9 May 2024

JLN and Liberals come to agreement on independent review of Tasmania's finances

| James Day
Start the conversation
A landscape shot of the Macquarie Point Multipurpose Precinct in the morning.

The Tasmanian Government plans to build a 23,000-seat multipurpose stadium at Macquarie Point. Photo: Facebook/Macquarie Point Development Corporation.

Following negotiations between the Jacqui Lambie Network (JLN) and the incumbent Tasmanian Government, an agreement has been reached for an independent review of the state’s finances and the Macquarie Point Multipurpose Precinct.

Premier Jeremy Rockliff thanked the JLN for its constructive input to establish the independent review, which will be led by esteemed economist and Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow of the University of Tasmania, Saul Eslake.

The JLN requested an independent assessor for the review as part of its deal with the Liberal Party, who failed to reach a majority government in the recent state election.

JLN members also asked the Liberals to review the state’s integrity commission, “with an eye to giving it greater capability to conduct its work”; rights to information legislation; political donation laws; and a range of actions in relation to the Child Sexual Abuse Commission of Inquiry.

READ MORE Tasmanian MP claims abuse inquiry was ‘not fully informed’

The JLN said it had achieved a significant breakthrough with the Rockliff Government in its collaborative efforts towards financial transparency.

“Despite significant initial hurdles in securing access to Treasury data, the JLN and Premier Jeremy Rockliff have demonstrated a willingness to overcome obstacles and a shared commitment to accountability and transparency,” reads the party’s statement following the agreement.

“The independent review of the state’s finances is a cornerstone of the confidence and supply agreement between the two parties.

“With a renewed spirit of goodwill and a commitment to collaboration, the terms of reference for conducting the independent review, have now been agreed.”

According to the terms of reference, Mr Eslake’s review investigation and report will include:

  • Updated forward estimates of the financial statements for the financial years ending 30 June 2024 through 2028, for the general government, public non-financial corporations, and public financial corporations sectors, and for the non-financial public sector and public sector as a whole
  • Longer term projections of the principal fiscal aggregates for the general government, public non-financial corporations, and public financial corporations sectors, and for the non-financial public sector and public sector as a whole, for each of the financial years out to at least that ending 30 June 2036
  • The risks to Tasmania’s financial position, especially in relation to:
    • The scheduled expiry of the ‘No Worse Off Guarantee’ of Tasmania’s share of GST revenues at the end of the 2029-30 financial year
    • A fall in commodity prices such as would result in a decline in Tasmania’s share of GST revenues
    • Tasmania’s prospective demographic profile
    • Alternative scenarios for population and economic growth.

READ ALSO The Water Cooler: Comings, goings and consultations

The review has also tasked economist Dr Nicholas Gruen with developing independent financial modelling for the controversial Macquarie Point Multipurpose Precinct.

The review is scheduled for completion in six months. Negotiations with the Premier were done with the JLN Tasmanian state team, which is comprised of Miriam Beswick (Member for Braddon), Andrew Jenner (Member for Lyons) and Rebekah Pentland (Member for Bass).

“This collaborative effort and groundbreaking agreement is a significant step forward in achieving transparency and accountability for the state,” reads the JLN statement.

“Tasmanians deserve transparency and the JLN will continue to work with the Rockliff Government in the spirit of goodwill for the benefit of all Tasmanians.”

Start the conversation

Be among the first to get all the Public Sector and Defence news and views that matter.

Subscribe now and receive the latest news, delivered free to your inbox.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.