FINANCE (P5d)

The Community Alliance Party is committed to a 'back to basics' approach that aims to direct government spending to the essential functions and services required to meet the needs of the community.

The current ACT Government has not spent our money wisely, especially during the past four years. It has wasted hundreds of millions of dollars on unnecessary expenditure.

The ACT Government has also cut back on essential services highly valued by the community while dramatically increasing rates (up on average between 35~65 per cent during the term of the current government), and other charges and fees. Many cuts have proven to be false economies. The Alliance will work with government and the community to develop long-term budgeting strategies that reflect community priorities and provide for recurrent funding of essential services like education, health, infrastructure, and the environment.

Accountability

The Alliance will demand transparency and public accountability in all budgetary processes. The Alliance will not 'block supply', thereby enabling the Government of the day to pass its budget. However, in return it expects the Government to engage in extensive community consultation on all major budget commitments.
The Alliance will insist that the ACT Government provides good value for money to taxpayers by focusing on the efficient and effective supply of services to the community.

Responsibility

The Alliance will deliver responsible budgets, recognising that this sometimes entails countercyclical investment to ameliorate the adverse effects of booms and busts in the business cycle.
The Alliance will investigate and implement measures to broaden the revenue base and steadily reduce the ACT Government's financial dependence on returns from land sales: a diminishing resource that is expected to be exhausted within 15 years.
The Alliance will develop a co-operative regional approach with neighbouring communities to share costs on tourism promotion, national parks, water infrastructure, hospitals and other common interests.
The Alliance will ensure that the ACT Government's investment portfolio is progressively converted to ethical investments.
Expenditure on matters that should be a Federal responsibility will be avoided.

Equity

The Alliance does not support the policy of replacing 'stamp duty' by increasing property rates at well above the rate of inflation.
The Alliance will introduce additional assistance for first home buyers who become owner-occupiers of residential property valued at five times the median income or less.
The Alliance will progressively introduce affordable cuts in rates, charges, levies, fees, and duties for government services to ensure that the tax burden is distributed equitably amongst ACT residents and businesses.
The Alliance supports a gradual rise in 'lease variation charges' so that the community recoups a fairer share of the increased commercial value of rezoned land and facilities.