Tim Fischer is an ex politician, a leader of National Party, previously Country Party, and was in a conservative coalition government. He is also a pope loving homophobe yet he loves trains, so I am conflicted. He will be on this forthcoming week's Q & A on our ABC. Post politics, he was appointed ambassador to the Vatican. While initially I thought having an ambassador in the Rome church was such a waste of money, further thinking led me to the conclusion that the Roman Catholic Church is very influential in the world, so maybe it is not a bad thing to spend our taxes on Australia's representation to the Holy See, for the fat lot of good it probably did.
Lordy, I have shot down my own argument already. Well, speaking of wasting money, there is the stupid Flinders Street Station redevelopment money that our State Government has wasted.
But here is a good one. I am going to do something about it because it involves what I consider some of my rather direct taxes.
I don't know why Albert Park is under control by Parks Victoria and not the local council. I suspect it happened under the evil Kennett government when Kennett put the Melbourne Grand Prix car race in Albert Park.
In our last drought, in the early 2000s the lake nearly went dry. More storm water was directed into it and I also remember an experimental sewerage recyling system being built, later demolished. Before the GP race each year, a lot of water is taken from the lake to water the verges of the race track to make it look pretty for the camera shots.
Parks Victoria have done some quite nice work at Albert Park Lake, with reed beds to filter storm water and replacing worn decking, which Non Dreaded Nephew worked on some years ago.
Now Parks Victoria has been funded by the State Government for improvements to Albert Park Lake, to keep the water level high in summer by redirecting even more processed storm water from the 'burbs. Other benefits are that water will be available for irrigation of Junction Oval and St Kilda Road trees.
Great, you may think, as I did initially for 30 seconds.
How will water get to Junction Oval and St Kilda Road trees? A pump? Would have to be a big pump. Perhaps it will be solar powered?
City of Melbourne has turned its side of St Kilda Road irrigation system back on in for the last summer but City of Port Phillip did not its side on. We have plenty of water in our storage dams and the monster desalination plant is sitting there unused, although we are paying for water from it, as per contract. The amount of water Melbourne uses as compared to the State's consumption is barely more than a drop in the ocean. Ten per cent comes to mind. Our parks and trees need water in our hot summers and the damage done to the trees in St Kilda Road over the period of the drought was very visible and even though an exemption was sought and granted by Port Phillip, still the trees went unwatered.
But here is what really troubles me, $1,000,000 is going into planning the project and while I agree with more water being cleaned and directed into the lake, re-cycled water for St Kilda Road and Junction Oval at a huge cost is totally unnecessary when there is an adequate supply at hand. Of course if it does not rain and there is a drought, there is no storm water. Duh!