Bill Shorten issues stinging budget reply

Posted May 12, 2017

Based on Parliamentary Budget Office modelling commissioned by Labor at last year's election, retaining the 2 per cent temporary budget fix levy on those earning over $180,000 would only raise $1.55 billion in 2019-2020, compared to $3.55 billion raised from the proposed higher Medicare levy in the same year.

The government wants to increase the Medicare levy paid by nearly all workers by half a percentage point to 2.5 per cent of taxable income from July 1, 2019, to provide long-term funding for the NDIS.

Labor argues the NDIS was fully funded when it was in government but the government argues there is a $56 billion shortfall in funding over 10 years.

After the opposition hedged its position last week, Shorten has confirmed a Labor government would put an extra $22 billion into schools above the amount the government has pledged, going back to the original ALP plan.

Deloitte's analysis of the impost of the Medicare Levy is all well and good, but it does ignore that high income earners - those earning more than $180,000 a year - would also receive a 2% income tax cut from the expiry of the Budget Repair Levy.

It would mean a worker on $55,000 would pay $275 extra a year, while someone on $80,000 would face an extra $400.

The Labor leader claimed one of the biggest deductions they claimed was money paid to their accountants, which averaged $1 million.

Labor's leadership group was due to discuss the matter on Thursday and there are range of views over whether to proceed.

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But it was anxious that "the weakness of this government will turn $6 billion tax on the banks into a $6 billion charge on every Australian with a bank account or a mortgage".

Treasurer Scott Morrison says previous measures were clearly getting stalled in Parliament.

Mr Shorten has accused Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull of giving millionaires a tax cut by ending the levy.

Labor leader Bill Shorten will promise a $3000 limit on how much people can deduct for managing their tax affairs, in a crackdown that will raise $1.8 billion over a decade.

This, he will argue, is a rort and the change will hit less than 1 per cent of taxpayers.

Analysis by Deloitte's Chris Richardson suggests that about 50,000 people with annual income of more than $1 million will contribute 6.9% of the increased revenue from the proposed 0.5% rise in the Medicare levy.

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann called on Shorten to submit his speech to the Parliamentary Budget Office for costing.