WATERED down laws dealing with drug use – along with the threat of a new carbon tax – lie in store for NSW citizens if senior members of its Coalition government have their way.
With NSW debt skyrocketing and its AAA credit rating downgraded this week, the Berejiklian government appears side tracked with implementing Greens Party policy.
S&P lowered NSW’s credit rating one notch to AA+ while at the same time dropped Victoria’s two notches to AA – bringing these States into line with all other Australian States’ AA rating.
A credit rating drop can result in borrowing difficulties as well as increased interest rates on government loans.
The Federal government retains its AAA credit rating for now, however, there’s speculation the Morrison government may struggle to maintain this in the wake of its COVID-19 spending.
As news of NSW’s falling credit rating was being announced, Liberal Party MPs were brawling over a government proposal to water down drug offence laws.
According to a report in The Australian newspaper on Friday, the proposals would see drug users issued with warnings or fines – instead of being charged.
Numerous Coalition MPs have said they would cross the floor if the proposal made it into parliament.
Ms Berejiklian is reported not to have a position on the proposal, however, has asked joint sponsors Attorney General Mark Speakman and Health Minister Brad Hazzard to revise their drug policy by December 14, 2020.
This is the latest of a string of proposals that have had grass roots Liberal Party supporters shaking their heads.
Late last year a proposal to water down bestiality offences was put to the NSW parliament – but rejected by cross bench MPs who called it “immoral”.
Just last month NSW Energy & Environment Minister Matt Kean backed a discussion paper calling for the re-introduction of a Julia Gillard-style emissions tax, according to Sydney’s Daily Telegraph newspaper.
This follows recent legislative changes allowing for extreme late term abortions and the scrapping of laws requiring HIV carriers to disclose their condition to bed partners.
The NSW government’s net debt is projected to increase by almost 70 per cent over the next four years to just below $150b.
The State is expected to run budget deficits at least until 2023/24.PC