ACCI shares fiscal priorities

Gareth ThomasAlbany Advertiser

Housing affordability, regional health and education are all on the Federal Budget wish list of the Albany Chamber of Commerce and Industry ahead of tonight’s budget announcements.

Housing affordability

ACCI chief executive Russ Clark said he expected housing affordability would receive some attention from Treasurer Scott Morrison.

Mr Clark said he believed the Federal Government could only affect some areas on housing affordability with the State Governments best placed to affect the supply and the Reserve Bank controlling official interest rates.

“One of the options for the Federal Government is to channel more money into community housing,” he said.

Regional health

The ACCI would like to see a continuation from the 2016 budget support for regional health that provided increased opportunities for training in rural areas.

Mr Clark said he would also like to see greater funding to combat drug and alcohol dependence.

Education

Mr Clark said he was interested to see what the implications of the Government’s education funding package, announced pre-budget, would be for Albany schools.

Communication and Technology

The ACCI would like to see more funding for improvements in mobile blackspots.

Mr Clark said this remained a key problem for people and businesses in the region.

GST

Mr Clark said he had his doubts whether the GST carve-up would be addressed in the budget.

He said the GST was certainly a key issue for WA which required a fairer distribution.

“In a recent Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA survey businesses identified the GST carve-up as one of their major concerns,” he said.

“WA has seen a decline in revenue from the tax, currently receiving (34 per cent) of its population share of GST.”

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