We're missing our share of infrastructure funding
For the attention of Wollondilly MP Jai Rowell.
As a voter in your area I am writing to you of the concerns I have for my ability to maintain a residence in your electorate and my employment in Sydney CBD with a public transport service which can only be described as appalling and unreliable.
The Liberal Party at the last election promised to deliver improved infrastructure but the Southern Highlands' train network seems to have been misplaced.
The Southern Highlands network is the only inter-urban network that is not electrified or that has express trains to Central during peak periods.
The performance of peak punctuality on the Southern Highlands Line has dropped to 66 per cent in 2014-2015. That is down from 93 per cent in 2008-2009.
Even when the Liberals came to power in 2011 it was 90.8 per cent.
Perhaps it is time to bring your electorate some of the infrastructure windfalls that are being seen by almost all other areas of the state.
Ross Horlyck, Picton
Trust takes time
Parliament will survive the blowtorch over the past few weeks — but regaining the public's trust requires cultural change around spending taxpayers' money.
This is an issue for the Parliament, not just the government, as we continue to see illustrations of poor practices across the political divide.
I strongly welcome the review announced by the Prime Minister which will see all aspects of the process scrutinised.
Many of my parliamentary colleagues and I have been dismayed at the revelations of abuse of taxpayer spending.
And I don't use the word "abuse" lightly: accommodation and travel costs, as well as our salaries, are paid by the Australian public — every dollar spent should be spent wisely.
I believe that rules covering every contingency will never really solve the problem; ultimately each parliamentarian needs to take responsibility.
Most importantly, we need to remember that transparency works.
Any member of the public can view MPs' expenditure on the Department of Finance website.
The reason we are having the debate is because all expenses are published.
However, we can improve transparency through near real time disclosures, or by developing a new "app" which enables the public to more easily and immediately see what each MP spends.
That would soon clean things up.
The election of Tony Smith as the new speaker of the House of Representatives is symbolic. I know he will serve with great integrity and commitment.
Hume MP Angus Taylor
Council review needed
As the NSW government is looking at the behaviour/performance of NSW councils, it would be a good idea to check out the failings of Wollondilly Council.
Its management, staff, mayor and councillors are out of control in their dealings with the public.
A list of the neglected matters in Wollondilly Council:
■ No concern for residents;
■ No incentive for small business;
■ Outrageous red tape meaning small businesses leave the shire;
■ Lack of employment, again due to council restrictions;
■ No affordable housing;
■ Neglected, dangerous roads;
■ No communication with residents;
■ Huge salaries paid to management.
So we and many others in Wollondilly hope this plan from the state government carries forward and is not overruled.
Spencer and Gloria Watling, Oakdale