It’s been six months in the making and today, the LNP Government’s first state budget was delivered.
Treasurer Tim Nicholls called it a budget that is all about ‘getting Queensland back on the road to financial security’.
Samantha Kolb reports.
It’s the budget that’s been described as “once in a generation” with cuts from different sectors saving the Queensland Government $7.8 billion.
Tim Nicholls, Treasurer: “This first Newman budget starts Queensland on the path to delivering those hopes and aspirations for all Queenslanders.”
The Newman Government plans to focus its attention on a four-pillar economy pledging money to tourism, construction and property, resources and agriculture.
There’ll be an additional $158.2 million for transport, fare increases on the Translink network will be halved from 15 to 7.5%.
Infrastructure was another strong focus with extra funding to public schools, roads across Queensland and the completion of the Brisbane Supreme and District Courts.
Premier Newman also focused on increasing the over-all health budget by 7.4 per cent.
With an emphasis on lowering the cost of living, the budget aims to save Queensland families an average of $120 off their annual electricity bills.
It’ll also deliver an $80 water rebate to south-east Queensland households and freeze car registrations.
Today’s budget announcement confirms that 14,000 public sector jobs will be cut however there are some winners with public schools being allocated $200 million for urgent maintenance.
Questioned about the job cuts, the Treasurer had this answer:
Tim Nicholls, Treasuer: “We think there’s been a cruel hoax played on public service by allowing people to be employed on the understanding that the bill would never come due.”
There’ll also be cuts in Government-owned corporations, saving $3.7 billion.
While the Budget may be remembered for job cuts, the Government says it will return to surplus in two years.
Samantha Kolb, QUT News.