Grylls says iron tax key to city wish list

Tim EdmundsAlbany Advertiser

WA Nationals leader Brendon Grylls has questioned if Albany’s “project wish list” will go ahead in the next four years if his ambitious iron ore tax is not introduced and a resulting new revenue source for the State’s economy is not found.

Speaking at a business breakfast hosted by the Albany Chamber of Commerce and Industry yesterday, Mr Grylls said his proposed new revenue source would ensure future projects for the region come to fruition.

The resurrected Nationals leader wants to introduce a $5-a-tonne mining tax on the nation’s two biggest iron ore producers, BHP and Rio Tinto, to return the budget to surplus but has been met by opposition from the global resource giants.

“Your community is a growing community,” he said.

“(About) 1400 kids, I think it was, playing soccer on your seven fields now under lights (and) every Saturday morning, that’s outstanding.

“They’re important projects. I’m a member of the Government’s economics committee.

“Do you think there is potential for that important wish list of projects to be delivered in the next four years?”

Mr Grylls said the Nationals were the only party with a plan to return the budget to surplus and ensure resource companies paid their fair share, but had been criticised by the Barnett Government and Labor.

He said he would continue to “prosecute” the matter and said the Royalties for Regions initiative introduced in 2008 was proof of his ability to get bold plans across the line.

Mr Grylls made his first visit to Albany since returning to lead the party last month and unveiled the Nationals plan for WA while endorsing Albany candidate Rob Sutton.

The Nationals hosted a sundowner on Tuesday night at Albany Surf Lifeasving Club with Mr Sutton, MLC Colin Holt and South West region candidate Louise Kingston.

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