“Wimmera paramedics will quit”: Ambulance Employees Australia rejects State Government pay offer

Wimmera paramedics fight for a pay rise in January. Picture: PAUL CARRACHERAMBULANCE Employees Australia state secretary Steve McGhie believes Wimmera paramedics will quit en masse if the State Government’s proposed changes to work conditions are successful.

The government released a revised pay offer on Wednesday.

Ambulance Employees Australia and the State Government have been locked in a pay dispute for about two years.

Much of the impasse has involved the government’s proposed changes to work conditions, including forcing staff to do shift relief work.

Mr McGhie said people would quit if they were forced to move anywhere in the state for up to a month at a time.

“The government wants the power to uproot paramedics from their home base to send them anywhere in the state for anything from a single shift to a month at a time,’’ he said.

“This is one of the strings attached to the offer the government did not talk about.

“The disruption this poses for families, and the health and safety issues around extensive travel after long shifts at work, make this completely unworkable.’’

Mr McGhie said paramedics in Melbourne could work that way because of reasonable distances.

But he said it was impractical and dangerous in rural Victoria.

Mr McGhie also talked down a $3000 sign-on payment in the revised offer.

The previous offer was a $1500 sign-on payment.

Mr McGhie said the State Government and Premier Denis Napthine had shown arrogant contempt and disregard for paramedics by calling it an upgraded pay offer.

“What he doesn’t let on is that paramedics have not had a pay rise for almost three years, and the payment is to cover the lack of back pay,’’ he said.

“Apart from that there is nothing new here, but there’s a lot that’s rotten.

“This offer is a con, a sleight of hand.

“The sign-on payment was $1500 November last year. It’s been topped up to give the appearance of something generous when it’s not.

“It’s the same contemptuous approach we’ve had all along.”

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Robbery at Rydalmere service station

Two men are facing court after an overnight robbery at a Rydalmere service station at the weekend.

About 9.30pm Sunday, two males entered the Victoria Road business.

One of them threatened the console operator with a firearm and demanded money.

The console operator has given them cash and cigarettes.

The two males left the service station and were last seen travelling west along Victoria Road towards James Ruse Drive in a Ford Falcon.

No shots were fired and there have been no reports of injury, ’

Police patrolling an industrial area on Briens Road at Northmead spotted a car, matching the description of the Falcon, in an underground car park.

Two men, aged 21 and 18, were arrested without incident. Police located cartons of cigarettes and a loaded firearm in a nearby room.

Both were taken to Parramatta Police Station and charged with robbery whilst armed and refused bail. They will appear in Parramatta Local Court later today

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Parkes High School tennis girls in final eight of statewide competition

Parkes High School Girls tennis team members, from left, Hannah Potts, Yasmin Potts, Maddison Potts, Bec Kiley and Phoebe Potts will travel to the Combined High Schools State Tennis carnival in Gunnedah today. subThe Parkes High School Open Girls tennis team is travelling to Gunnedah today to play in the Combined High Schools State Finals tomorrow and Wednesday.

In what could be a first for Parkes, four local sisters will represent their local high school team at the same time in the state-wide high school finals.

The five girl team includes Bec Kiley, Maddison Potts, Yasmin Potts, Hannah Potts and Phoebe Potts.

The girls will compete as one of the top eight teams in NSW after a wonderful effort in the preliminary rounds.

The team secured its place in the final following convincing wins over Orange and Bathurst, culminating to a nail-biting encounter and subsequent win over a strong West Wyalong line-up last term.

Ace tennis coach Helen Magill was impressed with the win.

“The match against West Wyalong was a cracker,” Helen said.

“It went down to the last match and a final set tie-breaker as to who would go through.

“The girls kept it together and played some really great shots at important times to get the win.

“They thoroughly deserved it,” she said.

The girls finished as Combined High Schools Western Region champions and will be flying the Parkes High School flag in the prestigious Floris Conway Cup at Gunnedah.

They will participate in both singles and doubles matches at the tournament.

The team are supported and supervised courtside by team manager, Science department head teacher, and local tennis player Mr Andrew Pigram.

Maddye (Year 12), Bec (Year 11), Yasmin (Year 9), Hannah (Year 7) and Phoebe (Year 7) will compete against teams from across the Sydney metropolitan area, regional New South Wales, and the state’s north and south coasts.

Many of the schools involved in the finals will be Sports High Schools from throughout NSW.

The girls have maintained a long association with Parkes Tennis Club and have been continually supported in their sporting endeavours by Helen Magill.

“I have been lucky enough to be involved with developing these five girls’ games over the years,” Helen said.

“They are a credit to their school, Parkes Tennis Club and the town in general.

“The girls all have different strengths and play very different games.

“I am sure they will put in a strong performance this week,” she said.

Gunnedah look most likely to be the team to beat with two of their players competing in junior International Tennis Federation tournaments played worldwide.

Four of the Parkes team will represent Western Region later this term.

Bec, Yasmin, Hannah and Phoebe were all selected while Maddye would likely have been selected too.

She decided not to nominate as to concentrate on school and work commitments.

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MH17 tragedy: Former Bermagui teacher remembered fondly

Retired Illawarra teachers Carol and Michael Clancy. Photo supplied.ILLAWARRA MERCURY: TRIBUTES FLOW FOR CLANCYS

WHILE the tragedy of MH17 continues to resonate around the world, it has also struck closer to home with news a former teacher at Bermagui Primary School is among the dead.

Michael Clancy taught at Bermagui in the early 1980s and former students and colleagues remember him fondly as a dedicated teacher and community member.

Mr Clancy and his wife Carol, also a former teacher, were returning from a dream European holiday to celebrate the Albion Park deputy principal’s retirement, when MH17 was shot out of the sky over eastern Ukraine.

The news has been met with outpourings of grief and disbelief right along the South Coast and much further afield as former students paid tribute to an “extraordinary educator”.

Former students, parents and friends have paid tribute online to Mr Clancy and his wife, Carol, who was also a teacher.

They recalled a kind and humble man who always greeted parents and students with a smile and by name as he hurried through the school grounds.

Many remembered Mr Clancy as the one teacher who made an impact on their life and ensured no child ever felt invisible.

By all accounts, he was a caring, dedicated teacher who made learning fun and who, at lunchtime, was hard to beat at handball.

Edith Blacka lived in Bermagui all her married life, around 50 years, and taught at the school “almost forever”.

“He was one of the best teachers you could get at a school,” Ms Blacka said.

“He was a very dedicated person, a dedicated teacher and a dedicated community member.

“It is such tragic news.

“Anyone in Bermagui who knew him would remember him fondly.

“I guess every part of Australia is feeling like us now – I can’t imagine what the families are going through.

“It really brings it close to home that it doesn’t matter where we live.”

Bermagui’s Errol Masterson also remembers Mr Clancy fondly, particularly for his dedication to the community through groups such as Apex, as well as a former teacher of his son.

“He was involved in everything and a ball of fun,” Mr Masterson said.

“He was a real live wire and enjoyed a joke with everyone.

“We just can’t believe it.

“It hits you and you don’t realise living in a small country town – when you hear about tragedies like this, you think it doesn’t happen here.

“He was such a great bloke.”

MH17 victims’ son says he does not blame airline for flight path

Albert and Maree Rizk (at right) with their travelling companions Sue and Ross Campbell.James Rizk, son of MH17 victims Albert and Maree Rizk, has said he does not blame Malaysia Airlines for flying over the Ukraine despite warnings it was an unsafe conflict zone.

”I have no problem at all with Malaysia Airlines, it’s not like they wanted it to happen,” Mr Rizk said on radio station Triple M.

Mr Rizk, 22, said his parents’ friends Ross and Sue Campbell, who travelled with them in Europe, had travelled the ”exact same route a few hours before” on a different plane.

”It is just life, it is just luck, it is surreal. You cannot blame anyone for this except the people who did it,” he said.

”I am not big into politics or anything like that but obviously somebody is to blame for this sort of stuff,” he said.

He learnt of the tragedy after waking at about 6am on Friday and finding a series of text messages and a call from a friend who said he should turn on the television to see the news.

At first he was not even sure of his parents’ flight number. He then got in touch with their travelling companions who confirmed they were due to be on the flight. A call to federal authorities confirmed the grim news that they had boarded the plane. Mr Rizk, who worked with his father in the real estate business, and his sister Vanessa, who works in community services, had been surrounded by friends and family since they heard the news. He said the federal government had flown family members from Queensland to be with them.

”We haven’t really spent a moment alone. That’s what we want, that’s what we need. We understand it has changed our lives forever,” he said.

Mr Rizk said he had prepared himself for a long wait for his parents’ bodies but was avoiding watching television coverage of the crash site.

He said they had cancelled their parents’ credit cards after they became aware of looting in the fields where the plane was shot down.

Mr Rizk gave a tribute to both his parents on radio and asked that they be left by other media to deal with the family tragedy.

“My mother was a loving person and took care of anything that anyone ever wanted,” Mr Rizk said.

He spoke of his grandfather’s wife, Kaylene Mann, who has suffered a double tragedy with the loss of her brother, Rod Burrows, in the disappeared flight MH370. Mr Rizk said she and her family were ”reliving” the tragedy.

He said his father Albert was born in Egypt and arrived in Australia as a four-year-old. He grew up in Broadmeadows and attended Broadmeadows High School.

”Broady High shaped him as a person, [it was a] tough area growing up,” Mr Rizk said.

He thanked family members, the Sunbury football community and his girlfriend for supporting him.

Driver killed, Hume Highway blocked for city-bound motorists after multi-truck crash

A truck driver has died in a head-on collision on the Hume Highway near Ingleburn. Photo: Jonathan Ng Police on scene. Photo: Jonathan Ng

The wreckage. Photo: Jonathan Ng

A truck driver has died after being involved in a multi-truck collision on the Hume Highway on Monday morning.

The driver, who has not been identified, was heading south on the highway at Ingleburn when his truck and another prime mover moving north collided head-on about 9.40am.

The driver was ejected from his cabin on impact and died at the scene.

Motorists are facing lengthy delays, after police blocked off all northbound lanes just past Brooks Road.

Traffic is being diverted off at the Campbelltown Road exit, Rebecca Walsh from the Transport Management Centre said.

All southbound lanes are now open, after two were closed earlier. At 11.25am, the southbound traffic queue extended back 6.5 kilometres to the M7 Motorway.

Horrific crash on Hume Highway at Ingelburn in Sydney with several overturned trucks. Expect big delays. pic.twitter南京夜网/xwTaDIVFGS — Katie Fielder (@Katie_Fielder) July 21, 2014

“Traffic is heavy in both directions and motorists are advised to avoid the area,” the spokeswoman said.

“Due to the serious nature of the crash and an extensive clean-up operation, the motorway is expected to remain closed for a number of hours.”

A third truck was also involved in the collision, and a car was struck by debris.

“The driver of the southbound truck was ejected from the cabin of his vehicle and died at the scene,” police said in a statement.

“The other two truck drivers were not injured in the collision but taken to hospital to undergo mandatory blood and urine tests.”

A woman driving a four-wheel-drive who saw the crash is being treated in hospital for shock.

Investigations are continuing and police will prepare a report for the information of the coroner.

Channelling Chalambar

Bygone era: Historic Chalambar sits on 784 square metres at Chatswood. Spectacular coastal views: 2 Weaver Terrace at Bulli is being offered fully furnished.

1890s residence Rathgar House in Grafton has been extensively renovated.

Chalambar, Chatswood.

2 Weaver Terrace, Bulli.

Rathgar House, South Grafton.

Chanel Australia and New Zealand’s national retail manager, Kathleen Bennett, and her extradition lawyer husband, Stephen Parkes, are selling their Chatswood house, Chalambar.

Fit for a style queen, the five-bedroom house sits among manicured hedges on 784 square metres about 10 minutes’ walk from the station. The stylishly renovated interiors include built-in wardrobes and an en suite off the main bedroom, no doubt stashed with the latest Chanel luxuries.

The enormous open-plan living area has three pairs of French doors leading to a wraparound verandah which overlooks a fenced pool.

Having bought the Californian bungalow for $1.4 million in 2011, the couple has decided to downsize to the inner city or eastern suburbs.

Chalambar goes to auction on August 2 for upwards of $1.7 million through McGrath Chatswood’s Olivia Chung.

Waterfront art show

In case the glittering coastal views from this spectacular home fail to impress, buyers can turn their attention to the artworks on display inside. In a rare collaboration between owner, agent and artist, the marketing of 2 Weaver Terrace at Bulli includes a free art show.

Ten abstract paintings by Illawarra artist Sue Smalkowski adorn the marble and exposed brick interior walls. Their subject, the Illawarra escarpment, is framed by north-facing floor-to-ceiling glass that also takes in the coastline towards Austinmer.

The striking house has five bedrooms, three luxurious bathrooms, several living areas and a spa pool overlooking the beach. The owner bought the 601-square-metre waterfront reserve plot on Sandon Point in 2010 paying $1,612,500.

Bevans Real Estate agents James Ianni and Andrew Hedley and McGrath Thirroul’s Kane Downie and Trever Molenaar have seen interest from locals and also Sydneysiders wanting a holiday home.

More than $3 million is expected for the house, which is being offered fully furnished when it goes to auction on site on July 22.  The paintings, at about $5000 each, are offered separately.

Victorian splendour

As Sydneysiders settle back in to city life after the school holidays, some might be tempted to break free and head to warmer climes. Rathgar House in South Grafton, on the Clarence River in northern NSW could be just the ticket.

The historic 1890s residence has just emerged from a thorough renovation after the owner, restaurateur Tony Karouhanis, paid $302,000 for the seven-bedroom house last year. He and wife Shai had plans to open a cafe and bed-and-breakfast.

Ray White Grafton agent Ben Hottes reports interest from Newcastle, Brisbane and Western Australia as well as locals. Built for the first mayor of South Grafton, J.J. McKittrick, the Victorian house has had its cedar staircase restored and new chandeliers and timber floors installed.

No reserve has been set for the August 9 auction, but Mr Hottes says bidding should start from $450,000. 

MH17 tragedy: Nick Norris changed my life

A former student of MH17 Nick Norris spoke of his dedication in the classroom during his days as a principal and teacher.

NICK Norris only spent one year as principal of Mukinbudin High School, but in that short time he changed one student’s outlook on education forever.

Perth woman Anne Carrapiett – who grew up in the small Wheatbelt town – was a Year 10 remedial student in 1984 who hated school until Mr Norris arrived and completely altered how she thought about the classroom.

“I thought I only have one more year left, get it over with, but then he turned it all around because he took the time with me and felt I was important enough to educate,” Ms Carrapiett said.

“I hated school so much and he changed that. He made me love it and made me want to go every day.”

Ms Carrapiett said she was sitting on the lounge with her daughter watching the shocking fallout from the MH17 attack unfold when she heard Mr Norris had been on the flight.

“I thought that can’t be the right person and I went straight onto Google,” she said.

“As soon as they mentioned the military and the army I thought that’s Mr Norris – I was just hoping it wasn’t.”

“It was horrible that it was with his grandchildren – at least he wasn’t alone and I am glad they weren’t alone.”

Mr Norris was Ms Carrapiett’s French teacher that year and she recalled how he went above and beyond the call of duty to give his students an interesting, interactive time in the classroom.

“There were only four or five of us in that class and he personally took us down to a French restaurant in Perth with his wife and two young daughters,” she said.

Living 300 kilometres from Perth meant she and the other students would not have been able to experience something like that without Mr Norris making the effort off his own back.

“He brought us croissants from Perth, he would tell us about his travels around the world and incorporate those experiences into his French lessons. I was like a sponge – I learnt so much,” she said.

Ms Carrapiett said Mr Norris was different because he could relate to students, had a cracking sense of humour, and was never condescending.

“I would say I didn’t understand and he was persistent about wanting to help me,” she said.

“He would turn the question around until I got it and he never made me feel stupid.

“It is hard not being able to tell him. I thought I should try and find him and write a letter to thank him but then you let time go by and it’s too late,” she said.

“I wish I was able to say thank you.”

Kaniva-Leeor United win despite fourth-quarter drop-off

EFFORT: James Turner scored three goals for Kaniva-Leeor United at the weekend. Picture: STEVE BROWNGOOD kicking is good football.

Kaniva-Leeor United proved that saying is true in its 17.4 (106) to 14.5 (89) win over Bordertown at Kaniva on Saturday.

The Cougars kicked 14 straight goals before half-time to hold a 56-point lead over the Roosters.

The Roosters responded late with a seven-goal-to-nil final term, but the Cougars were far enough ahead to hold on for their ninth consecutive win.

Cougars coach Neil Reeve said his side would take the four points but knew it could get better.

“To have a 10-goal lead at half time and not be able toput a team away was a little bit frustrating,” he said.

“We won, but the boys were obviously disappointed with how we played in the last quarter.

“We went away from everything we did well in the first three quarters.”

Leigh Ryan finished with six goals for the Cougars, while Dylan Williams slotted four and James Turner three.

All three were among the hosts’ best player, alongside defender Scott Brown.

Lee Staple was the Roosters’ best player, kicking seven goals.

The win leaves the Cougars a game behind ladder-leader Padthaway, but two games clear of Penola and Mundulla.

The Cougars will face the Lions on Saturday, with ruckman Ryan Richardson, groin, and Matt Skrypek, concussion, in doubt for the top of the table clash.

Border Districts came close to their first win since round four at Kingston.

The Eagles led the Saints by 16 points at three-quarter-time, but a five-goal-to-one final quarter saw the hosts snatch a 15.12 (102) to 13.11 (89) victory.

Shaun Taylor kicked five goals for the Eagles, while Anthony Taylor was named the side’s best.

Sam Braidwood slotted six goals for the Saints.

In other results, Mundulla thrashed Naracoorte by 103 points at home, while Lucindale dished out a 131-point thumping to Kybybolite.

Flag favourite Padthaway maintained its winning form with a 40-point victory against reigning premier Penola.

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Shoalhaven Heads’ arboretum formal entry opened

Shoalhaven Heads’ arboretum formal entry opened The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

The Curtis Park Arboretum in Shoalhaven Heads was officially opened on Sunday, July 20.

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Bonny Hills bushfire finally extinguished

File picThe Rural Fire Service declared thebushfire nearMcGilvray Road in Bonny Hills to be out on Monday morning.

“It’s pretty much done and dusted,” Inspector Guy Duckworth said.

The fire started on July 10, and burned through more than 600 hectares of scrub to the south of the Camden Haven town.

Crews from throughout the Hastings battled to contain the blaze for several days.

Containment lines were established on July 12, and it then fell to the Bonny Hills volunteers to check on the fire with twice daily patrols.

The smokey haze lingered over the area for more than a week, and was eventually cleared by the recent gusty conditions.

The weekend’s rain also helped end any remaining smoulder spots.

“That should keep everythingdamp around the coast for the rest of the week,” Inspector Duckworth said.

But he warned the dry conditions were expected to continue inland, and the danger period was only just beginning.

Residents planning to conduct hazard reduction burning should first contact their localFireControl Centre and check if afirepermit is required.

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Anglican parishes called on to assist court ‘war chest’

Reverend Brett Watterson.The Commonwealth Bank is demanding the Anglican Diocese of Bathurst repay its $25 million debt immediately, and to do so it must sell-off church buildings.

However, Bishop Ian Palmer says the church will not go down without a fight and will do all it can to protect its churches.

“We believe there are other avenues to explore, but in order to defend ourselves we’re seeking support from the parishes,” he said.

Parishes will be asked to come up with a “target” amount of money to contribute to the diocese war chest, but if the parishes do not have access to liquid assets they may have to sell church property to raise the funds.

Bishop Palmer said if property was to be sold it would be up to the parishioners, but they would need to provide the target money.

“We are instructed that in order to repay this money immediately, we must sell off assets to meet this bill,” he said.

“What we are saying is that we are protecting these assets, for the good of the communities.

“But we will have to use some of those assets, a small proportion.”

Parkes St George’s Anglican Church minister, Reverend Brett Watterson said it will definitely make it difficult for parishes.

But he said Parkes was quite a strong parish and he was confident they would be able to ride it out.

“The matter is in the courts so it is not possible to say too much. I am hopeful we will find out more at a meeting in Orange this weekend (yesterday),” he said.

In legal proceedings, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia sent the Bathurst diocese a list of properties to be sold to recoup the money.

Church buildings were at the bottom of that list, Bishop Palmer said.

But he believed church rectories were just as important for the lifeblood of the church community and did not want to see them fall out of church hands.

The estimated cost of the court action, should it go to trial, is about $1 million.

It is not expected to go to trial this year.

The church is arguing the Anglican Development Fund, which no longer exists, borrowed the money from the bank and the church is therefore not responsible for actions undertaken by the defunct fund.

The Anglican Diocese of Bathurst includes Parkes and covers about a third of NSW, from the Blue Mountains to the Queensland border, and consists of 34 parishes.

It stretches from Oberon, Cowra and West Wyalong in the south to Cobar and Bourke in the west, across the north-west to Coonamble and Coonabarabran, and in the east to Coolah, Mudgee and Rylstone.

“We don’t think that the demands the Commonwealth Bank have placed upon us are reasonable and in order to mount our defence we need support from the parishes,” Bishop Palmer said.

Bishop Palmer said last week he would be explaining the situation to all Anglicans in Orange over the weekend.

The Commonwealth Bank was contacted for comment but a spokesperson said the bank could not comment because the matter was before the court.

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Birchip-Watchem prove too strong for Wychproof-Narraport after slow start

Key forward Sam Barnes helped ladder leader Wedderburn to a 90-point win against Boort at the weekend.

BIRCHIP-WATCHEM had to overcome a slow start to reclaim fourth spot on the ladder on Saturday.

The Bulls were scoreless in the first term, as Wycheproof-Narraport pushed ahead to a 33-point lead at the first change at Birchip’s George Cartrwright Oval.

The Demons held off the hosts in the second and third quarters,maintaining a 15-point lead at the final change.

But the Bulls proved too strong in the last quarter, kicking six goals to one to claim a 15.5 (95) to 12.7 (79) win.

Daniel Castellano finished with eight of the Bulls’ 15 goals and was named the side’s best player.

For the Demons, coach Ricky Allan kicked five goals to be named among the team’s best performers, as was Sam Driscoll with three goals.

The Bulls hold fourth spot on percentage over Boort, with a tough run against the competition’s top three teams – Wedderburn, Charlton and St Arnaud – in the next three weeks.

St Arnaud enjoyed its third win over Donald this season, beating the team by 83 points, at Lord Nelson Park.

The Saints won three of four quarters to claim a 22.24 (156) to 11.7 (73) victory.

Coach James McNamee was named the Saints’ best, while Glenn Wyatt was the Royal Blues’ strongest performer.

Eight goals from key forward Sam Barnes helped ladder leader Wedderburn to a 90-point win against Boort at Donaldson Park.

The Redbacks won 25.20 (170) to 11.14 (80) .

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