Bob Beadman’s recent letter to the editor, Where has all the money gone? included “not so much attention has been paid to the NT’s declining revenue”. Indeed, it’s not just GST that has been reduced, several other forms of revenue have also declined, or not even been collected.
Note that the situation regarding mineral royalties going exclusively to Aboriginals Benefit Account has now been more opaque with the establishment of a separate “investment corporation”. The governance of Land Councils and other recipients of these royalties and the mechanisms for distribution of monies from the ABA are opaque and at the whim of the executives. There is little or no oversight of the activities of many of the Corporation supposed to be regulated by Office of the Registrar of Indigenous Corporations, leading to many examples of malfeasance in the expenditure funds by a number of Aboriginal corporations.
With Australian carbon credit units heading toward $100 each, the 10 million tonnes per annum that the LNG processors emit would provide about $1 billion to the Northern Territory Government revenue if they insisted on the offset policy that was included in the INPEX environmental impact statement.
The parlous state of NT Government finances is simply a product of laziness by the public servants whose job it is to collect revenue and ignorance on the part of ministers who should hold their staff to account.
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