Treasurer in firing line over Housing Trust rent increase in Budget

Trish Mohrholz may momentarily feel like a “rock star”, but she is living the life of a pauper.

TIGHT BUDGET: Pensioner Trish Mohrholz stands beside her radio while holding $20 - the fortnighly increase in Housing Trust rent that she will be forced to pay.

TIGHT BUDGET: Pensioner Trish Mohrholz stands beside her radio while holding $20 - the fortnighly increase in Housing Trust rent that she will be forced to pay.

Pensioner Mrs Mohrholz, 71, targeted Treasurer Rob Lucas on ABC radio on Wednesday, September 5, over his decision in the Budget to increase Housing Trust rent by $10 a week.

In a blaze of publicity, she was interviewed by a team from the ABC who travelled to Port Pirie to see her.

She also featured on Southern Cross Television with local reporter Dominic Beaton.

“I feel like a rock star, a celebrity,” she told The Recorder when the newspaper visited her neat unit later in the day.

“This is a nice unit, but I don’t want to pay another $20 a fortnight for it,” she said,

“I spend $60 a fortnight on my grocery bill and that is one-third of that.”

She rang the ABC while Mr Lucas was being interviewed on a morning program, saying to the receptionist that she wanted to speak to that “Treasurer b------”.

After being counselled about her language, she made her point on air.

“The announcer asked the Treasurer whether he needed to have ice in his veins to do his job and the Treasurer said, “yes, it helps’,” she said

“Well, thanks, mate. He is not going to get too many people being rapt.

“It comes across as non-compassionate for low-income earners.

“I tend to get really passionate about social injustice.

“He understood the position it may have put some people in, but he was not that compassionate.

“The top end of town gets away with everything.”

Mrs Mohrholz revealed she had two adopted Aboriginal sons in the Northern Territory who were on unemployment benefits.

She tries to send them some money for food.

The Recorder is seeking comment from the Treasurer.

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