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WA Treasurer Ben Wyatt has announced Western Australia’s first surplus in five years of $553 million and a $4.1 billion reduction in state debt.
REIWA congratulates the WA Government on bringing the budget back to surplus, but given WA’s improving economic conditions, REIWA is disappointed that once again there were few initiatives included in the budget to help address housing affordability and aid the property sector in its recovery.
REIWA President Damian Collins said while the Institute was pleased the McGowan Government had resisted temptation to increase property taxes, the allocation of the 2019-20 WA Budget was mostly uninspired.
“Treasurer Ben Wyatt has considerably revised the state’s economic position due to WA’s increased share of the GST and the surge in commodity prices. This influx of funds should go towards reducing state taxes, particularly stamp duty, and helping first home buyers get into the market through the reintroduction of the First Home Owners Grant for established properties.
“With the coffers fuller than we could have imagined just a few years ago, now is the time for the WA Government to step up and lead not only the state but the country and remove the single greatest barrier to housing affordability, stamp duty,” Mr Collins said.
In its pre-budget submission, REIWA put forward six key recommendations aimed at helping create a fair, sustainable and prosperous local property market.
The recommendations were: