Labor MP calls for change to GST assessment

An Australian Federal Labor MP has called for Western Australia to launch a High Court challenge that will force states to give up more money as part of the annual GST assessment, The Australian reports.

Federal Labor MP Alannah MacTiernan said gambling taxes, which are mainly collected in NSW and Victoria must be included in the GST assessment, saying it was a “scandal” that all of WA’s iron ore revenue was included in the Commonwealth Grants Commission distribution whilst gambling taxes were not.

The MP estimated WA could benefit by about A$400 million a year should the CGC decide to assess the states’ gambling revenues.

However, State Treasurer Mike Nahan said the comments was “nothing more than a smokescreen creat­ed by Alannah MacTiernan in a vain attempt to suggest Labor has tried to do something about the GST,” and added that he supported the current government’s treatment of gambling revenues.