We have been advised, like many others we imagine, that the recent asset rule changes taking effect from January 1 have put our asset assessments well above the new cut-off level and therefore our part age pensions and supplements ceased from that date.
This means no longer qualify for the annual $250 rebate of council rates, $56 each for Drivers Licence discounts and $783 discount on registration of two motor vehicles.
As our local medical centre is no longer bulk-billing, we are already paying for our visits to our GP.
We are already on what Centrelink describes as a low income and the loss will further inhibit our ability to spend freely which is, after all, what is needed to contribute towards the promised jobs and growth our economy needs.
What should we do? Continue to whittle away our savings? Our assets could be reduced by –
splurging on a holiday
moving to a more expensive home
reinvesting in faster depreciating assets – cars etc
gifting significant amounts to children or charities
We don’t agree these are acceptable avenues - neither for the national economy nor morally.
What has really hurt us is the apparent withdrawal of governmental recognition that we have in one way or another contributed positively to the economy through our lives and that we must pay through one savage cut for the parlous state of the economy.
It is not as if we have been “on the take” nor have we neglected to make provision for our retirement. Our projected income streams from investments after retirement have been dramatically reduced by the low interest rates imposed from beyond our control, but apparently politically acceptable and an expedient that is good for the economy.
It seems we are being punished for not being greedy in the past by pursuing strategies to amass wealth, rather than simply by doing our bit quietly and, we feel ethically, paying our way with some assurance and comfort that our efforts would be recognised by some provision of benefits when we needed them.
Name and address supplied.
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