Business grants fall short
I write in relation to the recent bushfire crisis that has hit our coastal community. I would like to address the impact on our businesses.
We have had several tough years in retail, and now we face our toughest challenge yet. Many businesses have lost months of holiday income and the effects on our community will be profound and long lasting.
Many small business owners are struggling to pay staff, rent and bills and buy stock. Many, like myself, have lost tens of thousands of dollars, money they rely on to carry them through our quieter times.So you can imagine my relief recently to see the federal government offering grants to bushfire affected businesses.
Unfortunately, as our business did not burn down, we are not entitled to any assistance in the form of business grants. They will offer us a loan, but that's the last thing we (or any other business in this area no doubt) want to do when faced with such financial uncertainty .As a result I wrote to the Minister for Small Business, Michalia Cash, to ask what she intends to do to help small businesses in our region, and I encourage all business owners to do the same.mailto:email@example.com
R. Cameron, Milton
Sliding into poverty
Business needs income not debt. Australia's regional economies and population are sliding into poverty. Natural event destroyed seasonal earnings. Debt will sink business. We deserve better. Salary sacrifice the PM's wages
P. Kairys, Lake Tabourie
Don't trash reserve
The pioneer Thistleton family donated Barkers Reserve to be enjoyed by the public and would shudder in their graves to see what is proposed for their lovely land.
We have a beautiful natural park and we should hold onto this land in trust for our children to be enjoyed by their children. We have lost too many of our beautiful spots to greedy Australians.
We have enough concrete jungles around us and not enough natural beauty to be able to sit, relax and enjoy.
C. Moss, Burrill Lake
Out of character
Building a shed in the scenic location of Barker Reserve is totally out of character and inappropriate. Residents will see depreciation of the value of their homes with loss of the natural environment to a created industrial scene and a blot on the lake. Children can disappear behind the shed and drown unnoticed.
I find it beyond belief Shoalhaven City Council would create such an eyesore on the edge of the lake. For the amount of use the boats get they should be stored in the industrial area. It will no longer be the scenic Barker reserve but an eyesore for all to lament.
D. Freeman, Woodburn
Release clean-up funds
Last Friday I met with some residents of Conjola Park and surrounds who had lost homes and businesses during the bushfires. They are slowly coming to terms with their loss but the one thing they all said would help most right now is the state government releasing the promised funds for the clean-up. This is particularly important in Conjola Park where there is uncontained asbestos. This poses a huge health hazard. On Thursday, in the extreme winds, there was debris blowing around. A brick wall was also blown over onto the footpath. It was lucky no one was walking past at the time.
Besides the physical effect of the delay in the clean up, it is having a psychological effect on these residents. Cleaning up the mess is the first step in moving on.
I implore the Member for South Coast to advocate on behalf of the residents and ensure these funds are released immediately. There is no point in making promises if you don't act on them.