June Post from Ray Stevens, Member for Mermaid
The commencement of winter has brought with it blue skies and sunshine albeit lower temps also, which will take a little getting used to!
With school holidays starting towards the end of June here’s hoping the skies remain blue for all the holiday makers keen to enjoy our tourism offerings after a very damp summertime. Since I last communicated to you, we’ve had a ‘changing of the guard’ in Canberra with the Albanese Government taking control of the Federal purse strings.
Immediately the new Treasurer has started blaming the previous government about financial aspects appearing on the horizon for Australia and has already issued dire warnings about the economic road ahead. We are all aware that inflation has soared and that upward pressures on the inflation rate are coming thick and fast, such as fuel prices, floods affecting food supply, the war in Ukraine and the spiralling cost of building supplies. There is no doubt that a rise in interest rates will follow and to what extent that rate reaches will determine the economic reality check on the booming housing market.
As someone who paid the 20% interest rate on business loans in the late ‘early nineties’ with the Paul Keating “recession we had to have”, I think it is timely to take a very conservative approach to fiscal measures in the months and years ahead. A 5% wage rise which the new government is asking the Fair Work commission for is another inflationary measure that will only add to more wage driven demands from other sectors, and this will add to a spiralling rise in interest rates which will eat into your business bottom line.
On budgetary matters, the Queensland State budget will be brought down on June 14th, and we are bracing ourselves for a “Ned Kelly” raid on fees and charges payable to the Government in Labor’s attempt to pay the rising interest bill on their $130,000,000,000 (yes, that is the amount of zero’s!) Queenslander debt that you and I will have to pay back at some stage in the future. Mining royalties and massive stamp duty income increases will have softened the blow of a budget deficit to some extent, but it is still a crazy amount of debt hanging over our heads particularly when these profligate spenders have wasted $3.5billion on infrastructure cost blow-outs.
That is $26,000 of debt on the head of every man, woman and child in Queensland. Throw in Queensland’s share of nearly a trillion dollars in Federal debt and people should be very concerned about the fiscal road ahead.
Soaring electricity and gas prices are already upon us and our political catch cry of the moment being climate change and moving immediately to renewables in energy supply are front and centre for the blame in this area. Despite large vested corporate interest in the move to renewables, coal-fired power stations are a necessity in keeping power prices low. Unfortunately, this will be just another factor adding to the inflationary gallop and it will be incredible viewing as to what the Federal Labor Government and the Queensland State Labor Government come up with as viable treatments to this economy's crippling fiscal threat.
Should you have any State issues you would like to discuss please feel free to contact my office on:
Tel: 5600 0100 / Email: Mermaid.Beach@parliament.qld.gov.au
You can also find me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/RayStevensMP.
Ray Stevens MP
State Member for Mermaid Beach