Will Hodgman

Premier of Tasmania

15 January 2018

Peter Gutwein, Treasurer

White confirms will scrap wages cap, wreck budget

After months of trying to dodge the issue, the Leader of the Opposition Ms White has finally come clean on public sector wages – revealing to the Australian newspaper today that she will “scrap” the two percent wages cap.*

Now, she must outline exactly how much of a pay-rise she intends to give Tasmania’s public servants, noting that every one percent increase is an additional $25 million per year.

This could only mean cuts to health, cuts to education, and cuts to police numbers.

A large number of public sector wage agreements expire next financial year, meaning this is more than just a moot point – the budget after the election will be materially affected almost immediately by Government wage decisions.

It’s simply not good enough that Ms White says she will give the unions a blank cheque on wages policy without outlining exactly what that is.

Ms White must also respond to reported comments in the same article that she would “not rule out governing in minority” – something she has previously ruled out.

I also note Labor’s continual attacks on us over gaming policy and political donations and ask – how much exactly are the union movement bankrolling Ms White’s campaign in return for a blank cheque on wages policy?

*The Australian, 15/1/18

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