PRIME Minister Malcolm Turnbull says the plan is to introduce a GST system that is fair and passes the
PRIME Minister Malcolm Turnbull says the plan is to introduce a GST system that is fair and passes the "pub test” in Bundy. He visited the region in February 2016. The NewsMail did not approach the pub in the photo yesterday. Craig Warhurst BUN160216MALCOLM3

BUNDY PUB TEST: GST no State of Origin

PRIME Minister Malcolm Turnbull says the plan is to introduce a GST system that is fair and passes the "pub test” in Bundy.

Unfortunately, it's not clear if it does ... yet.

On Monday, Mr Turnbull announced the government's plan to change GST distribution and there are concerns some states, such as Queensland, would be worse off.

The Sunshine State is set to lose $1.6b after the shake-up, which is set to happen later this week.

Economist Saul Eslake argues it will create a US-style inequality between states.

"The aim is to have... a GST system that is fair,” Mr Turnbull said.

"That it passes the pub test in Burnie and Bunbury, in Bundaberg and Bathurst - everywhere - and Bendigo, right across the country.”

Yesterday, the NewsMail hit Bundy's pubs.

But we had little joy finding someone to speak on the complex matter.

Firstly, and understandably, those pubs we approached weren't keen to be embroiled in a politically controversial topic.

Then, when we finally found one that would allow us to talk to patrons, the subject proved one that drinkers didn't really want to put down their schooners for a chat about.

Politics is clearly not State of Origin.

We had little more joy when we took to the streets.

Earlier we went to Hinkler MP Keith Pitt and the Treasurer Scott Morrison to get an understanding of the reasoning behind the changes to come.

Mr Morrison said he remained committed to the "fair go” principle of horizontal fiscal equalisation.

"Our goal is straightforward: to deliver a fairer, more durable and more efficient system for implementing horizontal fiscal equalisation into the future in the national interest,” Mr Morrison said.

His office said the government was boosting the GST funding pool divided between the states and territories, which has increased by $3.2 billion in the last year.

Under horizontal fiscal equalisation, states are meant to receive funding so that each has the same fiscal capacity to provide the same standard of services and infrastructure.