Qld budget to tackle debt load


Queensland will pay more than $2 billion interest on debt next financial year.

Treasurer Tim Nicholls will hand down the Liberal National Party's second budget on Tuesday which he described as an "easier" task than last year, when 14,000 public servant positions were axed.

The government is dealing with an unexpected $1.2 billion tax and royalty revenue write down, and the deficit has grown to more than $7 billion.

A returned surplus has been delayed by a year until 2015/16.

Mr Nicholls says the state would borrow again to continue its hospital building program and debt will increase 2013-14 to plateau at the end of 2014-15.

"In 2013-14 alone, more than $2 billion will be spent servicing the government debt we inherited from Labor," he said.

A debt figure for 2013-14 was not provided.

Opposition Leader Annastacia Palaszczuk says the government has broken its election pledge to bring down the cost of living.

"I don't know how on earth people are going to make ends meet ... people had better sit back and brace themselves," she said.

With other increases and a 22 per cent electricity price hike, families are staring at a $400-plus cost of living increase next financial year.

Federal Treasurer Wayne Swan says the budget won't be about supporting jobs or providing better services.

"Mr Newman has simply gone too hard, too fast with his savage cuts to jobs and frontline services," Mr Swan said.

Mr Nicholls has ruled out any new cost of living relief in the budget, however told AAP on Tuesday $5.1 billion would be spent on existing concession programs, not including tax-related exemptions or deductions.

Aged pensioners are the biggest winners and are expected to receive $1500 worth of concessions in 2013-14.

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