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Greens push for more pollies to fill the empty chairs

YESTERDAY in his response to the State of the State address Greens Leader Nick McKim said he wanted to increase the size of parliament back to 35 members.  Mr McKim indicated he intended to bring a Bill before the House ahead of the budget session in May so that a bigger parliament could be included in the budget.  We already know that budget will continue the cuts to Agency funding announced 2 years ago so Tasmanians can expect a further reduction in services. The Premier indicated she would not support a Bill before the budget but might consider supporting it in the second half of this year.

The cost of increasing the lower house to 35 members is likely to be around $3 million per annum.  The CPSU believe this money could be better spent on services.

CPSU General Secretary Tom Lynch told media yesterday increasing the number of politicians when services continue to be cut would appal Tasmanians.

In his speech Mr McKim said there were ‘10 empty chairs in parliament waiting to be filled’.  If the Greens Leader is so concerned about empty chairs, there are chairs waiting to be filled in Child Protection, in our Libraries, in Service Tasmania shops and on our Quarantine border just to name a few. In fact since July 2010 the public sector has been cut by 2800 jobs so there are empty chairs across the state service.

Government is all about setting priorities and the CPSU thinks there are plenty of ways $3M could be spent that would deliver better outcomes for Tasmanians than having 10 more politicians.  We’d like to hear your suggestions.  Tell us how you would spend $3M to improve our state before spending it on more pollies.

Please email j.clydesdale@tas.cpsu.com.au to let us know your thoughts and suggestions.

 

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