An Independent Queensland Regional & Rural
(Cairns... Far North Queensland)
PROPOSED REFERENDUM 2013
LOCAL AUTHORITY vs LOCAL GOVERNMENT
Government has engineered a massive 'scam' with the intent to include a
‘Referendum’ at the 14 September 2013 Federal election in an effort to
change the Australian Constitution to include Local Governments.
proposal for 2013 is already on the table dealing with ‘aboriginal affairs’
but polling would indicate that it will not succeed. The envisaged Local Government Referendum is seen by politicians as an
easy and convenient substitute.
By creating widespread
public outrage, firstly by reducing taxpayer funding of $103 million from
Queensland Health (including $6.5 million
from the Cairns Base Hospital), then procrastinating in returning full
funding as done for Victoria Health by direct funding to the Hospital Board. The
game is obviously to take advantage of public concern and foist support for a
more urgent referendum proposal that would raise substantial and additional
taxes from ratepayers.
question was asked at Referendum on 3 September 1988, and was soundly defeated
by 66.39% (NO) to 33.61% (YES).
To put this issue into
context, the Australian Constitution recognises only two (2) levels of
Government - Federal and State - with local 'Councils' formed as Local
Authorities, with delegated powers from the State.
provides around 150 services to its community, using only 3% of taxation revenue
raised through fees and charges and the only local government tax... property
Of the estimated 250
taxes in Australia, Local Authorities have only one tax, the rates levied on
property. This accounts for only 3% of Australia’s total taxation revenue. The
States raise 15% and the Commonwealth Government raises 82% of taxation revenue.
Funding from the Commonwealth accounts for around 7% of local government revenue
but this funding is vital to providing local services.
The 2009 High Court
case of Pape v Commissioner of Taxation has found that the Commonwealth does not
have power to directly fund areas such as local Authorities. It can only spend
money where it has a specific power under the Constitution.
Section 96 of the
Constitution allows the Federal Government to fund state governments and the
‘engineered proposal’ would be to amend Section
96 to read:-
may grant financial assistance to any state or local government body formed by
or under a law of a state or territory”..
proposed Constitutional ‘amendment’ has far reaching ramifications without
limitation on the already ‘bleeding’ pockets of Australian ratepayers.
It must be noted that
Australian Federal and State Governments have never had any 'money'! Federal and
State governments are only 'trustees' for taxpayer funds! The same applies to
State and Federal politicians are presently engaged in a bitter war over who
gets what out of the GST revenue. You will, no doubt, remember that GST was
intended to be used by the States to take the place of a raft of State taxes…
including stamp duties? Well, all
those aspirations are well and truly over and, now GST money is the major part
of the Federal Government Revenues which are used for anything but its
originally intended purpose.
now it is State health & education funding on the line, and clearly the
Federal Government will want to keep this funding and look for another revenue
source. Hence the proposed funding directly to hospital boards together with the
associated attempt to put Local Governments in a position to be another source
of new taxes revenue.
The real problem facing
Australians is that it now appears there is bipartisan support from a majority
of politicians in all political parties to again include Local 'Governments'
into the Constitution, which will inevitability create additional 'taxes' being
raised at a local level, in addition to existing Federal and State.
achieve their 'centralised' goal… who pays? YES, you, the already over
burdened taxpayer/ratepayer. To what extent is the question? The basic fact is
that it would be introducing a third level of taxation and that we can all do
Should a Referendum
eventuate on 14 September 2013 with the goal to recognise an additional tax
raising Local Government... say NO!
There is of course
another and more sinister perspective to this issue. It is a given that for
total control you need ‘centralisation’ and that is what a referendum of
this nature could be expected to do. It has always been the desire of the
Federal Government to weaken the States to the point of a ceremonial role only
leaving all the real power based in Canberra. Nothing could be more destructive
for this Nation… and electors should keep this in mind.
Not only would a
‘yes’ vote ensure the introduction of another level of taxation it would
signify a substantial shift in the balance of power in Canberra's favour.
SO... it’s your choice?
GO TO: QUEENSLAND LOCAL AUTHORITIES
14 March 2013
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Written and Authorised by Selwyn Johnston,
Cairns FNQ 4870