Staffing cap the tip of the melting fiscal iceberg

8 March 2019

Today’s announcement by Treasurer Nicole Manison that NT public service jobs will be cut by 300 is too little, too late, according to Leader of the Opposition Gary Higgins.

In April last year Ms Manison announced government would consider a "position freeze within the public sector to limit FTE growth" (media release, 20 April 2018).

"Government failed to go forward with that and now, 12 months later, when the pressure is on, the Treasurer has re-announced their intentions," Mr Higgins said.

"We have been calling on the government for months to implement an executive position freeze – they have stubbornly refused to acknowledge those calls. This could have been done months ago.

"If Labor fails to deliver on a promise from nearly 12 months ago, how can we trust the Gunner Government to deliver anything else in a timely manner when it matters most?

"The Treasurer has referred to $800 million in savings – you can’t trust her on that figure either. This is a projected figure from the time of taking government through to 2021/22.

"The facts are in the first year of the Labor government expenses increased by $57.25 million as they proceeded on a path to insolvency and the financial crisis outlined in the December 2018 report.

"This is another reason the Territory has no confidence in this government who is not meeting community expectations."