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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 07 Hansard (Wednesday, 30 June 2010) . . Page.. 2889 ..

Questions without notice

Government—taxes and charges

MR SESELJA: My question is directed to the Treasurer. Treasurer, from tomorrow a range of ACT government taxes and charges will go up. Electricity prices will go up by 2.35 per cent, household bills for water and waste water will increase by 4.3 per cent, or $50, ACTION bus fares will go up, government parking fees will go up, tip fees will go up, as will household rates. Treasurer, how much extra will the average Canberran have to pay a week because of increases in ACT government taxes and charges?

MS GALLAGHER: I imagine that over all of those different taxes and charges that you have just outlined, it would be almost impossible to give a per household figure.

Mrs Dunne: Why?

MS GALLAGHER: It depends if you use them, doesn’t it, Mrs Dunne? It depends if individual Canberrans use the tip, if they use the buses, if they drive their car and, if they drive their car, whether they park their car in Civic or whether they park their car in Dickson. So per household, that would be an almost impossible task. But what I can say to the Leader of the Opposition is that this budget outlines some very modest increases in fees and charges across government.

To the largest extent possible, they have gone up with the wage price index, which is what we introduced in 2006, as a means of increasing fees to the ACT government. I should say that when you look back in terms of revenue growth, revenue growth has not kept up with the increase in extra funding and services delivered to the community through the government.

MR SPEAKER: Mr Seselja, a supplementary?

MR SESELJA: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Given the level of increases in ACT government taxes and charges in 2010-11, why will the ACT budget still be in deficit?

MS GALLAGHER: Here we have the global financial crisis deniers again, that have completely obliterated from their memory the impact of the global financial crisis and the fact that we lost over a billion dollars across the forward estimates in revenue.

Mr Seselja: You got it all back. You got it back.

MS GALLAGHER: No, we did not, Mr Seselja. We got some additional one-off stimulus money that has to be used for a particular purpose. You cannot include that as a means of dealing with your ongoing recurrent expenditure.

Mr Smyth: The New South Wales Premier is misleading the people of New South Wales?

MS GALLAGHER: And Mr Smyth conveniently uses New South Wales again as another example. New South Wales happened to do very well in the Commonwealth

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