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Archives for May 1999

Meg Lees Responds To Brian Harradine’s Opposition To The GST

These are remarks by Senator Meg Lees, following Senator Brian Harradine’s decision to oppose the GST.

Lees, leader of the Australian Democrats, struck a deal with the Howard government to pass the GST provided it exempted fresh food and education, amongst others.

  • Listen to Lees (5m)

Senator Brian Harradine Opposes the GST

This is an edited version of Senator Brian Harradine’s speech in the Senate announcing his intention to vote against the introduction of a Goods and Services Tax.

  • Listen to Harradine’s speech (11m)
  • Listen to Democrats Leader Senator Meg Lees comment on the future of the GST in the light of Harradine’s opposition. (4m)

Speech by Senator Brian Harradine.

Independent Tasmanian Senator Brian HarradineThis new tax system that has been proposed by the Government, we all agree, is a major revolutionary reform, and for good or bad we will have to live with it for decades to come.

A huge effort has been expended by the Government and by others in developing this new tax system proposal.

The executive Government has put forward this proposal pursuant to what it considers to be a mandate given by the people at the last election in October.

So much has been said about this question of mandate and I’m not going to enter into that argument at this point of time. [Read more…]

Kim Beazley’s 1999 Budget Reply Speech

This is the text and audio Opposition Leader Kim Beazley’s Address-in-Reply to the Budget.

Kim Beazley’s 1999 Budget Reply Speech

Kim BeazleyMr Speaker, during the election campaign, we said this government did not have a plan for our nation, it had a plan for a tax.

This Budget shows we were right.

Instead of investing in our future, it invests in its own obsession.

And the price of its folly will be borne by the generations to come, because without the investments needed to make our nation and our future workforce smarter and more productive, we will not have the high wage, high skill future the people of this nation deserve.

The good growth recorded in this Budget stems from the industry and resilience of the Australian people, and hard decisions taken by this government’s predecessor over a decade ago. [Read more…]

Treasurer Peter Costello’s 1999 Budget Speech

Treasurer Peter Costello has delivered the Howard government’s fourth federal budget.

For the third year in a row, the budget is in surplus, expected to be more than $5 billion.

  • Listen to Costello’s budget speech:

Text of Peter Costello’s 1999 Budget Speech.

Treasurer Peter CostelloMr Speaker, I move that the Bill now be read a second time.

This is the Budget for the last year of the Century.

In putting together this Budget, the Government wanted to achieve a number of things:

  • We wanted to deliver the election commitments we made last October.
  • We wanted an economic framework which would help families by keeping home mortgage rates low.
  • We wanted to deliver increased services to rural and regional Australia.
  • We wanted to build the nation’s educational and research capacity.
  • We wanted to keep Australia strong — having come through the first two years of the Asian economic and financial crisis.
  • We wanted to keep the Budget in surplus.

We wanted to frame a Budget which would set us up to enter the next Century much as we entered this one — a world leader in living standards, prosperous, free, and with all the potential of a dynamic young nation. [Read more…]