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Three strikes and you're out



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Senator ¬ęTim Short. Shadow M inister for Finance and Shadow Minister Assisting the Leader on Commonwealth/State Relations

. SMF 22/91

THREE STRIKES AND YOU'RE OUT

For the third time in three weeks the Senate has voted to condemn the Government's policy failures.

The latest rebuff came today when Senator Short successfully moved a Second Reading amendment to the Loan Bill condemning the Government for its economic mismanagement and fiscal

irresponsibility (a copy Of the amendment is attached).

The amendment focussed on the deterioration in the budgetary position, with the originally estimated surplus of $8.1 billion being squandered at a run-away pace this y e a r .

It is only a matter of time before the Government is forced to revise down again its now current estimate of a $1.7 billion surplus for the year. The Treasurer admitted as much several days ago when he said the Budget could in fact go into deficit

in 1990-91.

Senator Button added further fuel to the fire in Question Time today, when he conceded that the worse than expected outcome for unemployment in February would bite further into the Budget surplus.

The Industry Statement only added to the fiscal disaster now confronting the Government. Rather than facing that squarely, the Government has run away from taking the hard decisions.

The support for the amendment to the Loan Bill today is

indicative of the groundswell of dissatisfaction and

disillusionment with the Government's policies which is felt throughout the community.

With the third strike notched up against the Government today, it is clear they will be forced to leave the batters' plate at the next election.

Canberra 14 March 1991

Contact: Senator Short (06) 277-3119 _________

COMMONWEALTH

PA R L IA M E N T A R Y LIBRARY IvIiCAH

1990-91

THE PARLIAMENT OF THE C O M M O N W E A L T H OF AUSTRALIA

THE SENATE

LOAN BILL 1991

(Amendment to be m oved the Opposition to the Motion - That this bill be now read a second time)

At end of motion, add but that the Senate condemns the Government for its economic mismanagement and fiscal irresponsibility, which has resulted in a severe and protracted recession and lead to:

(a) a substantial shortfall in Commonwealth revenues for the year ending 30 June 1991;

(b) a major increase in Commonwealth expenditure for the year ending 30 June 1991;

(c) a reduction in the Budget forecast of an $8.1 billion surplus to a possible deficit for 1990-91;

(d) an increase in the public sector's call on national savings of up to 3% of Gross Domestic Product in 1990-91, compared with the Budget forecast of a zero requirement; and

(e) an expected deficit starting point for the 1991-92 Budget based on existing forward estimates.”