No more than a graffiti vandal?

In the political race to win the seat of Dobell, Liberal candidate Michael Feneley has raised community anger with his visual sea of corflutes stretching from Lake Munmorah to Wyoming.

Michael Feneley has been described by a number of angry residents as a 'Graffiti Bandit', despoiling Dobell with his excess of political corflutes on power poles, roundabouts and road overpass bridges.

6 May 2022

ALAN HAYES

 

LIBERAL candidate for Dobell, Michael Feneley has been described by a number of angry residents as a ‘Graffiti Bandit’,  with little consideration to the visual pollution that he is creating with his plethora of political corflutes.

 

Although political candidates use power poles during elections to encourage people to vote for them, is it illegal to attach their corflutes to power poles? If you complain to the police, the council and the government they say they cannot do anything about it – well they can. It is illegal to attach any sign to an Ausgrid power pole, which accounts for almost every pole standing.

 

Council rangers will remove signs that advertise a business from power poles that should not be there once a complaint has been received, so why not political corflutes?

 

Usually, the political promotion is tolerated because it is reasonably discrete and doesn’t pose a distraction to motorists but Mr. Feneley signs go beyond the pale. He has graffitied the landscape, and in doing so has shown no consideration for the traffic distraction that is now evident.

 

The Feneley signs also festoon roundabouts and road bridges in the area.

 

Dobell resident William Gray was incensed over the density of the Feneley corflutes and, after being given the runaround by various government departments, spoke with Ausgrid.

 

“They informed me that it is illegal to have any sings on their power poles and will instruct him (Michael Feneley) to remove them within seven days or he will be prosecuted,” said Mr. Gray.

 

“Central Coast Council said that it may take their rangers fourteen days to check out the signs.”

 

Mr. Gray maintains that the Feneley corflutes are a distraction for motorists because of their mass concentration.

 

Mr. Gray said that in his opinion political signs should be limited by legislation to only have a limited number of signs per 10,000 people in each electorate.

 

The reason for Mr. Gray’s concern is that his son, whilst in his stationary car, was hit from behind by a distracted driver leaving his son disabled.

 

Mr. Gray said “This candidate (Feneley) should have more respect for the voters.

 

“He is already crapping on the Electorate of Dobell and he hasn’t been elected.”

 

But it seems Mr. Feneley’s hubris continues to offend many people in the Dobell electorate.

 

Last Wednesday evening (4 May) at the Ourimbah Region Residents Association Mr. Feneley’s address to the gathering was seen by some as condescending, “he talked down to the people”. He went on the attack over the mailout card, currently being distributed by Australia Post, which highlights his argument for cuts to Medicare.

The FACT is, as reported by the Grapevine on 2 May, that Feneley argued that the Federal Government should end funding for healthcare, including Medicare. “The most obvious area needing discussion is whether the commonwealth should retreat completely from the funding of healthcare,” he said. (The Australian, 21 July 2015).

 

He further argued and defended:

 

  • Support for a GP co-payment – a tax on patients every time they go to the doctor. “Most Australians could afford a co-payment,” he said. (The Daily Telegraph, 12 April 2022).

 

  • A health system where your income determines your level of care. He argued that some medical treatments should be restricted because they are too expensive for everyone. (The Daily Telegraph, 12 April 2022).

 

  • He supports a health system where your age and gender determines your access to treatment. He said, “As our population ages… we’re going to have a greater and greater demand on the limited health budget. We’ll have to discriminate… If you’re a certain age and sex, (a specific) treatment might be reasonable, whereas for others it’s not.” (The Advertiser, 8 August 2008).

 

Yet Feneley has said in his recent mailouts that there has been a record investment in health by the Liberal Government. Not so!

 

Scott Morrison reduced the number of GPs in regional Australia, including the Central Coast, as part of his Medicare cuts. That’s why the Coast has a GP shortage and existing GPs are not taking on new patients, because they can’t cope.

 

One month after becoming Prime Minister Scott Morrison cut the number of GPs in Australia and regional healthcare has been in crisis ever since, including the Central Coast.

 

In order to save Medicare funding (the Government) needed to reduce the number of GPs practising in Australia. (Source: Senate, Community Affairs Reference Committee, Provision of general practitioners  and related primary health services to outer metropolitan, rural, and regional Australians, 7 March 2022).

 

Michael Feneley cannot hide from the truth, it there for everyone to see.

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