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Mid North News

SILVER TINGE TO BLUE CORDIAL

A Nambucca Valley producer has tasted success with her first entry at the Royal Melbourne Fine Food Awards. Sandi Cleary from Blushing Blueberries scored silver for her traditional cordial, which was being sampled with delight at today’s Coffs Harbour Growers Market. Ms Cleary says feedback from her market customers helped her refine the recipe which features chemical free berries, sugar and apple cider vinegar. But her fine food award isn’t her only accolade – last year she won the Australian Institute of Horticulture’s student of the year award.

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CHEC LIBRARY UPGRADE

A $350,000 bequest by a much-loved Coffs Harbour identity has contributed to a substantial upgrade of library facilities at Coffs Harbour Education Campus. Students now have access to eight new study rooms, which are fitted with technology allowing the use of plug-in mobile devices. The walls of the rooms are coated in whiteboard paint with students encouraged to write on them for study purposes. The refurbished level two of the library also contains 18 new study areas with computers.

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URUNGA INFORMATION CENTRE TO CLOSE

The Bellingen Shire Council has voted to close its visitor information centre on the old Pacific Highway at Urunga. Council will now seek to lease the building to a commercial operator who will be required to provide at least some tourist information. The centre, which has operated for the past 20 years, has had a drop in visitors since Urunga was bypassed by the new highway. A spokesman for council says the new arrangement will operate on a trial basis.

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RACE FOR PORT MACQUARIE-HASTINGS MAYOR RAMPS UP

Candidates vying to become Port Macquarie-Hastings Mayor have had their final chance to sell themselves to voters ahead of Saturday’s by-election. Four of the five candidates took centre stage in Port Macquarie last night for a forum. Businesswoman Peta Pinson was a no show. The financial position of council, and concerns about the region’s roads, dominated discussion. (VISION ONLY)

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NO DOUBLE DUTCH FOR TRUE BLUE HARTSUYKER

His family has traded on their European heritage in Coffs Harbour for decades, but Cowper MP Luke Hartsuyker says he holds only Australian citizenship. Mr Hartsuyer says he has no worries about being caught up in the dual citizenship scandal which this week forced his Nationals colleague Matt Canavan to step down from the ministry. His father emigrated from the Netherlands in 1951 and was living in Muswellbrook when the federal member was born in 1959. The family later moved to Coffs Harbour and established the Dutch-themed tourist attraction, the Clog Barn. “My father is Dutch my Mother is Australian, was Australian, and as such there are no citizenship implications for me.”

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POLICE SEARCH FOR WANTED MAN

Authorities are searching for a wanted man believed to be somewhere on the state’s mid north coast. 35-year-old Leonard Hoskins is wanted on outstanding parole warrants. Police say he frequents the Coffs Harbour, Clarence River, Wauchope, and Kempsey areas. He is described as being of Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander appearance, between 165cm and 170cm tall, with a medium build, with black hair, black facial hair – possibly a goatee, and hazel eyes.

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PRIORITIES SOUGHT FOR CORRIDOR’S FUTURE

Users of the main link between the Tablelands and the Coast are being urged to have a say on shaping a better Waterfall Way. The State Government has released a draft strategy for the crucial transport corridor. It proposes both short and long-term actions to improve its utility, traffic efficiency and safety. Recommendations include more overtaking lanes, the introduction of safety barriers and improved drainage. The draft strategy can be viewed on the RMS website.

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