Budget14: Streetlights for sale?

WHO will buy the street lights? 

They are up for sale and the Treasurer tells us that this is the only jurisdiction that owns its streetlight infrastructure. It will be another two years before they are sold. Don’t worry. They will not be taken away to light up Wollongong, Newcastle or Cairns – apparently there are businesses that will own them and charge the government to look after them.

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ACCORDING to Katy Gallagher, “We have never been shy in taking the hard decisions.” This includes tax reform and she rails against the Liberals’ campaign at last election that rates will triple. They certainly haven’t. Just gone up 10 per cent this year.

SAVINGS have been the hallmark of Australian budgets over the last two decades. The ACT budget has practically no savings identified for the coming financial year. The out years of the budget show savings from the improved use of information technology. According to Treasurer Andrew Barr, face to face contact costs around $10 per interaction. Shifting people to using IT with more user friendly systems will mean each contact costs the government around 10 cents.

THE budget papers also reveal that long term liability of superannuation for the ACT government is set to increase to the order of $8.7 billion dollars by 2033, before declining to no liability in 2078. And some argue that governments only look to the next election.

THANKS to all those who receive traffic fines, overstay their parking meters or park illegally in some other ways. Over $10 million will be contributed to the ACT coffers over the four years of the budget. In the first year the expectation is $1.1 million, doubling in the second year to $2.23 million. And this on an indexation of 6 per cent. Looks like hiring parking inspectors is a winner; they seem to more than pay for themselves!

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