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ALGA 2016 Election Advocacy Focus - FAGs
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The ALGA 2016 Election Advocacy Focus is a pop up segment in ALGA News that will focus on a key aspect of ALGA's election plan each week. This week we begin with ALGA's call to restore the indexation of Financial Assistance Grants (FAGs).

Restore the indexation of FAGs

Local government currently receives general purpose funding from the Australian Government as FAGs. The decision in the 2014-15 Federal budget to freeze the indexation of the FAGs until 2017-18 had, and will continue to have, significant long-term impacts on councils, undermining equitable access to facilities and services. Over the budget out-years, the Government estimated that almost $1 billion will have been taken out of communities, permanently reducing the grants base by around 13 per cent.

Increase the quantum of FAGs

FAGs are intended to supplement the ability of local government to support functions but they have fallen over time as a proportion of overall Commonwealth taxation revenue. In 2013-14, FAGs amounted to around 0.67 per cent of total Commonwealth revenue. By contract, these grants represented around 1 per cent of total Commonwealth taxation revenue in 1995-96 and 1996-97. The current base funding should be increased to better reflect the actual cost of local government services and infrastructure.

 

ALGA's election plan, Local Government's Plan for an Innovative and Prosperous Australia, provides more information about what ALGA is calling for this election.



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