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It’s sometimes easy to forget how much Western Australia has benefitted since the deal the Federal Government did in 2018 to fix the GST system.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison was the Treasurer at the time and worked hard to deliver the deal which secured billions more dollars for WA.
That deal guarantees WA a minimum of 70 cents in the dollar in GST returns for the State.
What the Federal Budget papers revealed this week is without that deal, in 2021-22, WA would only receive 42 cents in the dollar.
Seeing a number like 42 cents in the dollar really brings back memories of the bad old days.
Instead, what is confirmed in the Budget, is that WA will receive an extra $2.115 billion top up payment for the 2021-22 financial year.
That means WA gets $5.278 billion in total GST payments in 2021-22.
The State also received an additional $1.547 billion top up payment in 2020-21 and $1.2 billion extra was delivered in the first year the new deal kicked in.
That’s over $4.9 billion in additional GST money, in just three Budgets, that would not have been received by WA without the reforms our Government put in place.
I was among the WA Federal Liberal team of MPs and Senators who fought hard at the time for a fair deal for the people of WA and the present team is proud of what we are now able to deliver for our State.
The top up payments were built into the deal to guarantee at least 70 per cent of GST revenue back to WA, after years of being below half that level.
The new reforms will further transition in 2022-23 with a relativity floor of 70 per cent guaranteed for all States. That will rise to 75 per cent from 2024-25.
The Budget papers forecast that by 2024-25 WA will receive over $6.5 billion in GST payments.
Critics of our government have tried to claim that we would back away from this GST deal but the Prime Minister again this week confirmed he would not do that.
By WA Liberal Senator Michaelia Cash is the Federal Attorney-General and Minister for Industrial Relations