Sunday, February 18, 2018

Letters to the Editor

Editor April 20, 2016


Dear Editor,

We live in fast moving times.

Ways of doing business are changing all the time with the rise of Uber and Airbnb being just two examples. Times of rapid change always bring uncertainty.

The question then becomes how do we have the insight to know what to embrace and what to protect?

It used to be enough to be well known and to be a ‘good bloke’ to serve in parliament, but today we want more.

I’ve got plenty of mates to have a beer with. But that’s not what we need in a parliamentarian.

We need more.

It is no longer acceptable to mention football 582 times and GV Health a mere eight times as Damien Drum has done in the Victorian Parliament.

In Murray, we need a member that is ready, willing and able to fight with passion and intelligence for us in Canberra. We need someone who can fight for our water. We need someone who can fight for our businesses. But most of all, we need someone who has the skill and intelligence to explain positios and policies for the benefit of our region.

Banging the drum using old fashioned clichés simply won’t work in the modern environment.

That is why I’m supporting Duncan McGauchie of the Liberal Party as the member for Murray in the federal election.

Duncan is the only candidate able to successfully articulate our needs at the highest level.

He will be ‘our man in the room.’ Fighting for us all.

Yours sincerely,

Marty Richardson




Dear Editor,

The Andrews Labor Government must come clean and explain to regional Victorians where hundreds of millions of dollars from the sale of Rural Finance corporation has gone.

Rural Finance was sold for around $460M in 2014, with $220M set aside by the former Liberal-Nationals Government for the Murray Basin Rail upgrade.

The remaining $240M was earmarked for investment in rural and regional Victoria.

But since the Andrews Labor Government has come to office, that remaining money appears to have vanished.

In May last year Jaala Pulford said the remaining funds would be “directed towards regional and rural projects.”

Yet two years after Rural Finance was sold, Jaala Pulford and the Labor Government still refuse say what these mystery “regional projects” are.

There are fears Labor is being coy because the money has actually been spent on projects in Melbourne.

It is well and truly time for the Andrews Labor Government to come clean and explain where regional Victoria’s missing $240M has gone.

Yours sincerely,

Peter Walsh

Leader of The Nationals



Dear Editor,

While very fast trains are great in theory, several studies have shown they are not economically viable in Australia.

Even before the inevitable cost blowouts, it is estimated that a Brisbane to Melbourne train would cost about $114B, or $5,000 per Australian. This is too much money for private companies to raise without setting ridiculous ticket prices, and it would be unconscionable for the government to borrow even more money to fund it.

If governments really are worried about travel times, they should reform speed limits on our roads. This would not cost us a cent.

As roads and cars have improved, other countries have reformed their speed limits. In Europe, speed limits on many motorways have been raised to 130 km/h and beyond, with no adverse impact on road safety.

Setting speed limits according to what the community considers to be appropriate would have many benefits. It would improve the experience of drivers, improve relations with law enforcement, and reduce the tedium of long distance travel.

Yours sincerely,

David Leyonhjelm

Senator for the Liberal Democrats



Dear Editor,

The argument put forward by the Victorian Regional Development Minister, Jaala Pulford that funding of a new building for Shepparton Art Museum (SAM) is not competing with funding for health and education and comes from a different bucket, does not hold water as the SAM funding was not coming from the arts budget. GV Health is the largest single employer in our region and provides for an ever increasing demand for health services in our region.

In my opinion, the non-funding of the hospital upgrade in Shepparton is more about politics than the needs of the Victorians that live in our region. The local upper house Liberal MP has been running a political campaign to get funding for the rebuild of the Shepparton hospital. This is a bit hypocritical, considering that over the past 12 years there have been four other unfunded master plans developed and she has not run a similar campaign nor even raised the issue in parliament.

I wish the politicians would just stop playing politics and fund the balance of the project.

Yours sincerely,

Michael Curtis