Who was Kerry’s successor? So who did Kerry O’Brien want in his 7.30 hosting chair next year? Not necessarily the two chosen, we hear…

Hear this: profiting from JobAccess. There is a national program called JobAccess which is funded by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR). It is a thoroughly commendable  program assisting people with disabilities by reimbursing the cost of equipment used in overcoming barriers in the workplace — items like voice recognition software for the visually impaired.

However, the intent of the program was never intended to be a cash cow for audiologists and hearing aid companies. Hearing aids can cost more than $10,000 a pair and while DEEWR is reviewing its policy on hearing aid funding, audiologists and manufacturers have been advising their clients that JobAccess will reimburse in full the cost of new hearing aids. It is hard to blame hearing impaired people for utilising this funding extravaganza but when that funding includes doctors, specialists, lawyers and other professionals without means testing then something begins to taste sour.

Audiologists have been sending through applications for the funding of hearing aids at about 70 per month for at least the last three. Prior to this hearing aids ran at about five per month. Of course the benefits to audiologists and companies are huge and while DEEWR grapples with this issue, JobAccess is the only viable funding mechanism for hearing impaired people requiring hearing aids.

Which bank has been having problems? Where is the Commonwealth Bank’s apology for their problems on Tuesday? Here is their notice on the CommBiz web site:

Bank Update 14/12/2010 1:13:21 PM Zero Account Balances: All account balances that were incorrectly displaying a zero balance have now been updated in CommBiz. Transactions that were submitted and show a status of declined need to be resubmitted otherwise the transaction group will not be processed. For details on reviewing a transaction group status in CommBiz, review the Transaction Group Status user guide.

This caused immense issues for my company in getting salary payments reprocessed as the directors who had to reapprove the payments are overseas and we only managed to get them resolved at 7pm just in time for the last processing by the bank. We are still waiting for an email advising us of the problem; if our accounts department did not log on to CommBiz we would still have been in the dark until our employees started complaining on Wednesday.

And by the way last Wednesday the Commonwealth Bank’s receivable finance department could not process monies that were being transferred to CommBiz which resulted in our weekly wages employees receiving their pay a day late. Again they did not email us about the problems and, despite several requests, we have still not been told the reason for the delays or received an apology.

Peter Fray

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