666 ABC CANBERRA
WEDNESDAY, 13 MAY 2015
SUBJECT/S: Budget 2015
PHILIP CLARK: Joining us now at Parliament House, Andrew Leigh the Labor Member for Fraser and the Shadow Assistant Treasurer. Andrew, good morning.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Good morning, Philip.
CLARK: And Angus Taylor Member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Tax and Revenue and Liberal Member for Hume. Angus, good morning. And here in the studio with us is Susan Helyar from the ACT Council of Social Service, she is the director of ACTCOSS. Susan, good morning to you too.
HELYAR: Good morning.
CLARK: Angus to you first, the age of entitlement and taking the hard decisions and all of that was the language of last year. This year it's all about childcare, what happened?
FEDERAL MEMBER FOR HUME ANGUS TAYLOR: Well we've made a lot of the hard decisions and we've done a lot of hard work. What we've done, Phillip, over the last 12 months is we've contained the growth in spending that we inherited and that is the most important piece of work we've done over the last 12 months. We're now in a position where we can reinvest in childcare, in jobs, in small businesses – a completely unprecedented small business package – and that's because of the hard work we've been doing. Now you know, it hasn't all been easy and we haven't achieved everything we wanted to but we've gone a long way down the path of what we needed to what we needed to curb that absolutely profligate growth.
CLARK: So the debt and deficit emergency, the budget emergency, that's all over now is it?
TAYLOR: I always saw it as an emergency in spending growth being out of control, that was the problem that I, as someone with a background in economics, always saw. We've now curbed that, and now the job is to really stimulate the economy over the next little while. We are optimistic about the economy, we are optimistic about investment particularly coming from small business over the coming couple of years, and that's the real focus. As well as a focus on jobs and helping those who want to work more, particularly women who are working part-time with extraordinary support in this childcare package as well.
CLARK: Susan Helyar, is the budget fair? Last year there was a lot of talk about it not being fair, that the impacts fell on people who could least afford it: what about this one?
HELYAR: There are some fair measures in it, but we would continue with our previous analysis which is the savings are skewed to low-income households and the ongoing concessions and subsidies continue for higher income households. The other concern we have is that many of the very unfair and damaging impacts of last year's budget continue. We see that the savage cuts to social services, legal services and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Services are still in place. The childcare and early childhood learning measures expected to be funded out of cuts to family benefits. For example cutting $10 a week off a single income family to fund people on $170, 000 to get half their childcare fees subsidised. So there are still some concerns around its fairness.
CLARK: Andrew Leigh, are you pleased that the debt and deficit crisis is over?
LEIGH: I'm not sure in what world it would be over, Philip. If you look at the deficit for the coming year, it has doubled since the last budget. If you look at total spending, total spending is going to be higher under this Government as a share of national income than it was under the previous Government.
BUDGET SHOWS HOCKEY’S MULTINATIONAL TAX ‘POLICY’ RAISES $30 MILLION OVER FOUR YEARS
Joe Hockey’s best effort at tackling multinational tax avoidance is worth a total of $30 million over four years – less than 1/60th of Labor’s multinationals package.
After spending months promising to reap “billions” from tax integrity measures, Joe Hockey’s own budget papers reveal him as a fraud.
There are no billions, only asterisks.
MONDAY, 11 MAY 2015
SUBJECT/S: Joe Hockey’s tax ineptitude
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Thanks everyone for coming along this afternoon. We've just seen a most extraordinary press conference from the Treasurer of Australia, who the day before the Budget has announced his latest thought-bubble on multinational taxation. With the Budget coming down tomorrow, Joe Hockey cannot tell the Australian people how much his latest multinational thought-bubble will cost. He's delivered a garbled and incoherent press conference, in which he's been unable to say what these important changes will do for the Budget bottom line. You can bet that if Joe Hockey was announcing measures that hurt poor people, he'd know how much they'd added to the Budget bottom line down to the last cent. But yet again we're seeing a Treasurer utterly adrift from his portfolio, turning out because he wants to be seen, rather than because he's got something to say.
On the so called 'Google tax', we had Joe Hockey first saying he was going to legislate a Google tax, then was going to inquire into a Google tax, and then wasn't going to legislate a Google tax after all. So it's hard to know how seriously Australians should take this latest uncosted thought-bubble. By contrast Labor has a clear plan. It is guided by evidence from the OECD, costed by the Parliamentary Budget Office, it is consistent with our international tax obligations and it adds $7.2 billion to the budget bottom line. If Joe Hockey wants to include our carefully targeted and precisely costed measures in tomorrow night's Budget, he'll have Labor's full support. Happy to take questions.
CHRIS BOWEN MP
MEMBER FOR MCMAHON
ANDREW LEIGH MP
SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER
SHADOW MINISTER FOR COMPETITION
MEMBER FOR FRASER
HOPELESS HOCKEY BLANK ON BUDGET AGAIN
Joe Hockey has given a fresh display of his Budget ineptitude today when he would not name a revenue figure for a measure which is apparently in his Budget tomorrow.Read more
ANDREW LEIGH MP
SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER
SHADOW MINISTER FOR COMPETITION
MEMBER FOR FRASER
GAI BRODTMANN MP
SHADOW PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY FOR DEFENCE
MEMBER FOR CANBERRA
SENATOR KATY GALLAGHER
SENATOR FOR THE AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
public service on the chopping block again
The Canberra community is outraged by reports today the Abbott Government will further reduce the size of the public service, with fresh cuts to be included in the Budget tomorrow night.
It is believed eight public sector departments will undergo so-called “functional reviews” with the aim of slashing more jobs.
The Coalition has already shed almost 17,000 public service jobs since coming to office in 2013.
This worrying news comes after Prime Minister Tony Abbott assured ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr that the worst of the Commonwealth job cuts were over at last month’s Council of Australian Governments meeting.
SKY AM AGENDA
MONDAY, 11 MAY 2015
SUBJECT/S: Childcare; Budget.
KIERAN GILBERT: I'm here with Andrew Leigh, Shadow Assistant Treasurer and Assistant Education Minister Simon Birmingham. Good to see you both. First to you Andrew Leigh on the families package, the economics of all of this. I understand Labor doesn't want families to lose any payment but then if you're going to make the childcare situation more generous, more targeted. The money has got to come from somewhere and the savings that Jenny Macklin articulated earlier, which no doubt you'll refer to as well, they’re not enough to pay for the initial spending.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: We have supported a range of changes that the Government has made including ones which were characterised in a way which we wouldn't have put them forward to the Parliament. But we don't think kids get any cheaper when they turn six, which is at the heart of this proposal the Government's been trying to ram down the throat of the Parliament the last year. Instead, we think the Government should be looking at savings in the area of multinational tax, where we've got a carefully crafted policy, costed by the Parliamentary Budget Office. Or the high income end of superannuation, where we've done the hard work. Labor is well ahead of the policy curve on this and the difference between what we've put on the table and what the Government has done is that our changes won't hurt the most vulnerable in Australian society. They won't try and address the Government Budget by hurting families.
PARLIAMENT HOUSE, CANBERRA
MONDAY, 11 MAY 2015
SUBJECT/S: Budget; The invisible Treasurer; Childcare
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Good morning everyone. I'm concerned, as we go into this Budget, that the Government hasn't learned the lessons of last year. It hasn't begun to think of vulnerable Australians as anything more than just a line on the balance sheet. Last year, the Budget was hurting young jobless people and pensioners. This year, if the pre-Budget speculation is anything to go by, we're looking at a Budget that's going to make life harder for families and maybe even for pregnant mums. It's not much of a Mother's Day present for women around Australia to discover that Tony Abbott has moved from wanting to deliver a gold-plated parental leave scheme, to saying that he'll leave things alone, to now saying he's going to make parental leave worse. Meanwhile, Joe Hockey is a bit like the star of Weekend At Bernie's - just being propped up by Tony Abbott and Scott Morrison, unable to go out there and sell his Budget. Can anyone really imagine that Paul Keating, Peter Costello or Wayne Swan would have been sidelined in the way that Joe Hockey has throughout this Budget process? Australians gain confidence from a Treasurer who clearly understands the economy and is able to convey that Budget message. But at the moment, many of them are shaking their heads. Joe Hockey says that he is going to be handing down a Budget tomorrow night that's Tony Abbott's Budget, not his. Happy to take questions.
ABBOTT GOVERNMENT HURTING FAMILIES BUT LETTING MULTINATIONAL COMPANIES OFF THE HOOK
Tony Abbott’s refusal to accept Labor’s plan to make multinational companies pay their fair share of tax shows his Government’s priorities are all wrong.
Labor has developed a sensible package of multinational tax measures that will return $7.2 billion to Australia over the next 10 years.
The Abbott Government has been dragged kicking and screaming by Labor into acknowledging that multinational tax avoidance is a problem for Australia.
Now, it is preparing to hand down a budget filled with smoke-and-mirrors tax measures in an effort to save Tony Abbott’s job.
FRIDAY, 1 MAY 2015
SUBJECT/S: marriage equality; Indonesia; keeping the Department of Immigration in Belconnen
MARK PARTON: Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has rejected his deputy's call to force Labor MPs and Senators to support same sex marriage. Tanya Plibersek wants the ALP members of parliament made to follow the party's policy and vote for gay marriage. Labor currently allows a conscience vote on the issue in parliament and some Labor MPs are considering whether they would cross the floor over the issue and risk expulsion from the party. Bill Shorten said that while he supports same sex marriage, colleagues who do not should not be made to vote for it. We were talking about this earlier in the week and I'm going to get Andrew Leigh to join the conversation now. He's the Member for Fraser in the north of Canberra, g'day Andrew.
ANDREW LEIGH: ACTING SHADOW TREASURER: G'day Mark, how are you?
PARTON: Excellent. It just astounds me that if we could ask all Australians today whether they support same sex marriage, I'm supremely confident that they would say yes. And I don't understand why our parliament can't get over this hurdle. Talk to me.
LEIGH: It is really strange, isn't it Mark? Because you think back – and I remember well when we had the last vote, because my third son was born on that day, 19 September, 2012 – since then we've had the UK Government and the New Zealand Government, both run by conservatives, embrace same sex marriage. A majority of Americans now live in states where same sex couples can get married, and the US Supreme Court is currently considering a case as to whether to make it national. So the mood has shifted a lot on this. What has surprised me is that the Australian Parliament could, at one stage, have been a leader. Now we'll end up being towards the back of the pack in accepting same sex marriage when it inevitably happens.
HOCKEY SPENDS $11 MILLION OF YOUR MONEY ON A COALITION AD CAMPAIGN
Joe Hockey must end his taxpayer-funded Budget advertising campaign today after new revelations the Liberal Government has wasted more than $11 million on TV, radio, online and billboard ads.
Having poured millions of dollars of taxpayers’ money into the advertising campaign selling their flawed and politicised Intergenerational Report, it seems the age of entitlement is over for everyone except Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey.
This is an absurd waste of money – and includes the fee paid to Dr Karl Kruszelnicki to act as the public face of the campaign.
Now Dr Karl says he is so concerned about how flawed this report is he wants nothing to do with it. He feels so strongly about it that he’s promised to give away his entire fee.
Why is taxpayers’ money being wasted on an ad campaign when even the star of the show says it should end?