Wednesday, 30 March 2022
Appropriation Bill (No. 3) 2021-2022, Appropriation Bill (No. 4) 2021-2022; Second Reading
Labor will support Appropriation Bill (No. 3) 2021-2022 and Appropriation Bill (No. 4) 2021-2022. They represent additional estimates for the 2021-22 financial year, with a total of $15.9 billion appropriated across the two bills—$11.9 billion in Appropriation Bill (No. 3) and $4 billion in Appropriation Bill (No. 4). The financial impact of these bills was incorporated into the budget bottom line as at the 2021-22 MYEFO, which was delivered last year.
It's appropriate that we debate these bills the day after the budget was delivered. What we saw last night was a fall in real wages, a trillion dollars in debt and the risk of a second wasted decade. Under the Morrison government, the cost of living is skyrocketing, real wages are going backwards and working families are falling further behind. Nothing in this budget makes up for a decade of attacks on wages, job security and Medicare. Its defining features are pay that won't keep up with prices and almost nothing to show for a trillion dollars in debt. It's a ploy for an election, not a plan for a better future. Australians need a pay rise, not a patch job that leaves them $25 a week worse off. An economy that works for everyone starts with a government that actually delivers what it announces, and we know that this one never does. It's a budget that includes $3 billion of secret cuts that the government has hidden—$3 billion of secret cuts that the government has hidden.
The Australian people will soon have a choice, and that choice is very clear: a Labor government led by Anthony Albanese will see budgets as an opportunity to plan for the future, not just plan for an election campaign; a leader who shows up, takes responsibility and wants to bring the country together versus a Prime Minister who can claim to do none of these things.