Cost line dominates SA election campaign | the lawyer


The row over South Australia’s election pledges is set to continue until Election Day, with Labor standing firm behind their plan and the Liberal government accusing the opposition of ‘rookie’ mistakes. Labor says it will use a combination of savings and uncommitted capital already in the SA budget to fund its $3 billion in campaign pledges. The Liberals offered $288 million in sweeteners and say Labor would have no choice but to raise taxes and charges. Labor Treasury spokesman Stephen Mullighan said the party’s pledges had been checked by independent audit firm Charterpoint and showed the party could deliver on its promises without hurting taxpayers if elected on Saturday. “The Liberals’ fear campaign has been thoroughly debunked,” he said. Labor said it could save around $670 million over the next four years by imposing a 1.7% efficiency dividend on departments that do not deliver frontline services. Agencies such as health, police, emergency services and education would be exempt from the savings measure. It will also use around $1.5 billion of uncommitted capital reserves already in the state budget, as well as the deferral of $662 million the Liberal government planned to spend on a new Riverbank Arena in Adelaide. These funds would largely be used to pay for Labor’s billion-dollar health initiatives, including plans to modernize hospitals, more hospital beds and the recruitment of doctors, nurses and paramedics additional. But Treasurer Rob Lucas said the state would be saddled with significantly higher debt and taxpayers would be forced to pay for Labor’s mistakes. “They assumed there were a few lazy billions of dollars sitting behind the couch in the Treasury that they could spend without any impact on the budget,” he said. “The main problem for bettors is that they are the ones who are going to have to pay for beginners’ mistakes.” SA-BEST Upper House MP Frank Pangallo said taxes would rise regardless of which party won on Saturday. “Car registrations will go up, bus and train tickets will go up, hundreds of government fees and charges will go up and don’t rule out stamp duty and payroll taxes being looked at to help them balance their books,” he said. he declared. As SA unions said on Thursday confirmation that South Australia had the worst unemployment rate in the country meant it was time for a change of government. Secretary Dale Beasley said South Australians need good, secure, long-term jobs, and a blueprint to deliver them. “We need long-term investment in renewable industries, high-tech manufacturing and other emerging industries that will provide secure, good-quality jobs for all South Australians and their children,” he said. he declares. Australian Associated Press


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