Unions Tasmania Secretary to appear before Select Committee
Unions Tasmania Secretary, Jessica Munday, will appear today before the Select Committee on the House of Assembly Restoration Bill.
Ms Munday will argue that public services need to be prioritised ahead of increasing politician numbers in the Lower House.
Since their election in 2014, the Hodgman Government have been brutal with cuts to the public sector. To add insult to injury, the Treasurer announced a $450 million efficiency dividend in the 2019 Budget that will see further cuts, including to our broken public health system.
“Against the backdrop of deep and damaging cuts to Tasmania’s public services, we need to consider whether now is the right time to be talking about increasing the size of Parliament,” said Ms Munday.
“The Government has estimated the cost of increasing the size of Parliament at $7.9 million in the first year and then $7.2 million every year after that. That’s a lot of money and I can tell you how it could be better spent,” said Ms Munday.
“Close to $8 million dollars would fund an extra 50 paramedics or 35 brand new ambulances. For half that amount, you could fund 15 additional rangers and 15 additional fire crews in Parks and Wildlife. For only $1.2 million dollars, you could double the number of staff in the Family Violence Counselling and Support Service who are buckling under the weight of 6,000+ referrals this year.”
Ms Munday also points out that time and resources would be saved if Agencies were not answering to multiple Ministers as they are now. There is only one Minister in the Hodgman Government whose portfolios are all in the one Agency.
“The question isn’t simply whether there are good reasons to increase the size of Parliament. The question right now has to be, measured against all the other services that support Tasmanians that are in immediate and desperate need of additional resources, whether increasing the size of Parliament outweighs all of those needs. Clearly, it does not,” said Ms Munday.
For further information contact Jessica Munday on 0417 454 809