Recent evidence given to a Parliamentary Committee by senior public servants has raised doubts about whether the Rann Government’s claimed $30 million a year savings in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) costs were actually being achieved.
The Chief Executives of Education and Health have told recent meetings of the Legislative Council Budget and Finance Committee that their share of the supposed ‘savings’ were only $2 million for Education and $4.7 million for Health.
Liberal Member of the Legislative Council, Rob Lucas, said today that, given the Health and Education portfolios constitute more than half of the State Budget it seems hard to believe that total savings in Health and Education only comprise $6.7 million of the claimed $30 million in savings.
“Unless of course the total ‘savings’ figure is actually much less than $30 million,” Mr Lucas said.
“This is especially so when it is considered that both portfolios have extraordinarily complex IT needs with Education having almost 1,000 work sites spread across the entire state.”
Mr Lucas said that if these figures were accurate then it would mean that a number of agencies with much smaller budgets would be facing massive cuts in their ICT budgets.
This evidence to the Budget and Finance Committee supports leaked information from senior public servants that Treasurer Foley’s claims of $30 million in annual savings are ‘rubbery’ and almost impossible to believe.
“Public service sources have claimed documents exist to show that a number of agencies have strongly disputed the level of savings claimed by the Rann Government for these agencies.”
The Opposition yesterday lodged 32 separate Freedom of Information applications to access these documents in an effort to find the facts behind the ‘rubbery’ figures.