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Monday, 2 May 2016
Page: 3972

Ms MacTIERNAN (Perth) (13:48): WA's economy is struggling. Today's CommSec report shows WA has the sixth ranked economy in Australia, spiralling downwards from top spot in 2014, yet the Commonwealth Grant Commission's latest recommendation will bring WA's share of GST revenue from 29.9c in the dollar to—wait for it!—30.3c in the dollar. I support horizontal fiscal equalisation—it is a very Australian concept—but the rules being used corrupt that very sense of fairness. Most disgracefully, WA's share is being driven down by our state's bipartisan, socially responsible policy of containing pokies. The eastern states earn more than $5 billion per year in gambling taxes. New South Wales alone earns almost $2 billion a year. Yet this revenue is quarantined for the purpose of GST distribution. Every cent of our iron ore revenues are counted but pokies revenue is protected. If we change that, if we brought that to account, WA in 2014 would have received an extra $413 million. This reprehensible policy actually encourages states and territories to promote gambling. It is the only significant source of state revenue protected— (Time expired)