Letters to the editor

LETTERS: Send letters to the editor to billie.harrison@fairfaxmedia.com.au

LETTERS: Send letters to the editor to billie.harrison@fairfaxmedia.com.au

Hard, green rubbish collection

It seems that there is to be a 6 per cent rise in the waste levy as well as a 3.2 percent rise in rates. Perhaps now is the time to offer the rate payers of Port Lincoln a hard rubbish and a green rubbish collection as a 'sweetener' to offset this rise.

These collections could be offered less frequently to general rubbish collection, but still on a regular basis. Many councils in Adelaide offer this service so why not Port Lincoln Council?  

It may even alleviate some of the problem with illegal dumping of rubbish. 

RENE STEEN

Port Lincoln

Fears for Warramboo future

This year Warramboo celebrates 100 years and within the district are children who are fifth generation.

With the proposed mine I am worried about the future of our district.

I ask people to talk to the affected people not only in the mine area but also the farmers along the corridor about its effect on their lives as this could happen to your area as well.

Please find out more about your rights when a mine developer comes knocking on your door as there are areas all over the state with exploration licences over them.

Once one mine starts others will probably follow.

Even though you have some rights at present the Mining Act is still loaded in favour of the miner.

Agriculture is the biggest employer in South Australia.

The question for the South Australian government is once all the agricultural land is mined or contaminated by mining what are they going to do next?

With agriculture there is a never ending future but with mining there is a limited shelf life.

CRAIG SAMPSON

Warramboo

Downsizing police overlooks most needy

National Seniors’ rightsizing proposal was pretty straightforward.

We asked that $250,000 be quarantined from the profits of the sale of the family home and exempted from the Aged Pension means test.

Older Australians could keep this money to pay for essentials such as health and aged care as they grew even older – and keep their part or full pension, and the concessions that go with them.

Around one in four National Seniors’ members have told us they live in unsuitable houses – they are too big, too expensive to maintain, or even unsafe if your mobility is compromised.

Our aim was to help those older Australians who most needed it – the ones on part and full aged pensions, that top out at $888 per fortnight for a single person and $1339.40pf for a couple, including supplements.

The government's initiative is more about superannuation than downsizing. It’s complex and relies on the transfer of surplus sales proceeds into superannuation. 

That money will then be considered for the means test. So those who want to downsize will lose some, most, or all of their pension depending on the calculations. 

That was a key reason why many home-owning pensioners were staying put before the budget, and it’s hard to see how that will change because of this initiative. There’s also the added issue of stamp duty costs, which vary from state to state.

One estimate I saw in post-Budget analysis estimated 10,000 homeowners may take advantage of the new scheme each year. That's a fraction of the number of pensioners in Australia who would be helped by a genuine downsizing policy.

IAN HENSCHKE

National Seniors Australia chief advocate

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