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Thursday, 28 May 1998
Page: 4070

Debate resumed from 27 May, on motion by Mr Costello:

That the bill be now read a second time.

upon which Mr Gareth Evans moved by way of amendment:

That all words after "That" be omitted with a view to substituting the following words:

"whilst not declining to give the Bill a second reading, the House notes that the Budget:

(1) does nothing to redress the pain caused to ordinary Australian families, and those doing it hardest in our community, by the impact of successive Budget cuts on health, education, job programs, aged care, child care and many other government programs and services;

(2) by seeking to achieve surplus on the basis of savage Budget cuts, rather than on growth and job creation, does nothing to give hope to the unemployed and underemployed;

(3) confirms that the Opposition's alternative Budget strategy, as originally announced in 1996, would have returned the Budget to surplus in 1998-99—on the basis of putting growth and jobs first, with much more moderate outlays reductions;

(4) lacks credibility in its growth, employment and current account deficit forecasts;

(5) confirms that Australia has a private rather than public saving problem—and the stupidity of the Coalition's promise-breaking decision in 1997 to abandon Labor's superannuation co-contribution; and

(6) is incomplete and misleading in its projections of future revenue and outlays, in that it makes no provision for election-driven new expenditures and the Government's GST and other tax proposals".