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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 3 Hansard (24 March) . . Page.. 751 ..

MR SPEAKER (continuing):

Yours sincerely

John Hargreaves MLA

8 March 1999

Public Housing

MS TUCKER: My question is to Mr Smyth as Minister for Housing. The Queensland Government has made some projections on the impact of the GST on public housing in that State. In light of the possibility that the Federal Government will impose a GST, has this Government done the same and investigated the implications to public housing funding and services in the ACT?

MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, the issue of the GST is appropriately dealt with by the Chief Minister. Recently, Housing Ministers did have a teleconference. There was to be a meeting in Hobart, but it was cancelled at the last moment. There is an impact of the GST on housing. The Chief Minister, and I believe other Premiers and Chief Ministers, will raise this at the special Premiers Conference on 9 April. We will have a better view then of what will occur and the impacts.

MS TUCKER: I have a supplementary question. Is the Government aware that the Queensland Government estimates that it will increase the State housing costs by between 6 and 8 per cent, resulting in a loss of $30m in revenue? If you do have to deal with such an amount, which I understand from your answer that you are investigating, or you are going to discuss at least, how would you tackle that issue to determine how you can compensate in housing for that cost?

MR SPEAKER: That is a very hypothetical matter.

MR SMYTH: Indeed, Mr Speaker. This is a projection. There are some very widely varying figures.

Ms Carnell: Could I take that question?

MR SMYTH: I am happy to defer to the Chief Minister, who will be able to answer for me in this regard.

Mr Stanhope: It is hypothetical, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Chief Minister, it is a hypothetical matter.


: Mr Speaker, I understood that Ms Tucker was interested in some information about 9 April. This, of course, is in my portfolio. The issue of public housing is on the agenda for 9 April, and the effect of the GST is very real. I think it is very unwise though for Ms Tucker to bring up the issue of the Queensland Government's work because the Queensland Government's work is aimed at one thing and one thing only, and that is to get more money for Queensland. Queensland at this stage is lobbying

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