NSW acting Premier Andrew Stoner says several north coast projects are ‘in the mix’ as possible recipients of part of an unexpected billion-dollar Budget surplus
The state’s acting Premier is refusing to say how today’s unexpected Budget bonus might be spent.
The Auditor-General has found $1 billion worth of mistakes in the State Government’s accounting, which means the Budget is actually in surplus.
Acting Premier Andrew Stoner visited Lismore today to promote the Government’s role in creating 70 new private-sector jobs in the area.
But he’s not saying if any of the region’s pet projects might get a funding boost as a result of the unexpected surplus.
“There are a great number of priorities, including in this region the Pacific Highway, school buses with seatbelts, all sorts of things we can spend the money on,” he said.
“It is a competing set of priorities that has to be considered within the context of the Cabinet.”
The State Government downsized the Grafton jail in July, leaving more than 100 locals jobless.
At the time, Premier Barry O’Farrell said the decision was necessary as part of the Government’s need to save $1.2 billion across the public sector.
“We make no apologies for doing what we said we’d do before the election, which was to reduce inefficiency, cut out waste and mismanagement across the NSW public sector,” Mr O’Farrell said.
When asked if restoring the Grafton jail to its former capacity was a possibility in light of the surplus, Mr Stoner said ‘it was all in the mix.’
Source: ABC News