Five steps to prosperity
The state election presents an opportunity to ensure that the major parties continue to have strong economic policies and a will to implement them. We cannot be complacent after a few years of strong economic growth. We must maintain the momentum and in fact build on it. We must seek innovation and change and do things better. The status quo is unacceptable. We must invent tomorrow, today.
I welcome you to read Five Steps to Prosperity. It is the culmination of many months work by our policy committees and we encourage political parties to commit.
Five Steps to Prosperity contains the following initiatives to supercharge Tasmania:
- 1Build participation, retain talent and grow population;
- Incentivise investment;
- Deliver equity across local government;
- Fix water and sewerage; and
- Finalise planning overhaul.
The incoming state government must set a population target for 2022, and enact a range of strategies, including investing in growth. 650,000 Tasmanians by 2050 will occur with natural growth and an increasing life expectancy. Off a base of 518,500 people, and with an Australian average growth rate of 1.6%, the state’s population should be 552,500 by 2022.
Working age mainlanders must be our target market with their ability to drive economic and social improvement the key to our future. This initiative alone would supercharge the construction industry over the next five years.
The Tasmanian Division wants the City Deals fully funded, and unashamedly underpinned by education. We want political parties to make an even stronger commitment to this initiative.
Our State requires the prioritisation of inner-city infill housing. We must increase supply in an affordable and strategic way.
There must be equity across local government. It is ridiculous that in 2017 the services across local government municipalities varies so much. This is inequitable and unfair. All Tasmanians deserve better from local government. Rates should not increase beyond CPI unless each council can prove to their constituents that the investment is in crucial infrastructure or improved services.
The one very disappointing political outcome for 2017 was that the reforms of TasWater were not approved by the Legislative Council. The loss of this major reform demonstrates that many of our elected officials are out of touch with economic issues and improving accountability and outcomes for all Tasmanians.
The Tasmanian Parliament missed an opportunity to deliver a structural reform that our state desperately requires.
It would be difficult to find too many people who believe that TasWater will still have 29 owners in 10-15 years’ time. We must fight hard for this reform to be implemented.
The local government sector has failed water and sewerage reform in this state for far too many years, and a Government Business Enterprise is the most logical way forward.
Finally, the incoming state government must finalise the Tasmanian Planning Scheme. The interim schemes presented a good base to launch a far more consistent regime across the state, delivering more certainty for investors and developers who now often complete projects in many municipalities.
The implementation, particularly of the local provision schedules, requires more strategic project management, however the quest for a single scheme which the TPS will deliver remains front and centre.