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Programme 1.4: General revenue assistance

Programme objective

The Government will make general revenue assistance payments to the states and territories. General revenue assistance is a broad category of payments, provided to the states and territories without conditions, to spend according to their own budget priorities.

Under the Intergovernmental Agreement on Federal Financial Relations (Intergovernmental Agreement), the states are entitled to receive payments from the Commonwealth equivalent to the revenue received from the GST.

In addition, the Government will make payments of other general revenue assistance to the states consisting of:

  • payments to the Australian Capital Territory to assist in meeting the additional municipal costs which arise from Canberra’s role as the National Capital and to compensate for the additional costs resulting from the national capital planning influences on the provision of water and sewerage services;
  • payments to Western Australia to compensate for the loss of royalty revenue resulting from the removal of the exemption of condensate from crude oil excise in the 2008-09 Budget;
  • payments to Western Australia as a share of royalties collected by the Commonwealth under the Offshore Petroleum (Royalty) Act 2006 in respect of the North West Shelf oil and gas project off the coast of Western Australia;
  • payments to the Northern Territory in lieu of royalties on uranium mining in the Ranger Project Area due to the Commonwealth’s ownership of uranium in the Northern Territory; and
  • payments to New South Wales and Victoria to compensate for Commonwealth taxes paid by Snowy Hydro Ltd in proportion to the states’ shareholdings.
  • Elements of this programme are linked to the Industry portfolio. Also refer to Budget Paper No. 3, Federal Financial Relations 2014-15.

Programme deliverables

The programme deliverables are:

  • general revenue assistance payments to the states and territories made in accordance with the payment arrangements specified in the Intergovernmental Agreement.

Key performance indicators

The key performance indicators are:

  • the Commonwealth Treasury will make general revenue assistance payments to the states and territories that reflect the requirements, the amounts and timeframes specified in the Intergovernmental Agreement; and
  • the Commonwealth Treasury will provide GST revenue data on a monthly, quarterly and annual basis, and will maintain a schedule of estimates of annual net GST receipts in accordance with the requirements of the Intergovernmental Agreement.

Analysis of performance

In accordance with the Intergovernmental Agreement, total general revenue assistance payments of $52.4 billion were made to the states and territories in 2013-14. Payments included:

  • GST entitlements to the states and territories totalling $51.1 billion;
  • payments to Western Australia of a share of royalties collected by the Commonwealth under the Offshore Petroleum (Royalty) Act 2006 totalling $1.1 billion; and
  • other general revenue assistance payments totalling $184.3 million.
  • The Treasury also recouped $0.7 billion in GST administration costs in 2013-14.
  • Monthly, quarterly and annual GST revenue data were provided each month in accordance with the requirements of the Intergovernmental Agreement.
  • All payments were accurately determined and made in a timely manner.