Should reconstruction be funded by taxes?
Australia's Prime Minister Julia Gillard has raised the prospect of a one-off tax to help pay for the devastation wrought by severe flooding. Is it right to tax residents to pay for a natural disaster?
Ms Gillard told Australian television that there would be spending cutbacks and a possible levy, and that she was determined to balance the budget as well as rebuild shattered communities.
But opposition leader Tony Abbott said "there's a right way and a wrong way to find that money," and suggested that the government should cut back its own spending before taxing Australians, and scrap the controversial A$36bn broadband network plan.
How should governments raise money to cover reconstructions costs? Is keeping the budget balanced a priority after a disaster? Was Australia well prepared for the flood disaster?
Thank you for your comments. This debate is now closed.