GST far from fair: Geraldton mayor

Geoff VivianGeraldton Guardian
City of Greater Geraldton Mayor Shane Van Styn
Camera IconCity of Greater Geraldton Mayor Shane Van Styn Credit: City of Greater Geraldton

Geraldton’s mayor said the passage of GST reforms through the Senate was a small win for WA but a long way from a truly fair distribution.

“WA continues to send money east when we desperately need it for things like the Geraldton Hospital expansion, paying down debt and increased investment in economic infrastructure to grow our struggling tourism industry,” Shane Van Styn said.

“Receiving 75¢ in the dollar is still a long way from a fair deal when other States are booming and receiving upwards of $1.60 in Queensland and $5 in the Northern Territory.”

Member for the Agricultural Region Darren West said the deal was a win for Labor.

“Mark McGowan has been able to do what previous governments haven’t been able to do which is increase the floor in the GST to 70¢ which over time will increase to 75¢,” he said.

Mr West said last financial year WA suffered because it received just 37¢ in the dollar.

“The GST rip-off has ended,” he said.

“This change to the GST plus the strong economic management the Labor Government is delivering will turn WA’s finances around.”

Opposition Leader Mike Nahan claimed the deal as a victory for his party.

“These much-needed reforms have been a long time coming, thanks to the persistence of the Federal Liberal Government are now a reality,” Dr Nahan said.

“These are changes that have been championed by WA Liberals, State and Federal for many years, in the face of resistance from Eastern States politicians and outright opposition from WA Labor until they were elected to Government last year.”

Member for Durack Melissa Price was happy with the outcome.

“This will be the first time real changes have been made to fix problems in how the GST is shared since the GST was introduced almost 20 years ago,” she said. “We have developed a plan that is a real, long-term solution, rather than a political quick fix.”

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