What’s going on in this country? Have all our politicians lost their ticker?

What’s going on in this country? Have all our politicians lost their ticker?

Well yes and no. There’s no doubt the ongoing leadership troubles besetting the Federal Government have left their appetite for reform in question.

We are seeing mixed messages about the need for further budget repair and the tax white paper has been delayed yet again, and will now come after the release of the intergenerational report.

In Queensland both the new ALP minority government and the LNP Opposition have pledged there will be no further asset sales.

In an appalling backdown in WA, the Barnett Government has walked away from a six-year local government reform process. Plans to amalgamate metropolitan councils – more than halving their number – have now been shelved. The lingering hope that the City of Perth Act may yet go ahead is little consolation.

But there are two bright spots.

SA Premier Jay Weatherill’s release of a thoughtful, wide-ranging review of state taxation, including potential abolition of stamp duty – the most inefficient tax – is more than welcome. It’s a process we’ll work closely with them on to ensure any changes promote investment and jobs in South Australia.

And the next Premier headed to the polls, NSW’s Mike Baird, is sticking to his guns on his plans to recycle $20 billion of public investment out of the electricity sector and into much-needed infrastructure to transform the state.

It’s good to see the reform flame burning brightly, even if the glow doesn’t extend nationwide.