THE Opal Card has been heralded as a great benefit to people who use public transport, particularly trains and buses. However you do not get the full benefit if you live out of major centres. To travel from Karuah as a concession card holder, there is no Opal card facility on the bus you need to catch to get to Broadmeadow to go to Sydney by train. You do get the concession fare of $2.50, but this only gets you as far as Broadmeadow. Then you have the $2.50 fair on your Opal card for the rest of the day. If you are lucky enough to live in Sydney you can travel all day for $2.50, so I say you are penalised for where you live by the state government.
AUSTRALIAN Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) secretary Sally McManus felt that it was appalling for Malcolm Turnbull to accept any pay rise while weekend penalty rates are being reduced ("ACTU blasts penalty cut", Herald 2/7). Politician salaries are determined by the Parliamentary Remuneration Tribunal; they don't give themselves a rise. It's also no secret that the Prime Minister gives his entire salary to various charities. A previous Labor Government set up the Fair Work Commission and their decision to lower some penalty rates should not be thrown back into Mr Turnbull's court by the ACTU.
THE Prime Minister will travel to Nauru later in the year for a forum but the ABC will not accompany him. The ABC journalists are banned from entering Nauru because the government there say they are biased when reporting on what is happening in the detention centre there (“Turnbull admits Nauru decision ‘regrettable’ but won’t step in”, ABC 3/7). It seems to me that some people cannot just handle the truth.
STEVE Barnett (Short Takes 3/7), you go on about the looney Greens but I reckon your ideas are the same. The Greens want our dogs to be vegetarian? The pet food industry will then collapse? Dogs will still need food, which won’t solve the poo problem.
I WOULD like to take the opportunity to wish Dr Sheahan Ranasinghe and his family all the best. Sadly, they are moving on. The good doctor has served our community well above and beyond the call of duty. Good luck, doc, and thanks for looking after the Butchers. I hope the new doctor realises how big the shoes he has to fill are, and I hope the little thing about cutting down on beer gets overlooked. All the best.
I HAD another geek at Shepherds Hill cottage yesterday. Whoa! What a hive of inactivity! Newcastle City Council are still paying for the fence, the site shed and the scaffolding. Gee they must have dough!
TO MATT Ophir (Short Takes 4/7): your comment should be seized upon by the hypocritical Greens. In my opinion, it makes far more sense than the rubbish spewing forth from this pathetic minority group.
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