Embattled NT Chief Minister Michael Gunner’s 2018 Budget lacks any real economic management and leadership and simply announces funding provided by the Federal Country Liberals.
Senator for the Northern Territory Nigel Scullion said this year’s Territory Budget was another fizzer that will abjectly fail to inspire confidence and attract investment in the Territory.
“It is clear that the Northern Territory under Michael Gunner’s hopeless leadership is a little brother government – that has become totally dependent on the CLP federally to bail them out and to fund the vast majority of the NTs services.
“It is great that the Northern Territory Government is using its Budget to re-announce Commonwealth Government investment in roads, infrastructure, defence, health, housing and education – but what is Michael Gunner actually doing for himself.
“The Federal Coalition will be paying for at least $4.2 billion of Michael Gunner’s $6.9 billion in expenditure this year – or 60 per cent of the Territory’s entire budget.
“Michael Gunner’s job-destroying agenda has held the Territory back with his politically self-serving ban on onshore gas – which has forced workers and businesses to abandon the Territory and killed investment.
“Nicole Manison also must apologise to the people of the Territory for continuing to lie about Commonwealth GST distributions – and she has never been able to explain how she has made up her mythical $3.4 billion cut to GST payments.
“Lack of population growth and reductions in spending by the Northern Territory Government are the primary reasons for the decision by the independent Commonwealth Grants Commission to reduce GST relativities – which puts Michael Gunner front and centre to blame. His answer seems to be to waste even more time, the Territory needs action not more talk.
“It is past time for Michael Gunner to stand aside and let adults make the decisions the Territory needs,” Senator Scullion said today.