Saturday, 14 July 2018


Tracey-Lee Cane - Christian Democratic Party (CDP)

Policy Source: As noted above, no online presence for Ms Cane has been identified by myself or the ABC that gives any indication of the candidate's personal views. She is even absent from the party's news updates. The CDP has a lot of policies to pick from, some with a heavy NSW focus, and no obvious method to go about it, except that one policy appears in a pop-up on each page. Policies 2 and 3 were selected based on the length of their discussion on the CDP site. I will add that the CDP policies are perhaps the best set-out and most readable of any policy page I have seen this election, often summarised in a few lines and very reader-friendly.
Policy 1: Marriage, Family and Gender. CDP, unsurprisingly for a conservative Christian party, believes marriage should be between one man and one woman and that "it seems unwise to discard this unique definition of marriage. The party adds that they "are carefully examining the full consequences" of the legalisation of same-sex marriage.
Policy 2: Housing. The CDP blames the current shortage of affordable housing on the abandonment of the government's Housing Commission to "economic rationalist market forces (private developers)" and excessive immigration. To reverse this, the party advocates a review of government charges on development and a return to government-led building rather than renting.
Policy 3: Infrastructure. The party insists infrastructure should be planned to support future generations and describes the access of infrastructure to the elderly and people with disabilities as a "One of the huge imperatives".

Kelsie Harfouche - Australian People's Party (APP)

Policy Source: Ms Harfouche's bio makes specific mention of a bill of rights though I could find no discussion of this idea among the parties' policies. I have taken the three most expansively discussed there as the "main platforms".
Policy 1: Taxation. This party wants to end tax deductions for work expenses*, increase the tax-free threshold, replace tax offsets for carers and people with disabilities with a payment, remove the beneficiary tax offset, reduce marginal tax rates, simplify GST and expand it to financial services, a 20% corporate tax rate with very few possible deductions; tax on all foreign businesses selling to Australians, and a 50% tax on property sales by foreign investors.
Policy 2: Immigration. The APP wants to reduce immigration for a 5-year period by: reducing visa numbers; abolishing temporary skilled migration; relying on temporary protection visas for refugees and repatriating them when it is safe to do so; providing visas for migrants to settle and remain in regional centres for 5 years; deporting all illegal immigrants; requiring family-sponsored immigrants of working age to have full-time employment for 5 years and not rely on welfare payments, with minors to be supported by family sponsors; and requiring immigrants to live here for 5 years, speak English and receive no convictions before seeking citizenship.
Policy 3: Social Security and Living Standards. APP policies call for: a $50 increase in the fortnightly single pension, $90 increase in the couples pension, Reduction of retirement age to 65, a reduction of gas and electricity bills by 50%, the implementation of a gas reservation policy, no expiration dates on any phone/internet data, unemployed people being made to work for councils or the military after 1 year, all welfare recipients to require photo ID, changing the NDIS to the National Investment Scheme, fully fund childcare only for working parents passing a means test, and all businesses with over 100 employees to have in-house childcare.
*The exact wording of this policy is "allow no work-related deductions". Though purely speculative, it is possible this should read "allow non-work-related deductions" which has the opposite effect of expanding rather than restricting tax deductions.

Major Sumner - Greens (GRN)

Policy Source: For the sake of full disclosure, I have met 'Uncle Moogy' previously in my university days and in my industry many people who I work with know him in some capacity. His bio is fertile ground for identifying policy areas he is passionate about, and these are reflected below. Details are taken from the Greens' policy page.
Policy 1: Water. The Greens want legal protections for waterways, a prohibition on large dams, national water testing and research, public ownership of major water systems, increased information on the safety of recycled water, ecologically sound water allocations, the National Water Commission to be reinstated, the return of water to the environment through water-efficient developments and water buyback from agricultural over-allocations, protection of marine mammals and habitats, national approach to dealing with marine pests, recognition and involvement of Indigenous stakeholders, pollution elimination, restrictions on the use of seismic devices, mining techniques and other technologies, including the testing of military and naval explosive devices in the oceans, for resource companies to be fully liable for clean-up costs, and the creation of marine reserves.
Policy 2: First Nations. The party's approach to issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders includes signing treaties with Indigenous groups; governmental policies that respect the need for self-determination of Indigenous groups; protection of cultural and IP rights; equality of outcomes for education, housing, safety and employment; increased resources and access to essential services, particularly in rural and regional Australia; community-based approaches to issues like domestic violence, alcoholism and drug abuse; revoking compulsory income management; compensation for loss of property or withheld wages; effective heritage protection; full support for native title; reduced incarceration rate for Indigenous people and a representative body of First Nations peoples to all levels of Government.
Policy 3: Renewable energy. The Greens want a shift to renewable, clean energy technology and a stronger Renewable Energy Target, 0 net emissions by 2040, orderly phasing out of fossil fuels, binding annual emissions targets, a ban on new coal-fired power stations and fossil fuel extraction and the government vehicle fleet to shift to zero-emissions vehicles.

Georgina Downer - Liberal (LIB)

Policy Source: has nothing to say on policy, and mostly just redirects to the campaign's Facebook page. This poses a greater than usual difficulty, as I can (and have) extracted three promises from the page's images which is generally an effective way to identify local priorities. I'm not sure that has really identified the key concerns this time around, but the posts on the page are too diverse to select from with any impartial system. In the last week alone there has been a $200,000 investment in the Steamranger Heritage Railway, a promise of $1.2 m for mental health spending in the seat, $4.4 m for a regional sports hub in Mt Barker and 'a strategic traffic planning study' for the Adelaide Hills. I have done the best I can to be impartial and use these three images as per my previous treatment of the major parties, but really the Liberal party needs to put more thought into structuring campaigns to make my election-shaping blog represent them better.
Policy 1: Tax relief. "The tax relief plan will put more money back in the pockets of 58,700 hard-working people living in the Hills, Fleurieu and KI area. Local teachers, nurses, plumbers and police officers earning around $75,000 will save $530 each year. This means a family with two people working will have more than $1000 extra per year to help pay bills or to save some money towards getting ahead."
Policy 2: Mobile coverage. For many rural areas, mobile phone reception isn't just a convenience but can mean life or death in an emergency.
Policy 3: Aquatic Centre. One of the most publicised promises from the Liberals--at least from my perspective as a Mayo resident--has been the Mt Barker Pool upgrade. The contribution is for $10m, or 40% of the projected costs. There really isn't much more detail to add, except that this is separate to the above-mentioned $4.4 m sports hub (which has been criticised as a council and Labor state-funded project the Libs refused to contribute to until recently, but that's another matter).
Also, and this is completely irrelevant to anything electoral, Ms Downer has an IMDb bio for her appearances in interviews. I have not relied on that page for any information, partly because that bio simultaneously claims she was born in Belgium and England.

Rebekha Sharkie - Centre Alliance (CA)

Policy Source: Of the policies laid out on Ms Sharkie's website 8 have links to details. Three of these are sub-points under a broader health policy, two are limited to particular areas in Mayo (duplication of Victor Harbor Road and tax relief for Kangaroo Island) leaving us with the following topics:
Policy 1: Health and Aged Care. Ms Sharkie's ambitions for healthcare in Mayo include a renal dialysis unit in Mount Barker Hospital, a Medicare Service Centre in Victor Harbor, Medicare-rebatable MRIs in both Mount Barker and Victor Harbor and 'Headspace' (a Federal mental health service) to be available along the South Coast. Ms Sharkie also proposes legislation requiring publication of aged-care staff-to-patient ratios covering nurses, clinical nurses, personal care workers, allied health staff and other staff, and wants improved training for personal care workers--at a minimum requiring supervised work experience or placement prior to employment.
Policy 2: The ABC. The candidate wants funding to the ABC to be restored, winding back cuts claimed to date back to 2014.
Policy 3: Live Exports and Processing. Ms Sharkie opposes live exports on animal welfare grounds, but also sees the transition to processed and chilled meat exports as "a real opportunity to grow Australian jobs". The candidate will sign a Bill with multi-party support to encourage the processing of meat within Australia.

Stephen Humble - Liberal Democrats (LDP)

Policy Source: Previously the LDP candidate bios have provided topics for discussion, but Mr Humble's actually sets out his policies in detail. This means the following is presented in a particularly favourable light, smoothing over the more controversial topics of revoking defamation law and widespread privatisation; the following is directly quoted.
Policy 1: Cannabis. "Though it may have initially been well intended and not simply a cynical vote grab through scaremongering, the war on drugs has devolved into misleading propaganda and invasive, costly and harmful actions by government against many people. The war on drugs does not protect people from harm but instead created a whole criminal industry which causes far more harm overall than the drugs themselves would."
Policy 2: Cycling and transport. "Stephen supports repealing bicycle helmet laws and other unjustified or counterproductive and costly intrusions by government into people's individual freedom. Australia's punitive approach of applying fines discourages many people from riding at a time when other countries are supporting increased popularity of bikes, which reduces traffic congestion in cities and makes them more people friendly. Stephen also has an open motorbike license, and values riding. He believes the aim of legislation should be improved efficiency and safety of transport not a means to raise revenue to fill government coffers."
Policy 3: Personal freedoms. "Stephen is opposed to censorship of speech, movies and video games and opposes the imposition of data collection laws which drive up the cost of data services without justification.  He supports equal opportunity rights for all people, legally assisted suicide and is pro-choice.
"Stephen believes that people and the community get the greatest benefit when people are empowered to support themselves and local business rather than more of their money siphoned to Canberra to fund questionable projects. Stephen feels government must be accountable, efficient and benefit the community."

Reginald Coutts - Australian Labor Party (ALP)

Policy Source: Dr Coutts' bio lists telecommunications as an area of expertise for the candidate, but detailed policies on this are hard to find for the ALP. The now standard appeal to images provides a general theme of opposing tax cuts for 'the big end of town' and one banner to 'fix our hospitals' but not enough to form three policy topics. Fortunately, in a post dated June 8, Dr Coutts outlined the areas he believes need particular attention. The selections quoted below are based on the general themes observed above.
Policy 1: Tax cuts and general funding. "The Turnbull Government’s plans for an $80 billion tax cut for big business and an income tax plan that benefits the rich instead of working families are unfair. Meanwhile, they’re cutting funding for services that families, older Australians and young people depend on." "Getting the balance right between road infrastructure and public transport, health and aged-care services, employment opportunities for our young people and affordable housing for them to raise families in, are some of the key issues."
Policy 2: Communications. "l was involved in helping envisage the original National Broadband Network(NBN). This aimed to be a world-best system based on fibre optic cable to 95% of the nation’s households and businesses. It was envisioned to serve our needs into the future and provide the infrastructure that would attract the world’s leading-edge companies to create the jobs of the future in Australia. It’s with a sad heart that I’ve watched this dream turn to disappointment through the implementation of a revised second-rate system. Relying on copper connections for the final link to customers while argued to be cost effective, delivers less reliability, slower speeds, and ultimately higher costs.
"The second-rate NBN isn’t the only telecommunications challenge we face in Mayo. Mobile phone blackspots, variable signal strength and mobile towers not having power backup means we’re particularly vulnerable in emergency situations. Plus, there is legitimate concern when the NBN transfer means loss of the basic telephone line as an emergency lifeline."
Policy 3: Health. In addition to a banner advocating we "fix our hospitals" Dr Coutts points out "It has been Labor governments that have brought us Medicare and the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). I am a strong advocate for the NDIS because I had a severely disabled son who lived a fulfilling life for many years but sadly died a short time ago."
This is the only policy of the three I could find discussed on the ALP website, opposing a calculated $715 m cut to hospitals as well as a link to a site advocating opposition to the claimed privatisation of Medicare by the Liberal party.

No comments:

Post a Comment