Page 44 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 13 December 2016

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MR BARR: The government has, through our diligent work in the lead-up to the election, sought to keep both election commitments and parliamentary agreement items largely within the provisions contained in the forward estimates, both in terms of the capital program and in terms of our recurrent spend. We maintain a desire over the economic cycle to see the territory budget in balance, and we will continue that approach in the coming 2017-18 budget.

The details of the costings of Labor election commitments were forwarded to Treasury during the election period and are available on the Treasury website. In some instances where the parliamentary agreement involves a combination of both a Labor and a Greens initiative, we will work through the detail of the implementation of that particular initiative, so it would be wise not to assume either the exact Labor costing or the exact Greens costing at this point, but I do note that the Greens party also participated in the election costing process, so the full cost of their commitments is available on the Treasury website as well.

MR COE: Treasurer, what is the total recurrent and capital cost of the Labor-Greens agreement, and what proportion is covered by the existing budgeted provisions?

MR BARR: There is a capital provision contained within the budget forward estimates that includes around $100 million annually in new infrastructure projects, together with a capital upgrades program that is around the $60 million mark annually. In relation to recurrent spending, the provisions that were outlined in the pre-election budget update indicate to the Leader of the Opposition provisions that were set aside for growth in health expenditure, as well as growth in other areas of the territory budget. We do, of course, project over the forward estimates a return to a modest surplus for the territory. But I do note that that is quite heavily impacted not only by decisions of the commonwealth but also by our allocation of the GST.

Mr Coe: A point of order.

MADAM SPEAKER: A point of order, Mr Coe.

Mr Coe: It is on relevance. The first part of the question was: what is the total recurrent and capital cost of the Labor-Greens agreement? I would ask that the Treasurer address that point.

MADAM SPEAKER: I think the Treasurer was referring to budget put-asides, so to speak, so there is no point of order. Have you finished, Treasurer?

MR BARR: I have.

MRS JONES: Has the signing of the Labor-Greens agreement pushed back the promised budget surplus and can you outline the exact total of current and capital cost of it?

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