Letters to the editor March 22 2017

MORNING GLORY: Sunrise over the Bellambi rock pool by Warren Gray. Send your image to letters@illawarramercury.com.au or share it on our Facebook page.
MORNING GLORY: Sunrise over the Bellambi rock pool by Warren Gray. Send your image to letters@illawarramercury.com.au or share it on our Facebook page.


It’s great to see Mr Ward is looking to the future and pushing for the completion of the Maldon-Dombarton rail line. Good on you Mr Ward.

But why wait for a private company? Why not use money from the lease of Port Kembla and royalties from local coal mines.

State ownership would mean any profits after its completion would go back into state coffers, benefiting the people of NSW.

And while you are at it Mr Ward, how about pushing for the non-privatisation of Shellharbour Hospital, lifts at Unanderra station, better Illawarra timetables with more carriages on peak hour trains, construction of Department of Housing, housing estates in the local area (with all DOH housing to have solar panels) and the removal of the most dangerous vehicle on our roads, the B-doubles truck.

And while thinking of the future Mr Ward, get the Energy Minister to give Mr Elon Musk a call to secure our clean energy needs into the future.

I hear Mr Musk has an offer too good to refuse.

Again, well done Mr Ward, your realisation that the Maldon-Dombarton rail line is a priority is commendable, though it’s taken you how long? And I’m sure you can sort these other issues out.

Dave Schmidt, Towradgi


The juxtaposition of the Amanda Vanstone article “Bill Shorten is playing us for fools” and the contribution “Help workers” from Chris Polson (Illawarra Mercury, Tuesday, March 14) should leave Mercury readers asking the question: “Is Amanda Vanstone for real?”.

For decades she was a minister of the Crown and for a time; Australian ambassador to Italy with the income and perks which come with those offices.

Possibly she is also a recipient of a lifetime parliamentary pension and associated perks unless of course her altruism and generosity has her donating services for free?

Irrespective of either circumstance, she evidently sees a need to offer Mercury readers reasons why she can justify in her own mind, the of cutting penalty rates.

On any reasonable consideration of the facts at hand, concerning her level of wealth in comparison with those of low income families about to be slugged by reduced penalty rates Amanda Vanstone appears to be a hypocrite of the first order.

Barry Swan, Balgownie


I refer to the article in the Mercury regarding Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews expectations regarding the repayment of the total of $140,000 claimed by Deputy Speaker Don Nardella $100,000 and, presumably, $40,000 by former speaker Telmo Languiller for living outside their respective electorates and. claiming these amounts.

I feel that these claims are, without doubt, similar to any Centrelink claim against individuals on Centrelink payments.  

Why should members of parliament be treated any differently to the general public when they have obviously ripped off the taxpayer by these amounts?  

If these individuals do not volunteer to repay the amounts they should have the moneys taken from them as they do with Centrelink debtors who have no way they can argue as the moneys are deducted from their fortnightly payment.  The same rules should apply to everyone no matter who they are or their profession.

Rita Webb, Sussex Inlet


I went down to my local Telstra shop today to ask them a question.  I was told that it would cost me $29 for a 15-minute consultation. How's that for customer service?  I wish I could charge them that much for all the time they've left me hanging on the phone trying to resolve my problems with their network.

William Bielefeldt,  Kembla Grange