Australian Greens Leader Senator Richard Di Natale and Greens Treasury Spokesperson Adam Bandt MP expressed strong disappointment at the savings measures announced today by the Labor party.
“We are hearing a lot about zombie measures in the budget, well today the Labor party are resurrecting the zombie of Tony Abbott by refusing to join with the Greens and the community in saying no to harsh cuts for students, families and research,” Senator Richard Di Natale said.
“$4 billion has been slashed from higher education funding, leaving Australians that want to access higher education through the HECS-HELP benefit scheme without support.
“The $5.5 billion of savings announced today pale in comparison to the $13 billion of savings measures the Greens have identified that could be achieved by phasing out the private health insurance rebate to be reinvested into our public health system.
“The Greens believe that we should be raising revenue and investing in the foundations of a decent society. We are disappointed that Labor has sided with big business and the Coalition when it comes to standing up for everyday people.
“While the old parties are cutting away parts of our family payments system, the Greens have announced policies that would see a real funding increase in income support, including for the most vulnerable in our society.
Member for Melbourne and Greens Treasury Spokesperson Adam Bandt said that both Labor and Liberal were now trying to balance the books by taking the axe to education and innovation.
“Labor and the Liberals want to rip $2.8 billion of public investment in innovation by cutting the R&D tax incentive, a measure that encourages businesses in Australia to invest many billions of dollars more into research and innovation.
“Cutting the Research and Development tax incentive is a dumb move.
“There is a smarter way to improve the Budget position. We could raise tens of billions of dollars by ending the unfair tax breaks that benefit the very wealthy,” Adam Bandt MP said.