The following is attributable to Sustainable Australia MP Clifford Hayes: The Federal Government’s “cut” to Australia’s permanent migrant intake has been exposed as a ruse by its own Budget Papers. While the Government has been loudly trumpeting the reduction in the permanent intake from 190,000 to 160,000, the Budget papers show that net overseas migration figure is actually going to rise from 259,600 to 271,700 in the next financial year. It will continue to be higher than the 2018 in every year for which figures have been provided. Net overseas migration is the total migration, including foreign students as well as temporary work visas and temporary old-age parental visas, minus of course people leaving Australia. This is one step forward and two steps back. According to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australia’s population grew in the year ended September 30 2018 by 395,100. This growth is much faster than the growth we had during the twentieth century, and it is damaging our environment and open space, driving traffic congestion, housing unaffordability and job security, and diminishing the Australian way of life. By blatantly trying to mislead the public and refusing to genuinely lower immigration, the Coalition Government is out of touch with the views of voters. We urgently need to slow our population growth, to protect our way of life and our natural assets. Of Melbourne’s total population increase throughout the past year, 65 per cent of it was due to overseas migration. Treasury has estimated that Victoria will add 652,000 extra residents by 2022, taking its population to almost 7.2 million. This will not make Victoria a better place to live. We need to return net overseas migration back to what it was before the spike of the past 15 years.