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Typical Liberal Budget Fails Tasmanians In Need

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Thursday, 25 May 2023

Tags: Housing Crisis, Housing, Housing Waiting List, Macquarie Point, State Budget, Social and Affordable Housing, Stadium

Cassy O'Connor MP | Greens Leader

In the midst of the state’s worst ever housing crisis, with the cost of living rising every day, and tens of thousands living in poverty, the Liberals have handed down a Budget that only grudgingly lifts a pinky finger for Tasmanians in need.

Instead, they’ve decided a Macquarie point stadium is their priority. $230 million for the stadium is prioritised over new money to build new homes – and that will only be the small change of the future stadium spend if it’s built.

Treasurer Michael Ferguson had an opportunity to put forward a bold, compassionate vision for our island and its people. Instead he trotted out a Budget that locks in more homelessness, more hardship, and more Tasmanians waiting longer for healthcare.

Perhaps the only thing of real substance in hundreds of pages of Budget Papers is the welcome inclusion of $30 million in new funding for the government’s response to recommendations from the Commission of Inquiry. The Greens advocated for this allocation formally with the Premier late last year. 

After a decade of failure in housing, education, and health, this is yet another typical Liberal Budget. And just like every other Budget since 2014, it makes sure the profits of big corporations and the wealthy are protected, while tens of thousands of Tasmanians are again given the crumbs.

If things are brutal in housing now, it seems they’re about to get worse. Homes Tasmania, the state’s new corporatised housing provider, expects the housing wait list to grow to 5,500 applicants within a year. It’s projected the waiting time for desperate Tasmanians will grow from a year to 18 months.

Rather than trying to tackle the deep societal challenges facing Tasmania, the Liberals are more worried about rolling out the red carpet of the AFL, cravenly caving in to multinational corporations, and looking after other big money interests.

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again – Tasmanians deserve so much better.