Good morning and welcome to the Morning Buzz for Friday, December 15. It’s set to be a cloudy but warm day. Temperatures are expected to hit 26 in the city and up to 33 in the west. Enjoy your day!
Rego rebate for Sydney motorists to cost taxpayers $550m over next decade
The Berejiklian government's carrot to regular Sydney toll road users of free vehicle registration is to cost taxpayers more than $550 million over the next decade.
Weeks after the scheme was announced, the half-yearly budget review released on Thursday shows the so-called rego rebate is forecast to cost $162 million over the next four years. Read more.
Measles case at Blacktown Hospital prompts vaccination warning
A person with measles at Blacktown Hospital was likely infectious while on two commercial flights.
The unidentified person, who is now in an isolation ward, presented to the hospital's emergency department at 10pm on Sunday, December 10. Read more.
New data reveals September 17 is Australia's most common birthday
Want a baby? Then, statistically speaking, you'd be better off celebrating this fertile Christmas holiday season in Victoria and not New South Wales.
September 17 is now Australia's most common birthday, according to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, thanks to the magic of festive timing.
April 8 comes in second, with the help of some winter warming. Read more.
Fire risk and health impact alerts as Sydney heatwave sweeps in
The first large heatwave of summer has prompted a fire weather warning and a public health alert with only modest relief forecast for the next few days before the heat starts to build again.
Sydney's expected top temperature was trimmed by the Bureau of Meteorology to 35 degrees for the central business district - reversing an overnight revision higher. Western suburbs were already reporting temperatures near or above 40 degrees by late morning. Read more.
Two men arrested over 'asbestos waste dump' in Sydney's west
Two men have been arrested in Sydney's west over a suspected asbestos-filled illegal waste dump.
The arrests come just days after eight tonnes of waste was found dumped in the middle of a suburban street in Chester Hill.
In the Wednesday night incident, police were called to Burroway Road at Wentworth Point to reports of a ute and a truck believed to be carrying materials that included asbestos. Read more.
Demolition of last tower at former Kurnell oil refinery
The last concrete stack associated with the Caltex oil refinery at Kurnell, which closed three years ago, has come crashing down.
Caltex said the 67 metre high structure was safely toppled at 8.15am on Thursday. Read more.
Standing ovation for final sitting of royal commission
The final sitting of the royal commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse was packed to overflowing Thursday when Justice Peter McClellan walked into the room to a standing ovation.
Scores of survivors of sexual abuse, and the people who supported them, were there - from family to lawyers - alongside the Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and leader of the opposition Bill Shorten, applauded loudly as the commissioners took their seats for the final time in the Sydney hearing room. Read more.
Malan tames Aussie quicks, WACA pitch with fighting ton
Australia's vaunted pacemen came out breathing fire but it was England's Dawid Malan who smothered the blaze with his maiden Test century giving the hosts a fight to take the urn in Perth.
The bounce is back in the WACA's famous pitch for its last hurrah as England's embattled top order defied some at times hostile fast bowling to produce arguably its finest performance of the series.
They were aided by some sloppy fielding from the new-look Australian slip cordon with Cameron Bancroft and comeback kid Mitchell Marsh both putting down chances. Read more.
ICC head says no evidence of fixing ahead of Perth Test
The head of the International Cricket Council's anti-corruption unit says there is no evidence that the third Ashes Test match between Australia and England has been corrupted, nor is there any indication that players have had contact with alleged fixers.
There was shock in Australian cricket at a report from UK newspaper The Sun of an alleged spot-fixing attempt on the Perth Test, which starts on Thursday. Read more.
Wanderers players need to take responsibility: Michael Thwaite
Western Sydney Wanderers players need to start taking responsibility for their own performances, rather than looking for fault elsewhere, if they are to salvage their season, says defender Michael Thwaite.
Still reeling from last weekend's 5-0 demolition at the expense of arch-rivals Sydney FC, Wanderers players are desperate to restore some confidence just a third of the way through the campaign. Read more.
Arnold denies being approached by FFA for Socceroos job
Sydney FC coach Graham Arnold cooled suggestions he will become the next Socceroos coach having denied he's been approached by Football Federation Australia to take charge of the national team.
Reports surfaced late on Wednesday night linking Arnold with the vacant post at the Socceroos, suggesting the FFA offered Arnold the job.
However, on Thursday morning, Arnold quashed those reports and reiterated that he's had no contact with the FFA about coaching Australia at the 2018 World Cup in Russia. Read more.