Tax cuts to end bracket creep

Treasurer Joe Hockey will today announce planned income tax cuts.

Tax cuts to end bracket creep

Treasurer Joe Hockey will today lay the foundations of the Government’s strategy to deliver personal income tax cuts for low and middle-income earners.

The Economic Case for Personal Income Tax Cuts will put front and centre the proposed tax cuts as a re-election strategy. An options paper on tax reform, which will include the details of planned income tax cuts, will be put to voters before the next federal election.

Mr Hockey will today lay out the proposals in a speech to the Tax Institute, and Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand in Sydney. The Treasurer believes there is no other option as the current system is increasingly penalising low and middle-income earners. He estimates that if nothing is done to redress the balance, around 300,000 Australians will move into the next, higher tax bracket within two years simply due to inflation and rising wages.

"Many Australians are not fully aware that they will be paying higher taxes as a result of the stealthy rise of bracket creep," he says. "For the worker out there on an average income, they might not notice it the first year. They might not even notice in the second or third year. But, eventually, it bites. We are now at that point."

The plan to cut income tax will be used to apply further pressure on state governments to agree on a plan to increase revenue, after they failed to agree on the raising of GST to 15 per cent, as proposed by NSW Premier Mike Baird. However, on Friday the state treasurers did agree to expand GST to apply to all goods coming into Australia that are sold by foreign business. This measure will apply from 1 July 2017.

Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen said that Mr Hockey’s plans for tax cuts were “all talk” and the Opposition would only be interested as and when the Treasurer was able to show how they would be funded.

"That's exactly what was promised prior to the 2013 election," Mr Bowen said. "If now the Treasurer is talking about new tax cuts, he needs to argue in the same breath for the GST increase or new spending cuts that will fund them."

Read more at the Sydney Morning Herald

Opinion: Bigger fix needed
While low and middle-income earners may welcome any tax cuts forthcoming, balancing nation’s budget cannot be achieved through measures aimed at appeasing voters come election time.

Mr Hockey will today announce that the government has no other choice than to stop low and middle-income earners being penalised by an unfair tax system, but it does. Time and time again the discussion on tax reform comes back to the overly generous superannuation tax concessions afforded to high earners.

Instead of being a means by which every Australian can successfully fund their own retirement, superannuation is fast becoming the greatest tax rort available to those earning hundreds of thousands of dollars each year.

Data from the ATO compiled for the Murray Financial System Inquiry released in 2014, shows that the top 10 per cent of income earners actually claim 38 per cent of government support provided by superannuation tax concessions. While the bottom 10 per cent of income earners are disadvantaged by paying the 15 per cent superannuation tax rate, as their marginal tax rate is in reality lower.

So while lowering the income tax levels for low and middle-income earners may give them a dollar to two extra in their pocket, they may be further disadvantaged by the superannuation tax concession. And all the while the rich are simply getting richer.

Piecemeal solutions to the tax system and government funding need to stop. If the Government is truly committed to strengthening of the economy, creating jobs and encouraging growth, then it must look at a fairer system for all.

Should lower and middle-income earners pay less tax? And if so, how should the revenue be replaced? Is it time for the government to bite the bullet and look at the whole tax system, not just a pre-election quick fix?





    COMMENTS

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    Saalbach
    24th Aug 2015
    9:53am
    Maybe my maths aren't what they used to be, but I figure that if wages go up 10% then the Govt gets at least a 10% increase in revenue (actually more, because of the tax free threshold). Even adjusting the rates to eliminate bracket creep would still allow for some increase. Why then does the Fed Govt need to talk to the States about ways to address the decrease in revenue? Maybe they just need to man up and introduce a separate tax on super income greater than say $50,000. Alternatively, take a higher proportion than the current 15% on super contributions that total more than $10,00 per annum. I know that those on high incomes (and therefore high super payouts) may not like it, but it would solve lots of the supposed problems.
    Hasbeen
    24th Aug 2015
    3:18pm
    Saalbach personal income tax is a very small part of government revenue. Currently it does not even cover the welfare bill.

    Over half of that personal tax comes from the top 10% of wage earners. A small tax cut to low/middle earners would help these folk, but not effect the budget much at all. It is a way of giving back bracket creep, with little pain.

    Well Debbie, if you think a tax cut is useless, do you suggest they should raise4 the tax instead? If you ever say anything good about this government many folk will faint in shock.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    3:22pm
    Tony's looking Dapper lately !! :-)
    Misty
    24th Aug 2015
    3:31pm
    I would be the first to congratulate them if they did do something good and I did that for stopping the boats but as for anything else they get a thumbs down. My electricity bills have certainly not come down as promised and they seem to go from one disaster to another, I thought the last 2 Labor governments were bad but this government is worse.
    Old Silver Fox
    24th Aug 2015
    3:40pm
    Saalbach, instead of going down the route of increasing taxes, tell the dopey pollies that you are sick of them spending all the time and that they should stop trying to buy votes.
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    6:04pm
    Thank you Debbie. I have been saying this for several years whilst both sides of politics have ALLOWED wealthy Australians to use the superannuation tax shelter set up FOR THEM to its maximum benefit. About time it ended....but don't expect this current government to end the feeding frenzy, compliments of taxpayers.
    Long overdue that bracket creep was addressed.
    What you have not discussed Debbie is that average Australians are and have been under attack from the current government for the past year and a half. What the Treasurer giveth with one hand he takes back with the other (plus GST plus interest).
    TREBOR
    24th Aug 2015
    9:05pm
    https://www.nationalpriorities.org/media/uploads/revenue_-_revenue_pie_2014_big.png

    Individual income taxes - 46% of revenue.

    http://budget.gov.au/2012-13/content/overview/image/p42bottom.gif

    Outgoings 2011-12... won't have changed much.
    GreyViper
    25th Aug 2015
    3:49am
    Seems to me there is misleading information in this article. "the bottom 10 per cent of income earners are disadvantaged by paying the 15 per cent superannuation tax rate, as their marginal tax rate is in reality lower". There is only one rate lower than the 15% for super and that is 0% and that is for earnings less than $18,200. If you earn more than this you pay 19 cents in the dollar above this point but if you put some of that money into super you pay 15 cents in the dollar instead. If you earn less than $35,000 then you are better off making contributions post tax as the government will make a co-contribution.
    Mick, once again you go on about the "superannuation tax shelter" for the wealthy as if they are sinking hundreds of thousands of dollars into their super to dodge tax! Keep in mind that the maximum contribution before tax is only $30,000 and this includes the contributions made by their employer. Not a very big amount if you are "wealthy". I'm not sure what you think the rules are? The other thing that I find amusing is that you seem to think it will be so much better if Labor gets back into power. Ha ha ha. You seem to forget that they are the ones who ran up the debt on the "credit card" that put us in our current predicament. Once the current government stops "attacking us", courtesy of a Labor win at the next election, we'll all be in Shangri-la!
    Anonymous
    27th Aug 2015
    2:50pm
    Stopping the boats was the number one reason I believe that Labor lost the election.
    It will be on the agenda again at the next election and Labor have not said they would continue with the current policy. The Greens will have something to say about that and not one person I know wants the people smuggler trade starting up again.

    We are seeing the backlash in Europe towards the huge influx of refugees/economic migrants. The ordinary Greek and German people do not want any more in their countries...they cannot feed and house them in Greece in particular. They have their own homeless.

    I would not even hazard a guess at the outcome of the next election.
    mangomick
    27th Aug 2015
    6:19pm
    Now Abbott has agreed to send war planes into Syria doesn't he have a moral obligation to start taking some Syrian Refugees. He can no longer say they are only economic refugees.
    He can't have it both ways. kowtowing to the yanks by agreeing to use our planes in Syria but then turning his back on genuine refugees when we are signatories to the U.N convention on Refugees.
    disillusioned
    24th Aug 2015
    10:04am
    Does any one feel there's an election in the air?
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    11:49am
    Say something nice and You'll get Million Bucks for Your Surf Life Saving Club !! :-) :-)
    Gee Whiz
    24th Aug 2015
    12:16pm
    Yep there's an election coming alright and Hockey is running scared.

    The old adage of beware of Greeks bearing gifts, applies very strongly to the likes Joe Hockey.

    Its the hand he keeps hidden behind his back that you have to be scared of.
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    7:48pm
    Sabre rattling. No detailed information. Just another 'promise'....and we all know where promises from this government rank.
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    8:35pm
    Yes but not until 2017 September. Let the Government run its course, patience is a virtue!
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    9:28pm
    A moving target is harder to hit !
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    10:13am
    Disillusioned 10.04 am.. Its all Gas and Wind !!
    A complete reversal this time ! :-)
    " There will be cuts to"......... :-)
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    7:48pm
    plus a GST of 15%.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    7:59pm
    If all Wages were Taxed at 15% and NO Refunds for anyone And I mean Anyone, no Smart Bum Layers needed. Sack half the Tax Office and hangers on. 15% GST 0n every thing yes and all Money leaving the Country,
    And that means You Mr Corporation !! I think Ill go outside now and Have a Cigar with My Mate !! :-) :-)
    TREBOR
    24th Aug 2015
    9:06pm
    Interesting thoughts, parti - I'd like to see overall figures on that idea.... we need a full review and upgrade of taxes (not just income tax) and it must be time to think outside the square.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    9:18pm
    Oh there were a few Items to be adjusted but not Many !! Not like the Dark Twisted cave they have there now !!
    World Prophet
    25th Aug 2015
    1:04pm
    Does taxing everybody at 15% include taxing pensioners? Just asking, parti...
    particolor
    25th Aug 2015
    2:43pm
    No ! You still get Your GST Pittance subsidy !! :-)

    24th Aug 2015
    10:14am
    There is no doubt our tax system needs an overhaul but it is so complex and unlike the 80s we don't have concensus between the 2 main parties on an economic direction - super is one aspect but of equal concern is that if we have reached the position that now 50% of taxpayers actually pay no net tax we are seriously heading for a wold of pain. While we can all expect the rich to pay their far share everyone should contribute something.
    I am a conservative vote and the one main aspect that I am not happy with from the Abbott government is economic and budget management - I do think Abbott or Hockey have a clue - I still think thye are marginally better than labors economic team of Swan and Leigh and their predecessors Swan and Wong but that is not saying much - I have read many god comments from people who comment on this site of all political leanings that suggest to me that they could do a better job than the current lot. Australia needs a Keating/Costello type badly
    Anonymous
    24th Aug 2015
    10:17am
    to correct my previous article - I DO NOT think Abbott or Hockey have a clue on ho to sort out the budget or manage the economy
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    7:56pm
    Gah, gah...........
    "While we can all expect the rich to pay their fair share.........." Really????
    Get real bob. The rich DO NOT PAY THEIR FAIR SHARE. That is one of the problems. Whilst the rich pay quite a lot of tax what you fail to mention is that this cohort is able to reduce taxable income significantly using a myriad of techniques. On top of that there is the superannuation Tax Shelter which the rich use to great benefit, compliments of the taxpayer. The result is AS A PERCENTAGE your cohort pay little tax. And nobody seeks to end this rort. That is the tragedy. And then your lot blame Labor for everything to avoid liability. Give me strength!
    Kato
    24th Aug 2015
    10:47am
    Disappointing no better than labour buying cheap votes. Nothing creative from the most inept treasurer in history.just borrow from Howard.
    Reeper
    24th Aug 2015
    10:50am
    ...errrr, and your highly academic reasoning?
    Paulodapotter
    24th Aug 2015
    11:05am
    No need to be academic to ascertain the lack of vision shown by the present government, who are so timid to innovate due to the risk of failure, that they hold onto the status quo of budget squeezing instead of encouraging development of new technologies. Accounting for bracket creep is simply an easy means of appearing to care for their constituents while real tax reform sends them terrified in search of their security blankets.
    Kato
    24th Aug 2015
    5:22pm
    Reeper and where is your higher academic reasoning? With the treasurer perchance you must have your head up somewhere as this is the same rhetoric Joe gave the public over twelve months ago only for them to see taxes go up.bit like the online rubbish its not,a tax just plugging a hole. The only hole Joe needs to plug is the one between his ears.
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    7:59pm
    Howard leftovers Kato. The current government is an absolute disgrace to the liberal brand. Little more than deceitful, lying, nasty pieces of work. The best thing that can happen at the next election is that the entire frontbench is voted out and the remaining LNP MPs rebuild the party.
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    8:05pm
    Mick, it is a case of being "cruel to be kind". Tough measures are needed otherwise there will all end up in the poor house. Rich people are the cornerstone of most societies and they give more than they take. No Government in its right mind wants them to up and leave. More people in Australia should look at ways of emulating them instead of complaining all the time.
    Adrianus
    27th Aug 2015
    12:05pm
    You can have Howard leftovers or if you prefer Rudd and Gillard leftovers? This current government may not be up to the job but they are our best chance by far!
    mangomick
    27th Aug 2015
    12:38pm
    You should go on tour as a stand-up[ comedian Frank.
    Did you hear the one about Abbott and his great idea.
    No ,neither has any one else :-)
    Betty Blue
    24th Aug 2015
    10:48am
    Dear Joe my great admiration for you is tempered by two things. I am all for people with a job even over 65 paying a fair rate of tax but what about people like me over 86 not earning enough in pension to pay tax trembling with every envelope that is dropped in my box when I who have never been in debt can't cover bills any longer. Yes i have a computer and am grateful for all the discounts I can get. The computer is my lifeline as it is to many living alone often the o nly human beings we contact over long periods of time.
    I can tell you it is rotten to be old lonely and watching every penny. This will never happen to you so what would you know about poverty?
    LiveItUp
    24th Aug 2015
    11:10am
    I ask for a quote before I consent to anything. I recently got into trouble for being incentive because I asked for a quote before organising a funeral. I noticed that Telstra shows your phone bill spend online now and that some power companies are calculating bills daily for people with smart meters.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    11:37am
    Well said Betty Blue ! :-)
    NGE
    24th Aug 2015
    12:00pm
    ! agree Betty Blue. My circumstances are similar to yours although I haven't reached your wonderful age. I too have never been in debt but I shudder every time I collect my mail....everything is going up..except the pension. I particularly like your line " I can tell you it is rotten to be old lonely and watching every penny" Couldn't agree more
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    12:08pm
    I had a Board Meeting yesterday with Myself, and came to the conclusion that I'm only living to make Rich People Richer !!
    Goodbye Cruel World :-(
    Misty
    24th Aug 2015
    5:20pm
    So sorry to hear you are feeling lonely Betty Blue I have 2 adult sons living with me, my husband of 50 years passed away 11 months ago and I have found my computer a great comfort in batelling grief and this site in particular has helped enormously so I hope it does for you too. I do keep in touch with all my family on a family only site on Facebook as well as a public one and that is a great help as my husband's family live in Austria.
    downunder
    24th Aug 2015
    10:59am
    Smoking Joe, How about closing the monster gaps used by multi nationals where tax avoidance is rampant, clean up negative gearing (not necessarily abolishing, but blocking the abuse), the same counts for Superannuation. But of course that would not be popular with your mates.
    The next election cannot come fast enough to get rid of this Muppet show
    sirmikd
    24th Aug 2015
    11:17am
    So you may want to get rid of the "Muppets" but who will be running things then " Noddy "? As a country I think THAT is our problem !
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    11:39am
    We need THE COUNT ! :-)
    Paulodapotter
    24th Aug 2015
    11:58am
    Between the two major parties, it's a case of tweedle dumb and tweedle dumber. It matters little to which party you attribute the name. The lunatic left which we attribute to the Greens & before them the Democrats were the ones who pushed the raising of the tax free threshold to $20,000. They're the ones who are pushing for real tax reform and to bring the multi-nationals to task. They're the ones who are pushing for the development of new technologies. Who are the lunatics here?
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    12:01pm
    same Boat, Different Crew ? That's Australia now ! Enjoy ! :-)
    Patriot
    24th Aug 2015
    3:06pm
    particolor
    With dual/triple (SAME) captains though
    Rothshield, Morgan & Rockefeller!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    3:16pm
    We just had a Cracker Barrel Thunder Storm here ! And I thought Id lost my Computer ! :-( But a bit of ***ing around and its back ! :-) We are having one of those 20 thunder storm days !! Get a Surge Buster !! :-)
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    8:05pm
    Good post downunder. Sadly this government will continue to turn the blind eye whilst the rich continue to gorge themselves at the superannuation feeding trough.
    Hockey's speech is the result of the by-election coming in WA. But of course any 'promise' from this government is worthless given the past 18 months so nobody is buying 'lower taxes'. We all know it will not happen unless the GST is increased to 15%....and then the wealthy will get the real tax cuts and everybody else will get the crumbs.
    Not buying Joe. Go smoke another cigar!
    sirmikd
    24th Aug 2015
    11:12am
    Hockey is probably right to adjust the tax free threshold now but it should be adjusted EACH YEAR - probably in line with wages growth or inflation. Then we wouldn't have a situation where there is a disproportionate gap developing.
    I remember a while back it was $6000 and stayed there for several years having detrimental affect on lower incomes as it does if it is not adjusted regularly.
    TREBOR
    24th Aug 2015
    1:16pm
    Best idea I've heard on that issue of adjustment... should be automatic.
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    8:09pm
    Some countries do not have a tax free threshold. And you miss the all important point that Australia gas a deficit. So how can taxes be lowered? WIll not happen unless GST is brought in to take with the other hand...and that will hurt those on lower incomes much more than the current tax scale as the GST is not avoidable whilst paying tax is related to income.
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    8:13pm
    Those on lower incomes will have to adjust, get an education motivate themselves and at least try to lift themselves.
    Ted
    24th Aug 2015
    11:21am
    What about looking at issues like Medicare levy. I rarely go to the doctor and cannot afford private health cover on the single wage I am on. How about we look at a user pays system for the medicare levy. Before you all jump up and down yes the levy does have a major impact on me every year as I still have a HECS debt which I have been paying off for the last 12 years. There is are also no other concessions for middle income earners we are expected to support everyone through our taxes etc. You have to remember that 15% out of a single wage for a single older person is a lot of money when you have no other income to back to you up. I think its ridiculous that the wage I am on I barely make ends meet, by the time I pay rent, bills, insurances, cost of living etc some times there is very little left for food let alone a few luxuries. I think its highway robbery what I have to pay in tax. Every year when I do my return in spite of paying extra tax to reduce how much I have to pay back, I still have to pay back more. Yes I go to an accountant and he is very reliable and has been in business for himself for nearly 40 years so he knows what he is doing. The reality is even on a barely above low income, if you just live your life and pay what you are supposed to pay, have all the insurances etc that you are now expected to have, you have make decisions such as what is more important contents insurance, income protection, funeral protection or health insurance? I cant afford all of them so health insurance gets dropped because I rarely have issues although I am sure as I age that will change. Then what goes, income protection, great Im in my 50's. Why do I have to choose?
    LiveItUp
    24th Aug 2015
    12:09pm
    I only insure for major events and put what I save into an account for emergencies. I don't have funeral insurance because quite frankly that is not my problem when I'm dead and the state can pay for the disposal of the body I have abandoned if there is no money left to pay for it.
    KSS
    24th Aug 2015
    1:10pm
    And therein lies the problem Ted. Like most people you want to impose greater burden in the areas you seldom or never use - in your case medical fees - in favour of lower fees/charges/tax in the areas you do use such as your HECS debt. The problem is we don't all have the same financial or lifestyle profile so who exactly is going to bare the burden? I don't have a HECS debt for example so why should I be subsidising those who do?

    I do agree with one thing though and that is that the single working person is up for full wack on everything, no discounts, assistance, tax relief etc and every time 'someone' wants 'more', its the singles that pay the post.

    Just a piece of advice on income protection. Have a look what your superfund offers in that area. It is considerably cheaper to access income protection through that avenue than try to afford a retail insurance. In addition, you don't pay for it out of your salary as you would for a retail insurance. It may make the pay packet a few dollars more.
    TREBOR
    24th Aug 2015
    1:18pm
    Very socialist of you, KSS - that is sort of the basis on which this country has run for ages - all contribute to some extent for the overall good. We are a mix of socialism and capitalism - and it worked reasonably for a long time.
    Misty
    24th Aug 2015
    5:27pm
    What a novel idea Bonny, what does your family think of I as they will be the ones picking up the tab but if you don't have any family then I guess you don't care.
    Tom Tank
    24th Aug 2015
    11:37am
    I agree with the article in that what is required is a comprehensive overhaul of our tax system. Everybody should pay their fair share without numerous loopholes that allow a privileged few to reduce their tax payments while still getting all the advantages that are paid for by the ordinary tax payer.
    One big change that is needed is for the Law to be altered so that the intent of a Law takes precedence rather than the specific wording. It was Garfield Barwick who established that the actual wording decided the application of a Law. This has allowed lawyers to exploit loopholes that exist because the wording of a specific part of tax law left a loophole. The result is smart well paid lawyers can minimise a well heeled client's tax in a manner that conforms with a written Law. Meanwhile the rest of us pay full whack.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    11:44am
    Yep !
    LiveItUp
    24th Aug 2015
    12:04pm
    These loop holes are available to everyone so there is no excuse for not using them. To play the game one needs to learn the rules. Most tax accountants etc will err well on the side of caution as they don't want the hassles of not doing so. However a well educated taxpayer will instruct their accountants and not just rely on their accountants judgement.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    12:16pm
    Bugger ! :-( I've looked and cant find a FREE Accountant anywhere ? They want MORE than Id save !! :-(
    LiveItUp
    24th Aug 2015
    1:33pm
    I don't use an accountant I just research what the rules are and work it all out from there. That's a free accountant. Most times a accountant would miss a lot of what I dig up as they are not specialised in the areas that I use. I used to do all the work for my SMSF until I found a lady who was an expert in SMSFs but didn't charge a fortune.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    1:50pm
    In another lifetime, and a FREE pastime I did all My Shearer friends Tax Returns for them ! They were amazed at their Returns ! :-) Some of them had had a suitcase half full of Group Certificates for years with some of them Missing ? But I got through it and made some excuse for the Missing Items And the Tax Department was Very Understanding :-) Good Luck !!
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    2:00pm
    PS .. Its a while back now and I think a lot of it was Tax Stamps and they were everywhere in the case !! And some Missing ?? I wrote a note and said.. He said a Ram ate them ! :-) And they wrote back.. We Appreciate Your Sense of Humour and have Made Adjustments for the Missing Items ! :-)
    Misty
    24th Aug 2015
    5:30pm
    Bonny you are lucky to be earning enough to have to fill out a tax form, not many elderly people are in this position.
    Tom Tank
    24th Aug 2015
    6:31pm
    Yes Bonny these loopholes are available but it requires highly paid lawyers, along with accountants, to actually find them. Why do you think the ATO spends so much time in court?
    The obvious loopholes are closed down therefore the ordinary person cannot access them.
    Anyone on a pension cannot afford an accountant assuming there actually have enough income to pay tax, which most don't, at least until Hockey gets going perhaps.
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    8:15pm
    Good post Tom.
    You are obviously one of the abusers bonny. Your retort about loopholes being there for everyone to use avoids the point that these loopholes benefit high income earners, not average earners. Your statement is flogged to death bonny.......by the rich to justify their special deals. Sickening really.
    Cookiegirl
    24th Aug 2015
    11:45am
    I'm coming up to 50 years of work and although I have super ( we weren't offered it till very late in the piece) and still I probably have five to six years to cover me.
    I was paid out a small amount ( when I had to leave to nurse my son in hospital for two years before he died) and all of it went to pay the hospital and fees.
    Now husband has gone and no money left. I even returned to school to enhance my limited prospects to get a good job but of course the GFC hit not only me but many others.
    With medical issues but not deemed serious enough to warrant disability cover ( spinal stenosis, insulin dependent diabetes, metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance, bulging disc and damaged knee ) I am still seeking work. No pension for me but I also knew I had to support myself.
    Its tough just buying normal foods ( luxuries went a long time ago) electricity and gas bills paralyse me.
    I know that there are many others in the same boat so when the Hockey's of our world take money that is really not due to them, what hope do we have?
    Cookiegirl
    24th Aug 2015
    11:45am
    I'm coming up to 50 years of work and although I have super ( we weren't offered it till very late in the piece) and still I probably have five to six years to cover me.
    I was paid out a small amount ( when I had to leave to nurse my son in hospital for two years before he died) and all of it went to pay the hospital and fees.
    Now husband has gone and no money left. I even returned to school to enhance my limited prospects to get a good job but of course the GFC hit not only me but many others.
    With medical issues but not deemed serious enough to warrant disability cover ( spinal stenosis, insulin dependent diabetes, metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance, bulging disc and damaged knee ) I am still seeking work. No pension for me but I also knew I had to support myself.
    Its tough just buying normal foods ( luxuries went a long time ago) electricity and gas bills paralyse me.
    I know that there are many others in the same boat so when the Hockey's of our world take money that is really not due to them, what hope do we have?
    Paulodapotter
    24th Aug 2015
    12:00pm
    You're repeating yourself Cookiegirl. I hope your super does too.
    jackie
    24th Aug 2015
    12:08pm
    If the multinationals paid their fair share of taxes there would not be tax problems in the first place. Hockey doesn't want to bother them because they are pulling his strings.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    12:12pm
    I see now that England is jumping up and down about Multi Nationals Avoiding Tax ! :-) :-)
    wally
    24th Aug 2015
    12:09pm
    Taxation reform and poverty seem to be the topics of the day, with accommodation and utilities costs rising almost daily, making it almost impossible for us poor old pensioners to be able to feed ourselves.

    The news media featured a recent story about a 91 year old man who has found a solution to the above listed problems, with health and dental care thrown in for free. How did he do it? He got himself arrested for being a "drug mule" smuggling illegal nasty stuff into Australia. If convicted, he will be sentenced to prison where he will be housed, clothed, fed and be looked after by the taxpayer for the term of his incarceration.

    This may not be the perfect solution for everyone, but for some, it might be a viable alternative the the living(?) conditions they presently endure.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    12:22pm
    :-) :-) Saw that :-) And at 91 Its safe to drop the Soap ! And other Prisoners (Well Most) Respect the Elderly ... Solution Found .. by Cunning Old Rascal :-) :-)
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    8:18pm
    So when are you going wally?
    wally
    26th Aug 2015
    8:50am
    Well, mick, I'm waiting for my situation to get worsen and more importantly, I'm not 91 yet!
    Supernan
    24th Aug 2015
    12:31pm
    Tax cuts for lower income brackets - except Pensioners who get income cuts ! And still the Millionaires & huge Corporation pay nothing ! Its true that if lower income earners pay too much Tax, it does affect the economy because have less to spend. But interest rates being so low also affects the economy. 32 % own their own homes. So low interest is bad for their savings - as it is for many Pensioners.
    TREBOR
    24th Aug 2015
    1:13pm
    Now we see the true reason behind the putsch to increase GST percentage and coverage - another trade-off of 'income tax cuts' for GST that will take up the slack across the broader community - meaning - in the case of pensioners -those who currently do not pay income tax.

    One thing about governments is that you can guarantee that no tax changes etc will ever affect its bottom line, not even to the extent of putting any extra income into a fund to accrue interest for the Australian people - every cent in = every cent out and then some, and thus governments will never set up a tax regime in which government does not get its share.

    We need a full overhaul of the entire tax system and its rationalisation into a very few taxation strands, properly controlled and where necessary - as with social security - place din separate and untouchable accounts for the purpose for which it is gathered - and not just flung into 'consolidated revenue' and disposed at whim and will by politicians.

    Pay the bills first - then they can look at the luxuries.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    1:24pm
    I said that once before Throw it all in the Skip its Antiquated Garbage and more holes than Swiss Cheese !! Get Modern ! Lawyers peruse Books and Books full of Rubbish to find a Tiny Space for their Clients to crawl through !!
    You cant find one Can You ? :-(
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    8:20pm
    You've got it: more GST money will fund tax cuts, mainly for the rich. Give with one hand and take back more than you gave with the other. This bunch are true to form.
    Teddyboy.
    24th Aug 2015
    1:21pm
    Good old Libs. They are experts at tax cuts and believe they fix everything.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    1:29pm
    PAYE's have nowhere to go ! :-(
    Put Your hands up !! :-)
    LiveItUp
    24th Aug 2015
    1:35pm
    PAYEs pay tax on their gross income but businesses pay tax on what is left after all expenses.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    1:42pm
    Exactly !! And after all expense's and a Smart as lawyer there not a lot left for the Chooks to Scratch ? :-(
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    7:36pm
    People need to expect less services as there are far too many at all levels of Government. I would like to see a flat rate of income tax of around 15% and a reduction in the threshold as well. GST to take up the rest.
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    8:24pm
    That is about all you ever get from the liberal side of politics Teddyboy. That's why this side side of politics never introduces any of the major projects and initiatives we all enjoy. Can you imagine getting an NBN or universal superannuation for all under a liberal government. All you ever get is tax cuts...for the big end of town, and a refusal to end fraud like the superannuation Tax Shelter which keeps on keeping on and the multinational tax fraud which is not fixed. Tells a story
    Happy Jack
    24th Aug 2015
    2:32pm
    You can be rest assured of one thing- these characters will not make changes to anything that will impinge on their capacity to protect and enhance their accumulation of wealth, to wit- negative gearing and trusts, not to forget that beauty; tax free super saving havens. Far easier to slug the old age pensioners.
    hedi
    24th Aug 2015
    2:34pm
    How about cutting all the freebies what the retired politicians getting, that would save some money and maybe their would be a chance to give the normal pensioners a nice payrise so they can pay all the bills.
    hedi
    24th Aug 2015
    2:34pm
    How about cutting all the freebies what the retired politicians getting, that would save some money and maybe their would be a chance to give the normal pensioners a nice payrise so they can pay all the bills.
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    7:01pm
    Off with their heads, the revolution is coming!!!!!!!!!!
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    8:26pm
    I'd like Joe to use the "let them eat cake" phrase to pensioners.
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    8:27pm
    With some cream on the top.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    9:03pm
    Friends Romans and Countrymen ! Lend Me Your Ears ! :-)
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    9:07pm
    For we will make them listen!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    TREBOR
    24th Aug 2015
    9:14pm
    ... it wasn't ears we were thinking of cutting off...... (laugh emoticon)...
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    9:15pm
    Taking Freebies off a Politician is like taking an Ice Cream off a 4 Year Old !! :-) Look Out !! :-)
    hedi
    24th Aug 2015
    2:34pm
    How about cutting all the freebies what the retired politicians getting, that would save some money and maybe their would be a chance to give the normal pensioners a nice payrise so they can pay all the bills.
    DavidF
    24th Aug 2015
    2:54pm
    My observations and maths tell me that for every $5000 you go over the $80,000 tax threshold you would lose $225.00 per annum compared to $5000 earned under the $80,000 threshold.
    The Government will make a big noise about how they are helping the lower and middle income, but the increase appears to be quite negligible - hence not much loss of income for the government -- but a lot of politics (votes) about what they are doing for the lower and middle class.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    3:19pm
    Out with the Begging Bowl !! :-(
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    4:21pm
    Lower personal income tax for everyone, and Corporations tax is the best method to encourage consumer spending (more jobs) and the incentive to work ( less tax). In more advanced and mature economies tax on good and services is the best and lest costly to raise revenue. Here in Australia we have GST stuck at 10% and many goods ( most foods e.g) are exempt. So lower personal income tax as it it expensive to collect and does not really produce enough revenue and widen the GST. Fresh foods say 4%, utilities, 7% education 10% up to a max rate of 25% for "luxury" goods. Spending habits will not change for most especially at the upper levels so a much larger tax take for the Governments.
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    8:35pm
    Strange theory indeed.
    1. We have a deficit...so what do you think lowering income tax will achieve other than this growing at a faster rate?
    2. ther poor and average people spend everything they earn. The rich save and reinvest most of their income, with some investment of no use to the national interest whatsoever.
    3. Increasing the GST rate and levying it on essentials like food hits those who have an income too low to pay tax on, so effectively they get a tax increase. Bad!
    The way forward is to close Tax Shelters for the wealthy and to stop the abuse of Trust structure used for the same reason: to avoid taxes. And then governments need to legislate so that multinationals PAY TAX IN AUSTRALIA.
    Not too difficult. Just needs pollies working for the nation, not the rich shoring up their own nest.
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    8:38pm
    Mick, same old............ Proven not to work. No my strategy will deliver far better results for everyone.
    Not Senile Yet!
    24th Aug 2015
    4:25pm
    They are broke.......they are broke!!!!
    Cannot Balance the Budget.......never will.....too bust racking up their expense claims.....or flying to wherever by chartered flights.....be helicopters or planes.....with family and friends!!!!
    Who do they think their kidding with the roll out of tax cuts adjusted for inflation creep?????
    The only inflation creep happening is in the 100% Power Gas & everything else tied to CPI except wages!!!!!
    They are incapable of managing the economy for all....far too busy managing the economy for the Corporates to dodge their tax commitments to Australia by allowing ABN's to operate Off-shore!!!!
    They are stealing everyone's Super by taxing it and putting in place legal jargon to stop you either from accessing it or taking a lump sum of YOUR OWN Money!!!!
    They have just finished pocketing Millions from Pension cutbacks because they Pleaded Poor.....now they want to give tax cuts for only one reason.....to stop being voted OUT by the Largest Swing against a Government EVER!!!
    Bring on the election!!!
    They Lied to get in...so why would they not Lie to get re-elected???
    The other Mob are just as Bad!!!!
    Cannot believe either Party or their Puppets!!!
    Bring on the election......the Independants are going to have a field day in BOTH houses of Parliament.....even if only to kick the Pigs at the trough out!!!
    No one in their right minds would elect Any of the Parties or their Puppets.......predict a massive Swing away from ALL the Party Puppets in both houses......just to stick to them!!!!
    Anyone over 50 would/should not vote for any of the lying Party Puppets after the broken promises by all Parties in the last 10 - 20 years!!!
    Vote them all OUT of OUR Parliament!!!
    Take the donkey Cards and reverse them in order....then Put and Independent at Number one!!!!
    If enough do it next election......heads will roll in all the Parties!!!
    Which is exactly what Australian Politics need!!!!
    Clean them all out!!!
    Then whoever wins will have to earn their Status and place by negotiating all changes to Legislation with the Independants BEFORE it is implemented.....like it should be done!!!!
    Bring it On!!!!
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    5:11pm
    Its worse than that !! :-( But a Start ! :-) Half of the Independent's will be Stooges ! :-( Curly, Larry and (Mo) will have nothing on them ! OH ! What a Mess ! :-(
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    5:13pm
    PS.. Get a Private Detective to look into them before Voting for them :-)
    Misty
    24th Aug 2015
    5:22pm
    Who will pay for the Tax Cuts, where will the money come from?, more Public Service jobs axed maybe.
    student
    24th Aug 2015
    5:39pm
    a tax cut for the lower income earners ... great and how is this going to be funded?? Cuts to Gov. spending?? Why not tax those who don't/can't work?? Those who earn the most pay the least taxes so why not give them a break and let them pay their share?? End or review some tax concessions. If someone lands in the top tax bracket ... good on him/her. It is a sign of their success. They are in a higher tax bracket that has new tax breaks (for them). The tax system is well and truly overdue for a complete overhaul. Start from the beginning.
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    8:51pm
    Why should people who earn more have to pay more personal income tax. Do you know why they earn more? Increase the GST and you will find that they will spend the same on "luxury" goods and cop a higher GST. The best incentive for al.
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    6:59pm
    With any tax there will always be winners and losers, so to speak. The Important thing is to have a tax system that is fairest to the MAJORITY and least costly to administer. Looking at an individual personal situation is irrelevant. Lower personal income tax and a tiered GST would be the way to go. I challenge any Party to rise above the need to "win votes" and think of the Nation first.
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    8:39pm
    And that is the real question...what this shell game is really going to achieve and who is going to pay. But of course after the election all bets are likely off.
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    8:44pm
    All parties should be made to sign a legal enforcible document stating that their promises will be delivered within the time frame they state in their election campaigns. No ifs and buts. Maybe that would be too simple for them to understand!!
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    8:49pm
    No not really Most of them wouldn't be able to sign anything because they know there is no way they can fulfil their promises ??? like last elections Waffle to the Unwashed !!
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    8:55pm
    It seems that a large number of voters do not believe promise made by the Parties. So why do they vote. Don't say "because they have to by law". That is a cop out.
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    9:05pm
    Paricolor, well they can always state what their policies are, but at the same time say they are not binding and may not ever be introduced or are subject to change at their discretion. In other words they are saying "voters don't complain after the election"
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    9:23pm
    That will not be accepted, Down with Your Policies on a Legal Form, Sign it. Or Git outta here !! :-(
    TREBOR
    24th Aug 2015
    9:25pm
    Caveat Elector?
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    9:31pm
    Make voting non-compulsory, then we will end up with a better system all round.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    9:32pm
    I don't care what sort of Politically Correct Latin Cactus You wanna call it, Its a Legal Document to Me !! :-)
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    9:35pm
    We have to look for the "get out" clauses" which they would most likely slip in hoping no one will notice!!
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    9:48pm
    No No All that Political Correctness and clauses Garbage was Slipped in on us Years ago to Coral populations and turn them into some sort of Little Girl Farm !! Say it like it is no ifs and buts or shut up and nick off !! There !! That'll fix the Lying Bar Steads !!
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    10:02pm
    Put them all through the lie detector test on National TV! Ratings will soar and we will all be able to see the respective leaders "squirming" in front of our eyes.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    10:15pm
    What a good Idea !! Back out of it now Varmint !! :-) :-)
    World Prophet
    25th Aug 2015
    1:20pm
    Ha ha, niemakawa, can you imagine ending compulsory voting? The Labor party would be relegated to a minor party (most of the great unwashed wouldn't bother turning out), the Greens would be a major player(an you imagine the disaster THAT would be!), and the Senate would be turned into a true House of Lords (most conservative voters would turn out and cast their vote) Interesting thoughts...
    mangomick
    24th Aug 2015
    7:31pm
    Joe is looking at lowering personal income tax but raising GST to 15%.
    So without worrying about the tax free thresholds let's say you earn $100 000 per annum. and let's pretend that you only pay 39 cents in the dollar. That gives you take home pay of $61000 and if you spend it all you pay $6100 in GST you end up with $54900 of expended income. With Joes idea of lowering your personal income tax to say 36 cents in the dollar you end up with $64000 after tax, a win of $3000. But if you assume you spend all of that and you pay the 15% GST that Joe wants, you end up paying $9600 in GST which gives you an expended income of $54400 . That means under Joes plan you are now down $500 a year on your previous spending power. Good one Joe.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    7:43pm
    Spend My 500 Bucks Wisely Joe !! No! No !! Put that Box of Havana's back !! :-)
    MICK
    24th Aug 2015
    8:45pm
    A lot of assumptions there mango but you have made the point. There is not going to be any real tax cuts for most. The rich will be the real winners as the rich do not spend all that they earn. They invest.
    As they say the devil is always in the detail, and you can expect average AUstralians to not get anything much out of any 'deal' from Joe Hockey or his fuhrer Tony Abbott.
    particolor
    24th Aug 2015
    8:52pm
    SEEK HAIL !! :-) We had some today Mick ! Don und Blitzen Ja ! :-)
    mangomick
    24th Aug 2015
    9:34pm
    The devil being in the detail was exactly what I was getting at. No one can say whether they are going to be better off or not without having the exact details of his plan. it's a fair bet that with all levels of Government screaming out for more money that there will be few winners under his scheme and anyone who doesn't work and pay taxes i.e. pensioners, will be much worse off .
    niemakawa
    24th Aug 2015
    9:37pm
    Well what you are saying is pensioners will be better off if they pay taxes. So An increase in the GST then!
    mangomick
    24th Aug 2015
    11:29pm
    What I am saying is, without seeing the details of his plan you have no idea whether you will be better off or not but if he is lowering the income tax rate for middle and lower income earners and you are a pensioner you will not get a lowering of your income tax rate because you do not get an income per se then swapping an income tax cut for a raise in the GST will probably result in pensioners contributing more to tax revenue Even if you are a wage earner it would depend on what changes are made to the tax rates, both the lower PAYG rate and the new higher GST rate ,as to whether or not you would be better or worse off. Seems like another smoke and mirrors policy to me.
    geomac
    25th Aug 2015
    2:08pm
    Hockey offered a thought bubble with no details or substance. Apparently the magic pudding formula applied before the 2013 election has been revived. That came to earth with a thud in the 2014 budget when Hockey unveiled his bash the low/middle income and help the well off. Same story again and the same trickery with the same chance of anything being of any benefit to the Australian general public. Even a Nigerian scam merchant would hesitate to try this one on again after the broken promises by Abbott and hockey.
    geomac
    25th Aug 2015
    9:39pm
    The treasurer, Joe Hockey, has signalled the government is looking at options to cut personal income tax to tackle the phenomenon of “bracket creep” but has not provided any detail about how the Coalition would fund such measures.

    Hockey said the government was “working on the tax mix” and hinted at the option of broadening the GST to include health.

    “There’s no doubt that with the exemptions in place in relation to the GST, the GST’s base is narrowed, particularly with the growth in the healthcare sector, which is essentially GST-free, and because health is growing with the ageing population, it means that the tax base for the GST is narrow,” he said on Monday.
    http://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2015/aug/25/labor-and-greens-oppose-government-adding-gst-to-health-services
    geomac
    26th Aug 2015
    3:33pm
    No tax cut is needed at all to stop bracket creep. As a few articles have said just raise the level where the various rates of tax apply. If at present a rate comes in at 80,000 raise it 85,000. If the rate comes in at 60,000 raise the level to 65,000.
    Bracket creep does not require a tax cut and as treasurer Hockey would be aware of that.
    particolor
    26th Aug 2015
    3:58pm
    Between the Smoke and Whistle's, Bells and Fire I'm lost ?? :-(
    geomac
    26th Aug 2015
    3:51pm
    If alleviating bracket creep was Hockey's true motivation for wanting tax cuts, his response would be simple: leave the rates of income tax unchanged, just raise the bracket limits by as much as you could afford.

    But in his next breath Hockey was arguing that the top tax rate – 45¢ in the dollar – which cuts in when incomes hit $180,000 a year, was far too high and needed cutting.

    See the scope for trickery? Justify tax cuts by telling the majority of voters on low and middle incomes how tough they're doing it, then give most relief to high-income earners again. Lawyers call it "bait and switch".

    Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/comment/bait-and-switch-habits-die-hard-20150824-gj6wmg.html#ixzz3jthqlW4E
    Adrianus
    27th Aug 2015
    12:08pm
    A much better solution than having both sides offering to adjust brackets as an election promise.
    particolor
    27th Aug 2015
    12:43pm
    And I'm sick of Bracket Creeps ! :-( :-(
    worker
    28th Aug 2015
    2:10pm
    About time this employee of the Australian citizens Hocky fix some of the tax matters eg bracket creeps but get onto those high payed and companies not paying there share of tax.


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