NT issues budget plan
The NT Government has a plan that it says will see net debt peak at $8.8 billion in 2026/27.
Late last year, Treasurer Nicole Manison revealed the Territory’s $3 billion debt was on track to increase ten-fold to $35 billion in 2029/30.
A budget repair plan has now been announced in full by Chief Minister Michael Gunner.
“This plan to fix the budget puts the Territory back in surplus in 2027/28,” he said.
“There will be savings of $11.2 billion over the next ten years.”
A ‘root and branch’ review of government programs and spending is expected to bring over $1.4 billion worth of savings.
The government is also seeking new revenue by increasing existing fees and introducing new ones.
The new fees include a $40 toll for Territorians to pick up a new set of number plates, and an increase in the cost of personalised plates.
The fee for selling fireworks will double in order to raise an extra $200,000 a year.
The Government is also looking at entrance fees for national parks and museums which are currently free.
Ms Manison said the Government would also undertake “the biggest reforms to the public sector since self-government.”
It will see 52 public service executive jobs cut next financial year, including seven from the Office of Chief Minister.
The Territory’s remaining 591 executives and 25 politicians will have their pay frozen for three years, saving around $25 million.
The money-making spree includes plans to sell or lease the Lands Titles Office.
Police will not be spared, with measures to replace 20 police constables in Intelligence with auxiliary police, and cap the number of 1st Class Senior Constables.
The Chief Minister said departments will be given no excuses for overspending.
Departments who spend within their budgets will be allowed to keep some funds as a reward, while the heads of agencies who break their budget will face the sack.
The next NT budget will be handed down in May, laying out a deficit of $1.15 billion.