Shadow Treasurer Curtis Pitt says Campbell Newman has broken his promise to get the budget back to surplus, and is gearing up to hand down a budget with increased debt and big new taxes.
Mr Pitt said Treasurer Tim Nicholls admission that a return to surplus will be delayed and borrowings will increase will lead to more hip pocket pain for Queenslanders.
“Campbell Newman said he’d get the budget back in black and decrease debt, yet his Treasurer is now saying Queenslanders can expect more debt and more deficits” Mr Pitt said.
“That’s at the same time as increased water prices, increased electricity prices, and a big new tax on families.
“Campbell Newman can’t get out of bed without breaking yet another election promise to the people of Queensland.”
Mr Pitt said any writedowns in state revenue were a direct result of a Campbell Newman-inspired economic slump.
“Campbell Newman’s cuts have led to a slowing economy and increased unemployment.
“If the economy is strong, revenues are strong. Mr Nicholls’ admission that revenues are down can’t be blamed on global circumstances, but on his own economic mismanagement.
“The LNP inherited an economy growing at 4%. Independent forecasters say growth has slumped to almost half that.
“Queenslanders put their trust in Campbell Newman, but the fact is he’s cut too hard, too fast, and the economy’s slumped as a result.”
Independent assessments of Campbell Newman’s austerity measures and their affect on economic growth:
1. The Commonwealth Bank’s institutional economists said in September last year that: As mentioned above, the substantial tightening in fiscal policy announced by the Newman Conservative Government in its maiden Budget unfurled on 11 September will weigh on the Queensland economy over the coming financial years and beyond.
(Economic Issues Brief 26 September 2012 page 3
2. This was backed up by the Commonwealth Bank’s investor arm economists in April this year:
CommSec economist Savanth Sebastian says Queensland was particularly weak in the categories of population growth and unemployment.
“They’ve had a significant amount of lay-offs in the public sector and that’s having an impact to some degree in curbing the retail story,” he said.
3. The Under Treasurer at Estimates said that the Government’s cuts would weigh on jobs growth:
Mr PITT: Thank you for that. At page 42 of Budget Paper No. 2 it states that fiscal consolidation is a factor toward lower employment growth forecasts in this financial year. Can you confirm that this reference to fiscal consolidation includes 2012-13 budget measures?
Ms Gluer: Yes, I can confirm it does. Could I also refer you to the answer to question on notice No. 2, which also sets out further details in regard to the question you have just asked.
(Hansard 9 October 2012 page 51 – http://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/documents/hansard/2012/2012_10_09_EstimatesFAC.pdf)