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Your views: on planning decisions and vaccination

Reader contributions

Today, readers comment on the KI port call and medical care costs.

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Commenting on the story: Richardson: A textbook conflict, and a staggering failure of governance

I have been member of the Liberal Party for many decades and a staunch supporter of free enterprise and acceptance of personal risk.

The situation the Marshall Govt has got itself into over the refusal of the Smith Bay proposal is plainly untenable and unacceptable for a free enterprise party; any solution is going to be ugly. – Rob Gilbert.

Tom Richardson’s piece on the KI port decision by Vickie Chapman aptly takes us back to the planning reform legislation, a key part of the legal framework that allowed what’s now the subject of a Parliamentary inquiry to happen.

That legislation set out to curb local influence, but political networking finds ways. An outcome has been undue concentration of power – and not confined to Ministerial decision-making. For example, more effective public participation on policy upfront was a supposed trade-off for more limited public notification of development proposals. In reality, we see far less effective participation, combined with inadequate accountability and transparency.

I agree and sympathise with groups like Community Alliance on this. On the other hand, the supposed red tape reduction reforms have not always worked to the benefit of applicants. The flow of applications can be painfully slow, it appears development assessment isn’t more flexible and always sufficiently expert, and the holy grail of consistency is still a holy grail. While some of this may be teething problems, too much seems fairly entrenched, accepted by bureaucracy, and thus not easily remedied.

It seems the symbolism of grandiose legislative adventures and centralisation took precedence over cultural change and other prerequisites for best practice and effectiveness in the day-to-day administration of the planning system. Finally, I strongly believe that an essential feature of a good planning system (and planning code) is that it is navigable by ordinary folk. This one fails that test dismally. – Jim Allen

Commenting on the opinion piece: Unvaccinated shouldn’t have to pay for hospital COVID care

No, unvaccinated must pay for hospitalisation. There is no excuse, no rational reason why they shouldn’t have to pay, given their personal refusal to vaccinate.

The rest of us have been responsible. Why reward the irresponsible? – Noris Iannou

Disagree heartily with the comment. Unvaccinated should not receive free hospital care. These people can infect so many people with their ridiculous stance against vaccines that it should not be tolerated.

We have lots of laws here in Australia which when first introduced, ie helmet wearing on motorbikes, safety belts, no smoking in restaurants/pubs/buses/trains etc, were actively challenged but then sensibility won out and they were accepted apart from a few rebels who challenged and then ended up paying the fine. So why not pass this legislation to protect us all. – Trish Cooper

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