Page 5089 - Week 13 - Thursday, 29 November 2018

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I note this recommendation was not confined to residential taxes; it is broader, and the wording also covers rates on commercial properties. If we assume that the government accepts this recommendation—which would appear to be quite possible, given that it was a unanimous recommendation—it is possible that there could be two reviews at the same time into commercial rates. I hope the public accounts committee considers how best these inquiries should proceed, if the government takes up the committee’s recommendation. It would be deeply confusing for the community to have both running in parallel. I am not really sure what will happen. A government review will have greater resources to do the revenue, social equity and economic efficiency analysis required to make changes to the tax system.

In the interests of time I will finish by saying that I agree with all the speakers—our tax system is important. We want a fair, efficient tax system and I wish PAC well with this important work.

MR COE (Yerrabi—Leader of the Opposition) (12.37), in reply: I thank those opposite for supporting this referral. It is interesting that Ms Le Couteur should celebrate more taxation. What would be better still would be to celebrate value for money. Are we getting value for money when it comes to health in the ACT? Are we getting value for money when it comes to education? Are we getting value for money when it comes to public housing or the housing sector at large? Are we getting value for money with the services we are providing for Indigenous people in the ACT? Are concessions keeping pace with the cost of living? Obviously they are not.

The government is bringing in record revenue but failing to deliver, despite all this cash. It is a major failure of this Labor-Greens government that despite having $7 billion of expenditure they are still unable to deliver concessions for people who need them. They are still unable to deliver a world-class health system. They are still unable to have education results that are going forwards and not backwards. They are still unable to reverse the trend when it comes to pretty much every single indicator regarding the health and welfare of our Indigenous population. This government is failing on every single front. And it is not due to a lack of money; it is due to a lack of leadership. We very much need this referral.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Health, Ageing and Community Services—Standing Committee


MRS DUNNE (Murrumbidgee) (12.39), by leave: I move:

That if the Standing Committee on Health, Ageing and Community Services has completed its inquiry into the future sustainability of health funding in the ACT when the Assembly is not sitting, the Committee may send its report to the Speaker or, in the absence of the Speaker, to the Deputy Speaker, who is authorised to give directions for its printing, publishing and circulation.

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