Victoria election 2014: Labor reveals policy costings

ABC Victoria: Victoria election 2014: Labor reveals policy costings. By Alison Savage. 27 November 2014

The Victorian Labor Party has released an assessment of its policy costings, including details of what savings measures it would implement if it wins this Saturday’s election.

In a coup for Labor, its costings have been approved by the former head of the Kennett and Howard Government’s Commissions of Audit, Professor Bob Officer.

The party has made $3.3 billion worth of recurrent spending promises over four years.

Labor said there would be no new taxes or tax increases, no impact on debt, and no impact on the projected surplus or Victoria’s AAA credit rating.

Labor’s treasury spokesman Tim Pallas said the costings process has been thorough.

“This is the most rigorous costings process undertaken by an opposition,” he said. Continue Reading…

A Referendum on Melbourne’s future

A Referendum on Melbourne’s future By Andrew Herington

The Prime Minister has sealed the fate of the controversial East West Link. When Tony Abbott declared the November 29th Victorian election to be a referendum on the project, he gave the winner a mandate – that most precious of things in politics.

If Labor wins, the project is dead. Daniel Andrews’s recent answers have been emphatic. If the Liberals win, it will have the political legitimacy that it has so far lacked. The final hurdle for the project would be whether the planning approval survives each of the three Supreme Court challenges currently underway.

Lend Lease and its consortium partners would still face protracted and well organised community resistance. In the early months, this would focus on sit-ins to prevent the excavation of a huge cutting in the central part of Royal Park – the largest hole ever proposed to be dug in Melbourne.

Denis Napthine has misread the public mood and put all his eggs in one basket, making the tollway the cornerstone of his Government whilst Daniel Andrews has staked his reputation on reversing the hastily signed contracts. The tollroad may turn out to be a very large political hole. Continue Reading…

Victorian election 2014: Economic clouds loom with the economy growing by 1.7 per cent in the past financial year

The Age: Victorian election 2014: Economic clouds loom with the economy growing by 1.7 per cent in the past financial year. November 21, 2014. Josh Gordon, State Political Editor

The state economy grew by 1.7 per cent in the past financial year, half the annual average for the past decade.

But Treasurer Michael O’Brien has dismissed the result, pointing out that it followed relatively solid growth of 2.1 per cent in 2012-13.

“Over the last two years Victoria’s economy has grown by 3.8 per cent, compared with an expected 3.6 per cent,” Mr O’Brien said. “This demonstrates that Victoria is on the right track under the economic management of the Napthine government.” Continue Reading…

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