Mr BAYLEY question to TREASURER, Mr FERGUSON
While the Government has been happy to deliver two rounds of land tax cuts to wealthy property owners it has been reluctant to provide the necessary funding for critical services Tasmanians desperately need. As you are well aware, the community sector's request for funding support in the state Budget was not met. Can you confirm you received explicit budget requests from Homes Tasmania to deliver its recommended level of crisis accommodation and another for funding for 22 full-time equivalent staff and neither were delivered in full in this year's Budget?
Mr Speaker, I welcome Mr Bayley to the Chamber as the new member. I do not discuss budget deliberations and submissions that are made through the Cabinet process. I need to respect that process to enable any agency to put forward their budget requests. I think I can honestly say that every agency always asks for more than the budget can deliver. I am prepared to say that much to you, Mr Bayley - and there are no surprises there, but even though you are a new member there is no excuse for making up numbers as your Leader has earlier done. I think $5 billion was the figure that was repeated by Dr Woodruff, who frankly just goes around making numbers.
Dr Woodruff - I said $5 billion to $6 billion.
Mr SPEAKER - Order.
Mr ROCKLIFF - Oh, $5 billion to $6 billion? That of course is two-thirds of the state Budget. Quite honestly, the Greens cannot be taken seriously here.
What I can confirm is that we have provided additional funds for Homes Tasmania in the hundreds of millions of dollars to assist it with its next tranche of support, not just for the 2000 additional homes to 2027 and the necessary wherewithal to provide for that, particularly given that the funding through Homes Tasmania is for borrowings to build and to partner with community housing organisations. It shows how little the Greens understand about the model that they so vigorously opposed through this parliament through our very significant reforms. Further to that, we provided additional funds to Homes Tasmania for additional wraparound supports and, in particular, to expand the Private Rental Incentives scheme and to provide more supports in what has been a very tight rental market.
Unfortunately, I have to say through you, Mr Speaker, to Mr Bayley, the member for Clark, that I invite him to have a look at the Budget and examine the numbers that show new appropriations for additional supports for Homes Tas for people who are doing it tough and additional support to our new organisation that has only been in existence since November to allow it to really double down on the new builds that will be required at a rate never before seen.
We have shown as a government that we can deliver and we are delivering significant not just reforms that have been opposed by that side of the Chamber, I should at least say by Labor and the Greens, who claim to support people who are doing it tough, who claim to want to see more housing developments, who claim to want to see more shelters and dwellings being constructed, but when they are asked for a vote to support the processes that will enable that, they go running. They go for landing punches. They are actually standing in the way of decent Tasmanians getting that roof over their heads that they so richly deserve as fellow Tasmanians.
I invite you, Mr Bayley, to have another look at the Budget and you will see hundreds of millions of dollars of additional support for Homes Tasmania to allow it to achieve its next tranche of delivery.