A Better Way - Labor details funding sources to deliver infrastructure priorities over the next decade


Labor has today released its fully funded and costed infrastructure plan for NSW that isn’t reliant on the privatisation of the electricity network. 

The plan will deliver an additional $10.055 billion on top of the ongoing capital program funded in the budget, which is currently around $15 billion a year.

Labor’s infrastructure program will keep the budget in surplus, maintain NSW’s AAA credit rating while retaining the electricity network in public ownership.

Labor Leader Luke Foley and Shadow Treasurer Michael Daley said Labor’s plan makes modest commitments but with the right priorities.

“Labor’s infrastructure plan is not a bribe for votes,” Mr Foley said.

“We will not be going from town to town, suburb to suburb, blackmailing local communities with extravagant promises in exchange for electricity privatisation – which is the Mike Baird model of campaigning.

“Labor’s plan is a smart, affordable solution to building the projects NSW needs, while keeping our electricity network in public hands and using the profits they make to pay for teachers, nurses and police,” said Mr Foley.

“This approach means modest commitments with the right priorities.”

Labor’s additional infrastructure investment – above and beyond the capital works money in the budget every year – is achieved through the following funding streams:

  • $5.13 billion in additional funding for infrastructure investment over 10 years achieved by the deferral of business tax cuts on intangible business assets, unlisted securities and business mortgages. This has been costed by the independent Parliamentary Budget Office;
  • $4.92 billion of existing Restart NSW funds identified in the Statement of Uncommitted Funds released by NSW Treasury. This includes $2 billion which the Liberals are using to underwrite a shortfall in Mike Baird’s risky privatisation plan and $2.92 billion of uncommitted funds.
  • Labor’s $10.055 billion of additional infrastructure investment is on top of the current capital works program of around $15 billion per year (which is expected to be around $150 billion over the next decade).

The $15 billion annual capital program is built into the existing budget – and is available to Labor and Liberal, no matter which side is in government. ($61.5 billion is confirmed in Treasury’s forward estimates and detailed in the Government’s Budget Paper Number 4, page 1.6).

Mr Daley said the precedent for deferring business tax cuts has been set by the Baird Government, which already deferred the abolition of these same taxes in 2013 only to backflip on this decision in the 2014 budget.

“Labor would prefer to abolish these taxes,” said Mr Daley.

“But NSW has been left with no option after Tony Abbott stripped away $25 billion from the state under health and education agreements without a whimper from Mike Baird,” said Mr Daley.

“Inter-governmental agreements between Mike Baird and Tony Abbott are a mess,” said Mr Daley.

“Labor has considered this issue carefully, and we believe that $5.1 billion of earmarked tax cuts for intangible business assets, business mortgages and unlisted shares is better invested in infrastructure.

“Labor has unashamedly made the choice to retain our electricity assets in public ownership and the dividends they provide to fund teachers, nurses and police.”

Read more about Labor's fully funded infrastructure plan.