A massive black hole has emerged in Labor’s All Aboard policy which proves, yet again, you simply cannot trust Labor with money.
Labor’s so called ‘free fares’ policy for students has been costed at $9 million over an unspecified timeframe, although most other concepts in the policy are costed over 10 years.
However, the Department of State Growth have advised the absolute minimum lost revenue for this is $4.8 million per year – and even this is underestimating as free buses would be expected to stimulate additional demand.
This means that over 10 years, the minimum amount of money needed to pay for this is $48 million, and even over 5 years the amount needed is $24 million- and yet Labor has allocated just $9 million!
Labor need to provide answers on how they will pay for this policy without blowing the Budget- will it be through the sale of public assets such as TasNetworks, perhaps?
It is also important to note families who are on lower incomes already receive free student travel through the existing concession structure. So not only is Labor’s policy uncosted, it is likely to only benefit those families on higher incomes.