West Australian Premier Colin Barnett insists he’s not flying back to Perth grumpy, just disappointed that his state counterparts ganged up on him over the GST.
Mr Barnett came to Canberra for the Council of Australian Government’s meeting arguing his state deserved more GST revenue and is unimpressed the issue wasn’t treated more seriously around the table.
“I’m not grumpy, certainly disappointed, but happy to be going back to Perth,” he told reporters said as he left Parliament House on Friday.
Mr Barnett said it was poor form for the other states to jointly sign a letter that argued for the status quo and was “basically picking on Western Australia”.
WA wasn’t looking for a handout, just a bit of equity, Mr Barnett said.
WA wants more money than the 30 cents in the dollar – down from 38 cents – being offered under the Grant Commission’s GST revenue carve up formula for 2015/16.
Tasmanian Premier Will Hodgman had little sympathy for WA’s plight saying the political argy bargy had been unhelpful.
It was not appropriate for any state or territory to “jump off at the low point of the swing” because the roundabout would inevitably come back, as Mr Hodgman suspects will be the case for WA.
“Thankfully commonsense has prevailed and now we get on with it,” he told reporters.
Mr Barnett was buoyed by the prospect of having a floor price of 50 cents in the dollar down the track, once WA’s share increases in the next few years.
“I’d accept that. It’s not a perfect outcome,” he said.
He ruled out WA legalising poker machines outside the Perth casino as a way to make up for a revenue shortfall because his state took a moral and ethical stance on the matter.
Meanwhile, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk hopes to fast track an NDIS trial site in her state as soon as possible.
Northern Territory Chief Minister Adam Giles said a second NDIS trial site in a remote indigenous community might be set up within six months.