Budget Gippsland South The Nationals Small business Mirboo North Yarram Foster Emergency Services Funding Danny O'Brien CFA Volunteers Taxes

Labor’s mismanagement taxes Gippslanders

The Andrews Labor Government’s State Budget handed down today will result in more taxes, fewer jobs and more pain for families and small businesses across Gippsland.

The Nationals Member for Gippsland South, Danny O’Brien said he was alarmed at the increase in new taxes most of which were on the property sector, which will only make housing affordability and availability an even bigger problem in our region.

Mr O’Brien said there was little in the State Budget for Gippsland South with the exception of planning money for the Sale College redevelopment and a mental health outreach clinic at Central Gippsland Health.

“We were waiting to see investments in our road and rail systems particularly along the South Gippsland Highway and there is virtually no new spending on Gippsland roads.

“For the seventh year in succession, the Andrews Labor Government has turned its back on our CFA volunteers with no funding for new stations at Mirboo North, Foster and Yarram.

“There’s also no money to complete the rebuild of Foster Primary School.”

Mr O’Brien said the Government was unable to control its spending and Gippslanders will pay through $5.8 billion in new and increased taxes.

“We have a serious problem with housing affordability and availability in Gippsland and coming out of the pandemic this has been exacerbated as city people move to the country pushing up property prices.

“Adding taxes to property will only exacerbate the problems of housing affordability.”

Mr O’Brien said the Government was right to invest in the mental health system but noted the $3.8 billion spend was only marginally more than the blow out in costs on the metro tunnel project.

“If the Government was able to manage projects and keep to within its budget we wouldn’t need a mental health levy that will cost jobs and turn away businesses.

“Mental health is a core government function and shouldn’t be stigmatised by being funded through a new levy.

“We don’t raise funds for hospitals and schools through a levy, and neither should we for mental health which is a critically important function of government.”

Mr O’Brien said he would continue to lobby for projects and services in Gippsland South, despite the disappointment of the Budget.

 

20 May 2021

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