Nurses not Politicians
IT is almost unbelievable that at a time when state public service workers are taking industrial action to get a liveable wage that there is talk of increasing the number of members in the House of Assembly back to 35, and even a suggestion of increasing the Legislative Council to 17.
It is not just the politician's salary but all the expenses that go with them: offices, secretarial services, allowances, travel and hangers-on.
The cost of 10 more politicians would be between $3 and $4 million a year.
As it is Tasmania is completely over-governed. The Hare Clark electoral system is partly to blame for any problems with deadwood members being elected on the coat-tails of more able and well known ones.
To me, increasing the numbers is just a ploy to get their party mates elected to highly paid jobs.
Malcolm Scott, Newstead.
NEW state Liberal Lyons MP John Tucker notes federal Labor's $100 million commitment to tranche 3 of Tasmania's irrigation rollout isn't remotely enough to make it a reality (The Examiner, April 1).
Mr Tucker really should do his homework.
The irrigation rollout, which started under Labor, has always been a partnership between the federal and state governments and farmers/investors.
The $100 million announced by Labor would be the federal contribution to the tranche under a Bill Shorten Labor government.
It is on par with federal contributions to tranches one and two.
Labor, to date, remains the only party to publicly commit to contributing to the funding of tranche three.
Irrigation continues to open up new agricultural opportunities and brings jobs to the regions, and Labor is proud to back it.
Brian Mitchell, federal Labor MP for Lyons.
YET another example of where Tasmania sits in Liberal priorities, a nothing budget for us.
What good is there in billions of dollars in surplus if working and non-working people can't afford to live a decent life, keep their head above water, put good food on the table for children and put it away for that rainy day?
No, let them take care of the top-end of society - those on a $100,000 plus a year.
We won't even get into what the state needs for roads, hospitals, schools, the homeless, disadvantaged, the mentally ill or those living with a disability.
Tax cuts for the rich is what we get.
Doreen Baker, West Launceston.
SAME old election promises concerning Sorell and the airport roundabout upgrades as last election.
The previous election we were told money would go to fix the mess, but we all know the money has been spent on road infrastructure in the North of the state.
Same old, same old.
Max Wells, Sorell.
ISN'T the federal opposition leader proving that no one ever really likes an electric Bill?
Jack Sonnemann, Lucaston.
HAVING watched the debate on the marriage bill in the Upper House last week, I can't decide if I am more disappointed, frustrated, or angry at what the Legislative Council has become.
The Leg Co is supposed to be a house of review, scrutinising and strengthening bills that are presented, whilst representing the will of the people.
What I saw last week was a group of so-called independents who went into the debate with their minds already made up to push their own agenda.
In years past, members would base their decisions on merit.
Points were discussed and listened to by other members, and members could be persuaded by the depth and quality of the debate to take a different position.
I saw none of this last week.
Members arguments were clearly not listened to, as was evidenced by some of the comments that followed from those with closed ears.
Mike Gaffney's performance in the chair made a mockery of the very serious role of the legislative council, having the clerk whisper every procedure in his ear, word for word, and still getting it wrong.
I saw obstructionist bullying towards a member who asked for clarification on an amendment.
They were told to refer to Hansard when the person who moved the amendment in the Lower House was not available.
No clarification was given, but the amendment was passed, despite its implications being unclear.
I am left wondering what is the point of having a debate if nobody is listening to what is being presented?
If Leg Co members wish to push an agenda, they are in the wrong house and should get out.
That is not the role of the council, and not the will of the people.
With a committee looking into the merits of increasing numbers in the Lower House, perhaps it is time to follow the lead of Queensland and abolish the Legislative Council, as it has become an obstructionist and hostile place.