Seniors’ win on concessions

In a backflip today, the Queensland Government has announced it will reinstate the full level of pensioner and senior concessions after a state-wide backlash from struggling older Queenslanders.

Premier Campbell Newman told State Parliament this morning they had listened to older Queenslanders after the wrath which flowed from Tuesday’s Queensland Budget.

National Seniors chief executive Michael O’Neill welcomed the decision and said Queensland pensioners and seniors would be relieved to hear of the government’s change of heart.

“Seniors were facing cuts to concessions for basic services such as electricity, council rates, water, gas, vehicle registration, bus and rail transport,’’ O’Neill said.

“They will be breathing a sigh of relief this morning knowing they will keep their concessions,’’ he said.

“This is a win for struggling older Queenslanders on fixed incomes who’ve stood up and said they just can’t take any more cuts.”

National Seniors has confirmed that the reinstated concessions are now in the Forward Estimates for the next four years.

But O’Neill said seniors would still struggle with cost of living increases on electricity, water and gas.

On Tuesday, Treasurer Tim Nicholls blamed a $50 million federal funding cutback (only 15% of total concession funding) for reductions to state-based concessions for electricity, council rates, water, gas, vehicle registration, bus and rail transport.

See more coverage on this issue in our Media Mentions page.

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