WA Brekkie Blog | Thursday, April 20, 2017

Good morning. Here are your headlines from around regional Australia and beyond. Scroll down and refresh for weather, road reports and more.

Fisheries minister Dave Kelly with a shark barrier. Photo: Facebook.

Fisheries minister Dave Kelly with a shark barrier. Photo: Facebook.

ESPERANCE: The state government has come under pressure to reveal its plan to prevent shark attacks after fisheries minister Dave Kelly conceded drum lines would no longer be dropped to catch dangerous sharks following fatalities.

The fresh political row erupted after 17-year-old Mandurah girl Laeticia Brouwer was killed in an attack near Esperance on Monday.

In the wake of the fatal shark attack, the Mandurah community has come together to raise funds for the family’s expenses.

► NORTH DANDALUP: Following a crash between a car and the Australind train at North Dandalup crossing, community members are speaking up on railway safety in the area.

The driver escaped the crash, which happened around 4.30pm at the South Street and Lakes Road crossing, uninjured but it was a matter of centimetres.

WA: Education minister Sue Ellery announced today that Western Australian schools will not sit NAPLAN (National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy) online this year, after trials on the school holidays identified issues with the online platform. 

► BUNBURY: Melinda Schneider is on the hunt for a four-legged Bunbury star. Headed around the country with her show Melinda Does Doris: A Tribute To Doris Day, Schneider will be at the Bunbury Regional Entertainment Centre on Friday April 28.

And the six-time CMAA Golden Guitar Award winner is inviting dogs of all breeds to ‘pawdition’ for a starring role in the show. 

TOP SHOT: This awesome pic was captured by @daruquthniriza near Esperance, Western Australia.

TOP SHOT: This awesome pic was captured by @daruquthniriza near Esperance, Western Australia.

State of the nation

► Adelaide, SA: Horticultural grower groups in the north of Adelaide have come out in opposition to a local council’s proposal to lift rate charges for primary producers.

Queensland: Nationals Deputy Leader and Regional Development Minister Fiona Nash has outlined further plans to bolster the potential for decentralising government agencies and also pushing commercial businesses out into country centres.

In an address to the National Press Club in Canberra today, Senator Nash also revealed a new mental health initiative that’s a direct result of the recently convened Regional Ministerial Taskforce chaired by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

► Tasmania: The scrapping of Safe Schools in Tasmania could come at the expense of some of the state’s most vulnerable students, according to opposition parties

Education Minister Jeremy Rockliff announced this week that the government would not fund Safe Schools once federal funding for the program ran out this year.

► Morpeth, NSW: The assault on Berrsheba, a legendary battle in the First World War, was immortalised by Ron Marshall in his painting The Charge. The painting will be on display at Morpeth Gallery until April 23, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the battle.

The assault on Beersheba began at dawn. It was the first time the Australian Light Horse was used as pure cavalry, and it became history’s last great charge.

► Cessnock NSW: Mystery surrounds a man who was stabbed but refused to provide any details of the incident to police.

The man from Hunterview, in Singleton, presented to Cessnock Hospital at 10.15am Saturday with a 10 centremetre laceration to his torso.

Eye on the weather

What does it look like in your neck of the woods today?

World news:

Jakarta: Anies Baswedan is poised to become the next governor of Jakarta in October after one of the most bitter and polarising elections in the history of Indonesia's nascent democracy.

Two hours after voting closed Mr Anies had an unassailable lead over the incumbent, Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama, who is ethnically Chinese and Christian, following a peaceful polling day.

The election has been portrayed as a test of Indonesia's much vaunted pluralism and an ominous presage of the role sectarian politics could play in the 2019 national election.

 Beijing: Interpol has issued a red notice to arrest a flamboyant Chinese billionaire who has been taunting the Chinese Communist Party online and hurling accusations of corruption while living a luxurious life in exile in the United States.

Guo Wengui, aka Miles Kwok, is a Forbes rich-lister who shot to international prominence last month when it was revealed the 50-year-old was a member of US President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.

Faces of Australia

FOR 18 years, Darryl Sheridan has been teaching kindergarten children about the many and varied animals that are part of his mobile animal farm.

It was explaining the characteristics that identified his rainbow lorikeet, Polly, as a parrot to one inquisitive child that inspired his first published children’s book.

What was it about Polly that differentiated her from, say, one of the cows? Or from Lamington, the sheep? 

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On this day …

1862 The first pasteurization test is completed by Frenchmen Louis Pasteur and Claude Bernard.

1902 Marie & Pierre Curie isolate the radioactive element radium chloride

1920 Balfour Declaration recognized, makes Palestine a British Mandate

1968 English politician Enoch Powell makes his controversial "Rivers of Blood" speech.

1974 'The Troubles', the Northern Ireland conflict between republican and loyalist paramilitaries, British security forces, and civil rights groups, claims its 1000th victim

1980 Climax of Berber Spring in Algeria sees hundreds of Berber political activists arrested

1999 Columbine High School massacre: Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold kill 13 people and injure 24 others before committing suicide at Columbine High School, Colorado

2010 The Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explodes, killing 11 and causing the rig to sink, causing a massive oil discharge into the Gulf of Mexico and an environmental diaster