Manison: No slash and burn approach to fiscal emergency


p2168-Nicole-ManisonBy ERWIN CHLANDA
“With the reduction in revenue already mentioned and a declining economy, we need to slow our rate of expenditure,” says Treasurer Nicole Manison (pictured), partly answering questions from the Alice Springs News Online.
“But we will NOT make any changes without first talking to industry and coming up with a smart plan to be more efficient, create local jobs and fix our budget.”
Minister Manison says the Labor Government “inherited a declining economy with an extremely challenging set of economic circumstances and no plan by the previous Government for the Inpex wind down.
“The interim independent report I requested and that was released on Friday will help us drive a sensible plan to budget repair and make sure we deliver on what is a very bright future for the NT.”
She says the report – whose author remains confidential – confirms:
• A declining economy post Inpex with no plan by the previous CLP Government to fix it.
• Significant GST reduction – $500m annual drop in GST revenues remains the main issue we face along with a slowing economy and increased demand for government services.
• Increasing long-term demands on Government expenditure (health, youth justice and child protection, police).
Minister Manison says: “We will NOT do is take the CLP approach of sacking teachers and nurses, selling Government assets (like TIO) and hiking up the price of power by 30%.
“We will be smarter than their slash and burn approach and we will focus on creating jobs.
“We need to get the best value for every dollar we spend and we need to create local jobs. We also need to ensure the Commonwealth Government are on board and understand our challenges so we can get the best deal for the NT.”
Ms Manison says she will be meeting with Shadow Treasurer tomorrow in Adelaide and Federal Treasurer on Wednesday in Melbourne “to explain the findings of the report and keep fighting for a better deal for the Territory”.
We asked Minister Manison yesterday:-
What is the collateral the NT Government is borrowing against?
What is the amount borrowed at present?
What is the interest rate?
What are the banks?
What credit rating does the NT Government have at present?
What impact on the rating is the current crisis likely to have, in your opinion?
What requests are you going to make from Canberra?


  1. We need the government to stop spending NOW! No more follies. No more non essential employment.
    No more consultants.
    Departments to work within budget.
    No more grants or propping up inefficient NGOs.
    Return education and health to Feds.
    No free rides.
    Tough times need tough results.
    Bring in an auditor and do a KERR.

  2. Will this welcome move towards fiscal responsibility include scraping boutique projects like a redundant art gallery and yet another sports ground in Alice?

  3. Fancy having a Treasurer with a journo education. They may need to bring back Clare Martin.
    Well the people of the NT got what they voted for. Even a taxi driver knows you can not spend more than you earn.
    However, the people who voted for the present NT government should pay and not all the community.
    It is a fact that approximately 30% to 35% of the NT population contribute nothing to the economy except for Federal Government hand-outs.
    In closing, who is the Phantom? Does not have the guts to put their name to what they write.

  4. My Grandfather used to say “if a horseman comes to you complaining about his horse – don’t bother looking at the horse – the problem is in front of you”.
    It’s a simple analogy, let’s apply it to the Northern Territory Government. If you listen to Treasurer Nicole Manison she was a wealth of excuses; but for anyone who knows anything about running a business, none of them stick.
    Then listen to Greg Bicknell, Chamber of Commerce calling for more big projects and that hydraulic fracking should be under way?
    Well no Greg – the economy (which is a separate thing to the Budget, Katie) is in freefall because of the boom – bust scenario created by INPEX and mismanaged by both the ALP and the CLP.
    At the time of this ill-conceived invite by NT Labor Martin / Henderson Government who were advised by Gunner, Manison and Woolfe, brought INPEX to town with NO GAS RESERVATION (which was what they were running from in WA) and no real accountability for the fragile NT economy.
    This gas company destroyed the tourism industry and eventually destroyed the housing market because Labor didn’t cross the Ts nor dot the Is.
    That’s why the economy is in freefall. But you won’t hear that on 104.9 or in any media that benefits from the advertising paid for by the said gas company. But you will hear the said media personnel looking to attribute blame to the “Cliff”? But what does that mean? It means mismanagement by NT Labor when they first invited INPEX to town.
    Okay, so what’s that got to do with the Budget and NT Government going broke? A lot really.
    Because it’s the same people who originally made the mistakes with the big gas company now making the same mistakes through mismanagement again of taxpayers money.
    It’s also the same people now trying to cover up this mismanagement either in the media or in NT Government-funded mouthpiece organisations.
    Fracking is not the answer either. Short term gain for long term pain. It cannot be regulated effectively and it cannot create a sustainable economy.
    It’s another INPEX, just more of the same.
    In layman’s terms, there is nothing wrong with the horse as there is nothing wrong with the Territory. It’s the horseman – which in the case is the NT Gunner Labor politicians and their hangers-on.
    It’s time the Administrator got involved.

  5. Our economy is going broke because our politics is already bankrupt. On the 40th anniversary year of NT “responsible self-government” just look at where we’ve ended up.
    The “bad old days” of Commonwealth control have never looked so good.

  6. To those in the know: Changes presented as “increasing efficiencies” perhaps need closer attention.
    Can those in the know advise the community, for some protection through Alice Spring sNews, how the NT Budget leak, aka deficit, already has, or continues to, effect the viability of various support services?
    How many will be closed, plan to cease, still struggling, or still funded adequately?


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