Today’s ACT budget includes record taxation and increasing debt. Whilst taxes go up and up, services are getting worse and worse. For the first time, the budget papers show total annual ACT Government revenue reaching more than $7,000,000,000 ($7 billion).
How your money is being spent:
Back in 2012, the Canberra Liberals said that ACT Labor’s planned “tax reform” would triple your rates. Unfortunately, this has come true. This budget confirms that rates will triple from $209 million in 2011–12 to $685 million in 2021–22 as a direct result of the government’s reforms.
This budget is bad for business. Payroll tax is a tax on job creation, and this Labor-Greens government is making it even more expensive to hire staff in Canberra. Using this budget’s figures, we now know that payroll tax will double from $316 million in 2011–12 to $643 million in 2021–22.
Despite the government claiming to abolish stamp duty, the tax continues to bring in hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue. This budget confirms that the government has no real plan to phase out stamp duty. By the government’s own figures, stamp duty will continue to increase every single year in the budget.
Despite record revenue, government debt will skyrocket. ACT Government net debt will hit a mammoth $2.9 billion in 2020-2021.
As a result of the increasing debt, taxpayers will be forced to pay more than $200 million per year in interest. Over the next four years, Labor will spend $916 million servicing debt.
The government’s “tax reform” began in 2012 with the stated aim of creating a “fairer, simpler and more efficient tax system for the Territory”. Unfortunately, the real result of these reforms has been huge increases in taxes for everyone. Far from being revenue neutral, the government is slugging households with more tax than ever before.