Chief Minister mum on money, again


Sir – The Gunner Government has again shut down real transparency on the Territory’s books in the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), the forum the government promised would be the outlet for scrutiny and openness.
They didn’t address the Territory’s financial outlook, despite repeated questioning. While the Chief Minister and other Ministers spoke at length on a range of topics, serious budget related questions went unanswered: The current debt position or other headline budget figures as the Chief Minister and Treasurer kept stubbornly referring to the March quarterly figures.
Those figures are way out of date. Why are there no estimated figures? Why is there no update?
Tasmania managed to produce detailed final forecasts and Queensland is on track to do the same. Unfortunately, the Gunner Government still believes it can use COVID-19 as an excuse to hide the embarrassing state of the budget. It’s obviously a political liability.
On the Home Improvement Scheme, the Chief Minister failed to show any regard for the plight of many small businesses who have lost income because of their scheme’s poor design. It’s disgusting.
At the current rate of approval for works, it would take at least another 17 weeks for the remaining vouchers to be approved.
Furthermore, there has been speculation about an alleged riot at Darwin’s prison potentially causing over $40m worth of damage. Again, the Chief Minister refused to answer questions.


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