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Greens Deliver Triple Bottom Line Alternative Budget

30 May 2017

Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens' Leader

The Tasmanian Greens' Alternative Budget is a fully costed vision for the future that demonstrates it is possible to look after people and invest in their capacity, to protect our environmental assets and stimulate the economy through investment in small business and infrastructure.

Through targeted savings measures that cut areas of public spending which deliver limited public benefit, we've demonstrated it's possible to restore frontline staff in health and child safety, in education, skills and training and in action on climate change.

 

Key features of the Greens' Alternative Budget 2017/18:

Investment in key 21st century infrastructure, including;

·        $180 million towards regional and urban renewal infrastructure funds

·        $46.5 million towards public and active transport, and light rail

·        $20 million for the sub-partners' cable to the mainland

·        $60 million towards Launceston stormwater and sewerage upgrades

·        $31 million to fund a modern, smart electricity grid

·        $25.2 million to encourage large scale renewables investment

 

The Greens' genuine housing availability and affordability package includes;

·        $37 million to fund stamp duty exemption for all first home buyers

·        $40 million capital funding to construct new, energy efficient social housing

·        $30 million land acquisition fund to encourage infill, higher density affordable housing close to centres of economic activity

 

Health is a core priority of our Alternative Budget with an extra allocation of $220.08 million over four years;

·        $92.5 million to deliver 200 extra, staffed hospital beds

·        $7.5 million emergency hospital relief to alleviate immediate pressure on the emergency department at the Royal Hobart Hospital

·        $30.6 million to fund 102 new paramedic positions

·        $12.8 million into palliative care, with a dedicated increased allocation to the north

·        $3.3 million towards a comprehensive tobacco control strategy

·        $5.6 million towards suicide prevention for young Tasmanians, and LGBTI people

 

Protecting Tasmania's extraordinary natural environment is core to our Alternative Budget, through measures such as:

·        $2.5 million to fund the protection of 356 000 hectares of high conservation value forests set aside under the TFA, including management, recreational uses and potentially progressing monetisation of forest carbon

·        $6.1 million to restore fund to Parks and Wildlife

·        $2 million to restart the Marine Protected Areas Strategy, delivering greater marine protection and improving the sustainability of fisheries for the future

·        A $10 per tonne waste levy

·        $800 000 over four years to fund the vital work of the Environmental Defenders Office

·        $2.4 million to re-establish the Coastal Policy Unit in DPIPWE and to develop a new Coastal Policy framework that protects Tasmania's coastline in a way the State Coastal Policy 1996 has failed to do

·        $10 million towards a forest restoration fund to create training and employment opportunities restoring logged public lands to a natural, forested state

 

The wellbeing of vulnerable people is a strong component of our Alternative Budget with;

·        $9.83 million to fund 20 new child safety officer positions

·        $5 million as the State's contribution to the Child Abuse Redress Scheme, as recommended by the Royal Commission

·        $77.24 million to remove poker machines from pubs and clubs and retire machines as they reach their 5 year replacement date

·        $16.7 million over four years to increase indexation paid to community service providers to 3% from 2.25%

 

We have funded these initiatives through savings that include defunding the Office of the Coordinator General and the to-date ineffective, Infrastructure Tasmania.  We would also end the public subsidies to the racing industry, removing the $30 million taxpayers pay each year to TasRacing.

Unlike the Liberals and Labor, we've got the guts to reset the Budget priorities to genuinely deliver a fair, visionary and triple bottom line Alternative Budget.