Page 2980 - Week 08 - Thursday, 25 June 2009

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The Tasmanian government will also implement a range of budget management strategies similar to that of this government’s structural reform, including amalgamation of efficiencies, boards and committees savings, efficiency dividends and whole-of-government non-salary savings targets. They have imposed quite a strict wages policy as well.

The Western Australian government has announced the establishment of an Economic Audit Committee which will conduct a wide-ranging review of the operational and financial performance of the public sector. This committee will deliver its report later this year, to feed in to the next budget cycle.

As we can see, the ACT’s plan has been replicated across the country, indeed, over there in Western Australia, where they have a Liberal government. So the actual responsibilities that governments have to face and respond to have been reflected in the budget of every jurisdiction. Not one of these budgets indicates that they can recover in one year’s time or that they can recover without savings strategies, without wage restraint or without having a look at what government spends its money on.

The opposition have called our budget economically irresponsible. They have failed to substantiate that. From what I can presume, that criticism is levelled at the seven year plan. I would argue that the Liberal strategy is the economically irresponsible one. By opposing this budget, they try to deny significant capital investment in the ACT. If they could win the vote on the floor to oppose this budget, they would oppose jobs, create concern in the community and lower confidence—all the things that business and industry are telling us they do not want to see happen is being played out by this opposition.

If there is anyone economically irresponsible in this Assembly today, as we debate ad nauseam this budget, it is those opposite that could not even be bothered to give me the time to listen to my answer today. That really shows us how prepared you are to stand up for the ACT community. They expect their appropriation to come through. You call us economically irresponsible but you have no plans, no ideas, no hope and no suggestions. What we have here is a plan to invest in our community and to recover the budget over the longer term.

Mr Stanhope: I ask that all further questions be placed on the notice paper.


Mr Speaker presented the following paper:

Estimates 2009-2010—Select Committee—Report—Appropriation Bill 2009-2010—Answers to questions on notice and questions taken on notice—Received after 15 June 2009.

Mr Stanhope presented the following papers:

Intergovernmental agreements—

Bilateral Agreement on the Nation Building and Jobs Plan, dated 25 March and 14 April 2009.

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