100,000 degree write off becomes policy shambles from Budget-Reply to breakfast time

15 May 2015 Media release

Hours after the Leader of the Opposition announced a Labor Government ‘will write off the HECS debt of 100,000 science, technology, engineering and math students’ Mr Shorten in now reeling under pressure to come up with the details.

Last night Labor were claiming this policy would cost $353 million. This morning Labor are claiming the policy will cost $45 million.

The Department of Education and Training estimates the cost to taxpayers will be more than $2.25 billion - on a conservative assessment of the policy.

Last night Labor were claiming 100,000 students would benefit, today Labor’s policy document only mentions ‘20,000 STEM award degrees’.

But of the 184,000 students doing STEM degrees, today Mr Shorten is unable to explain who will be the losers under his policy.

Nothing has changed with Labor – they are still hopeless with money and haven’t a clue what their schemes would actually cost.

This is the sort of policy debacle and dodgy figures the Rudd/Gillard/Rudd Governments were famous for.

Mr Shorten also needs to explain why he is returning to a failed policy which was tried and then scrapped under the previous Labor Government because it didn’t work.

The so-called ‘year of ideas’ is already off to a bad start, Bill Shorten has no plan for future. Last night was all about politics and uninformed, unfunded thought bubbles.