• NT Government releases budget repair plan

    Updated April 16, 2019 10:18:00

    Through scrimping and saving, the Northern Territory Government has released its plan to claw its way out of debt.

    Key points:

    Treasurer Nicole Manison has accepted the majority of recommendations made by former West Australian under-treasurer John Langoulant, who chaired the Fiscal Strategy Panel.

    Under the new plans, the Government said it would reduce expenditure by $11.2 billion over the next 10 years.

    It is projecting a return to budget surplus in 2027-28.

    Among the top savings to be made, the NT Government will reduce executive positions by 10 per cent [52 full-time jobs] and freeze pay increases for politicians and public service executives.

    Another $12 million per year in "workforce sustainability savings" has been listed in the report — the equivalent of 120 non-executive-level public servants.

    The Government also claimed it would terminate the employment of department chief executives who failed to stay within their agreed budgets.

    In previous years, Health, Police and Corrections have all exceeded their budgets.

    The Government has also agreed to legislate a "debt ceiling" by 2021 but has not put a number on what that figure would be.

    In December last year, the NT Government said if it stayed on its current expenditure trajectory its net debt would reach $35.7 billion by 2029-30.

    As it stands, the NT Government is $3 billion in debt and is forecast to spend over $1.5 billion more than the revenue it collects in 2018-19.

    In the "Root and Branch" review released this morning, the Government has named a raft of new fees and cuts to existing programs.

    Ms Manison labelled the suite of measures the "biggest changes since self-government".

    These include:

    More to come.

    Topics: budget, business-economics-and-finance, government-and-politics, darwin-0800

    First posted April 16, 2019 10:14:22

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