InDaily

Adelaide's independent news

Support

Targeted Service SA centres among most profitable, productive

Local

Three metropolitan Service SA centres earmarked for closure are among the busiest and most profitable in the state, according to documents obtained by Labor under Freedom of Information.

 

Print article

The State Budget delivered last September revealed the Prospect, Modbury and Mitcham Service SA centres would close as part of a broader revamp of the group’s statewide operations.

The Opposition today released FOI documents showing the Prospect centre was Service SA’s second-highest earner with $25.1 million in 2018/19, after the Marion centre’s $25.6 million.

The Modbury centre ranked sixth with $17.4 million, followed by Mitcham with $16.5 million.

The three centres also ranked inside the top 10 for the number of transactions conducted.

Prospect was fourth with 191,747, with Modbury fifth on 176,127 and Mitcham eighth with 151,092.

The Elizabeth office had the highest transaction count of 250,369, while the Adelaide office was tenth with 140,410.

But Labor today accused the Marshall Government of “fiddling with the figures” by removing inquiries and reducing the total transactions count in what appeared to be “a deliberate attempt by the Liberals to artificially deflate the number of people that use and rely on Service SA Centres”.

Opposition Leader Peter Malinauskas said the figures were “yet more evidence the Marshall Liberal Government has made the wrong call” in closing the Prospect, Modbury and Mitcham centres.

“Demand is clearly high for these centres. So why close them? This is only making the everyday lives of South Australians harder,” he said.

Transport and Infrastructure Minister Stephan Knoll said that while there was “no doubt” Service SA service quality could be improved, the government had “made it very clear that these centres will not be closing until an alternative service delivery model is in place”.

“That’s why we’re undertaking these reforms, to deliver a better service and help prevent people having to line up at a Service SA centre,” he said.

“At the moment, around 80 per cent of all transactions can be done online – our reforms are looking to deliver better and more convenient services.”

Treasurer Rob Lucas told InDaily in July that he was looking at privatising Service SA because the Liberal Government had been locked into considering selling the Motor Vehicle Registry under a deal Labor made when it sold the Lands Titles Office for $1.6 billion in 2017.

The deal included a separate $80 million contract giving exclusive rights to negotiate for the further privatisation of “other state registry functions such as the Motor Vehicles Registry”.

Lucas said the registry comprised about “97 per cent” of Service SA business.

Under the deal, if the Government doesn’t sell the registry to the consortium or a third-party manager by 12 October, 2020, it must repay the $80 million plus interest or hand Land Services SA an additional seven-year extension to its existing 40-year contract.

Want to comment?

Send us an email, making it clear which story you’re commenting on and including your full name (required for publication) and phone number (only for verification purposes). Please put “Reader views” in the subject.

We’ll publish the best comments in a regular “Reader Views” post. Your comments can be brief, or we can accept up to 350 words, or thereabouts.

InDaily has changed the way we receive comments. Go here for an explanation.

 

We value local independent journalism. We hope you do too.

InDaily provides valuable, local independent journalism in South Australia. As a news organisation it offers an alternative to The Advertiser, a different voice and a closer look at what is happening in our city and state for free. Any contribution to help fund our work is appreciated. Please click below to become an InDaily supporter.

Powered by PressPatron

More Local stories

Loading next article

Subscribe to InDaily – it’s free!

South Australia’s locally owned, independent source of digital news.

Subscribe now and go in the monthly draw* for your chance to WIN a $100 voucher!

Subscribe free here

*Terms and conditions apply

Welcome back!

Did you know it’s FREE to subscribe?

Subscribe now and go in the monthly draw* for your chance to WIN a $100 voucher!

Subscribe

*Terms and conditions apply