Public Library last month were (from left) Carl Vogelsang,
Ann Wachtel, Deidre Fogden, Ed Davey, Sarah Bruton and Mavis Gotts.
Tutor Ed Davey (left) instructs Sarah Bruton on how to use an
iPad in last month's final class.
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