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(generated from captions) A brief recap of our top stories tonight - disgraced former NSW minister Eddie Obeid is back before the ICAC at the centre of a new corruption inquiry. And a storm expected to be the worst in decades is sweeping into Britain and France cutting power and disrupting transport. And that's the latest from the Canberra newsroom. Coming up on '7.30' with Leigh Sales, the new industrial relations background as the Government revooifs the building industry watchdog. I'm Virginia Haussegger and I'll be back with a news update in about one hour. Until then, goodnight.

Welcome to 7.30. Tonight - low rent. Eddie Obeid's secret harbour-front leasing deal that cost the taxpayer millions.I just complacency. There was indifference to actions. And there's that underlying concept of greed. The Abbott Government prepares for a new battle with the construction unions.The zombies and vampires of WorkChoices never rest. They're out of their graves, they're not dead, buried and cremated. They're roaming streets hungry for the blood an brains of workers. And Australia's biggest woodchiping company admits getting it wrong on its treatment of koalas.

We're deeply sorry for the fact that koalas have been harmed on our property. Deeply sorry.

If you want to lease a property in Sydney, even a glimpse of the world famous harbour will send your rent through the roof. Unless of course you're the corrupt Labor kingpin Eddie Obeid. The man who once controlled the New South Wales State Government from the shadows. More of the Labor Party's dirty laundry was aired today, in another anti-corruption hearing, this time looking at how the Obeid family came to land two lucrative harbour-front retail leases without them ever going to tender. The Obeids have already been caught pocketing tens of millions of dollars from a rigged coal deal exposed earlier this property in Australia. Arguably the best harbour in the world. And the most valuable real estate.Behind the glitter and glamour of Sydney Harbour theres a been a dark secret at Circular Quay for many years.Those who manage the harbour have been under political and other vested interest pressures for at least a century. And Fergus McPherson would know. The former maritime official was forced out after years of warning his political masters that taxpayers were not get ing a fair price for this world-famous view. Is this one. Wharfs here ? Most landlords around the harbour have been reaping the benefits of soaring property values. But the State of New South Wales has been missing out, thanks to corrupt former God father. Labor Party Eddie Obeid. Now the ICAC is investigating how he lobbied four ministers allegedly to give his family a leg-up.Mr Obeid made representations about Circular Quay leases to successive relevant ministers. Messrs Cole, Scully, Michael Costa, Eric Roozendaal and Joe Tripodi. He did so without disclosing his family's hidden interests in the retail leases. And decisions were ultimately made which were highly favourable to them and other retail lessees in the precinct.

Obeid has become poster boy for everything that went wrong with the Labor Party in New South Wales.The State's biggest an most sensational corruption inquiry could see two former Labor ministers end up behind bars. Earlier this year, he and his family were caught by the State's anti-graft watchdog extracting tens of millions of dollars by corrupting a mining tender. With the help of Ian Macdonald, a former Resources Minister. Now, Obeid is back before the independent commission against corruption, this time, it's not a coal deal he has rigged, it's about control of some of Sydney's most iconic property, including two leases on the quay's bustling ferry wharfs.The previous inquiries have been massive. Have resulted in exposure of many millions of dollars of corruption over the years that ICAC has been in place. It's difficult to say that this one is more important or greater. But this one definitely had a higher level of involvement of elected officials. It all started in the year 2000.Circular Quay was redeveloped in anticipation of the Olympics and the expected surge in visitation to Sydney.Here we are at Circular Quay. Fergus McPherson was responsible for thousands of leases around the harbour, and staff in his team were busy preparing for a long-planned public tender, for shops housed within the ferry wharfs. The idea was to attract the best possible shops for the busy tourist area and the best possible rent for the taxpayer. But at tenants at the quay pleaded to be allowed to stay and Obeid successfully lobbied on their behalf.Sweetheart arrangement that was worked out in 2000 where they would avoid being put to the open market was conditional on facing market competition from all-comers in 2005. What no-one knew was that behind the scenes, Obeid was in secret negotiations to buy the three businesses. The ICAC heard today the family paid $2.4 million in 2003 for the leases. But they didn't want anyone to know they were involved. So in what has emerged as a pattern, the Obeids found someone willing to be their front man. John Abood is Eddie Obeid's brother-in-law and appeared today at the ICAC. He told the hearings that he did act as a front for the business, receiving a $50,000 salary, a phone and a car, but he insisted he was not trying to deceive anyone. He dealt with Eddie's son Damien and not him.

What's the difference between being a frontman and fronting for the Obeids? Is there a difference, sir?

Documents obtained by 7.30 show that the Labor Government was repeatedly warned that the properties must proceed to a public tender or else they ran the risk of a corrupt outcome A senior official shade that to agree to the tenants' demands for another five years would mean a benefit at Circular Quay in the order of $1 million or more per tenancy. The official warned this would be totally inappropriate to grant each lessee the equivalent ever a $1 million windfall gain.Let me deal with the issues. In early 2005, after years of work to prepare the sites for the tender, Obeid's loyal ally in the right faction of the New South Wales Labor Party, former unions boss Michael Costa, became the minister for ports. My staff were developing the tender documents that would go out to the general market, but it became increasingly clear that there were political objections to that happening. That culminated in March 2005, where it was explicitly said that the minister's office, ie the minister, Minister Kos da, was opposed to the sites being put to the market as had previously been agreed - minister Costa. The public tender in 2005 never happened.Each of the ministers will say he did not know of the Obeid family interests at Circular Quay. We anticipate they will say, with varying degrees of fervour, that this is information which should have been disclosed to them. The propriety of Mr Obeid withholding this information and the adequacy of his explanation for doing so will clearly arise for consideration.

It's a prime position, probably better even than the wharfs.This is the cafe the Obeids kept. It was not part of the same tender controversy, but even after the family's front company was exposed last year, it won another two-year lease. How much did you spend on your coffees and teas?$17.50. Are you aware that some of that money is going into the pocket of Eddie Obeid and his family?Um ... no, I wasn't. I didn't know he still had that lease.Sydney Harbour has never generated the amount of revenue that the public should be able to do extract from their prime asset. That will continue to be case and we will continue to bt subjected to a revolving door of corruption.

The Abbott government's shaping up for its first big industrial stoush as it takes on one of Australia's most powerful unions. The construction forestry mining and energy union, the CMFEU. Moves are afoot to reinstate one of the most controversial elements of John Howard's WorkChoices policy - the Australian building and construction commission. Its job is to stop union thuggery and to enforce a national Building Code. But as Adam Harvey reports, its return looks set to reopen old wounds.

This battle at Melbourne's Myer emporium site was an old-style industrial dispute. No quarter was given. On either side.

It was a classic dispray of industrial muscle by one of the nation's most powerful unions, the CMFEU.

The union was fighting for the right to install its own safety representatives at the site.

I'm sure most Australians will recall the very ugly scenes that we saw at the Myer emporium site in Melbourne, where police horses were being punched by an unruly mob of individuals who were demonstrating in circumstances where the actual workers on the site were happy with the boss, were happy with their conditions.

The Construction Union lost this battle. Builder Grocon refused to accept the union's peace. One year on the unions' war rages on but out of sight as it targets one of Grocon's suppliers, building materials company Boral.We've probably lost the equivalent of 10,000 concrete trucks worth of delivery of product in Victoria because of this action by the CMFEU.

It's probably cost us over a million dollars in legal fees. We've lost probably $7 million in revenue in the Victorian market. All attributable to this fight that the CMFEU has with Grocon. Boral's concrete trucks are turned away from scores of sites controlled by the CMFEU, because Boral sells concrete to one of the union's enemiesWe've been dragooned into a fight that they have with Grocon that we're not a party to. It is a bizarre situation that's unfold and we may be the largest target of their activity outside of Grocon, but we didn't volunteer for this, we didn't ask to be involved in it. Boral has won court injunctions ordering the CMFEU to stop this secondary boycott. But to no effect.It's become butch more subtle. While they're occasionally still trying this stopping of trucks or delaying of trucks of entry onto sites it's become much more of an intimidation of our customer base and our customers frankly are inTim date and fearful about coming forward.(Applause) The National Secretary of the CMFEU, Dave Noonan, says a tough industry calls for tough tactics.Our members make it very clear they expect a union which is active, a union which when necessary will take up their issues with the employer. Construction workers have been militant since Christ was a carpenter and they expect a union which does the job for them. They're really organised, well resourced, ruthlessless and their approach is to play hard-ball day in, day out. And they don't have a high regard for the law, in my view.

The union's next fight is with the coalition government. The current legislation clearly isn't sufficiently tough enough to deal with the duggery and intimidation that has unfortunately been a hallmark of the building and construction sector. To tackle the union the Abbott Government is moving to reconstitute one of the most controversial weapons of John Howard's industrial armoury. The Australian Building and Construction Commission. Legislation will be introduced in the first week of Parliament in mid November, giving the commission powers to levy big fines over disputes like the Boral boycott.I don't think it's too much to ask that we actually have the rule of law abiding. All you have to do is remember the ugly scenes at the Myer emporium building and ask the question: who? That's itching for a fight I? Don't think it's us, the government, having the CMFEU brought to heel in some of its activities will in fact enhance the reputation of the trade union movement. The government will restore the commission's powers, which included the authority to jail reluctant witnesses. So ABCC had the power to require people to give evidence, if they don't, the maximum penalty was six months in prison.

The union is vowing to fight the new regime. Just as it did until the commission was disbanded by Labor.There's an old saying, my mum used to use the saying, I have said it once before, the more you touch shit, the more it smells. That's them. They are shit! They're the shit that they are.(Applause)

While Abbott governs and advocates these policies the zombies and vampires of WorkChoices never rest. They're out of their gravers. They're roaming the streets hungry for the blood and brains of workers. The unions have at times a tendency to personalise attacks. But yes, you've got to be resilient.When this is all over and they don't exist any more they've got to work elsewhere and we will remember them 'cause we know every (bleep) one of them. We'll never forget 'em. Thanks fellas.(Applause)

The coalition has just appointed the ABC krcht's former head John Lloyd as ka chair of the Fair Work building inspectorate, where he will be for the commission's return.The industry has a history of appalling unlawful conduct. It's widespread and it's entrenched. The only time that the industry observe and upheld the law was during the period of the ABCC.

Taking on the union cost this Perth builder his business. Jerry Hanssen's sites were boycotted for weeks.I pay the people ...He is lying!On my side on an AWA ...He's lying, his lips are moving. Hey!

Finally I couldn't pay the bills any more and had to wind my company up.

He estimates he spent $2.5 million in legal fees and it took him years to rebuild his business.They sent me into hell and three years of absolute intimidation and blackmail and extortion and you name it taught me that nothing is worse than that, so going broke was no longer an issue. I was broke. From there on, it was only a win. You cannot sink lower than nothing. We're not saying that they shouldn't represent the rights of their members. We're just saying why don't you behave like normally? Why do you have to boast about breaking the law?Sometimes unions will have to take a stand which may not always be popular. And sometimes we need to explain ourselves better but we make no apology for the putting our members' safety ahead of the opinion of a few politicians or shock jocks. The return of the building commission is shaping up as the first big stoush of the Abbott Government. For Boral's Mike Kane, it can't come soon enough.It's much better than asking police to be there to try to enforce the at every concrete delivery. We expect to see that in the Third World, not a first world country.

Adam Harvey reporting. In July, 7.30 had a story about thousands of koalas facing injury or death due to the logging of vast tracts of bluegum timber in south eastern Australia. The report named the country's largest woodchip exporter Australian Bluegum Plantations. The company ridiculed the suggestion that koalas were under threat, but since then, it's being slammed in an environment al audit and forced into a public admission that it has killed and injured koalas. Greg Hoy reports and a warning this story contains some disturbing images.

After the logging machines have left, this is what's left behind. This lucky koalas survived, but their habitat is gone. Confused, expose and stressed, their health is deteriorating.

Wildlife carers are keen to catch them to check for injuries, nurse them back to full strength and try to relocate them.

It's a sadly familiar story across the vast bluegum plantations of south west Victoria and South Australia.

I think we're facing a crisis with these guys. Broken limbs. Impact wounds. Broken backs. Severed arm. Dead mothers with joeys that are still alive. Trying to survive. It's a huge issue.

When 7.30 exposed this issue in July, we noted many companies were involved, but singled out the biggest. Australian Bluegum Plantations. Each year ABP ships 2 million tonnes of bluegum woodchip to pulp and paper manufacturers in Japan and China. Have you had animals from Australian Bluegum Plantations?Yes. Got one out in the tree. It's from Australian Bluegum Plantations.Do they know that you've had animals from Plantations?Uh-huh.They know?Yes.For this poor fellow who's missing both an arm and a leg, it was obviously a slow and painful end. But the lingering problem for the Forest Certification Council and for the environmental auditor for this company, the Rainforest Alliance Auditors, is that FSC certification is meant to pledge that companies like Australian Bluegum Plantations will guarantee that all wildlife is vigorously protected. Following our report in July, Australian Bluegum Plantations issued a blanket denial through the Forest Certification Council.When you choose an FSC product you are contributing to a positive change in the world. The Chairman of the Forest Certification Council at the time was the Chief Executive of Australian Bluegum Plantations Tony Price.At that time or mar vest ing operations and the procedures we were operating under, we felt we were delivering the outcomes we were looking for and that is to avoid harming koalas.As complaints against his company flooded in following our report, international environmental auditors the Rainforest Alliance Auditors launched an investigation into ABP and 7.30's claims.We felt the program's essence was serious enough and the feedback that we got from various stakeholders was serious enough that it warranted that immediate field investigation. The investigation's report has now been published. It's damning of Australian Bluegum Plantations.

Across six areas, the Australian Bluegum Plantations were found to have what we call major non-conform ances. These are significant failures related specifically to how they manage wildlife on their operations. Australian Bluegum Plantations's FSC certification has been suspended. It's a significant blow.Really FSC certification is almost becoming an essential in the forestry industry in order to do business. The company's logging operations in vast koala habitats across south eastern Australia have also been suspended.

Do you feel any guilt that it's taken this long that it's taken for you to be forced to take action? Do you feel any guilt about the numbers of koalas that have been injured or killed in that time?If I could just take you back to ... It's a simple question, though. Do you feel any guilt ...Of course I do. We're deeply sorry for the fact that koalas have been harmed on our property. We're deeply sorry. We're very, very keen to make sure that going forward, we do everything we possibly can as a koalas.Last
business to avoid harming koalas.Last year ABP has named the Forest Certification Council's Australian forest manager of the year.Have you written to complained to those who complained to the Forest Certification Council and to your company about the sort of problems that were problems that were presented in our program?We responded to a number of emails that we had at the time. Denying any involvement. Have you written to those people since to correct the record?No, I haven't. Should you?I believe I should. Though he's resigned as Chairman, inexplicably, Tony Price remains a director on the FSC board.Having been found guilty of such serious breaches, do you not think it would be fair to step down as one of the leaders of the forest stewardship council?I come back to the point. We are focused on addressing some findings in an audit that we've just had and our intention would be to get those things closed out, those corrective actions closed out, get them signed off by the auditor and then have our certification reinstated.As auditors are paid by the forestry companies they inspect, wildlife carers fear penalties won't be either tough enough or imposed frequently enough to deter ongoing mistreatment of koalas. And they will be left trying to clean up the mess.

Even by rock'n'roll standards Lou Reed was one of a kind. He was one of the first singer songwriters to openly write about his addiction to drugs and alcohol. The only stand-out commercial success he had was with the song 'Walk On The Wild Side', but his influence went way beyond raw album sales. Here's a look back at the life and contribution of Lou Reed who died on the weekend.

He is a New Yorker, an acclaimed photographer, a guitar player and a singer with a unique place in the art world. Please welcome Lou Reed!

Were you searched by our customs men for drugs?No, 'cause I don't take any.No drugs at all?No. Yet you sing about them ...I'm high on life.

They're all real simple ideas. Three chords. Turn it up. And make the lyrics be about something. That we really care about, that really happened. That have some bearing in real life. They're not just a disposable subject. SONG: # Hey babe, take a walk on the wild side # I said hey babe # Take a walk on the wild side # How do you describe yourself?Average. Why do you think your music is so popular?I didn't know it was popular. What do you like most in life?Everything.

For me, any good song stimulates some kind of emotion. What other thing is there that makes people get up and dance?

SONG: # I'm # Waitin' for my man #

You seem very withdrawn.Introverted you mean? It said in your release that we were given this morning thaw like lying to the press. Why is this, now you're doing it now?I didn't say that, the release did.

They say God protects fooms an drunks. After that you're on your own. I every been on my own for a very, very long time.

SONG: # Just a perfect day # Drinks and grey in the park # And then later when it gets dark # We go home

I've been notorious and I every been famous and that's not what's interesting. To say the least. I mean plus it's pretty easy. You know, you can vomit and walk on glass and jump off a roof and have your 15 minutes as Andy said. But trying to write something over a period of time and improve it and get closer to it, I mean you know you never will get there which is a cliche granted. But there's a lot of fun to be had trying to do that.

And that's the program for now but I hope you can join us tomorrow night for an investigation into controversial plans to build the world's biggest coal port on the Great Barrier Reef. And claims of a conflict of interest within the agency charged with protecting the World Heritage Listed site.If will be
it goes ahead as planned it will be the largest coal export port on the planet and if Mackay to the south goes ahead it will be the second largest coal export port on the planet and the Whitsundays lies right in the middle. The dredging itself will be just about where we're sitting now.Save our reef! Save our reef! Do we feed to really dump the spoil in the Barrier Reef? Is it really that necessary?Until they get the science right it's just too much of a gamble. That story tomorrow night. I hope you can join me then but for now, goodnight. Scplr Captions by CSI Australia

This Program is Captioned Live # Theme music

Hello, I'm Caroline Jones. They say every family
has its secrets. Tonight's Australian Story shows how far some families will go
to bury them. When Susan Swingler began a quest to
meet her long-lost father she had no idea what she would
unearth along the way. Lies and deceptions
that were simply astonishing and even more so because of
the hand that lay behind them - one of Australia's best known
and best loved authors. This is Susan Swingler's story.

My last memory of my father, Leonard,
was being at a station, probably New Street Station
in Birmingham and him lifting me up onto the train and my mother's suitcase
being on the train. I was told that my father
would be going up to Scotland where he was looking for a house
for us to live in because he'd got a new job and while he did this, my mother and I would go and stay
in a school, a boarding school.

I was quite excited about this trip
to a boarding school

and I accepted it because I thought,

'Well, we'll be joining him soon
in Scotland,'

I remember my mother hanging on
to me by my waist

while I leaned out to wave goodbye
to my father and he ran along the platform
for a little way

and then with all the steam and
the smuts and so on, he disappeared.

I didn't actually see him again
until nearly 40 years later.

It took me a long time to decide
to write this book.