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Tonight - a mini Budget with

megacuts. This is an

appropriate Budget for the

times. These are unprecedented

times that we are facing right

around the world. Easing

traffic gridlock or taking

drivers for a ride. The

Government sux, what can you

do. Tight security as five men

face trial on terrorism

charges. And time passes but

the lessons lingerment And we

commit ourselves afresh to the

great cause. Good evening,

Juanita Phillips with ABC News.

The focus today was meant to be

on the mini Budget aimed at

sorting out the State's

financial mess, by this afternoon the Premier was dealing with a different kind

of problem - the socking of yet

another Minister, in dramatic

Premier developments late today the

Premier was forced to fire the

Small Business Minister Tony

Stewart after he refused to

resign. State political

reporter Emma Griffiths joins

me from Macquarie Street.

Another Minister dumped? The

Member for Bankstown Tony

Stewart becomes the latest

Minister to lose his front

bench position, he was

suspended when a former female

staff member lodged an official

complaint about his behaviour.

An investigation was ordered

and that has been tabled in

parliament. It found in favour

of the staff member. She

alleged that Tony Stewart

verbally abused her, touched

her on the leg to hold her down

at a table and in this report

it's been revealed she

described him as a nasty piece

of work. Today the Premier has

spoken twice ta Tony Stewart,

asking him to resign, and twice

he has refused. Nathan Rees had

to take the extraordinary step

of writing to the governor

recommending that Tony Stewart

be removed from the ministry.

That's done, happened,

effective immediately. Tony

Stewart is on the backbench and

the Tourism Minister Jody

Mackay is ticking over the


responsibilities. Have you

heard a reaction from Tony

Stewart? He's said to continue

to deny he's done anything

wrong. Backbenchers close to

him say that he denies he

touched the staff member and

continually denied to the

Premier that he did anything

inappropriate on this night at

a function late last

month. What about the timing of

all this? The timing has been interesting because the Premier

received this report late

yesterday afternoon, and it

wasn't until early this

afternoon that he was able to

speak to Mr Stewart, so in the

end it's been released on a day

that was busy at State

parliament with the mini Budget

handed down, the Treasurer Eric

Roozendaal delivered that,

calling it a tough Budget for

tough times. It was a some ber

mood at the Cenotaph as the

Premier laid a wreath in memory

of the fallen. And the mood was

just as serious at State

parliament. Treasurer Eric

Roozendaal delivered the toughest NSW State Budget in

years. We have made difficult

and tough choices. But in the

times we live in, difficult

decisions need to be made. The

most irresponsible thing that

we could do is to do

nothing. So instead, they have

done quite a bit. There are new

charges for crossing the

Harbour Bridge and tunnel.

Child care licence fees and a

levy on coalmining waste,

property transfer fees double

and hikes to ferry tickets and

commercial ferry fees, the

Manly JetCat service cut,

subsidies in north is gone,

hospital upgrades likely to be

deperiod. The Government is

spending on a Metro system, new

train carriages and buses and a

clean coal fund. The capital

works program has been changed.

There'll be a $56 billion

investment over the next four

years. That's not theoretical

pie in the sky, it's happening

now. The Opposition slammed the

Budget as short-sighted. This

mini Budget confirms after a

decade of Labor, NSW is no

longer the gateway to

opportunity, it's become the

transit lounge for

opportunities in Queensland and

Victoria. The Budget will slip

into deficit territory this

financial year. The Government

predicts a recovery and return

to hefty surpluses, that's

prompted some scepticism in

financial circles. It looks

like the economic forecast

might be on the optimistic

side. Standard & Poor's the

rating agency courted by the

Government says the state will

retain a AAA rating on a

negative outlook. To be removed

from a negative outlook

requires the execution of a

strategy announced today. It

won't be the only one watching

the Government's strategy

unfold. Emma Griffiths, there's

unpopular decisions in the mini-Budget. What are the

political ramifications? The

Government has time on its

side, it still has two more

Budgets to deliver before the

next State Election, that's a

factor they have taken into

account here. The what word for

this Budget has been prudence,

and Ministers home people see

it as a responsible response to

tough economic times, but

rarely are new charges popular, we have

we have a congestion tax on the Sydney Harbour briftening the

the Government prefers it's not

called a tax but a charge or a

levy, it's proved to be

unpopular with commuters today.

Joe O'Brien has the

details. The people of Sydney's North Shore aren't happy. I

think it's a disgrace. I think

that we pay for the bridge 20

years ago. It's ridiculous,

it's annoying. It's a rip off,

it seems as though they are

targeting people in certain areas. The Harbour Bridge and

the tunnel have the dubious

honour of carrying the first

congestion tax. In peak hour

from 6:30 to 9:30 in the

morning, and 4 until 7 the toll

increases from $3 to $4.

There's a inteet ner for

overnight users, a 50 cent reduction. For the rest of the

time, between 9:30 and 4, the

toll is the same. The NRMA

likened the Premier to Ned

Kelly. He engaged in the most

blatant form of highway robbery

this state has seen. Motorists

agree. The Government sux, what

can you do. They are bankrupt,

they are looking after the

shrinking minority of people in

applicants welcome the tax power. Public transport

saying it should apply to all

major roads. It's a good idea

but in this case it's a

political instrument, they want

to tax the Liberal voters in

the North Shore but not anyone

on the M 4 or M 5. Northern

residence are hit with the

axing of JetCat services to

Manly, at the wharf there's

frustration It's lousy,

terrible decision. It's part of

the Manly. They are supposed

to be encouraging more people

to travel by public transport,

so why aren't they making the

facilities available. In an

effort to further discourage

people bring cars into the

city, commercial parking levies

will be doubled. The Government

defending its strategy pointing

to a plan for an inner city

Metro, with other rail plans

scrapped it's being

questioned. The Prime Minister

has declared war on

unemployment as more depressing

forecasts about the economy

roll in. A survey by the

National Australia Bank shows

business confidence at a record

low. Political editor Chris

Uhlmann reports. Doit doit blessing upon this

Parliament. Calls for armistice

on Remembrance Day. Ever

vigilant in the prosecution of

peaceful Seek piece and pursue

it. It didn't last long It's

important for the Government of

Australia to embark upon a war

against unemployment. It was

the second declaration of war

this year. The Government has

declared war on inflation. The

new front looks more alarming

every day. The National

Australia Bank survey of

business confidence shows it

plunged to a new low in

October. We expect growth will

be very, very low, pretty close

to zero. And I ask the Prime

Minister does he take any

responsibility for today's collapse in business confidence. Business confidence

is bad here as it is in

practically every other developed economy in the

world. With a welter of bad

news on the horizon, Kevin Rudd

made a brave call. As Prime

Minister of Australia, I take

responsibility for the good

news and the bad news. The

Coalition is accusing Treasury

of hiding bad news in its

latest take on the economy

because it's based its

prediction on 2% growth on assumptions it never used

before. It does have the smell

of manipulation about it in

order to get a 2 in front of

the growth numbers. A

coordinated orchestrated attack

on the Secretary of the Treasury. The other

orchestrated attack was on

Kevin Rudd for his persistent

refusal to reveal who leaked

details of a conversation he

had with President Bush. The

Prime Minister's finger prints

are all over this. The Foreign

Minister was given the task of

defending his boss. The central

tenant of the report couldn't

possibly be correct. On a day

when tempers were strained. If

everybody could just calm

down. And peace was as elusive

as ever.

The Supreme Court has heard

that five Sydney men stockpiled

firearms and explosive chemicals in preparation for

terrorist attacks, the court

was toll the accused were

motivated by their Islamic

beliefs and anger at

Australia's involvement in Iraq

and Afghanistan. The highest

security was put in place

around this Parramatta court

which was purpose built for the

trial of five men accused of

plotting to commit terrorist

acts. We'll protect the company

like you do, we love Australia,

we are born and raised

here. Former Guantanamo Bay

detainee Mandoub Habib was

among a small band of

protesters there to support the

accused. The five men whose

images can't be broadcast for

legal reasons have spent the

last three years in prison

waiting for this trial to

begin. They are Mohamed begin. They are Mohamed Elomar.

Abdul Rhakib Hasan, Khaled

Cheikho, Moustafa Cheikho,

Mohammed Omar Jamal. All have pleaded not pleaded not guilty.

The crown alleges the devout

Muslim men worked together in

the pursuit of violent jihad,

and they they viewed

Australia's role in Iraq and

Afghanistan as an act of

aggression against the wider

Muslim community, the court was

told the men had been

stockpiling weapons, ammunition and chemicals:

The crown alleges when the

accused were arrested, they

also had extremist material, it

included the teachings of Osama

bin Laden, instructions in

bombmaking, videos of the

planes crashing into the World

Trade Center towers, and ritual beheadings. This was all

designed, says the crown, to

glorify the actions of

terrorists. Earlier the judge

urged the jury to put aside

prejudice and bias, he told


And the jury has a long and

difficult task ahead. The trial

is expected to last nine

months. 90 years on Australia

hasn't forgotten the sacrifice

of those who fell in battle.

Today's anniversary not only

marks the end of the First

World War but commemorates all

the other Cam paps in which

Australians fought and died.

There was -- campaigns in which

Australians fought and died.

There was renewed debate about

whether the 60,000 losses on

the Western Front were properly

recognised. The country's most

recent casualties were added to

the honour role. On Sydney

streets the poppies sell to generations that remember

well. It probably means as much

today as it did when we first

commemorated it. I don't see

many people wearing the

flowers, it's a shame. Just as

they have for 90 years. The

great tribute is in the way

people remember. Australians

still answer the great call. BELL TOLLS

..of the Great War, wherever

it's made, bugles at Street

corners in Melbourne. Silence

in the NETS in Sydney. On this

anniversary, there's a debate among historians about whether

the Western Front's time has

come In recent years there's

been more of an interest and

assessment of the Western

Front. It's a history war where

some charged that the Gallipoli

story should be rebalanced in

favour of the hard fought gains

and losses in France and

Belgium. That should be what

they remember, not messing up

in the gullies and ridges of

Gallipoli. The argument is lost

on some. They are both pretty

big occasions, and quite sad

for many people. For those who

do pause to remember, the

argument over Western front

versus Gallipoli is as futile

as war itself. After 90 years,

as enduring too. I really think

that Anzac Day has different

symbolism and it's secured -

its place is secure, if

Remembrance Day achieves

elevated sense of identity,

that's fine too. There are ever

more to remember, David Pearce,

Matthew Locke, Luke Worsley,

Jane Marks, Shaun McCarthy, the

casualties of Afghanistan have

taken their place on the honour

role. I believe each of the

fallen would say to us this:

be forever vigilant in the

preservation of the peace. I

definitely do not want another

war, I think we have had enough

wars. A near century old plea

for all ages. It wasn't the biggest commemoration in

Australia, but it was one of

the most poignant. Geoff Sims

reports from a small community

of O'Connell of a living

tribute to 26 diggers that

never came back from the Great

War. There's not a lot to

O'Connell, a pub and a few ore

buildings, and a tennis court

that's seen better days, a road

lined with desert ash trees to

honour those that died in the

war. At 101 Alan Todd is the

last survivor of the tree

planters. We fought to save Australia. When the community came together the people

remembered the fallen and the

trees. The original ceremony to establish The Avenue had in

attendance the last man to

leave the shores of Gallipoli,

and Field Marshall Allenby. But

the trees have been under

threat. They were deemed a

danger to drivers, and there

have been casualties, so the

RTA set out to remove the trees

and widen the road. I really

think it would be sad,

upsetting a lot of people. Symbolically the people

compare the treats to old

soldiers, fighting against the

odds for survival and refusing

to give up. Several generations

on O'Connellites came to

cherish the trees, in a paddock

to defeat the memory of some of

Europe's battlefields the

community remembered. Across

the generations they resolve

not to give up the battle to

save the memorial avenue. The

RSL and many people, the motto

is the price of liberty is

eternal vigilance. The frail have plenty of fight when it

comes to the trees. They should

never be taken out. People

should form a great crowd,

object strongly to it. After

today most seemed seemed to

agree no-one would dare touch

them. Tonight's top story, the

State Government hands down a State Government hands down a

tough mini-Budget as the

Premier sacks another Minister

for inappropriate behaviour.

Still to come - Ricky Ponting

responds to his critics.

America's past has come face

to face with America's future.

In a highly symbolic visit

George W. Bush has welcomed his

successor to the White House,

Barack Obama took his first

steps in The Oval office while

his host played tour guide. The

current occupants of a prime

piece of real estate are

vacating the premises. Walk

this away. They granted the new

tenants an inspection. While Laura Bush showed Michelle

Obama the living quarters, the

President and the man who will

succeed him headed to the Oval

Office. I don't think any of us

can understand what it's lining

for two people who are going to

be in a small club, who

understand what it's like to be

the Commander-in-Chief, the leader of our great

country. It's the first time

Barack Obama has been inside

The Oval office or gone one on

one with the President he

railed against during the

campaign. There must be

tension beneath the surface,

Obama spent millions attack ing

the Bush record in foreign and

domestic policy. Since the

election sniping has been

replaced by smiles and talk of

Cop ration, huge differences

remain. The Republican and the

Democrat discussed Iraq and the

US economy that's bleeding

jobs. It sounds like the

Barack Obama team wants to hit

the ground sprinting, senior

advisors are working on plans

to close Guantanamo Bay, some

prisoners released the rest transferred to the United States going before the

civilian courts or face a

system of National Security

trials. Barack Obama visited

the White House after being

elected to the senate. Describing meeting the

President in an audio book. ,

"You know", he said quietly, "I

hope you don't mind me giving you advise".

Barack Obama began the day by dropping his children at school

in Chicago. In January they'll

move to the White House, but

the crowd suggests they'll be

living in a fish bowl. On to

finance now, and the local

share market went into reverse

after today's plunge in

business confidence. Here is

Alan Kohler. Well, according to

the monthly NAB business survey

confidence is in worse shape

than business conditions, suggesting that business people

think that things will get

worse than they are now.

Actually conditions at least on

this measure are about the same

as they were in 2001. That

wasn't even a recession in

Australia. But confidence about

the future has absolutely

collapse said and is much worse

than it was after the September

2001 terrorist attacks. When

there was a spike down that you

can see there, after which

confidence recovered. It won't

be that easy this time. The

share market may have been

responding to that today, and

it may have been the Finance Minister's declaration that the

worst is past, but more likely

it was that knees stopped

jerking after yesterday's

dramatic sounding Chinese

stimulus package because

investors worked out a lot of

the money was committed. Only a

trillion yuan was new money.

The All Ords closed 3.5% lower,

Macquarie Bank fell 10%,

Wesfarmers was smashed down

12%, and BHP Biliton led a less

brutal retreat among resources

by falling 3.5%. The other

thing that unnerved the market

was Asciano shares crashed 60%

after the Opening before

trading was altered at 10:45.

Citigroup issued a research

note headed, "Crisis of

Confidence 'Rerouting from buy

to sell. Nothing has come from

the company. US stocks fell,

not as much as in Australia.

That's finance. The troubled childcare provider ABC Learning

could be split up and sold. The

Deputy Prime Minister says the

receivers are taking

expressions of interests from

buyers but haven't settled on a

sale process. Public servants

have been assigned to work with

the receivers, and monitor

developments. A number of

organisations have already

contackted the receiver and

others have contacted various

arms of Government with a view

to expressing their interest in

potentially buying or otherwise

operating individual or a

number of ABC Learning

Centres. The Government has

provided 22 million to keep the

companies childcare centres

open at least until the end of

the year. Pills taken to Lower

cholesterol could have a

beneficial side effect.

Research showing the drug can

help reduce heart attacks even

in people with healthy

cholesterol levels. Don't think

you are safe from a heart

attack because your cholesterol

is low, half of all heart

attacks occur in people with

healthy cholesterol levels,

many don't realise they have

high levels of CRP, C reactive

protein, associated with

inflammation in the body,

prompting a study involving

18,000 patients with normal

cholesterol but high CRP

levels, they were given a

placebo or a statin, a drug lowering cholesterol and

inflammation. In my opinion

this is the most important

study in the last decade in

terms of reducing risk of heart

disease. Those taking statin

had a risk of heart attack

reduced by 54%, a stroke by

48%, death rates falling by

20%. The reduction this heart

attacks/strokes are bigger than

anything seen in other

trials. The results so good the

5-year study was stopped after

two years. Statins are among

the most widely prescribed

medications, well tolerated,

but can cause muscle pain in

some patients. The findings

stir debate over who should be

tested for elevated levels of

the C reactive protein. It's an

exciting stage where we'll be

able to do a better job of

preventing heart disease. C

reactive protein can be kept in

check through healthy diet and

exercise. Ricky Ponting has hit

back at his critics, the

Australian captain has been

accused of putting himself

ahead of his team in the final

test against India, India took

the series 2-0, winning the

fourth Test by 172 runs. Here

is Peter Wilkins. It was a

painful end to a losing tour,

Ricky Ponting surrendering a

series for the second time as

captain, and being criticised

by former players over tactics. It's disappointing

when it comes from them .

Ponting believed he was

upholding the spirit of the

game and attacking when using

part-timers to boost a flagging

overrate At no stage did I feel

it was totally negative bowling

at the other end. As for

suggestions he wasn't a team

player My experiences of Ricky,

he's a great team person,

fantastic leader. There haven't

been many that played for

Australia that would do things

more than I would for the

team. There was pressure from

match referee Chris

Broad. Chris made a point of

rubbing guys out of international cricket for

similar offences, never in any

game have a played would I want

to miss the chance of

representing Australia. It may

have been deemed irresponsible

if he just didn't care about

the over rates, gets banned for

a Test match and you play the

first Test at the 'Gabba

without Ricky Ponting, you

don't have the strongest

Australian team

there. Ponting's next opponent

said the absteps of killer

instinct was out of character. He's ruthless, a

good captain and player, that's

probably why the questions are ask. Questions about slow over

rates are raised. It's back to

the ICC at the moment. It makes

them clear statements on what

is expected, and support the

referees and the umpires to

administer that. Amid the

Ponting tribulations one clear

truth remains for Australian

cricket - We were totally

outplayed. Not up in a puff of

smoke, at least at the season

ending Masters Cup a first up loss doesn't end Roger

Federer's chances of winning

the title. Former world No.1

loaninged to overcome back

soreness in the first set

against Gilles Simon, the

Frenchman made it two wins from

two closing out 6-4, 6-3, the

Swiss lost his corresponding

match last year before winning

the event. Fiji will need all

hands on deck this Sunday, the

Fijians quofld for a Rugby

League World Cup showdown

against being qualified for a

Rugby League World Cup showdown

after overcoming Ireland 24-14,

the Irish kept it tight until

midway through the second harl.

Fiji's full-back Jarryd Hayne

set up a clash for himself,

last year he played for the

Kangaroos. After a career

spanning two decades injury

forces the retirement of former

Socceroo and Sydney FC defender

Tony Popovic. This journey

ended, it's been a great one. A

new one begins. The 35-year-old

will stay at Sydney FC in a

coaching role. Time to check

the weather with Graham Creed. And the mild temperatures continue in

Sydney. If we look at today's

conditions, textures under or

at at average.

Cloud redeveloping and

possible fog in the west

overnight due to light winds

and high humidity. The State's

weather is under the control of

a high sitting near New

Zealand. It's driving onshore

winds, cloud and rainful about

the mid-north and northern

rivers regions, the rest of the

State was dry, we did have cloudy periods. cloudy periods. Looking at the

rainfall - there's not a great

deal to talk about, totals

light. We expect to see that

story condition over the next

day or two. Falls this

afternoon have been in that

very light level. Across the

nation - we have seen a few

light showers around Brisbane.

A cool change moving through

Hobart dropping a warm

afternoon to cool conditions.

The cloud moving over NSW is

nothing to be worried about,

it's high-level. It's the cloud

over WA with the biggest impact

on the weather. It's in

association with a heat-low,

and the heat-low is basically a

borrowed area of low pressure

caused by high temperatures.

The high pressure system near

New Zealand will dominate the

weather meaning more onshore

winds about the north-eastern

corner, but rainfall totals

expected to be light. A few

showers for Hobart, afternoon

thunderstorms for Darwin.

Looking around NSW - the only

rain for the State will be

about the north-eastern corner,

basically some fresh onshore

winds and cloudy periods across

the region, most of the falls

north of Newcastle. It will

remain milder along the coast. Becoming hot Becoming hot inland, high fire

danger returning to the inland. Temperatures tomorrow:

Winds light in the morning,

afternoon sea breezes rolling

through. Pleasant whether to continue, showers and storms by the the weekend.

We can update you now on the

top story, the sacking of Small Business Minister Tony Stewart

over allegations of

inappropriate behaviour. He has

just spoken about his dismissal

in State parliament. Mr

Speaker, the report is

deficient, it contains no

statements from people present

at the fnks where the alleged

behaviour occurs cob rating Ms

Sanger's version of the event.

I instructed my legal adviceors

to pursue action, and have the

report and its conclusions

judicially reviewed. Mr

Speaker, I wish to state

plainly and clearly, that the

allegations made about me by Ms

Tina Sanger in respect to the

function and associated issues

are not true. Tony Stewart

sfaking a short time ago in

State parliament. -- speaking a

short time ago in State

parliament. That's ABC News for

this Tuesday, the '7.30 Report'

is up next. Goodnight.