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Reforming Australian federation

Comments on Michael Stutchbury “Devolve power to the people”, 13/04/2010, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/devolve-power-to-the-people/story-e6frg6zo-1225852925443

I think Josh Burnell's idea of clearer demarcation of responsibilities between the federal and State governments is excellent, with federal fewer service responsibilities.

To enable that, there should be inter-governmental agreement on how to divide tax revenue between federal and the States, so the States will have the financial capacities to provide services.

Such an agreement needs to be more than just the GST revenue. It should include all revenue sources.

In that case, there is little room for blame games between federal and the States, because most services are States' responsibility.

The current three levels of government in Australia is fine, but the main problem with the current state of Australian federation is that States lack control of revenue sources and there are overlapping of services responsibilities between the federal and the States.

So, reforms of the federation needs to focus on the clearer clarification between the federal and the States in both services responsibilities and revenue allocation.

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