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Greens Stand with Liberals and Labor on GST

9 Oct 2017

Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens' Leader

The Productivity Commission draft report into Horizontal Fiscal Equalisation proposes changes that would significantly and unacceptably disadvantage Tasmania.

The Greens stand with the Liberals and Labor in vehemently opposing any change to HFE that hurts this State and its people.

It's clear this reference to the Productivity Commission was Prime Minister Turnbull's effort to quiet the bleating of Western Australia which squandered the benefits of its mining boom while deriding other States, like Tasmania, who were doing it tough.

Tasmania has the nation's highest chronic disease burden, the oldest and fastest ageing population and the highest level of disability per capita of any State or Territory. 

Our skilled workers have also suffered from the downturn in manufacturing and the transition to new work requires government investment.

We simply cannot afford to lose the estimated $150 per person under the model recommended in the draft report.

A fair and equitable HFE is essential for Tasmania.  Without the stabilising revenue from the GST distribution, we would be unable to maintain stability and security of basic service delivery.  The flow on impacts to our people, particularly in areas of disadvantage, would be profound.

As we argued in our submission to the HFE Inquiry in June this year, rather than tinkering with GST distribution, the Turnbull Government should address the urgent need for tax reform, particularly in relation to capital gains, negative gearing, carbon pricing and socially harmful subsidies to fossil fuel companies. **

We will make a strong submission to the draft Report, rejecting any change to GST distribution that hurts this island's people and its economy.