Zombie measures dumped

A raft of old Budget measures that failed to pass the Senate have finally been culled, at a cost of $13.9 billion – but it’s the one that wasn’t we should be worried about. 

Plans to increase Age Pension eligibility age from 67 to 70 by 2035 are still in the pipeline, with this being the one piece of zombie legislation that survived the cull. The Government clearly still has belief that it can pass this measure, due to commence in 2025. However, as it’s not included in the four-year forward Budget estimates, there is also little to be gained by getting rid of it just now. Perhaps a pre-election sweetener in one of the next two Budgets would be better timing.

From Budget:

Measure

2014-15

Pensioner Education Supplement – cessation

2014-15

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme – increase in co-payments and safety net thresholds

2014-15

Simplifying Medicare safety net arrangements

2014-15

Stronger Compliance Arrangements for Job Seekers who Refuse or Persistently Fail to Meet Requirements

2015-16

Australian Working Life Residence – tightening of proportionality arrangements

2015-16

Growing Jobs and Small Business – Youth Employment Strategy – revised waiting period for youth income support

2015-16

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme – increase in the safety net thresholds on 1 January 2019

2015-16

Growing Jobs and Small Business – further strengthening the job seeker compliance arrangements

2015-16

Addressing Welfare Reliance in Remote Communities

2015-16

Phasing out end of year supplements and limiting FTB Part B to single parents with youngest child aged under 17 years

2015-16

Reducing FTB Part B for single parents with youngest child aged 13-16

2015-16

Changes to diagnostic imaging and pathology services bulk billing incentives

2015-16

Paid Parental Leave – removing the mandatory obligation for employers to administer payments

2016-17

Revised arrangements for Commonwealth Dental Funding

2016-17

Families Package – child care – Workforce Participation Scheme

Written by Debbie McTaggart

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