Letters to the editor

BIG BUILD: Opposition to the next stage of the Western Highway duplication project has continued to grow.
BIG BUILD: Opposition to the next stage of the Western Highway duplication project has continued to grow.

Post chief paid too much

There has been a lot said of the $5.6 million annual wage paid to Australia Post chief executive Ahmed Fahour.

In the corporate world, this sort of payment isn’t unusual, but when Mr Fahour has presided over the dismantling of Australia Post services, you’d have to say it is a remarkable salary.

If we use our local postal service as an example, Australia Post has deteriorated enormously under his leadership.

In Western Victoria, our mail used to be sorted by a handful of staff at the Ballarat Mail Centre. 

You could post a letter from Beaufort to Ararat, and in most cases it would be delivered the next business day. It was a good service.

Now we have a situation where that letter is driven past Ballarat, all the way down to Dandenong, it then gets sorted (eventually) and might arrive in Ararat a week later - if you are lucky.

Then there is the new pricing structure where the cost of sending a letter rose 30 per cent to $1 only for our letters to receive a lower priority.

If you pay an extra 50 cents for a “priority” sticker, it might arrive a bit sooner - again if you are lucky.

It’s argued that the changes and price increases were necessary to stem the losses incurred by Australia Post’s letter delivery business.

But most good CEOs would actually do their best to improve the service instead of winding it back to a point where it is unreliable, therefore resulting in even more lost income.

I know of a school that once posted out its newsletter to more than 200 parents, but has now given up on the postal system because the newsletters were arriving too late.

Ignorant Pauline Hanson says Mr Fahour should be paid a maximum $250,000. 

That’s stupid! No corporate brain would work for that sort of money.

But the current salary is way too high, especially considering the long list of underachievement.

As it stands, the taxpayer still owns Australia Post.

Malcolm Turnbull is happy to cut back pensions, and even admits Mr Fahour’s salary to way too high.

You’re his boss Malcolm, you can fix this! 

Craig Wilson


Highway concern

The Ararat Landcare Group has ongoing concerns about VicRoads’ proposed route in the Langi Ghiran area between Buangor and Ararat.

We are not against the ongoing duplication of the highway. Our concerns are both environmental and economic, the latter being the cost of the currently approved southern route which will involve a great deal of earthmoving and the removal of many trees and other native vegetation.

The Landcare Group’s much preferred option is to use a widening of the existing route which will involve much less vegetation clearing and earth moving.

By widening the existing road to meet VicRoads’ criteria and putting a centre barrier in a narrower section (as has been done successfully at Burrumbeet ) some millions of taxpayers money will be saved, as well as a great deal of significant native vegetation and small wildlife.

We find VicRoads adamant refusal to consider this option very disturbing, especially in light of the huge past errors made in tree count and loss of vegetation and habitat in an earlier section of the new highway.

This miscount was in a VicRoads Report by Environmental advisor Matt Mooney in March 2016.

We ask that VicRoads examine in detail our optional suggested route and ask that other environmental groups and interested members of the public support us by writing to their MP, paper or VicRoads.

Keith Little