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e-BULLETIN No. 81 – 4 April 2011


Hon Editor, Dr Ruth S. Kerr



1) Release of


2) Libraries, Technology and the Future


3) Launch of NSW Archaeology On-Line


4) Cut in heritage programs at Commonwealth level


5) Queensland - special disaster assistance - floods and tropical cyclone Yasi


6) Local history - New South Wales - Cardiff Central Development - Bundarra near Lake Macquarie


7) Local history - Tasmania Launceston Historical Society Symposium


8) (advertisement) Affordable digital replacement for your old microfilm readers now locally available



1) Release of


On 10 March 2011 Special Minister of State, Hon Gary Gray MP, released the new site. It is available for exploration, access and reuse of the data available on the site. The release of public sector information in the form of datasets allows the commercial, research and community sectors to use add value to government data in new and innovative ways. contributes to the Australian Government's commitment to informing, engaging and participating with the public, as expressed in its Declaration of Open Government and Freedom of Information (FoI) reforms. It is the Australian equivalent to similar overseas sites such as the United States', the United Kingdom's and New Zealand's


Agencies such as the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Geoscience Australia, the Bureau of Meteorology and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) already release large amounts of data to the public. An important goal of is to encourage a broader range of agencies to release more data online.


More than 200 datasets are accessible through The release of replaces the beta site, which was developed for the Government 2.0 Taskforce's Mashup Australia contest in 2009. offers new features for both the public and government agencies.


Researchers can:

The site also offers:

Australian Government agencies have been encouraged to make data open and reusable for the public through AGIMO, in conjunction with the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner, is preparing best practice guidance to assist agencies with the technical aspects of publishing public sector information. Additionally, guidelines are being developed by the Attorney General's Department to assist agencies with licensing public sector information, with the goal of encouraging the use of open licences.


(Source: - 10 March 2011)


2) Libraries, Technology and the Future


A joint seminar is being held at State Library of Victoria (State Library of Victoria Conference Centre, La Trobe Street (Entry Door 3) on Thursday 7 April 2011 between 2 and 5pm by VALA - Libraries, Technology and the Future, in association with the State Library of Victoria and Public Libraries Victoria Network. It will focus on Libraries after the iPad and Top Technology Trends.


Public libraries around the world are redefining their roles and reinventing themselves to ensure survival in a digital world. The iPad is said to be the tipping point, a change that has been described as being as profound as the invention of the printing press.


Historical Society members and volunteers may be keen to hear about the likely future given the discard of books and journals in libraries currently.


The speakers are: Christine Mackenzie from Victoria's Yarra Plenty Regional Library on 'Libraries After the iPad', and John Blyberg from Darien Library in Connecticut on 'Top Technology Trends'.


The event is free, but you **must register** to attend.


(Source: – 11 March 2011)


3) Launch of NSW Archaeology On-Line


Drs. Sarah Colley and Martin Gibbs and the Archaeology of Sydney Research Group have proudly announced the launch of Stage 1 of the NSW Archaeology On-Line digital archive. This project, funded by a NSW Heritage Council (Department of Planning) Community Strategic Products and Services grant and supported by the University of Sydney Library, is a collaborative venture between university, government and industry partners to locate the historical archaeology grey literature of the Sydney area, ensure it is properly archived in sustainable digital format and make it available for research, teaching and the public. Stage 1 has focused on the pre-1995 (pre-electronic) material. Approximately 600 reports are now fully available, with a further 250 to be added in the coming months.


The digital archive website address is:


The contributors for Stage 1 are: Ian Jack, Wendy Thorpe, Judy Birmingham, Godden Mackay Logan, Ted Higginbotham and Annie Bickford who have provided access to their reports.


The archive 'front page' includes links to technical information on the project, the archive, copyright, and our inclusion policy. There is a feedback form available on the website, or email:


It was announced at the formal launch that the project has received further funding from the NSW Heritage Branch Community Strategic Products and Services Program to develop the site. Stage 2 of the project has specific aims to increase the functionality of the system and incorporate a wider range of image, database and other documentary resources.


This digital archive will be enormously valuable for historical societies and local historians.


(Source: – 29 March 2011)


4) Cut in heritage programs at Commonwealth level


The Heritage Division of the federal Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities Environment Department is to have its budget reduced by 30 per cent for the coming financial year. This is likely to result in 30 job losses from July and the cessation of work on projects. The division will lose $3.8 million, leaving $7.6 million.


The Canberra Times obtained access to an internal memo setting out funding cuts and likely job losses.


The Australian Heritage Council's work on assessments of new places for the National Heritage List will be drastically reduced from about 15 places to one and work on other assessments already under way will cease.


A government spokesman stated that the cuts are due to the Distinctively Australian and the Heritage Jobs Fund Programs lapsing.


(Source: Canberra Times 23 March 2011)


5) Queensland - special disaster assistance - floods and tropical cyclone Yasi

November 2010 – January 2011


Not for Profit Organisations


Grants are available from Queensland Rural Assistance Authority (QRAA) to assist non-profit organisations toward the costs arising out of direct damage caused by the November 2010 to January 2011 flood event in Southern and Central Queensland.


What assistance is available?

Grants of up to $25,000 are available to assist eligible organisations as follows:

Assistance under this scheme is not intended to compensate for loss of income.

Assistance provided is subject to future audit.


How can the assistance help you?

The assistance enables the organisation to cover the costs associated with cleaning and restoration activities including:

Eligible areas:

The not-for-profit organisation must be located in one of the local government areas affected which includes Brisbane City Council area.


Closing Dates:

Part 30 Category C grants up to a maximum of $25000 for non-profit organisations for the floods is 30 September 2011 [Section 311(2)].

Part 33 Category C grants up to a maximum of $25000 for non-profit organisations for Cyclone Yasi is 31 October 2011 [Section 354(2)].


(Source:; Rural and Regional Adjustment Amended Regulation (No.2) 2011, Subordinate Legislation 2011 No.21; Rural and Regional Adjustment Amendment Regulation (No.2) 2011, Explanatory Notes for SL 2011 No.21; Subordinate Legislation made by Governor-in-Council on 17 March 2011 and published in the Queensland Government Gazette 18 March 2011)


6) Local history - New South Wales - Cardiff Central Development - Bundarra near Lake Macquarie


Ferrier Hodgson, administrators of Pasminco Limited, are developing the old Sulphide Corporation's Cockle Creek smelter site for sale for light industrial businesses and residential allotments. The land release follows a seven year remediation program. More than two million tonnes of contaminated soil were removed. The century old research laboratory building is being restored for use as a historical museum displaying the site's history.


(Source: Australian 19 February 2011)


7) Local history - Tasmania Launceston Historical Society Symposium


At the Launceston Historical Society Symposium to be held on 16 April 2011 in the Meeting Room, Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, Inveresk (on the northern side of Launceston), Alexander Davis has declined and has been replaced with Dr Marion Walker. Detailed information about the symposium can be found in FAHS e-Bulletin No. 80.


(Source: Launceston Historical Society – 20 March 2011)


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