Queensland Treasurer reveals plans to bring down $1b debt
THE Queensland Treasurer has found a way to fund road safety projects while trying to put the brakes on rising debt.
Speedsters better watch out for more speed cameras on roads as the State Government predicts it will rake in $102 million extra in fines over the next four years.
But Treasurer Curtis Pitt denied the Camera Detected Offence Program had anything to do with revenue-raising at the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Review on Tuesday.
"Clearly revenue is collected as a result of people speeding or running red lights, or having other minor traffic infringements," he said.
"The modelling has said this is going to be a combination of increased population ... as well as potential new (speed camera) sites."
But at the core of the government's review is a plan to shift debt to the State-owned Gladstone Ports Corporation, North Queensland Bulk Ports and SunWater .
Mr Pitt said the "re-gearing". along with a $150 million dividend from Stanwell would reduce debt by $1 billion.
Yet debt is still predicted to rise despite these measures and reach $79 billion by 2018-19.
As flagged when the Palaszczuk government handed down its July budget, Energex and Ergon Energy will be merged by mid-2016.
Mr Pitt said about $680 million would be saved over the 2019-20 period.
But the Labor government has backflipped on its plan to merge Powerlink with other distribution companies following consultation with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.
"We have decided to retain CS Energy and Stanwell as separate generation businesses ... but we will undertake a structural review to achieve operational efficiencies within Powerlink, CS Energy and Stanwell," Mr Pitt said.
Opposition treasury spokesman John-Paul Langbroek said the centrepiece of Labor's budget was now off the table and criticised Mr Pitt for not revealing where the merger's savings would come from.
- APN NEWSDESK