Mildura Weekly : Friday May 30 2014 Vol 8 No 30
www.milduraweekly.com.au 10 Mildura Weekly – 30/05/14 The soapbox Tell us what’s on your mind 1010 Mildura Weekly – 30/05/14 Mildura Weekly – 30/05/14 Mildura Weekly The editor’s pick of comments made on the Mildura Weekly’s Facebook page this week... Facebook feedback Sparkies not to blame 1 Sir, With regards to ‘Who is Re- sponsible?’ in last week’s edi- tion. I wish people would do their research before going to print. The problems with the installation of the insula- tion has nothing to do with the sparkies. The insulation should have been fastened to the inside of the roof, not to the top of the ceiling. The wiring in ceilings is in dou- ble insulated plastic cable. If you install the insulation on top of this by using a staple gun you can bet you will drive a staple through a cable and make the whole sheet of insulation ‘live’. The fault is with the em- ployers who did not train their employees correctly as per Occupation Health and Safety Regulations. Why OH&S are not in- volved in this investigation is beyond me? Ray Denton Broken Hill Sparkies not to blame 2 Sir, Please do not blame the elec- tricians! It was the insulation installers – often untrained youngsters given staple guns to connect the foil to timber – that died. What they did, unwit- tingly, was staple through the electric cables in homes not fitted with a RCD safety switch. A positive outcome from this enquiry would be to make safety switches com- pulsory in all properties. Like the insulation scheme reduced unemploy- ment, so would fitting safety switches and would have the side effect of saving lives! Just make sure only li- censed tradesmen do the job. Note: I got my first wir- ing licence as an apprentice in 1956! Renny Williams Merbein Final local screening Sir, To all those who may be in- terested in the progress of the Chookman movie in the Cannes Festival in France. The movie has been suc- cessful in being received as a competitor for movie-mak- ing amongst thousands of other movies world-wide. It is now at the stage of being analysed by buyers and agents. Tonight, May 30, at the Paringa Hotel, is the last wide screening showing in the Riverland. Frank Turton Paringa Explanation please... Sir, Can Mildura Mayor Glenn Milne please explain to me – and all Mildura residents who pay rates – what is really going on? I have read the ‘Draft Budget,’ and it does not sur- prise me that there are very few comments made on it, as the average ‘Joe Blow’ would be confused after the first chapter. The ‘figures’ used look good. For example on Page 32 (4.2) in the ‘red header’ across the page it reads ‘In- come Types, Ref, Forecast Ac- tual 2013/14 $’000, Budget 2014/15 $’000. The first line under the header is ‘Rates and Charges’ with the accompanying fig- ures $55,877 for 2013/14 and $59,140 for 2014/15. Looks like a small change so no one complains about the increase, but if you were to add the extra zeros, you get the real figures. The rates collected for 2013/14 were actually $55,877,000, and the ex- pected income for 2014/15 is $59,140,000. I have read all the ‘gob- bledygook’ in the rates ‘Draft Budget,’ and you said in the Mildura Weekly (23/05/14) that you needed to clarify the issue “because there were some very inaccurate figures floating around,” which you say are very concerning. Well, I may not be as high- ly educated as some people, but I CAN READ, and what is written in black and white on the draft budget (page 58) clearly states that “a munici- pal charge be introduced at $100 per assessment.” According to my under- standing of the written word, ‘per’ means single, so that would translate to each and every assessment or rate no- tice that Council sends out. Isn’t this the way the aver- age ratepayer would see it? You stated that it is NOT a $100 flat rate municipal charge, that those proper- ties with “lower” capital improvement would pay a higher percentage of a $100 municipal charge, and those with “higher” capital im- provements would pay a lower percentage of a $100 municipal charge. The figures you used in the report dated 23/05/14 stated that anyone with the average rate notice of $2000 would incur a municipal charge of $21, yet those with an average rate notice of $1000 would incur a munici- pal charge of $60.50. Have I got the correct interpretation of the writ- ten word? So, believing that I have got it correct, it’s the ‘little man’ that gets shafted – again. What are ‘capital im- provements?’ I believe that it means a person has im- proved the value of their property. This could mean that they’ve added rooms to their property, added a pool or built a garage, which means a permit has been required if it is to comply with govern- ment regulations. Council makes money from these permits, and keeps track of who has im- proved their property, and fair enough. BUT, it takes money to improve property values, and I don’t see the average rate- payer having a lot of money to spend on improvements. Or is it that they just don’t want to, so they don’t have to pay more money to Council? Well that’s backfired too, hasn’t it? Less improvements mean you want more money from them, and those that have spent money on improve- ments (because they CAN af- ford it) don’t have to pay as much. As I said before..... it’s the ones who can least afford it who have to pay. Sue Watson Mildura What are your thoughts about the Federal Government’s decision to raise the retirement age to 70 by 2035? Kath: It just shows how out of touch the Federal Government is. There’s many people approaching “the big 5-0” who are in volunteer positions because they can’t get paid employment – largely due to the higher cost to employers. These people have held some incredible positions in the past and are more than capable and willing to work, but they’re not the problem in this equation. Raising the retirement age will see unemployment figures skyrocket, and see many more elderly people needing to apply for the disability support pension. On the other end of the age spectrum, youths not born into privileged households are going to be just as disadvantaged due to cuts to education and trainee/apprenticeships. Without the ability to get affordable education and training we’ll lack skilled workers and unemployment will also increase in that age group as more people are forced to look for manual labour roles which are already being taken on by backpackers, migrants, and under- qualified people (a position which I’ve been in myself). Why is our Government trying to run our country into the ground by creating policies similar to those that have made America such a tragedy? Vicki Downes: I feel sorry for the people who have to work until they’re 70! That’s if they live that long! Chris Brown: Not good – sack the Prime Minister now! Mildura has experienced a slightly warmer May than usual in 2014, with our latest run of warm weather only coming to an end in the past couple of days. How have you enjoyed the unexpected warm spell? Are you looking forward to a cool change? Barbara Stroud-Ferry: Winter cannot come soon enough. Lynton Grayson: It’s been great gardening weather. Heath Slingo: Yes, give me mid to high 20s all year round! Rachel Freeman: No! The weather has been perfect! 204 Deakin Ave, Mildura Phone: 5021 2008 Sunday to Saturday 9am-7:30pm Deakin Lucky Lotto • Geoff Adcock • Joan Jenkins • Donnie Byrne This Weeks Winners Are: F. 5027 6241 E. firstname.lastname@example.org www.frankstockmanplumbing.com.au VIC & NSW LIC. NO. 32486 CALL NOW 0419 276 220 FREE QUOTES EXCAVATION HIRE PENSIONER DISCOUNTS DID YOU KNOW Frank Stockman Plumbing provides the following services? Leaking Taps? Blocked Drains? New Hot Water Service? Gas Heater Installation? Septic Tank Installation? Grey Water System Installation? Sewer/Storm Water Problems? New Roof and/or Guttering? Bathroom Renovations? Kitchen Renovations? Building a new home? Rainwater Tank installation? Air-conditioner Service? Excavation Hire? Sky Lights?
Friday May 23 2014 Vol 8 No 29
Friday June 6 Vol 8 No 31