QUEENSLAND STATE BUDGET 2018
Queensland Treasurer Jackie Trad's first budget has focused on major infrastructure delivery to drive growth, off the back of a surprise $1.5 billion surplus.
The operating surplus for this financial year will be $1.512 billion - three times that predicted in the mid-year budget review in December.
The extra money is almost exclusively from an excess of mining royalties, with coal and gas pumping $4 billion into the state economy in 2017/18, an increase of $1 billion on the amount predicted in the last budget.
The surpluses are expected to continue, however, with more conservative estimates of $148 million in 2018/19, $160 million in 2019/20, $110 million in 2020/21 and $690 million in 2021/22.
The Labor government will also keep borrowing to help pay for the infrastructure spend, with state debt levels set to hit $83 billion by 2022.
However, Ms Trad has moved to reframe the debt debate, insisting the levels are manageable.
"Debt is stable, it is sustainable, and it is responsibly funding much-needed infrastructure for our communities and for our economy," she told reporters on Tuesday.
"We make no apologies for borrowing to invest in infrastructure. It's the right thing for jobs today, but it's also critical for economic productivity in the future."
However, Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington said the budget figures showed Labor had underspent on infrastructure by $3 billion for the past three years, meaning it was fixing a problem of its own making.
"The only infrastructure crisis (there is) has been created by a Labor government," Ms Frecklington told reporters in an abrupt 74-second press conference.
"This is a budget of broken dreams and broken promises for the next generation."
Dr Pradeep Philip from Deloitte Access Economics said the government appeared to be on the right track with its focus on borrowing to fund big-ticket items.
"What we see in this budget is a large infrastructure spend which lowers the cost of getting from place to place, lowers the cost of doing business," he said on Tuesday.
"So to that extent, borrowing can be a good thing."
The government's new waste levy will generate $1.3 billion in the next four years, with some funds to subsidise councils to pay for the operation and support of new rubbish disposal programs.
Four other new "luxury" taxes will target the top end of town - high-end cars, foreign property investors and online bets, plus a new land tax category for an estimated 850 large holdings that don't include farms.
Combined, they're expected to rake in $163 million a year for government coffers.
The other major sectors of investment are health, with $18.3 billion, a billion of which is capital works, and $14.1 billion towards education.
Queensland households will get some bill relief with $5.6 billion in rebates.
The government will contribute $500 million to the National Redress Scheme stemming out of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
The Great Barrier Reef has $330 million directed its way in a number of projects to improve water quality and address the effects of climate change.