October 10, 2017

Opposition shows its true mettle to block royalty rise

The decision of the Liberal party room to block the McGowan Government’s 50 per cent gold royalty increase shows the true mettle of the State Opposition, according to the member for Kalgoorlie Kyran O’Donnell.

“When it comes to protecting the jobs of Western Australians this Opposition is up to the fight,” Mr O’Donnell said.

“Mr McGowan was prepared to say whatever he thought would win him votes in the election and then backflip once in Government.

“In 2015, in Opposition, Mark McGowan committed to block in the Upper House any gazetted increase in gold royalties, saying that it would hurt jobs and the economy; nothing has changed, a gold royalty increase will still cost jobs.”

Mr O’Donnell said the Treasurer was shamelessly spinning the tax to try to make the public believe the only people it would impact would be millionaire mine owners.

“The people in my electorate who would be hurt most by this increase are by no stretch millionaires,” Mr O’Donnell said.

“They are the mums and dads of kids who play tee-ball each weekend in my local park, they are the young people starting out their apprenticeships on the mines, they are the small businesses owners who rely on mine employees for customers and they are the teachers who educate our children.

“What Mark McGowan is doing is asking all of these people who rely on the gold sector to pay for his $5 billion in unfunded election promises.

“He tells us it’s about budget repair but that’s just more spin.

“Now the budget has been handed down we know the McGowan Government has increased spending and increased debt and deficit – there is no budget repair, just budget bloat.”

Mr O’Donnell also thanked the gold industry for standing up to be counted and taking its fight against the royalty increase to the Government, to the Opposition and to the public.

“There can be no doubt the industry was facing a very uncertain future if this increase had succeeded,” Mr O’Donnell said.

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