THE $105 million in “extra” health funding announced today by Mr Ferguson does not give hospitals any ability to spend more money than they already are. It’s a bit of an accounting trick.
Every year the line-item for health in the budget is around $100 million less than actual expenditure turns out to be.
As it’s a bit difficult to stop patients coming through the doors, the Tasmanian Health Service has to be topped up every year. Normally there are two or three amendments to the annual service agreement to accommodate this.
Patient demand has been growing statewide by around 5 per cent a year for several years. It is quite predictable. The number of patients has been growing lately a bit less than usual not because there are fewer sick people but because the hospitals are full.
You will recall that the recent KPMG and RDME reports showed that the funding gap between the allocation in the budget and the minimum amount that actually needed to be spent was around $100 million. That’s what this is, and it’s been going on for a long time.
Under-estimating health costs in the budget make the surplus look better.
If there was $105 million in genuinely new money going into health, the government would be able to tell us the specifics of what it would be spent on. They haven’t because they can’t. This will not alleviate any of the current pressures on the state’s hospitals.
Martyn Goddard, Hobart.
WHAT a completely selfish lot these mountainbike riders are, not only do they destroy kilometres of bush and undergrowth, in this quest for their thrills, but they are determined to destroy all heritage and history in their paths. Where will their greed take them or the two councils involved?
The North-East line has so much history for so many families, whose livelihood depended on that railway, we are not dead yet. My aunt and uncle ran the post office at Lalla until they passed away and their son, daughter and grandchildren are still in the area. My nan and grandfather established the orchards in the area beside the rail, my mum and dad lived on the other side of the railway, in the house that I was born in.
There were several aunts and uncles Brooks along that line and the famous Lalla Church, recently removed to a winery, was just above the railway, where all our families worshipped every Sunday.
The apple shed beside the railway, was where all the apples grown in the area were sent off for sales and export, Santa came every Christmas and joined the families from miles around, the rail motor driven by politician Alec Atkins, picked up for the families for their shopping trips to Launceston and locally to Lilydale.
Descendants of these families still live in the Lalla, Lilydale, Karoola area and the ones that have moved to Launceston and further away, filled the Don River Railway trains when they had trips to Scottsdale until the Tasmanian Government withdrew funding for the upkeep and so stopped these wonderful excursions.
Like most greedy councils, as the Dorset and Launceston, if it’s not bringing heaps of money into their coffer, they say “forget history, we can make a quid out of these two-wheeled fanatics”. Shame on all of you, greed is an ugly monster.
Marion Brooks, Youngtown.
PETER Doddy and Graeme Barwick have hit the nail right on the head, their views on teachers and nurses wage increase are spot on. We only seem to get industrial action like this when a Liberal government is in power and an election is due.
Union leaders stir up this trouble and still get paid, their members lose pay when they strike and that money is never recuperated when or if they get the increase they ask for. This is just a way of getting the mindless sheep to follow their lead to an election.
If you belong to a union, it doesn’t matter who you vote for, a portion of your dues goes to Labor, it is not divided and paid to whomever you want it to go to.
When Labor is in power the onion leaders say “don’t rock the boat”. They make it look like Liberals are against us and Labor is for us. Which is a load of rubbish, Labor is for themselves.
Labor does spend a lot of money, particularly on actors in advertisements, which people think are real stories, until you see them months later in some other advertisement.
It’s as if they have a great big credit card which come next election is left to the Liberals to get the budget back in the black.
Many people of today put everything on credit and seem to think that the government can do the same but someone has to pay it back and they forget that it is them in the long run.
B. Luies, Longford.
THE education union and its action getting teachers to strike across Tasmania is just completely out of hand. Teachers are being made to look like that they are more interested in what goes into their pockets than what they put into the kids heads in their classrooms.
David Parker, West Launceston.
COULD the current impasse between the state government and public sector unions please move to arbitration as soon as possible? It would be great to start 2019 anew.
Suzanne Fadel, Caveside.
CASSY O’Connor could not have picked a worse time to present a bill to restore the House of Assembly back to 35 members.
Unions up in arms over pay and conditions, shortages of nurses, teachers and support staff as well as the government crying poor. How out of touch with the ordinary Tasmanian can a politician get?