Topics:  australian government, budget, education, funding, health, queensland government, tim nicholls, wayne swan

Qld Govt blames state problems on federal funding drop

Queensland Treasurer Tim Nicholls.
Queensland Treasurer Tim Nicholls. Dave Hunt

A $350 million federal funding drop over four years could have paid for 85,000 normal births or 150,000 hip replacements, Queensland Treasurer Tim Nicholls says.

The blame game over the state's health and education funding shortfalls continued on Thursday when Mr Nicholls accused Federal Treasurer Wayne Swan of peddling a "miasma of mistruths".

Mr Nicholls called a press conference to provide media with documents he said proved the Federal Government had reduced the Queensland funding by $751million over four years.

He said Mr Swan had made a many "spurious claims" in the past 48 hours and he wanted to set the record straight.
Mr Nicholls said that money could have been spent on maintaining employment and on services in Queensland.

"Between the (Federal) budget brought down in May and the mid-year update released in November - Queensland is missing out in net terms … almost $350,000 (in health funding) over the forward forecast," he said.

"Queensland has put an extra $816 million into the budget this year, a 7.8% increase."

Earlier, Mr Swan had told a press conference that the Queensland Government had cut $3 million from the state's health budget while the Federal Government had delivered a $600 million increase.

"They signed up to a health agreement, which delivers a record 21% increase in federal funding, but because (Premier Campbell Newman's) now got into a bit of political trouble, by cutting health budget in Queensland by $3 billion at his last budget he's now seeking to save his political hide by concocting an argument about federal funding which is entirely untrue and not credible," he said.



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