TOTE sale "fair and reasonable" Tue 24 July 2012 Lara Giddings Premier The Liberal Party's bizarre opposition to the sale of a betting agency has been exposed with the release of a report by the Auditor General today confirming that the $103 million sale price for TOTE Tasmania was "fair and reasonable." The Premier, Lara Giddings, welcomed the report, which found that the sale process was appropriate. "The Auditor General has conducted a full and thorough assessment of the sale process and has overwhelmingly concluded that it was handled appropriately and that the price received was fair. "In fact he concluded: 'the sale price considerably exceeded the retention value and there was no reason to expect a higher sale price would be achieved in the future'. "We know that if we kept TOTE Tasmania we would be exposing the Tasmanian taxpayer to the unnecessary and unacceptable risk of running a betting agency in a volatile industry. "Instead, we have been able to realise significant value for the asset to reinvest in the community, including $5 million on cost of living initiatives and the $3 million investment and innovation fund announced last week. "These are initiatives which offer support to Tasmanians doing it tough and will help grow the economy and create jobs. "They are also measures which were effectively opposed by the Liberals, because they were only possible through the TOTE sale, a sale they opposed." Ms Giddings said the Auditor General's report exposed the Liberal Party's poor judgement and cynical approach to politics. "The Liberals have shown they will oppose everything, even if it provides benefit to the community. "It is no wonder that the business community has serious doubts about Will Hodgman's leadership. "Claims that the sale process was "dodgy" and a "fire sale" have been exposed as false which only goes to show that Tasmanians cannot trust a word Will Hodgman and Peter Gutwein say."