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Tuesday, 3 May 2016
Page: 4209

Taxation

Infrastructure


Mr SHORTEN (MaribyrnongLeader of the Opposition) (14:44): My question is to the Prime Minister. Should value capture to fund infrastructure apply to existing properties that have their value increased by the provision of new infrastructure?


Mr TURNBULL (WentworthPrime Minister) (14:44): That is an interesting question, but it certainly, from the—perhaps I can explain the concept of value capture to assist the Leader of the Opposition. The honourable member is presumably referring to the way in which state and local governments have at different times applied betterment levies or adjustments to rates to fund infrastructure. I remember the Pitt Street Mall was financed in that way, for those old enough to remember that, many years ago. The cross-city rail in London is being financed in that way. There are many ways in which value capture can be approached. It is a matter of very live debate. It is a very relevant consideration to ensure that taxpayers get the best bang for the buck for the money that is put into projects by grants, and it is certainly something that is being considered in the context of the discussions around City Deals and the government's cities policy. The member for Grayndler and I have spoken about this at length in the past.

Can I say, however, that the clear point of our cities policy and the clear point of every policy that we have is this: we need to drive jobs and growth here in the 21st century economy. We need to ensure that our children and grandchildren have those great opportunities as our economy transitions, as the Reserve Bank governor observed, from the mining construction boom to one that is more diverse, taking advantage of the great opportunities, for example, opened up in Asia by the former trade minister, Andrew Robb. Every element in the budget tonight will drive jobs and growth and a sustainable tax system and ensure that every commitment of spending is fully funded.