Ageing, Disability & Home Care

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NDIS funding commitment must be revealed

1 May 2012

NSW Treasurer Mike Baird and Minister for Disability Services Andrew Constance have called on the Prime Minister and Treasurer to fully outline the detail on how the Commonwealth intends to fund and rollout the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

"The Prime Minister said the Federal Labor Government would fund its share for the NDIS trials to begin next year. However, it's critical that the States, the disability sector and indeed the whole community knows how this will be paid for," Mr Baird said.

"The Prime Minister has raised everyone's expectations that the NDIS is being delivered, but our fear is that this could be raising false hope," Mr Baird said.

"The Productivity Commission recommends that the Commonwealth should be the sole funder of the NDIS. If that recommendation is rejected then the Commission suggests that a pooled funding agreement should be signed with the States and Territories."

"The truth is the States have not been consulted on an appropriate funding model, which means the Federal Government is either paying for it entirely or they have not done the work."

In 2009-10, State and Territory governments invested $4.7 billion in disabilities – more than double the Commonwealth's investment.

"The States can't do it alone. If the NDIS is to be delivered, we need to see significant funding dollars from the Federal Government in next week's Budget," Mr Constance said.

"Unlike some of the other States, NSW is investing heavily in disability services with $2 billion in growth funding to be delivered over the next five years."
  "We won't be using our record investment to prop up the other states that are dragging the chain."

According to the Productivity Commission, $900 million is needed for the NDIS trials.

"If the Commonwealth is committed to beginning the trials a year earlier, then it needs to bring forward its investment as well," Mr Constance said.
  "The Prime Minister cannot play political games with such an important reform."

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