Opinion

Letters to the Editor

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November 29, 2016

River survival

Reduced environmental flows in our Goulburn River will in turn lead to further damaging impacts on the river and dependant wetlands. Wetlands such as Loch Garry, Reedy and Gemmill swamp and a myriad of other wetlands rely on over bank flows to maintain their health.

This connectivity of nutrient and carbon cycles is the very key to a healthy riverine ecosystem and ultimately the future of the Goulburn River and our regional economy.

The Murray-Darling Basin Plan is not just about distant downstream environmental benefits, it’s also about the survival of our Goulburn River.

Submitted by - Terry Court, Tatura

Off the rails

Your editorial (“Left waiting on platform”, November 22) summed up the Andrews Labor Government’s city-centric approach to extra public transport options.

Because Public Transport Minister Jacinta Allan and Daniel Andrews are short of ideas, they have partly copied the Liberals’ and Nationals’ fully funded November 2014 election plan to introduce extra V/Line train trips.

We said that an afternoon weekday train should be extended from Seymour to Shepparton to balance the early morning extra train introduced in the other direction by the Liberals and Nationals. That will now occur, not before time.

However the Liberal-Nationals plan also included extra return Shepparton trains on Saturdays and Sundays.

Shepparton has a particularly poor train frequency on weekends that Labor is not doing anything to fix.

Instead of spending on worthwhile extra V/Line train schedules, Labor has given its militant union mates in the Rail Tram and Bus Union totally unjustified above CPI wage rises plus extra leave conditions that are extremely rare for the 80 per cent plus of the community who work in free enterprise or who operate businesses such as farms.

The Liberals and Nationals want Shepparton and other provincial cities, along with rural towns, to grow and further prosper.

A selling point in the competition to attract new residents is train frequencies. Unfortunately, Labor’s priority is areas like Caroline Springs to Melbourne’s west rather than convincing prospective residents to make a great move to rural Victoria, including major population centres such as Shepparton and Echuca.

Submitted by - David Hodgett MP, Opposition public transport spokesman

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