GST Lemons

The WESTERN AUSTRALIA PARTY‘s campaign to fix the GST is a per capita share of GST revenue collected by Canberra and paid to the states and territories – no strings attached.


Six states and territories receive more GST than their per capita share as this graph from CGC shows. WA (-5.7%) and NSW (-4.6%) are the only states that receive less.

A per capita share GST formula is easy to understand, stops Australia from being a welfare nation on the back of GST handouts, and the negative effect of pokies used to exploit gamblers and their addictions as revenue windfalls for all states except WA.

GST per capita share 2018:


Labor’s proposal (April 2018) is for a 70 cent GST floor using $1.6 billion infrastructure fund as compensation to WA for its low GST share.  The fund is a “de facto” level of 70c in the dollar, without taking any money from other states.  This fix is a GST LEMON. Modelling show the money could run out a year later after a Labor government came to power, Andrew Burrell, WA Chief Reporter, Perth, 11 April 2018. Click here>>>


The Commonwealth Grant’s Commission’s Horizontal Fiscal Equalisation report (May 2018) recommended a model base on equalisation to the average state.  Under this model WA would receive an extra $7 billion over the next 8 years or $875 million each year, hardly enough to pay the interest on WA’s debt and a shortfall to the $7 billion per year base on a per capita share.  The Commission assumes all states will exploit revenue from gambling and pokies. This fix is a GST LEMON.


Liberal’s proposal is to fix a 70c to 75c in the dollar floor to deliver WA $4.7 billion in extra GST cash over 8 years or $587.5 million per year, again like Labor, it’s not enough to pay the interest on WA’s annual interest payment on debt, and it’s not $7 billion per year under a per capita share of the GST. This  fix is a GST LEMON.

Q: Does the GST still need fixing?

Yes, while other states use our GST to balance budgets and pay down debt:

  • WA has nearly $40 billion in debt and an interest bill of $1.3 billion per annum.
  • WA is the ONLY STATE to receive less than 83 cents in the dollar of GST revenue since 1999, and the only state to receive the lowest amount at 30 cents in the dollar.
  • WA is closing services and robbing Peter to pay Paul – Moora College, WA Camp Schools, etc.
  • The GST formula rewards states that exploit gambling revenue and pokies. WA does not.
  • WA increases payroll tax which impacts on jobs.
  • Payroll tax is harmful to WA small business
  • MRIT being used to prop up WA’s credit rating.  This $500 million tax pool is meant to fund public open space and land for transport – roads and rail.
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