So glad to see you, along with our federal member Damien Drum, at the meeting to try to save the DP Jones Nursing Home. I realise the nursing home has got itself into severe financial insolvency to the tune of $3.5 million which in terms of both the state and federal budgets is a drop in the ocean.
A case in point I refer your attention to the environmental flow put down the Goulburn River at the start of the month worth some $150 million, and this in a drought where Goulburn River customers have been allocated 50% entitlement for which we will be charged full entitlement costs. I come to this figure of $150 million by 8000 mega litres per day for 14 days at $600 per mega litre which is the current market price. You will find that 14 days at the flow by price adds up to $75 million but there is another 14 days proposed for next month. The letter we received says the flow is required to revegetate the river banks when in fact it tips trees over.
I rabbit on about this to show the futility of government policy to country people.
We in Murchison have felt very fortunate to have a high quality nursing home for our end of life living. Living in a small town of under 1000 people is a personal choice. A large part of that choice was due to the great medical, pharmaceutical; phlebotomy services, neighbour house services and finally nursing home facilities.
Steph, I have post-polio syndrome, which means I will require a nursing home 10 to 20 years earlier than most people. As I’m 68 now that could be as early as 5 years from now. I had hoped that would be here in Murchison.
Rosemaree is quite disabled, with a severely constricted spinal cord, due to her nursing for 33 years, coincidently at DP Jones. She has had 2 corrective surgeries which have prevented her becoming a quadriplegic but she walks extremely slowly on a stick, and she is my carer.
With DP Jones operational, I would be able to visit our home occasionally, look over our small farm on the edge of the town, less than 1 kilometre from DP Jones.
Without DP Jones being available for me, I will have to go to Shepparton, which is 40 kilometres away. As we are both pensioners, an 80 kilometre round trip would be too expensive for more than a fortnightly visit.
As we have been married for 46 years, so far, and seen each other almost every day, I would find the separation unbearable, in fact I would rather be dead.
I know my wishes are not of much importance, but I worked hard and paid my share of taxes for 40 years believing they would be used to benefit all Australians.
Sorry to go on so much, but I along with this whole small community is hurting badly.
I thank you for your support at the meeting.
Gerard R Ryan