Shadow Environment Minister Tjorn Sibma has called upon the WA Treasury to tackle systemic and unlawful waste levy avoidance which is costing the State up to $100 million each year.
Mr Sibma used budget estimates hearings last week to raise the issue with Treasury officials, as his earlier calls for the Government to take action have been unheeded.
“This large sum is the industry’s own estimate of the amount of money taxpayers are missing out on as a result of systemic and long-standing practices of waste levy avoidance, especially as it relates to the disposal of construction and demolition waste,” Mr Sibma said.
Mr Sibma asked Treasury to consult with their colleagues at the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (DWER), to quantify the amount of revenue being lost annually and to encourage them to improve the regulatory framework for waste management.
“I am pleased that Treasury officials accepted my recommendation and will speak to their colleagues in DWER about this missing revenue,” he said.
“As I have stated previously, waste levy avoidance is a public policy scandal hiding in plain sight; perhaps with Treasury now having a clearer focus on the economic cost of the currently inadequate regulatory and enforcement system, the Minister for Environment and DWER might swing into action.
“Unfortunately, the McGowan Government will not give a guarantee about when it will make overdue changes to waste management regulations in Western Australia, which will result in the continued growth of the environmental and economic costs.”