Posted on 17. May, 2011 in News

The Baillieu Government has confirmed that $100 million will be slashed from the department responsible for supporting small business and innovation across the state.

Under questioning from Labor during a Parliamentary Accounts and Estimates Committee hearing, Minister for Small Business and Innovation Louise Asher admitted there would be significant cuts to her department.

Shadow Minister for Small Business and Innovation Justin Madden said it was concerning the Baillieu Government was making substantial cuts that could detrimentally impact on jobs and economic growth.

“Ms Asher’s has admitted that her portfolio was in essence being ‘gutted’, which confirms the Baillieu Government has no interest in supporting Victorian institutions and companies to grow and create jobs,’’ Mr Madden said.

“The government’s budget will have long lasting implications for Victorian jobs, economic efficiency and innovation, well past 2015.

“Failing to provide adequate funding for Ms Asher’s portfolio will stifle new innovative projects across Victoria and hinder our states ability to compete and stay ahead of international trends.

Last week it was revealed that Ms Asher’s seat of Brighton would receive a $2 million investment to assist in the reopening of a street level rail crossing.

“While Ms Asher is obtaining funding for her electorate, it’s appalling she would celebrate this investment at the same time the government was taking a meat cleaver to her portfolio,” Mr Madden said.

“It’s time Ms Asher also starts paying attention to her portfolio and stands up against her own Government’s gutting of the innovation and small business portfolio before Victorian innovators are left cash strapped and unsupported.”



Comments are closed.