Insight into the machinations of government are always of great interest (you don’t always understand it from the outside) and this morning I had the fortune to hear from and talk with Paul Sheehan from the Sydney Morning Herald about an eastern state’s view on the West. As I mentioned in my post about Q and A last week it missed the point somewhat by not including some ‘balance’ from having eastern states representation on the panel… and whats more – I was reminded this morning by a senior state MP of the opening question that was chosen to be asked was about WA seceding… we all know it is not going to happen – but it still gets raised time and time again to position us as the wild west… we need something better than that.
In the current economic and political times we need a greater understanding of the importance of WA to the nation to support the federal investment that we lack compared to our eastern states counterparts…
Back to Paul – he appears to be a lone (eastern states) voice to see the lack of support federally for WA which is the economic powerhouse of the nation. The facts as they are with only 68 cents in each GST dollar coming back to WA – with expectations that it may drop down to 54 cents. Add to that (or more importantly take away) the federal health deal which will take away another 30 cents and WA could be in a position of only getting access to 24 cents in each GST dollar. In a position as that we will be at the whim of the east coast (or more correctly Canberra) for any funding to assist in state building projects (and here if you are helping build the state you are helping build the nation’s economy).
Paul is planning to put together some pieces about WA in the coming weeks and months and I will share any with you that are appropriate.