Morrison's budget priorities all wrong for the Hunter

After six years of the Liberals’ and Nationals’ cuts and chaos, and six weeks before an election, this budget was Scott Morrison’s last chance to reverse his cuts to the services that people in the Hunter electorate rely on.

“A Budget is a statement not just of the Commonwealth accounts, but a statement of the Government’s values,” Federal Member for Hunter Joel Fitzgibbon said.

“To find the Morrison Government’s values, we should look more to the last five Budgets, not just tonight’s.  But tonight’s Budget tells us what the Morrison Government’s main priority is: its re-election.

After six years of cuts to key services in health and education, the Morrison Government now wants Australians to believe it cares.  No one will believe them.  A change of heart six weeks out from an election does not pass the pub test.

“Labor welcomes the Government’s embrace of our tax cut commitments but unlike Bill Shorten, Scott Morrison has ignored all those earning less than $40,000 per annum. When last in office, a Labor Government invested record amounts of money in Hunter region infrastructure projects,” Mr Fitzgibbon said.

“The 2019-20 Budget is another disappointment on the infrastructure front with important projects like the Glendale Interchange and the Singleton Bypass being overlooked again.”

Over the past six years the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison Governments have doubled Government debt.  The $7.1billion surplus announced in this Budget is just greater than the $6 billion cost of extending franked dividend cash rebates to people who don’t pay tax.  It’s emblematic of the Morrison Government’s priorities.

The Hunter deserves better.

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