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Public Service Staffing - email sent 19/6/12

Daniel Hurst
Brisbane Times

Re: More pay means fewer staff, Newman Warns, Brisbane Times, 19/6/12

Your article drew attention to disagreements about proposals to reduce Queensland’s public service by (say) 20,000 because, in the premier’s view, “Labor have employed 20,000 more public servants than the people of Queensland can currently afford”.

I should like to submit for your consideration that the issue is a bit more complicated than this, because:

  • Queensland appears unable to pay public servants, not necessarily because too many staff were employed, but rather because there was a massive blow-out in capital spending which left the state with a very high debt level;
  • The options and methods that the Commission of Audit has proposed to deal with Queensland’s fiscal difficulties seem limited and inadequate.

My reasons for suggesting this are outlined in Inadequate Goals and Inadequate Methods (in Auditing the Commission).

John Craig