UnitingCare Australia Wants Urgent Ministerial Taskforce on Henry Report
3 May 2010 at 3:55 pm
UnitingCare Australia has called for an urgent Ministerial taskforce to resolve outstanding issues in both the Henry Tax Review and the Government’s response to that review.
Commenting shortly after the release of Australia’s Future Tax System, and the Government’s response to the Henry Review UnitingCare’s National Director Susan Helyar said it was essential the Government and the community sector continue the momentum of the extensive consultations which have taken place over the past 18 months.
Helyar said important issues for disadvantaged Australians and the community sector that supports them have not been adequately addressed in the process to date.
She says the complex issue of Effective Marginal Tax Rates – that is the anomalies and poverty traps that exist for people moving from welfare payments to work, have received little attention.
She says she welcomes the Government’s decision not to accept the Report’s recommendation on Fringe Benefits Tax for Public Benevolent Institutions, which would see the benefits continue to diminish.
But she says the level of FBT concession has not been indexed since it was introduced in 2001. Had it been indexed it would have moved from a cap of $30,000 in 2001 to a current cap of $44,500.
Helyar says the benefit of the FBT concession has been eroded by inflation, CPI increases and changes to the personal tax rate.
She says the sector has been exploring options with the Government and look forward to resolving these issues in the near future.
The Federal Government pledged not to implement any of the Henry Tax Reform recommendations affecting the Third Sector including a reconfiguring of FBT tax and lifting the gift deductibility threshold from $2 to 25.
For more information go to: http://taxreview.treasury.gov.au/content/Content.aspx?doc=html/pubs_reports.htm