Letters to the Port Stephens Examiner: August 15

Save lot once and for all

As some would be aware, Port Stephens Council recently conducted two public meetings to permit discussions and feedback regarding its recently issued Draft Plans of Management [DPoM] for two holiday parks - Halifax and Shoal Bay.

SAVE OUR RESERVE: Shoal Bay residents rally together in the fight to keep Halifax Reserve, also known as Lot 424, in public hands.

SAVE OUR RESERVE: Shoal Bay residents rally together in the fight to keep Halifax Reserve, also known as Lot 424, in public hands.

I attended both meetings on the Halifax Park, and found that 99 per cent of the discussions related to the future of the adjacent Lot 424.

At the first meeting on Tuesday night, August 10, around 22 people attended, the second on Saturday morning had around 35 people there.

Many reasons were presented to the council officers, and the consultant spokesman, as to why the Lot 424 should not be developed. The recommendation stated for section 7, in the DPoM, is to allow Lot 424 to remain AS IS.

However this recommendation will be voted on by the Port Stephens councillors at meetings in September/October and they are able vote against the recommendation. Following the many, many submissions that were received by the council, it seems they have accepted the notion that it would not be a very popular move with the general public, and the many visitors, and users of the park, who appreciate it as it is now.

The overall opinion at the conclusion of both meetings, was to thank the consultants for their suggestion, but begin moves to have the Lot 424, reclassified and made a permanent public park, divorced from the caravan park, so that this battle does not have to take place at every five year period. It costs the council many thousands of dollars of ratepayers funds to conduct the surveys, pay consulting fees, and cause great angst to the general public at large.

Council officers advised that they would investigate this proposal, and advise at a later date.

Rick O'Shea, Shoal Bay

Cost of health care

Ross Gittins from the Sydney Morning Herald deserves thanks for providing a deeper analysis of the superannuation issue.

I would like to add one perspective that needs to be addressed and is being overlooked by our politicians.

As a current superannuation recipient I find myself in the position of struggling to make ends meet comfortably. I mention this because the current commercials that highlight the $250,000 lump sum total of superannuation as enough to live on are incorrect. People on superannuation will need to ensure they have enough to pay for what is considered a comfortable life but please take account health care. Pensioners receive many benefits by way of concessions. Health support is the big one. Even funding your private health care is becoming financially difficult. The dream of the your superannuation being a supplement to the pension has and will be further eroded as this government seeks to punish the leaners of our community. Reducing or not having superannuation into the future will mean more people will need to receive a pension. The current desire to reduce or eliminate superannuation is great for employers who can pay less as a component of wages and apparently provide more current income to the employee, but how will the politicians deal with the increased demand on the welfare system into the future?

Robert Mulas, Corlette

Every drop counts

Recently a senator proposed a bill to reduce the rate of immigration into Australia.

Fortunately it was defeated 54 votes to two, otherwise we would not be able to reach the goal of a Big Australia with an extra 25 million more people in the time-frame planned. Consequently, saving water is even more important as we will need to share it with the new Australians. Surely we can all cut down on washing in all its forms but we must keep drinking water for health reasons. As the summers and winters become warmer, we will need to drink more not less.

George Allen, Nelson Bay