Deficit Pledge Broken

What they promised

“I’m not going to lead a government that goes into deficit, I can tell you that right now.”

- Colin Barnett, 28 April 2009

What they say now

“After successive healthy surpluses, these sharp declines will take us into deficit this year.”

- Colin Barnett, 17 February 2015

24 Jul 2015 - The Liberals have broken their promise to never preside over a budget deficit while Premier..

In early 2009, under pressure concerning projections on spending and a possible deficit, Colin Barnett promised to never lead a government that goes into deficit.

He repeated the claims in subsequent days stating “I’m saying I’m not going to be a Premier that is going to plan on budget deficits”, and “When we draft budgets we will not be drafting budgets with deficits.”

However in the 2014-15 Mid-Year Review it emerged that WA was on track for two deficits; one in the current year of 14-15 and another in 15-16.

In the WA Government 2015-2016 Budget the following deficits were confirmed:

2014-15: $1.28 billion deficit

2015-16: $2.7 billion deficit

2016- 17: $1.14 billion deficit

WA Government 2015-16 Budget Paper No. 3 p3