Political careers stand in way of basin decisions
The Victorian Water Minister Lisa Neville, like all of us, knows there are "serious issues under the Murray-Darling Basin Plan that still need to be resolved".
But at federal level there is no appetite to improve this failing plan, and this will not change while there is an election in the air.
A federal Senate Inquiry was told last week that there have been 45 reviews since the basin plan's inception and that we should be acting on the expert advice in these reviews to make the plan better.
That will not happen until we have a parliament with the courage to implement recommendations and commit to an adaptive plan that protects the environment and our rural communities.
He appears to have little interest in improving the plan, or supporting these basin communities.
To the frustration of Ms Neville (and I am sure others) he doesn't even have enough interest in the Basin Plan to hold scheduled meetings of the Ministerial Council which oversees its implementation.
IN OTHER NEWS:
We have a Federal Environment Minister (Sussan Ley) who, despite ongoing objections from thousands of her constituents in the electorate of Farrer, appears happy to toe the party line rather than demand the Basin Plan changes that we know are needed.
We also have National Party members in the Federal Parliament who are prepared to call for Basin Plan amendments, but do not have the support of Coalition leadership that is required to bring them to fruition.
All of this is occurring because making sensible, necessary changes which will improve the Basin Plan for everyone will lead to a political stoush, with various parties and individuals using our communities as their political football.
It has nothing to do with good government and sound decision-making.
It has everything to do with protecting political careers.
That, unfortunately, is the sad state of affairs we currently face in our nation.
As for the future, if Labor/Greens win the upcoming federal election the predicament for the Basin Plan and our communities will be even worse, as they continue pandering to city-based environmentalists at our expense.
All we can do is hope that at some point, before it is too late, we have a Parliament where the balance of power tips in favour of our nation's best interests, and where decisions are made for the benefit of communities and the environment, rather than what is best for a political party.
Shelley Scoullar, Table Top
Housing shortage reaches crisis point
To buy a house or to rent one is beyond many working people so can someone tell me why we have nine ministers for housing in state and federal government.
It costs taxpayers big time and apparently there are plans for the next few years for two million more immigrants to come and settle here.
What exactly do these ministers do and where do they plan to house these new immigrants?
Yvonne Cugley, JIndera
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