L to R: Paul, Oliver, Isabella and Lishia O'Reilly will get a new fridge courtesy of Mr Rudd.
L to R: Paul, Oliver, Isabella and Lishia O'Reilly will get a new fridge courtesy of Mr Rudd. Northern Star

Rudd's magic millions handed out from today

AUSTRALIA’S $10 billion spending spree will begin today when Kevin Rudd starts handing out the money to two million families and four million pensioners.

Paul and Lishia O’Reilly, of Lillian Rock, who will be receiving $1000 for each of their two children, said they would be using the money to buy a $1000 fridge.

“We are going to spend the money,” Mr O’Reilly said.

They will also spend $500 renovating their chicken shed and put the remainder on their mortgage.

Mr O’Reilly said they wanted to spend the money on things that would have a long-standing benefit.

“Getting a more efficient fridge will also reduce our energy bill,” he said.

Mr O’Reilly, a solar panel installer at The Rainbow Power Company, said job insecurity created by the world financial crisis was affecting his family’s spending behaviour.

“I don’t feel comfortable about spending ridiculous amounts of money because I don’t know if I will still have a job,” he said.

Kevin Rudd is urging people not to hold back when they receive their payments.

“Go out and spend the money,” the Prime Minister said.

 Mr Rudd said Australia was still at the mercy of an unprecedented global financial crisis and it was not over yet.

He predicted 2009 would be a difficult year, with reduced growth and higher unemployment.

“I see no point at all in trying to gild a lily with the Australian people,” he said.

“We’re in tough times, there will be tough times next year.”

Mr Rudd said Australians needed to stick together to ride out the financial ‘doom and gloom’.

Mark Willoughby, of the Lismore Chamber of Commerce, said retailers were optimistic the money would find its way into the local economy quickly.

“Electrical retailers are confident people will be buying new appliances,” Mr Willoughby said.

“I hope people spend it responsibly because the bonus is based around children.”

NSW Shadow Minister for Fair Trading Catherine Cusack said families should disregard calls to splurge the government bonuses and instead stick to a budget for the whole of the Christmas, New Year and back-to-school season.

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Retailers call on public to spend bonus


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