Media


Labor light rail funding vital for Canberra - Transcript, ABC Canberra Breakfast

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

RADIO INTERVIEW

ABC CANBERRA BREAKFAST

TUESDAY, 12 MARCH 2019

SUBJECTS: Labor’s plans to support sustainable public transport in Canberra, federal ICAC, Labor’s plans to give Australians hotels control over their businesses.

DAN BOURCHIER: Although the date for the next election hasn't yet been set, it's largely seeming like it will be at some point in the later half of May. But we've seen lots of election promises on both sides of the aisle - everyone really make commitments right across the nation.  Today Opposition Leader Bill Shorten will announce a $200 million investment towards stage two of Canberra's light rail track to Woden, if Labor's elected the next federal election. Federal MP for Fenner is Andrew Leigh, he's with us on the phone. Good morning.

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Good morning Dan. You're sounding as though you’re a bit croaky at the moment?

BOURCHIER: I'm a little, a little bit congested, but I’ll persevere onwards and upwards. 

LEIGH: I hope you’re on the mend soon.

BOURCHIER: Tell me, why is Labor making this commitment?

LEIGH: It's really important that we get going on light rail all the way through from Gungahlin to Woden. As you recall, Dan, when we were last in office Labor funded the Majura Parkway, an important piece of road infrastructure taking pressure off our roads. This is a vital commitment that a Shorten Government would make - $200 million towards to stage two. So that’s light rail from the city through to Woden. It'll create hundreds of jobs and it'll ensure that people are able to move swiftly through the city as modern light rail projects do. It's been championed by Alicia Payne, our candidate for Canberra, and I know she'll continue working on those issues with the route if she is elected.

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Labor to put Aussie hotels back in control - Media Release

LABOR TO PUT AUSSIE HOTELS BACK IN CONTROL

Local accommodation providers will have greater control of their own businesses under a Shorten Labor Government, making small businesses more competitive and reducing the price of a weekend away.

If elected, Labor would ensure that Australia’s accommodation providers would have the ability to set their own prices so they can compete with the multinationals behind the world’s largest online booking sites.

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Australia needs a pay rise - Transcript, RN Drive

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

RADIO INTERVIEW

ABC RN DRIVE

TUESDAY, 12 MARCH 2019

SUBJECTS: Labor’s push to give Australians a living wage, Josh Frydenberg’s backflip on the recommendations from the Banking Royal Commission, Labor’s plans to give Australians hotels control over their businesses.

PATRICIA KARVELAS: Dr Andrew Leigh is the Shadow Assistant Treasurer and he joins us. Welcome back to RN Drive.

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Thank you, Patricia. Great to be with you.

KARVELAS: So the Federal Government has abolished the plan to dump trail commissions for mortgage brokers because of concerns around competition. They're going to get the ACCC to review it and they've got another review in three years. Why not review it given so much of the sector says that they worried about competition and that this will favour the big banks?

LEIGH: You just have to look at Kenneth Haynes’ report, which said on the issue of trail commissions ‘to put it bluntly they are money for nothing’. Now that’s a pretty damning indictment on their system. Trail commissions have been removed in other contexts and we believe it's appropriate to follow the Hayne Royal Commission’s advice on this.

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What if Cash Refunds for Franking Credits Didn’t Exist? - Op Ed, AFR

WHAT IF CASH REFUNDS FOR FRANKING CREDITS DIDN’T EXIST?

Australian Financial Review, 11 March 2019

Suppose that Australia - like every other country in the world - did not provide cash refunds of franking credits to anyone except pensioners.  

Now imagine that a government decided to implement such a policy. 

How would it fund it? For starters, the cost would be significant - nearly $6 billion a year. That’s over $200 for every man, woman and child in Australia. So it might raise income taxes on middle-income earners or increase the GST. Or it could rip money out of the health or education system.

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Phoenixing is a bit like tax avoidance: you've got to constantly be updating the laws to keep up with the wrongdoers - Transcript, ABC Melbourne

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

RADIO INTERVIEW

ABC MELBOURNE

THURSDAY, 7 MARCH 2019

SUBJECTS: Labor’s plans to crack down on dodgy directors; Australia’s per-capita recession; Labor’s plans to close tax loopholes.

JON FAINE: Andrew Leigh is the Assistant Treasurer from the Federal Opposition and he thinks he has found a formula for dealing with this. Mr Leigh good morning to you.

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Good morning Jon, great to be with you.

FAINE: I first reported on this 25 years ago when I was working on ABC TV's The Investigators, no one has been able to crack this nut for the decade since, what do you think you can do about it now?

LEIGH: Phoenixing is a bit like tax avoidance: you've got to constantly be updating the laws to keep up with the wrongdoers. But we've put together a pretty comprehensive plan: a Tradie Pay Guarantee with so-called ‘cascading trusts’ which ensure that on big Commonwealth projects people who do the work on time, get paid on time. We'll beef up the funding to ASIC to run cases going after dodgy phoenix directors, not only to catch them but send an example to the rest of the industry.

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Labor takes the wheel for mechanics in La Trobe - Media Release

ANDREW LEIGH MP
SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER
SHADOW MINISTER FOR COMPETITION AND PRODUCTIVITY
SHADOW MINISTER CHARITIES AND NOT-FOR-PROFITS
SHADOW MINISTER FOR TRADE IN SERVICES
MEMBER FOR FENNER
 
SIMON CURTIS
LABOR CANDIDATE FOR LA TROBE
 
LABOR TAKES THE WHEEL FOR MECHANICS IN LA TROBE

Labor is driving a better deal for car owners and independent mechanics in La Trobe with a plan to make timely access to technical information a reality.

Whether you drive a Holden or Ford, Porsche or Prius, everyone should be able to choose where they get their car serviced. But independent repairers are struggling to get fair access to the standard service information they need.

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Dodgy builders under a spotlight - Media Release

DODGY BUILDERS UNDER A SPOTLIGHT

Dodgy building firms who deliberately avoid paying workers will be forced to face the consequences of their actions under a Shorten Labor Government.

If elected to government, Labor will work with states and territories to cancel the building licenses of companies which have been caught phoenixing, a practise where dodgy directors deliberately burn companies in an attempt to avoid their obligations to employees, government and honest businesses.

Not only does phoenix activity hurt hard working Australians, their families and their communities, but it costs the economy billions of dollars. On one estimate, phoenixing costs the Australian economy in excess of $5 billion per year, which is more than $200 for every person in Australia.

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The Liberals are a party of hubris - Transcript, Doorstop

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

DOORSTOP

MELBOURNE

WEDNESDAY, 6 MARCH 2019

SUBJECT: The Morrison Government asking the Tax Office to enforce an unlegislated tax amnesty to benefit dodgy bosses.

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Last year, the Liberals introduced a bill into Parliament that would give a 12 month amnesty to employers who hadn't paid their employees superannuation. Let's be clear what this means. If you're a boss who failed to pay your required superannuation obligations to your workers, you wouldn't face any penalties. Those penalties are significant. They can be up to 200 per cent of the amount unpaid, reflecting the fact that when an employee doesn't get superannuation then they miss out not only on the money but also on the earnings – the compounding returns.

Labor didn’t back that bill. We said we didn't believe that employers who had failed to live up to their obligations to their workers should get off with nothing more than a slap on the wrist. We said that it wasn't appropriate to be letting dodgy bosses off scot free at the same time as the government came down like a ton of bricks on any welfare recipient who did the wrong thing. Yet the Liberals went ahead and asked the Tax Office to enforce the amnesty. It turns out from reports today that hundreds of applications rolled in and the Tax Office continued to process them. Now, recognising that the bill won't pass parliament - it's been languishing in the Senate since June last year - the Tax Office is going to use its discretion to waive penalties against these employers.

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The latest example of arrogance from the Morrison Government - Transcript, 5AA Adelaide

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

RADIO INTERVIEW        

5AA MORNINGS

WEDNESDAY, 6 MARCH 2019

SUBJECT: The Morrison Government asking the Tax Office to enforce a tax amnesty on dodgy bosses that had not passed Parliament.

LEON BYNER: There’s $6 billion – yes, billion with a ‘b’ - outstanding of unpaid super. Now the Tax Office has admitted that it will waive penalties for hundreds of businesses that have admitted failure to pay super in the wake of what was an amnesty. Now the amnesty didn't get through the Parliament. It’s a year later that the policies being dumped and the Coalition have done a press release recently saying the 12 month amnesty will run from today. But it's not actually happening. So let's talk to the Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh. Andrew, thanks for joining us today.

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Pleasure, Leon.

BYNER: When this went through up into the Senate, didn’t you guys reject this?

LEIGH: Absolutely. We have said from the moment that the government announced this legislation, Leon, that we didn’t think it was necessary. There are penalties in place for not paying superannuation, as there should be. Just as an employer who chooses not to pay wages to their workers suffers penalties, so too there are penalties for not paying superannuation. And this bill said that employers wouldn't cop those penalties, which could be up to 200 per cent of the unpaid amount, going back 25 years. Of course, when they told the Tax Office to start enforcing the unlegislated bill, people came forward. But the government should never have been getting the Tax Office to do something that the parliament hadn't agreed to.

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Liberals protecting dodgy bosses who don’t pay super - Media Release

ANDREW LEIGH MP

SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER

SHADOW MINISTER FOR COMPETITION AND PRODUCTIVITY

SHADOW MINISTER FOR TRADE IN SERVICES

SHADOW MINISTER FOR CHARITIES AND NOT-FOR-PROFITS

MEMBER FOR FENNER

CLARE O’NEIL MP

SHADOW MINISTER FOR FINANCIAL SERVICES

SHADOW MINISTER FOR JUSTICE

MEMBER FOR HOTHAM

LIBERALS PROTECTING DODGY BOSSES WHO DON’T PAY SUPER

The Liberals are letting dodgy employers off the hook for failing to pay workers’ superannuation.

Last May, the Liberals introduced a bill to Parliament to give a 12-month “amnesty” to employers who pay superannuation guarantee payments that they have failed to pay since 1 July 1992. Labor opposed this amnesty, because dodgy employers shouldn’t get away with failing to pay their employees’ super.

Employers must obey the law. There are penalties in law which remain for ripping off workers and not paying superannuation – which is a fine equal to up to 200 percent of the amount of superannuation owed. These have remain in force and have not changed.

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Cnr Gungahlin Pl and Efkarpidis Street, Gungahlin ACT 2912 | 02 6247 4396 | Andrew.Leigh.MP@aph.gov.au | Authorised by A. Leigh MP, Australian Labor Party (ACT Branch), Canberra.