Tasmanians are rightly concerned that Malcolm Turnbull’s plan to change the GST carve up to benefit Western Australia will cost Tasmania tens of millions of dollars in GST revenue which fund Tasmanian hospitals and schools.
The fact is, Mr Turnbull yesterday walked away from the government’s commitment provided at COAG of an extra $500 million in GST revenue for Tasmania over 3 years. Now Mr Turnbull has promised Western Australia more, that means less revenue for other states including Tasmania.
Further to this, in April, the Commonwealth Grants Commission advised that there would be an $84 million decrease in GST for Tasmania in 2016-17. Now, on top of this forecast we have Mr Turnbull’s promising Western Australia that they will receive more GST.
Mr Turnbull’s latest GST thought bubble is flawed. It will cripple funding for hospitals and schools in Tasmania. Tasmanians can’t afford this and they can’t afford a Turnbull Liberal Government.
A cut in distribution and allocation of GST in Tasmania will give the Hodgman Government more ammunition to continue to cut public sector jobs, continue to starve our hospitals of revenue and cut school funding.
The fact is Mr Turnbull can’t be trusted with the GST. Tasmania was promised a GST windfall, now that is off the table, our GST projections were downgraded in April. Tasmania no longer knows what GST it will receive under a Turnbull Liberal Government.
I encourage Mr Turnbull and his Liberal colleagues to rule out any changes to the GST that would hurt smaller states like Tasmania and start giving the voters of Tasmania the respect they deserve.
We live in a Federation, Mr Turnbull can’t just make captains calls that will hurt Tasmania.
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