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ABC News Breakfast -

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(generated from captions) their prr pretty good really.

We won't take them too

seriously then. Thank you.

Another of the Government's

Budget measures is facing an

uncertain future with the

Greens and Coalition seeking

changes to the proposed

overhaul of the student youth allowance. The Government

on plans to tighten the criteria

on the scheme to fund other

student support projects.

Opposition education spokesman

Christopher Pyne joins us now

from the ABC's Adelaide news

room. Good morning and thank

you for joining us. Good

have about the tightening of morning. What concerns do you

the youth allowance? What are

you hearing? I'm concerned

that the changes to the youth

allowance have inadvertently thrown

thrown 30,700 students off the

common youth allowance, they're

the government's own figures

and a lot of those people are rural and regional young

people. Now, if you are in the

city and you are no longer able

to access the common youth

allowance then typically you

can stay home with mum and dad

or with mum or with dad but

unfortunately if you're in the

country and you're thrown off

the common youth allowance you can't just stay home with can't just stay home with mum

and dad and still go to

university. That's almost the

end of your university career,

in which case you have to

choose another path. That's

not, I'm sure, what the Government intended. We're

going to send it to a Senate

inquiry, get to the bottom of

the detail and hope that Julia

Gillard and the Prime Minister

can see reason to change the

particularly scheme to ensure that

particularly rural youth aren't

worse off. When we were in

Government, and Labor has said

they want people with disadvantaged backgrounds, low

SES backgrounds and people from

rural and regional areas to be

able to access higher

education, this measure flies

in the face of that commitment

and will definitely hurt a lot

of families. Julia Gillard

argues differently and she's

suggesting you don't need to

if take to a Senate inquiry, maybe

if you just talked properly to

each other you might be able to

solve it between you because

the Budget boosted parental

income threshold from 38,500 to

42,559 according to Julia

Gillard, that means 68,000 more

students will qualify for

support and another 35,000 will

receive higher payments and if

you speak specifically about

rural people there's actually a

relocation allowance of 4,000 relocation allowance of 4,000

in the first year of uni and

1,000 each year after that.

That's not too shabby. Well,

the Opposition has, on numerous

occasions, offered to sit down

and talk to both Kevin Rudd and

Julia Gillard about important

mistakes that Government has

made that we're trying to help

them with. They've never

responded to that. They've

refused to speak to us about

any of those matters. Listening

to these to these figures, Christopher

Pyne, doesn't that allay your

concern? Not at all. Certainly

they are increasing the amount

of the youth allowance for some

people. They are making it more

accessible to some people but

there are at least 30,000

people that we know of that the

Government's admitted will

actually miss out on a common

youth allowance and the emails

and letters and phone calls

that are flooding in to Coalition offices around Australia are telling us Australia are telling us this

is a heart-wrenching change for

many families. It's being

implemented in the middle of

many people's gap year from

January 1 next year, so those

people who this year have made

plans for the next 18 months from the beginning of January

are suddenly disadvantaged in a way that they didn't expect to

be. We don't have a fulltime

Education Minister. Education Minister. Julia has employment, industrial

relations, social inclusion and

we find these kinds of detail

mistakes occur very regularly

in her portfolio. You're

accusing Julia Gillard of

missing the details because

she's spread too thin?

Absolutely. I think she misses

the details regularly. We've

seen it with trade training

centres, computers in schools

and the common youth allowance and the common youth allowance

that the detail is not being

taken care of. I'm sure Julia

is a very competent Minister in

her own way but she may well

have too much on her plate. We

need a fulltime Education

Minister not a part-time one.

And Christopherer pooin, just

on another subject, we're

hearing Kevin Rudd is thinking

of applying some sort of

auditing process to the $32,000

be electoral allowance you'll all

be receiving very shortly. Do

you think that's a good idea? Does it need to be audited and

scrut ainised more closely?

Well, look, the Remuneration

Tribunal sets the electoral

allowance for MPs. The

electoral allowance is spent in

your electorate on essentially

what you don't spend is taxed

in your hands. Most MPs I know

electoral allowance end up spending at least the

electoral allowance and often

more and whether people want to

audit it or not is really no

skin off my nose. The

Remuneration Tribunal- You're

comfortable with that idea? It

doesn't worry me in the least

bit. Can you see an argument

finally for the Australian

public starting to talk

sensibly and soberly about

paying MPs more, your base paying MPs more, your base

salary? Look, Virginia, I have

been in politics for 16 years,

as I think you know, we've

talked to each other many times

over the years. I've never

complained or said anything -

bragged or complained about my

salaries or remuneration t is a

no-win issue for politicians to

talk about. I'm quite happy to

be paid what I'm being paid. If

they want to pay me more that's

great too f they want to pay me

less that's the choice. I

didn't go into politics for

money, I went into politics to

serve and I enjoy it very

much. Christopher Pyne, always