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Hello, I'm James McHale. Thank you for joining me for this national edition of ABC News. Today - running into the red.

This Program is Captioned Live.

The Government battles an $18 billion blow-out in the Budget deficit.The Coalition's abrupt change of direction on education funding.Life in jail plus a thousand years for the man who held three women hostage for a decade.And Australia in a strong position in the third Ashes Test, despite more umpiring controversy .The Government's statement on its finances has unveiled massive revenue write-down, deeper Budget deficits andle billions of dollars worth of cuts. Treasury now forecasts a Budget deficit of $30.1 billion in 2013-14, up from $18 billion in the May Budget.Deficits of $24 billion are now forecast in 2014-15 and 4.7 billion dollars in 2015-16, before returning to a $4 billion surplus in 2016-17.The unemployment rate is forecast at 6.25% for 2013-14 and 2014-15, representing an extra 70,000 people out of work.Economic growth is also expected to be softer with GDP growth at 2.5% in 2013-14, down from 2.75% in the May Budget.The Government says it's made $17 billion worth of savings. The efficiency dividend is forecast to increase to 2.25% in 2014-15. The tobacco excise will reap 5.3 billion dollar, the bank deposits levy $733 million in the first 18 month s from 2016. And aged - aid spend willing be cut by $1 billion over the forward estimates. Political reporter James Glenday joins us now from Canberra. A lot of numbers floating around. What is the economic picture the Treasurer is painting with this economic update?He wants everyone to know that the economy is operating in what he calls very volatile world, circumstances. So that is why his Budget is volatile too. In this update, 33 billion dollar s of forecast revenue has been wiped out, that means a massive blowout from the Budget bottom line from $18 billion to $30 billion this financial year but a slender surplus in three financial years time. Those difficult condition s show up in the general outlook and growth forecasts are also down. So to manage that economy that's giving up much less revenue than first forecast, there are going to be some spending cuts and tax increases in particular foreign aid and the public service will be cut while Banks and smoke will pay more tax. The Treasurer Chris Bowen thinks he has got the balance right.Further swinging cuts would be a blow to jobs, a blow to growth and endanger our economic prosperity. So we've taken what we think is the balanced and right approach to surplus, achieving surplus by 2016-17, reducing the deficits as I showed before over those years, in a gradual approach to surplus, but doing so in a measured way.James, what does the update say about the cost of the PNG asylum seeker solution?Well, yet again the immigration Budget's blown out. Kevin Rudd's PNG plan will cost at least $1.1 billion over four years, so over the forward estimates. But those savings have been found, especially in foreign aid, as the Finance Minister Penny Wong explains.The estimated operating cost of the arrangement is $175 million dollars in '13-14 and accumulative total of just over a billion dollars over the forward estimates. This will be partially funded from a reduction in the operating costs of the on shore network of $423 million over four years.And that assumes there will be big savings by reducing the numbers of asylum seekers coming to Australia and also those in detention on shore. It's also worth noting that the PNG Government stands to gain several hundred million dollars in aid and that was the first time it was revealed today. ScrewFinal lu, any sign of the election?We're getting closer. This was always one of those last pre-election hurdles and the decks are now looking quite clear. Tony Abbott certainly is getting ready for a campaign. He dealt with a policy problem this morning unveiling a fairly substantial change of heart on Labor's school funding package.Thank you.We will talk with our business and resources reporter Sue Lannin about business reaction to the Budget rightdown a little later in the program.As James messagesed, Opposition education spokesman Christopher Pyne is defending the Coalition's change of rather on education funding. Coalition will now honour
Labor's education re forms, should it win the election. Mr Pyne says fund willing be identical regardless of the election outcome, but the Coalition would decentralise Canberra's power over State and Territory education systems.The Liberal or you can vote Labor and you will get precisely the same funding envelope regardless. The real difference is going to be that the Coalition recognises that we don't own any school, we don't run any school, we have Gone noft or Government. Schools is uniquely a responsibility of the States and Territories and rather than trying to control every aspect of the operations of schools from Canberra, we will dismantle in the Australian education Act those sections that would give the Commonwealth over arching control of school systems whether their they're government or non-government around Australia. So the States and Territory, the non-government school s can do what they do best - which is teach students, run their school, manage their own budgets and funds. We will get the Commonwealth out of trying to have the central control and command features from Canberra that the Labor Party's model envisages.NT says there were no child restraints in a car that hit a power pole this morning, killing a woman and two young children.ThePolice say it's not clear whether anyone in the car was wearing a seatbelt.There weren't any approved child restraints in the vehicle and that will be a key area of the investigation.A man and a child who were also in the car are being treated in Royal Darwin Hospital for serious injuries.Police say a woman whose body was found in her Melbourne home may have been murdered by burglars. The homicide squad is continuing its investigation into yesterday's death of a 42-year-old woman in Packenham, south-east of Melbourne. The woman's body was found by her 11-year-old twin daughters as they arrived home from school. Police are pleading for people who saw anyone acting suspiciously in the street or surrounding area over the past few days to contact them.A Victorian coroner will consider new evidence about the death of a Volkswagen driver on the Monash freeway. Melissa Ryan was killed in January 2011 when her car appeared to suddenly stop in the right lane of the freeway and a truck hit the car from behind. Since the inquest, hundreds of Volkswagen drivers have come forward, describing instances where their cars have suddenly lost power: The coroner was meant to hand down her findings two days ago but has decided to accept new evidence.Volkswagen for its part says it can't comment while the coroner is looking at this extra submission and while the inquest continues: So they're not saying anything. It's been difficult to get anything out of the department of infrastructure and transport as well. When these claims came to light they put out a public call telling people if they had concern s or issues to get in touch with the department and let them know. We don't know how many people have got in touch with the department, they won't tell us. Basically now it is hoped that there will be a finding into Melissa Ryan's death by the evend of the year and I am told by the family's lawyer it's been a very traumatic and lengthy process gathering some 300 piece s of evidence together from other Volkswagen drivers who have experienced power loss.Queensland Police are continuing to investigate the death of a young lifesaver on the Gold Coast yesterday. 17-year-old Jerry Dennis died whil training with his Northcliff club mates in a canal at Mermaid Waters. Authorities say he came off a paddle board, disappeared under the water and couldn't be found for around an hour.Despite the best efforts of trained service rescuers the teenager could not be revived.The club is struggling. We're a knit community and not just our club but surf lifesaving. It ate hit really hard yesterday.Police are now trying to determine dep he was injured while training or suffered from a preexisting medical condition.After five weeks in limbo, the former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden has left Moscow airport. Snowden was heading to an undisclosed location in Russia. The White House says the development is extremely disappointing. And has implications for US-Russian relations.Out of the transit zone, and still out of sight. This grainy image the only apparent proof that Snowden has left five weeks in limbo behind him. He could be the last anyone seats of the whistleblower for some time. TRANSLATION: As concerns for his place of residence, his he will choose it himself. He can live live in a hotel or in an apartment. As he is one of the most wanted people on earth, he will be making sure his place of residence is absolutely safe.Edward Snowden has been granted a one-year visa for Russia. His father thinks he might extend the stay.I believe that from my heart that Russia is the safest place for my son and the fact the is if he chooses to spend the rest of his life there, I am comfortable with that.But human rightings groups it's a bizarre outcome. TRANSLATION: The situation is very curious and the irony is that he requested asylum in a country that is certainly not on the top of the list of nations that obey international human rights laws.WikiLeaks has released a statement on behalf of the former intelligence contractor, in which he thanks Russia and says the move shows the law is winning.We are extremely disappointed that the Russian Government would take this step, despite our very clear and lawful requests in public and in private to have Mr Snowden expelled to the United States to face the charges against him.The White House says the development means a planned US-Russian summit is now up in the air.The man who held three women captive in the US city of Cleveland has been sentenced to life in prison, plus a thousand years. Ariel Castro pleaded guilty to more than 900 counts of murder, kidnapping and rape.But as North America correspondent Ben Knight reports he tried to back away from his admissions as he was being sentenced.Michelle Knight was the first of Ariel Castro's victims. She was the only one who face him in court.From this moment on.

Ariel Castro pleaded guilty to avoid the death penalty. But even as he was being sentenced, he was backing away from his own admission s, saying he never murdered an unborn child or raped his victims. He claimed most of the sex was consensual..

But there was nothing normal in the photos that showed the secret rooms the women were kept in, the chains they were restrained with, the helmets they were silenced with and the wigs they were forced to wear on the rare occasions they were allowed outside.He dictated what they ate, when they slept, when they could talk, when they could interact.He dictated when they could go to the bath room.Ariel Castro apologised to the victims but he Plamed his deparagraphity on the abuse he suffered as a child himself.

But the judge rejected all excuses.

Ariel Castro will die in prison. And he's been banned from trying to contact any of his victims, including the daughter born in the house, the house that will now be torn down.Zimbabwe's elections have been dismissed as a farce after President Robert Mugabe's ruling party won by a land slide. The first official announcement of the country's national assembly elections shows 25 portfolio o-28 seats released so far have gone to Mugabe's allies.The election does not meet guidelines. It was a sham election that does not reflect the will of the people.One of Mr Tsvangirai's senior party people is urning people to stay home from work and refuse to pay bills as a campaign of passive resistance but Mugabe's party says it has the machinery in place to deal with any trouble Mack makers. The city of Homs has been rocked by a huge explosion with at least 40 dead and more than 100 injuried. Locals say it was a rebels attack on a weapons stock pile in an Aalia white section.Un verified amateur video show shows a massive fire ball shooting hundreds of meters into the air.The Cairns chamber of commerce says a proposed megaresort and casino to be built in Far North Queensland will have huge economic benefits for the region.TheThe proposal at yorky's nob includes nine luxury hotels an 18 hole golf course and a 25,000 seat sports stadium.I went to a resident rent lie, they are very concerned this is on a flood plain that it's a mangrove habitat, it's a breed ing grounds, a hatchery for fish and they're concerned that the resort is intended to bring people to see the natural wonders the Great Barrier Reef and this will have a district impact on the reef. The developer has said that he would like to see the approvals done by mid-2014 rand have the construction completed by 2018 but it does have to go through a long process. It has been declared a coordinated project by the Queensland Government which means the process is streamlined because of the economic benefits propro-posed in this project. Some 25,000 jobs indirectly at the end.The next stage is the terms of reference will be released in the next few weeks for an environmental impact study that James Cook University will do. The local council here says it doesn't expect the project to come to for development approval for 18 months. The share market close.

Business has given a mixed reaction to the th Federal Government's updated economic forecast. Adds you heard earlier, the Budget deficit for the current financial year is expected to come in at $30 billion, up from an estimated $18 billion in May. For more I'm joined by national business reporter Sue Lannin. What is the business reaction been to this announcement?A number of the business groups have come out today and commented on the Budget update. The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has been very critical, it says the Budget update shows a lack of fiscal discipline, they would say that. I also says that the Government's ability to bring the Budget back to surplus by 2016-17 may not be achieved, it says the update shows that the Government may not be able to keep its economic commitments. On the other hand, the Australian Industry Group says that it reflects - this Budget update reflects the slowing economy. We have heard that from economists as well that the Budget update because the bad news is coming out now it's paving the way for the election so the Australian Industry Group is continuing with that theme. It's also saying, though, it shows that the tax system needs overhauling because business confidence is low and as the Government admitted today unemployment is expected to rise above 6%.We've also heard breaking news about the development of the Browse Basin gas project off the WA coast.Big new erlt gler the year when Wood side petroleum

News onned it would not build a gas projecting hub onshore North of Broome. That is a proposal that the Western Australian Premier Colin Barnett has long been championing, but now the Federal Resources Minister Gary Gray has altered the licence condition force the consortium, so that includes Woodside petroleum and Shell. This means it opens up the gas fields literally, these Browse Basin there have been leases over 40 years. It means they can actually be offshore development. The news has onlt just come through. We don't know what sort of business plan Woodside and Shell has presented, those details will surely come out soon m. It's not been made public but their preferred option is what's known as floating LNG which is offshore platforms to develop the gas.Cricket ace has lodged a complaint with the game's governing body over Usman Khawaja's dismissal in the third Ashes Territory.Clarke is on 125 and Steve Smith 70. The pair sharing an n un beaten 174 lf run stand. Yerl, opening Chris Rogers made 86. But it was the dismissal of Khawaja that has all talking. & he was in correctly given out caught behind with the third umpire failing to overturn the decision once it was referred.A spokesman for Cricket Australia read out a statement from CEO James Sutherland.Australia has sought an explanation from the ICC on the dismissal of Usman Khawaja.In our view, the on-field decision and referred decision using DRS were both in correct. We are a strong supporter of DRS and it's important that cricket cronts to improve and build confidence in the DRS. We understand and septa from time to time mistakes can be made however on thin stance on behalf of the player, the team and all cricket fans we feel duty bound to seek further explanation to how this decision was rived at.In swimming, James Magnussen has dedicated his gold medal at the world championships in bars loan oa to his friends and family for helping him through a tough year.Magnussen put a tough London Olympics campaign behind him to win gold in the 100m freestyle, finishing ahead of James Feigan and Nathan Adrian to defend his 2011 title. Fellow Australian Cameron McEvoy was fourth.It's tiethder than I would have liked but it's been a really - tighter than I would have liked but it's been a really emotional last 12 months for me after the Olympics. There was a lot of controversy back in Australia.So it was a really emotion al swim for me tonight. I think it shows that I've matured a lot over the last year and I think I can put the Olympics behind me now and look forward.High profile lawyer Julian Burnside QC has been hired to represent Essendon coach James Hird as the Australian sports anti-doping Authority continue s to investigating the club's supplements program. ASADA is expected to release its findings on the bombers next week, including allegations about what Hird knew about the substances being administered. Hird has continually denied any wrong doing by himself or anyone at the club. Mr Burnside confirmed this morning he is acting for Hird lird but couldn't comment on report s they may seek an injunction to stop the report being made public. St Kilda coach Scott Watters refused to comment on Ahmed Saad's positive test for a banned substance. The AFL is scrething whether he's reach breached the league's anti-doping code after providing n irregular samp nl July. If judged he would face the AFL tribunal hearing and under the aept doping code, use of a prohibited substance can lead to a 2-year ban for a first violation. Geelong is expected to dominate tonight's match against North Melbourne at Docklands. The kalthss have lost key forwards James Podsiadly to suspension and Dawson Simpson to injury. They're said to welcome back Jimmy Bartel and Allen Christensen.ACT Brumbies coach Jake White named an un changed side to take on the Chiefs in Australia's super rugby final in Hamilton. The ACT have clocked up plenty of kilometres in the last few yeeks with claims in New Zealand, South Africa. Stephen Larkham admit s the amount of travel could be hard to overcome.I think getting over the travel is the first hurdle that you have to cross.And then it's just a matter of tick sticking to your game game, not getting caught up in conditions over here or the way they're playing their game over here.The weather is forecast, are you aware of that?We are aware it will be wet.We've had one training run this week and we've made preparations for that.Had it been a bit of a blur the last three or four quai s day s having to come back from Africa to Canberra and Sydney.Nothing really happened for us in that second half and all of a sudden we near the finals, it's been a remarkable fiejs campaign for us.We obviously knew we would be in the finals some time ago. That was a real big goal for us this year. Very happy to get to the finals. Now as you said it's a bit of a blur, really we're
getting into the finals and now we're into the Grand Finals. The boys are quite happy but there's still a bit of work to do.And the Sydney Roosters be hoping to join South Sydney at the top of the NRL ladder when they face Penrith tonight in Sydney. Tonight, the Knights host Brisbane in Newcastle, they will be without Kade Snowden and Willie Mason. The Broncos will welcome back Jack Reed.You're watching ABC News right across the country on ABC1. You can keep up to date with the latest news on aur website.We will Thank, James, and good evening. I'm Craig Allen. Coming up in the Canberra new the tonight we'll have more detail on the Government's worsening financial position, with a $33 billion black hole, the Government's lifting the efficiency dividend across the public services. The CPSU says that will cost more than 5,000 jobs.

The shortage of GPs in the ACT appears to be easing. A Government survey shows there are now 400 doctors in the Territory, that's on par with the national average of one GP for every 893 people. Most medical practices are now able to take on new patients for the first time in many years.

Political lobby organisation Getup! Has confirmed that ACT Greens Senate candidate Simon Sheikh sometime has a link - still has a link to the group, but not for long. Getup! Said it simply forget to remove his name in a subsidiary company. But the Liberal Party says Mr Sheikh has misled voters. It's just a day out from the zb final and for the third week in a row the Brumbies will field the same team, a winning formula that coach Jake White is reluctant to mess with. It looms as the last game for George Smith, whom many regard as the greatest Brumbies' player of all time. We'll have those stories coming up in the Canberra Bulletin at your local news room. We have a series of cold fronts set to cross the south-east over the coming days. The good news for the ski fields is it will be cold enough to see snow develop. Unfortunately there's not a huge amount of moisture so any fall s will be light and generally at the lower ends of the scale. Nor so about a couple of sent metre s more likely than up to about 10cm. Accumulated falls over the coming week might be a little bit better. Now, there's the frontal system moving into eastern Victoria. Scattered showers in behind it but rainfall totals across Victoria are mostly very light and isolated. Tasmania's picked up some falls about to 10 to 20mm about the north-west but elsewhere those total s have also amounted to very little. A feet wur the systems is going to be winds and some cooler air moving through, which is why we e expect to see the snow dropping to low levels. This is the first front, another one following through as we into Saturday night, Sunday morning, it will be another one to move through as we into Monday night and Tuesday. It's the accumulated rainfall totals from these cold fronts moving through that will trigger some deenlts falls through parts of TV the southern agricultural areand northern and western Tasmania. We also have severe weather warnings for the alpine areas of NSW. Also through the north-east of Victoria and part of Gippsland. These strong to gusty winds will persist across the south-east through the weekend but this high pressure system will maintain mostly clear, dry and sunny conditions across much of the remainder of the continent. In fact we will see relatively warm temperatures for this time of year through many areas, except through that south-east corner, fairly widespread showers and much cooler temperatures expected. Expected to see the showers persist tomorrow, tending to rain, clear I drie, and mostly sunny across the remainder of the nation.That is all for this bulletin. The next edition of ABC News be in an hour. You can visit our website or follow us on Twitter. Thanks for your company. Bye for now.

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