Page 5165 - Week 12 - Thursday, 27 October 2011

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MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mr Hanson.

MR HANSON: Minister, doesn’t this tax impact on those Canberrans that can least afford to pay?

MS GALLAGHER: All taxes affect Canberrans and they affect them in different ways. That is why we have a range of concessions and concessional amounts. Indeed, with that charge there are concessions available to people on lower incomes. You take out one in isolation and refuse to look at all of our other revenue lines to see where we can ease some pressure, if we are able to. I would just say that the budget update will be provided in February but I do not think it is unreasonable to believe, given that there has been some pressure in terms of the performance of the international stock market and some of the overall economic indicators, that in that update we may see some downward revisions of some of our own revenue lines.

Mr Hanson: Point of order, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mr Hanson.

Mr Hanson: On a point of relevance: the question was specifically about a tax and whether it was going to affect those that can least afford to pay. I was asking a question on that, not about the broader implications of the international stock market.

MS GALLAGHER: I cannot assist Mr Hanson if he does not understand the correlation between the impacts on our superannuation investments and the amount of revenue available for government to provide services. The link I am trying to make is that the government looks at all of our revenue lines specifically with a view to how it impacts on ACT households. We do that every year; it is part of our core business. But at the end of the day we also need to provide services. Demand on services continues to grow. We have had some pressure placed on our budget through the global financial crisis and through the revision downwards of GST receipts, and that has put some pressure and constraint on decisions that the government is able to take. (Time expired.)

Northern Bridging Support Services—payment of accounts

MRS DUNNE: My question is to the Minister for Community Services. Recently, you tabled in this place a list of creditors that your directorate had not paid within 30 days. It did not include the Northern Bridging Support Services who have payments in excess of $200,000 outstanding, some for over a year. Why was Northern Bridging Support Services left off the list of creditors that had not been paid within 30 days?

MS BURCH: It is my understanding that the invoices were not entered into the system. They were in dispute. They were being negotiated. The arrangements and payment prices were being negotiated.

MRS DUNNE: Supplementary question, Mr Speaker.

Members interjecting—

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