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Budget Never Fails To Disappoint

Budget Never Fails To Disappoint

Press Release by Hon Sir Roger Douglas
ACT New Zealand
Thursday, 28 May 2009

The Budget claims to put productivity first on the Government’s agenda - if that were true, Finance Minister Bill English would have cut taxes and taken steps to reform the public sector, ACT New Zealand Finance Spokesman Sir Roger Douglas said today.

"Reforming the public sector and reducing taxes are the two most important things the Government could do to deliver productivity and revive our flagging economy," Sir Roger said.

"Instead, Mr English has given up and shelved the promised tax cuts for 2010 and 2011 - completely flying in the face of Prime Minister John Key's promise last year that: ‘under National, personal tax cuts are a priority. New Zealanders will be able to believe in our tax cuts, they will be able to trust our tax cuts'."

"The fact is that delivering the tax cuts would have cost $1 billion, requiring the Government to cut only 1.5 percent of waste. Yet National's spending is projected to exceed $65 billion over the 2009/10 financial year - against a backdrop where Government spending is $18 billion dollars in real terms higher than it was nine years ago. And it will continue to worsen: Core Crown Expenditure in the 2007/08 was 31.8 percent of GDP; under National it will surge to 37.3 percent of GDP in 2010/11.

"Government spending must be brought under control - especially given the fact that it costs the Government around $1.20 to raise just $1 of revenue. This means that Government is costing us even more than we realise.

"National must understand that any deficit we create today will have to be repaid with interest by our future generations. The Government's unwillingness to make modest cuts today will make paupers of our children’s children tomorrow," Sir Roger said.


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