Er­gon’s power play

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - FEEDBACK -

a town which re­lies on tourism. I am just home from a great hol­i­day with fan­tas­tic weather. Over Easter the town was buzzing with hol­i­day­mak­ers . . . the streets were full of tourists, shop­ping, en­joy­ing a meal at the many fine restau­rants or tak­ing in the sun on the beach. Fi­nally af­ter the Queens­land floods, the GFC and the high Aussie dol­lar the town was do­ing a roar­ing trade. It was fan­tas­tic to see Port Dou­glas so busy.

En­ter the Gestapo from the Qld Gov­ern­ment Of­fice of Fair And Safe Work, who on Good Fri­day went from shop to shop read­ing the riot act on who was “legally” al­lowed to be open and who was sup­posed to be closed. Did they make an ap­point­ment . . . NO? Did they make con­tact with the Port Dou­glas Cham­ber of Com­merce . . . NO? Did they leave a copy of the act with shop own­ers . . . NO? They harassed shop staff and man­age­ment with threats and the pos­si­bil­i­ties of fines. They left shop own­ers, staff and shop­pers be­wil­dered and stressed.

Port Dou­glas is a tourist town that thrives on hol­i­day mak­ers. Imag­ine Port Dou­glas with over half the shops closed . . . who would walk up and down a des­o­late street . . . all busi­nesses would suf­fer in­clud­ing restau­rants, who are al­lowed to be open.

OH . . . and the Gestapo will be back on An­zac Day . . . this time to fine shop own­ers who should be closed.

Surely in a town that re­lies on and thrives on tourism all shops should be open.

Sur­prise, sur­prise (Cairns Post P3-31.3.12) electricity to house­holds is ex­pected to rise by 3.9% or $52 per year for av­er­age users, which is nearly 1% more than the con­sumer price in­dex for the past 12 months.

There is more of course, if your house­hold uses more than av­er­age then you will pay 7.6% more. These rises are on top of al­most 70% in rises in electricity prices since 2006, which is when er­gon de­cided that they needed to help the smaller electricity com­pa­nies com­pete wth them (er­gon) at our ex­pense.

In 2006 Er­gon sold $2.2 Bil­lion in power to us, which cost them $1.2 bil­lion to aquire from power gen­er­at­ing com­pa­nies.

In 2010 (2011 fig­ures not avail­able yet) Er­gon sold $2.18 Bil­lion in power to us, but only had to pay $925 mil­lion to aquire it.

This is a sav­ing to Er­gon of about 23% in their cost of power, and yet we are pay­ing around 76% more.

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