Rural riches in little known suburb

first_imgThe Newman’s have just sold their property for $920,000 after buying it six years ago for $570,000. They say even though the property market is tough there is still money to be made. They also reckon Toonpan which offers a semi-rural lifestyle is Townsville’s best kept secret. This is Sharee Newman on the property.THE Newman family’s Toonpan home has become a property success story, selling for $920,000 after they purchased it five years ago for $572,000.Sharee Newman, who lives at 242 Mountview Dve with her husband and two children, says the sale is proof there is still money to be made in Townsville’s downtrodden property market.The family gutted the five-bedroom home during a five-month renovation to create a picture perfect homestead sitting in pride of place on 26ha.Even after completing a six-figure renovation, Mrs Newman said they had come away with a healthy profit.“When we bought it in 2012, it was a bit of a mess and they had renters here at the time,” she said.“It was on the market for a long time and we came back to look at it again and the renters had gone and they had cleaned it out but there was still a lot of water damage. “I was pregnant at the time and I just thought, ‘I can’t do this’, but the previous owners had all the right infrastructure in place so we went ahead and bought it.”The property was sold to a Townsville family with three children who want to be able to enjoy a rural lifestyle. Mrs Newman said well-maintained acreage properties were a rarity in Townsville and she felt that was why it sold for such a high price.“I noticed in Townsville that you don’t see a lot of acreage properties of this size where it’s tidy inside and out and I think there is a real lack of these properties in the market,” she said.“We had overseas interest, interstate interest and the rest was locals.More from news01:21Buyer demand explodes in Townsville’s 2019 flood-affected suburbs12 Sep 202001:21‘Giant surge’ in new home sales lifts Townsville property market10 Sep 2020“We’ve kept it well maintained and that’s what really attracted people and within three weeks we had an offer.”The home has a large undercover entertaining area and a six-bay shed, while there is also a dam, bore water, rainwater tank and a pet pig that will be given to the new owners. The dam has been stocked with barramundi and there is a bridge leading to an ­island in the centre of the dam.She said the home had been a rural paradise and they were sad to be leaving to relocate to Victoria. “We get turtles out of the dam that crawl up to the house, we catch barra out of the dam and you get kangaroos hopping about the place,” she said.“The bird life is amazing and you get storks that are as tall as me and they are like a jumbo jet when they fly in. It’s a great home for kids.”The southern suburb of Toonpan is arguably Townsville’s best-kept secret. It offers a rural lifestyle, large lots, mountain views and tranquillity. The suburb, off the Flinders Highway, mainly hosts owner-occupiers and properties rarely come up for sale.McGrath agent Karyn Voevodin, who sold the property, said the price was a reflection of the limited amount of quality acreage on the market.“I’ve got a number of buyers who are still looking for something similar,” she said.last_img read more

Laudrup plays down Everton move

first_img The Swansea boss is reportedly one of the contenders to succeed Moyes, who is to leave Goodison Park to take on the huge task of filling Sir Alex Ferguson’s shoes at Manchester United. Laudrup was linked with the likes of Real Madrid, Chelsea and Manchester City before signing a new contract to extend his Liberty Stadium deal until 2015. And the Dane re-iterated he will take the Welsh club into European competition next season. He said: “It is pure speculation, like when some of my players are linked to other clubs or when players are linked with coming here, so I don’t want to comment on it. I haven’t spoken to anyone (at Everton), I don’t have time I have so much work to do here.” Press Association He went on: “I don’t have dreams of going to other clubs, I live in the present. I don’t have dreams about what I am going to do in two, four or eight years because I don’t know, I live in the present. I’ve said so many times my intention is to be here so I can’t say any more than that.” Ferguson’s decision to retire from management after a remarkable trophy-laden 27-year stint in charge at United means Swansea have the honour of being the Scot’s last opponents at Old Trafford, and Laudrup does not believe Ferguson’s marathon tenure with United will ever be repeated. “You always know that one day we all have to stop, but it seemed Sir Alex would go on and on,” he said. “There were rumours a few years ago but this came out of the blue and caught us all by surprise, but it was going to happen and leaving after winning the title once more is the best way to go. What is unique with him is the time he has been at Manchester United. Twenty-seven years – even 10 years in other countries would be impossible. “Here there is Moyes, Wenger and Fergie (who have spent over 10 years at their clubs) and that can only happen in the UK. “In southern Europe there is talk of change after three years. To have five years at the same club is huge, so imagine 27 years at the same club. “What makes it special is that it is his last home game so I’m very pleased and proud to be his opponent.” center_img Michael Laudrup has dismissed suggestions he is among the favourites to replace David Moyes at Everton as “pure speculation”.last_img read more

Politicians, experts discuss immigration reform

first_imgAs Sen. John McCain walked into the USC Schwarzenegger Institute’s bipartisan summit on immigration reform, he stopped before a demonstration of about 15 students from the School of Social Work.Looking ahead · Sen. Michael Bennet (left to right), Sen. John McCain and ABC News Radio correspondent Ann Compton discuss immigration reform with USC students and faculty on Tuesday at the USC Schwarzenegger Institute’s bipartisan summit. – Ralf Cheung | Daily Trojan“Let’s keep families together,” the group chanted in rally of  support for comprehensive immigration reform.McCain (R-Ariz.) waved his hand and made his way into Town and Gown, the site of the four-and-a-half hour symposium that featured political leaders and immigration experts, ranging from former President of Mexico Vicente Fox to former U.S. Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez.The forum fell just weeks after a bipartisan group of United States senators, known as the Gang of Eight, unveiled a bill to address the nation’s 11 million undocumented immigrants. The proposal provides a path toward citizenship if border tightens. The legislation is expected to be voted on in June, Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) said at the forum.In his opening remarks, former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, and the institute’s namesake, said the Gang of Eight has “brought the chutzpah back” to Congress.McCain said he has lobbied Republicans by emphasizing the importance of immigration reform as not just the right thing to do, but also as a political necessity, during a panel with Ann Compton, a White House correspondent for ABC News Radio, and Bennet.“I also appeal to their base instincts and that is to review for them the percent of the Hispanic vote that we got in the last several elections, which is dramatically dropping,” McCain said. “If we don’t do this, you can’t begin the conversation with our Hispanic voters and all you have to do is the math.”With the event, Gang of Eight members McCain and Bennet continued to make the case for their reform proposal on the road.“The reason why we will be able to succeed here is because there has never been a coalition like has been assembled by this: business, labor, agriculture, unions, the Catholic Church, evangelicals,” McCain said.Though some have attacked the pathway to citizenship as “amnesty,” Bennet said that this facet of the bill was not as contentious as the debate to iron out a deal on agriculture workers.“Many people describe this as the most controversial part of the discussion,” Bennet said. “This was not the most controversial part of this discussion for the Group of Eight because there was general agreement, I think, that we live in a country where we don’t have a sub-class of people.During the question and answer period, some students expressed concern about how a pathway to citizenship might negatively impact the economy.Bennet addressed this issue by arguing that reform might, in fact, benefit the economic situation for American workers.“Compared to today, the fact that we’ve had 11 million people that are in the shadows in this county is not good for American workers,” Bennet said. “It definitely depresses wages if you have people working for cash or under the table — outside of the law.”The second panel, featuring Gutierrez as well as professors Dowell Myers and Pierette Hondagneu-Sotelo, discussed immigration reform, specifically as it relates to the economy.Myers said new workers must fill the positions that open when people retire. He noted that the baby boomers account for 60 million of all workers, or 40 percent of the workforce right now.“Over 20 years’ time, about 90 percent will be into retirement,” Myers said. “In the pipeline, we need reinforcement, and immigration is our secret weapon.”The forum took an international perspective during the third panel, which featured a conversation between Fox, who served as Mexico’s president from 2000-06, and Univision 34 anchor Gabriela Teissier.“Most of the discussion today has been inward — has been within the woods looking at the problems here — but a lot of things are going on around the world,” Fox said, noting rapid economic development in Asia and Latin America.Fox reiterated his position that building a wall carries the wrong message with regard to the U.S. immigration system.“Walls don’t work,” Fox said. “Walls, and again I say it with all respect, reflect fear.”He also emphasized that, though immigration reform will benefit Mexico, the primary aspiration is to close the economic gap between Mexico and the United States. This has already begun, Fox said, citing the faster growth of Mexico’s economy and salaries.“So sooner or later, that gap is going to unravel and I think that will be the best situation for North America,” he said.Mikey Geragos, former Undergraduate Student Government president, said the forum provided a glimpse into the process behind drafting a comprehensive immigration bill.“It was interesting to get a little more detail on the inner-working of the Gang of Eight, seeing what some of the sticking points were and how they overcame those,” Geragos said.Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and USC Trustee and former Congresswoman Jane Harman also delivered remarks at the symposium.Villaraigosa reported that one out of 10 Angelenos is undocumented and said that although the bill is not perfect, it’s a step in the right direction.“I learned a long time ago, don’t let the perfect get in the way of the good,” Villaraigosa said.Though students viewed it as an informative event, the day was not without a good deal of political humor.In his introductory remarks, Jack Knott, dean of the USC Sol Price School of Public  Policy, joked that he has his own agenda for reform -— to include a clause that immigrants can run for president.“Let’s please narrow it down so it doesn’t go crazy,” Schwarzenegger responded. “You have to be Austrian-born. You have to be a body builder. And you have to be an actor.”last_img read more

Zambia captain Katongo named 2012 BBC African Footballer of the Year

first_imgChristopher Katongo has won the 2012 BBC African Footballer of the Year award.The 30-year-old Zambia captain beat off competition from Demba Ba, Didier Drogba, Younes Belhanda and Yaya Toure to become the first winner from southern Africa in the history of the award.Katongo told BBC Sport: “This is a fantastic moment for me. I thank the people who voted for me. It is something I will never forget in my career.“This means a lot for the young people and the young players who look up to me. I could not have achieved this without the support of my team-mates.”The shortlist for the award was drawn up by football experts from every country in Africa, who based their choices on players’ skill, technical ability, teamwork, consistency and fair play.And a record number of people nominated their favourite online or by text message with just over 40% of the votes going to Katongo, who plays his club football in China for Henan Construction. While all the players on the shortlist have enjoyed a superb year, with four of the players picking up silverware, it is Katongo whose performances and achievements have been considered by African football fans to be the greatest.Katongo, who is also a soldier in his home country, was inspirational as he led Zambia to their first Africa Cup of Nations title in February.He scored three goals en route to the final of the tournament in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon and then struck a successful penalty in an 8-7 shoot-out victory over favourites Ivory Coast to lift the trophy in Libreville.It was an emotional moment for Zambia, who had suffered a tragic air disaster 19 years previously, when a plane carrying most of the national team crashed when only 500m offshore from Libreville, killing all 25 passengers and five crew.Seven months after leading Zambia to glory Katongo was again his country’s talisman, this time in a 2013 Nations Cup qualifying tie when he scored the only goal of the game in his side’s final-round first leg match against Uganda. And it proved to be a vital strike as Chipolopolo lost the return leg 1-0 but made it through to next year’s tournament in South Africa by winning 9-8 in another penalty shoot-out.In between those Nations Cup heroics, Katongo also provided the spark that lifted Zambia out of a difficult phase in their 2014 World Cup qualification campaign.last_img read more