NT shifts goalposts
The NT Government has adjusted its public service cap amid a decline in population and GST revenues.
The Northern Territory Government is allowing almost 300 more public servants to be employed by easing its staffing cap, which was imposed to help reduce its dire debt position.
Treasurer Nicole Manison has announced that the cap, which was to be achieved in March next year, has been shifted up from 21,118 to 21,395.
The cap was a central part of the Government’s plans to fix a budget crisis flagged this time last year.
This week’s updated outlook shows a $5 million improvement on the forecast deficit of $1.5 billion.
However, the deficit is set to grow higher than predicted over the next four years of forward estimates, topping $8 billion in that period.
Ms Manison said demand for services is increasing, which will require more public servants.
“We have large proportions of disadvantage, of poverty, and very large sparse pieces of land, where often it is the Government that is the only port of call when delivering services that people need,” she said.