End of Year Light Rail Stage 2 Update

Most work will stop from Friday 23 December to 3 January. In January:

– Noise barriers will be built behind Carner Court and a number of properties in Henry Cotton Drive, Stanton Court, Longcove Place and Longreef Crescent
– Lanes closures at the Napper Road and Smith Street intersection for the light rail alignment. Concrete islands on Napper Road will be removed
– Bridges will start to be built across Biggera Creek and Coombabah Creek
– Rock will be removed on Uplands Drive and the footpath between Uplands Drive and Carner Court will stay closed

More info at gclrstage2.com.au

Pension Asset Test Changes

From 1 January 2017 the assets test free area and the assets taper rate will increase.

Click here for more information and an asset test estimator.

New Thresholds

The assets test free area is the amount of assets above which allowances are not paid and pensions are reduced.

The assets test free areas will increase to:

  • $250,000 for a single homeowner
  • $375,000 for a homeowner couple
  • $450,000 for a single non-homeowner
  • $575,000 for a non-homeowner couple

Pensioners will be subject to a new taper rate of $3 for every $1,000 above the new assets test free areas.

If you lose your pension on 1 January 2017 you will automatically get a Health Care Card. Those over age pension age will also get a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card. These cards will be permanently exempt from the usual income test requirements.

FAQs from the Department of Human Services

Who does this measure affect

From 1 January 2017 the changes will affect all pensioners who are assets tested, or who are currently income tested but become asset tested.

Customers receiving or applying for an allowance will have a higher assets threshold.

This measure will also affect the means test assessment for aged care fee purposes.

Who is eligible for this measure

These changes will affect all pensioners who are, or who become, assets tested.

From 1 January 2017 customers receiving or applying for an allowance will have a higher assets threshold. This means more people will qualify for an allowance.

The date this measure will start and finish

This measure will start on 1 January 2017 and is ongoing.

Exit 54 Upgrade

I recently visited Coomera to check out the Exit 54 upgrade. It’s a month ahead of schedule and should be completed by September. I fought hard to deliver $10 million in funding from the Federal Government to get the project off the ground. As a local parent, I understand how hard the school run can be in the area. I know just how big of an impact the new overpass and upgraded intersections will have. It means you’ll be spending less time on your journey and more time at your destination. The upgrade also means the Coomera Town Centre can progress. This will be a vital addition to our fast-growing northern Gold Coast Community.

The Exit 54 upgrade is on track to be finished by September, a month early. Great news for local parents and visitors to Dreamworld Australia. It also means the Westfield Coomera Town Centre can be built, a vital addition to our northern Gold Coast community.

Posted by Stuart Robert on Thursday, April 14, 2016