Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens Leader and Treasury spokesperson
The Tasmanian Government Fiscal Sustainability Report 2021 reiterates the findings of previous reports from Treasury. It makes it clear things need to change.
The Tasmanian budget is on an unsustainable pathway due to the skyrocketing cost of health services. In this context, the Gutwein Government’s fiscal philosophy, policy or rhetoric is largely irrelevant.
While factors like the State’s ageing population and a high chronic disease burden are contributors, the demand for services is not the primary culprit. The costs causing the budget blowout are supply pressures, such as the cost of new technologies.
Improving the health of Tasmanians, while critical, will not address the budget shortfall in coming years.
Under all assessed scenarios the budget is plummeting into the red across the forward estimates. This is regardless of revenue growth, expenditure constraint, or any other assessed inputs.
To be able to continue providing essential services – like healthcare, education and housing – into the future, the only solution is to find new revenue sources.
It’s time to make the corporates pay their fair share.
The Liberals only took one taxation policy to the State election - to adjust land tax thresholds. That sop to the propertied class will likely result in decreased revenue, not what’s needed to pay for critical services into the future.
The Greens’ plan to make wealthy corporations and investors pay their fair share, on the other hand, would ensure a functioning health, education or housing system into the future. It’s the only fiscally sustainable pathway forward for Tasmania.