Territory Stories

Parliamentary record : Part I debates (11 November 1986)



Parliamentary record : Part I debates (11 November 1986)


Debates for 4th Assembly 1983 - 1987; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 4th Assembly 1983 - 1987




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Northern Territory Legislative Assembly

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Tuesday 11 November 1986 This publication provides an outline of what has been occurring during September and the prospects for the building industry for the future in the Northern Territory. It states: 'In the September quarter. 42%.of respondents reported worsened trading conditions while 60% of firms expected further deterioration in the December quarter. On-site employment fell by 11.7% and a further reduction of 18.4% was expected'. That is for commercial building. For residential building: 'In the September quarter. 63% of respondents reported that work availability. sales levels and overall trading conditions were much worse than in the June quarter'. We are starting from a base which is the lowest since at least 1979-80. and we are going downhill fast. Mr Speaker. 'This has caused substantial reductions in calls for subcontractors. 75% of respondents expected sales inquiries to diminish further. causing employment. availability of work. and overall trading conditions to decline in the December quarter'. The housing outlook for the Northern Territory is extremely bleak. We have shown that drowth in vehicle numbers will not produce the extra amounts that are required. Because of the lack of growth in housing and buildings. extra revenue will not come from water and sewerage charges. There is only 1 option left to the government. I am afraid. and that is to belt the taxpayer again. It was not game to hit him for the total amount all at once so it will do it by stealth. It hit the taxpayers for half at that stage and will hit them for the other half later on. In fact. Territorians have many reasons to fear the new year. Let me see. how many reasons there are. Let us assume that the current slump does not become too bad and we end up square on motor vehicle registrations for the whole year. It does not look that way at the moment but I will be optimistic. I will not retire to cloud cuckoo land where the Treasurer drew up this budget. I will say that we will end up square for the year. The increases that I have spoken of will give the Treasurer a 20% to 25% increase in total revenue for the full year. They were put in place on 1 September so will run for 10 months of the year . A simple calculation shows that. last year. they brought in $5.2m. The 25% increase will yield $l.lm for a whole year raising the total to $6.3m. However. the budget figure is over $9m. Where were will the Treasurer obtain the $2.7m that he needs to balance that item in the budget? I fear that there will be another round of increases. Probably. they will be introduced over the school holidays because that is when the government usually sneaks in its nasties. What percentage increase will be required from individual car owners to reach that budget figure? The longer the Treasurer leaves it. the bigger the increase will have to be in this year. By early next year. an additional 50% would be required on top of the current 25% if the budget figure is to be reached. It is a matter of simple arithmetic. My message to Territorians is that they should register their cars'now and renew their 1 icences as soon as they can for as long as they can. What about water? The basic rate went up 25% and from this the Treasurer says 50% more revenue wi 11 be obta i ned. Where wi 11 the mi ss i ng $2. 5m come from? Will the Treasurer ask his. colleague. the Minister for Community Development. to slash away some more of the subsidies to pensioners? He has been at it already. Wi 11 he raid the money boxes of the old timers who gave their lives to make the Territory what it is today? I have written to the Minister for Community Development about this. He has not answered my letter yet. He will have to answer it because I shall pursue it. 805

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