Action needed on cats
Let me say initially I don't dislike cats per se, but what I don't like is the fact their owners let them run wild, especially at night. Cats are hunters and kill our native wildlife every night they are allowed out. This is a fact.
I suppose many families buy cats because they have young children who simply adore them. I wonder what these young children would say if they saw the photos I have seen? They would be horrified!
We live in a new estate where many houses are now being built, and cats have come with these new houses. We have noticed the big increase in cats hanging around our place, especially early morning and late evening.
My wife and I have grown vegetation around our property, and as a result we have noticed large numbers of a beautiful bird called the New England Honeyeater. This is where I see the cats.
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To cat owners I plead: keep your cats in at night. To the Warrnambool City Council - it is time to make bylaws about cats being free to roam at night. Fine people who do not keep their cats inside at night.
We need to protect our wildlife! Action is needed.
Glenn Brotchie, Warrnambool
Recently I received two mailouts from our local member Roma Britnell. The first letter addressed to me was inviting me to ensure I claimed my $250 power saving bonus, however there was no mention this was part of a Labor Government initiative announced in the 2020/21 budget.
The second document - her community newsletter - attacks the state government over "an increase in stamp duty on a growing number of family homes". She neglects to mention the increase in stamp duty only applies to houses worth more than $2 million. How many home-buyers in the south-west will this affect? This change in stamp duty does not apply to any other home-buyers, while first-home buyers are eligible for generous stamp duty exemptions on properties up to $600,000 and a partial exemption on properties up to $750,000. No mention of this whatsoever.
While Roma has played with the truth in this newsletter, her constituents should be reminded Roma herself would have benefited from a 25 per cent reduction in stamp duty on her recent home purchase as reported in The Standard. Roma, herself, is more than happy to benefit from a Labor Government stamp duty reduction and use announcements about Labor's power savings to make herself look good, but won't give the Labor Government any credit for their initiatives. Her newsletter is misleading political scaremongering.
Malcolm Grieves, Warrnambool
Catastrophic policy failure
I commend Keppel Prince workers for taking a stand against cheap imported wind towers being used for Victorian windfarm projects - but I suggest the unions, who are leading these protests, should also be directing anger at the Andrews Labor Government.
Ahead of the 2018 state election, Minister for Energy Lily D'Ambrosio and Labor Candidate for South West Coast Kylie Gaston stood at Keppel Prince with director Steve Garner and said their Victorian Renewable Energy Target policy would result "in more jobs for people here in Portland".
"I'm very confident that Steve and the Keppel Prince workforce will have more to come as a result of the VRET scheme," Minister D'Ambrosio said at the time.
Less than four years later, 40 people have been made redundant and more are at risk because the first round of VRET all had the same completion dates and the second round is delayed by up to 18 months.
Those two factors mean the pipeline of work for Keppel Prince dried up - but of course you won't hear those facts from Daniel Andrews' union mates who are leading the protests in Portland.
The Labor Government's promises allowed Keppel Prince to train staff, invest in equipment and have confidence in their businesses - but they have been left high and dry. The result is components for Victorian projects, that could have been made in Portland, being driven past the front door of an idle factory and skilled manufacturing workers being sidelined for cheap imports.
Minister D 'Ambrosio could fix this now and make sure people are back in their jobs by announcing the second round of the VRET - but she is completely silent. Andrews and D'Ambrosio are as much to blame as anyone else for these job losses and the unions should be holding them accountable for this catastrophic policy failure.
Roma Britnell, South West Coast MP
I will forever remember Monday July 5, 2021 - the day the Australian government's entire vaccine supply agreement with AstraZeneca is being withheld from public release on the grounds it poses a "real and substantial risk" to national security if it were released. Hilarious!
Gavin Arnott, Allansford
We appreciate your support
I'm writing to express my deep gratitude to everyone across Victoria who supported The Smith Family's 2021 Winter Appeal. Times of uncertainty can make giving difficult, but our supporters have demonstrated a level of generosity that we've found truly humbling. Our vision is to create a better future for young Australians in need, and we launched our appeal with a warning that the fallout from COVID-19 continues to impact the lives of vulnerable children and young people.
Not only are we concerned the pandemic has exacerbated the education gap between the one-in-six Australian children living in poverty and their more advantaged peers, but we're also worried many families we support say they're struggling to cope with the ongoing repercussions of COVID-19. Key areas of concern - including a housing affordability crisis, a lack of suitable employment opportunities and the digital divide - are compounding, and affecting families' wellbeing. This often flows on to negatively impact on their children's educational journeys.
During tough times, The Smith Family's out-of-school learning and mentoring programs help keep children engaged in their schooling and on-track to complete Year 12. And thanks to the tremendous generosity shown towards our Appeal, The Smith Family will be able to support more than 15,000 additional students with our evidence-based educational programs.
So to everyone who contributed to our Appeal to help the next generation of young Australians thrive in their education, I say thank you.
Judy Barraclough, Acting Chief Executive Officer, The Smith Family
The Standard prefers letters to be less than 250 words, preference is given to shorter contributions. Letters must include the author's name, address and contact phone number for verification purposes. Letters are published on our website standard.net.au and in print.
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