Coali­tion calls for ‘fairer’ fuel prices

Mans­field SES ben­e­fits from new equip­ment do­na­tion

Mansfield Courier - - COURIER OPINIONS/PEOPLE -

CINDY McLeish (MLA, Eli­don) is back­ing calls by the Vic­to­rian Coali­tion to es­tab­lish a par­lia­men­tary in­quiry into fuel prices in re­gional Vic­to­ria.

Ms McLeish said the in­quiry would help an­swer ques­tions about the method­ol­ogy of pric­ing and the di­vide be­tween met­ro­pol­i­tan and ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties.

“It is no sur­prise that peo­ple liv­ing in the coun­try must pay higher prices for petrol,” she said.

“But just how much more should we pay com­pared to peo­ple in the city?”

Prices in Mans­field are cur­rently $1.25.9 per litre of ULP and $1.25.9 diesel, how­ever at Bon­nie Doon they are $1.24.9 and at Mer­ton just 35km down the road they are cur­rently $119.9 ULP.

Ms McLeish said the in­quiry would also con­sider the im­pact of fuel prices on fam­i­lies, busi­nesses and in­dus­try and as­sess the in­flu­ence of reg­u­la­tions and leg­is­la­tion.

The lat­est fuel re­port that from the Aus­tralian Com­pe­ti­tion and Con­sumer Com­mis­sion (ACCC) shows although petrol prices are fall­ing, these dips are not be­ing passed onto con­sumers in shrink­ing re­tail mar­gins.

“We must clear up the lack of ex­pla­na­tion on price dis­crep­an­cies, es­pe­cially be­tween met­ro­pol­i­tan and re­gional, and even re­gional and re­gional ar­eas,” Ms McLeish said.

She said fuel prices are j ust one of the cost-of-liv­ing pres­sures Vic­to­ri­ans can share with the Coali­tion’s CostWatch web­site - www. costwatch.com.au

“The CostWatch cam­paign is com­mit­ted to driv­ing down costs and mak­ing your dol­lar stretch fur­ther,” Ms McLeish said.

MANS­FIELD’S State Emer­gency Ser­vice (SES) unit has shared in a statewide boost of more than $500,000 worth of equip­ment from in­surer AAMI.

The equip­ment was re­cently handed over to var­i­ous units at 10 statewide events, as part of an on­go­ing parn­ter­ship.

More than 300 vol­un­teers from a di­verse range of ar­eas in the state at­tended the events, in­clud­ing Tom Thoburne and Kate Camp­bell rep­re­sent­ing Mans­field SES at the Be­nalla pre­sen­ta­tion.

Mr Thoburne and Ms Camp­bell were pleased to re­ceive two new pieces of equip­ment for their Mans­field unit - a por­ta­ble recharge­able light, and two rolls of a spe­cial film called Pack-Exe that can be placed over wind­screens to aid in safe re­moval of glass in mo­tor ve­hi­cle ac­ci­dents.

Ms Camp­bell has quite re­cently joined VICSES, hav­ing only been a vol­un­teer for 18 months, while Mr Thoburne has spent much longer with the or­gan­i­sa­tion and cur­rently holds the po­si­tion of unit con­troller.

Both were very grate­ful for the new equip­ment.

“This new por­ta­ble recharge­able light will op­er­ate fully charged for 24 hours which saves us hav­ing to worry about gen­er­a­tors and re­fu­elling dur­ing their op­er­a­tion, mak­ing it easy for all of us to use,” Mr Thoburne said.

VICSES’ di­rec­tor of com­mu­nity tesilience and com­mu­ni­ca­tions, Kate White, thanked AAMI for their con­tin­u­ing gen­eros­ity.

“AAMI have played a vi­tal part in en­abling VICSES vol­un­teers to carry out the im­por­tant work they do and the or­gan­i­sa­tion is very grate­ful for their con­tri­bu­tion,” she said.

“Since 2002 more than $5.5 mil­lion has been re­ceived to spend on equip­ment as part of the part­ner­ship.”

Ms White also thanked the vol­un­teers and their fam­i­lies for the sac­ri­fices they make in a bid to keep Vic­to­ri­ans pre­pared for and safe dur­ing emer­gen­cies.

ABOVE THE REST: Mans­field fuel prices last week were still above those of Mel­bourne, larger re­gional cen­tres and even Mer­ton.

PHOTO: Cour­tesy SES

SES - Mans­field Equip. NEW GEAR: Tom Thoburne and Kate Camp­bell were de­lighted to re­ceive some new equip­ment for the Mans­field SES Unit as part of a part­ner­ship pro­gram with AAMI.

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