Vic State Budget: Daniel Andrews defends Victoria’s huge debt
Victoria’s debt is expected to continue to rise after Tuesday’s state budget, but Daniel Andrews defended his government’s plan.
Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews says his government budget is about “patience” and not “politics,” with the state’s net debt expected to stand at $ 101.9 billion by the end of the financial year.
Tuesday’s budget saw more than $ 12 billion go healthy in an effort to repair and support the industry, but saw Victoria’s debt sink further into the red.
That state’s debt is expected to grow to a whopping $ 167.5 billion in 2025-26, although Andrews defended lending as a necessary move in a post-Covid world.
“The reserve rank governor, head of the federal treasury and every credible economist in the world said, ‘Look, you have to use your budget and your budget to protect the budgets of households and businesses.’ So we had to borrow, ”Mr. Andrews said Wednesday.
“If you hadn’t, we would have literally made the worst of times worse again. It wouldn’t have been an answer. “
But a bright light for the Victorians was an expected operating surplus of $ 650 million by 2025-26.
Mr. Andrews said this projected figure was part of the government’s plan to “stabilize” those loans.
“Bringing stability and, in some ways, this is the most important point, a surplus. A $ 650 million in the year 2025-26, “she said.
“Not only are you in a better position to start serving the loans you owed, but also to start paying them.”
The Premier was questioned about the likelihood of this surplus being delivered, with budget documents stating that the risk to Victoria’s economic outlook was “greater than normal” and the forecasts were subject to a “higher degree of uncertainty”.
Mr. Andrews acknowledged that there has been “tragedy” and “uncertainty” around the world, but expressed hope that the projected $ 650 million surplus will come true.
“The treasure in my experience, especially the Victorian treasure, are conservative in the way they try to predict,” he said.
“Most of the time their sense of what the future holds, we actually did better than that.
“We could have gone even further and had larger surpluses, but that would have meant that we would not have invested in the health and healthcare staff that Victorians need.”
But on Tuesday, Victoria’s liberals actually argued that there was a $ 2 billion cut in state funding for health in the budget.
“Victoria has a health crisis and Labor is snatching $ 2 billion from our hospitals, aged care system and mental health services,” said Liberal MP Georgie Crozier.
“It’s black and white in the budget, the only person cutting health funds is Daniel Andrews.”
But Mr. Andrews said the same level of investment in some health protection services was no longer needed after receiving more funding during the height of the pandemic.
“Once everyone is vaccinated and you are in a different stage of the pandemic, well, if you were to keep funding them (some health services) you would be taking money away from surgery, you would be taking money away from hiring more nurses,” he said.
“It wouldn’t make any sense, unless, of course, I was playing a political game. If politics were more important to you than patience.
Originally published as Daniel Andrews says the state budget is about “patience” not “politics”