The federal government has money to spend in Tuesday’s budget.BUDGET 2018 – WHAT WE KNOW SO FAR
– Theme is: “A stronger economy means a stronger budget, creating more jobs while guaranteeing essential services.”
– Tax receipts are running at least $4.8 billion higher than estimated in mid-year review in December
– Federal election is due before May 2019
– Budget papers to show a return to the black in 2021, if not slightly earlier
– Planned 0.5 increase in the Medicare levy to pay for the NDIS has been dumped. How the NDIS will be funded will be spelled out in the budget.
– $40 million for drug addiction services
– $39.5 million for free whooping cough vaccinations for all pregnant women.
– $241 million to make spinal muscular atrophy drug Spinraza available on PBS from June 1 this year
– $84 million to establish a Flying Doctor mental health service as part of a four-year, $327 million commitment
– $33 million to boost 24-hour telephone service at Lifeline
– Medicare-funded MRI scans to check if men have prostate cancer
– 200,000 women to receive $200 towards 3D breast cancer screening.
– Possible boost to aged care funding following a taskforce report
– Low and middle-income earners are the priority for immediate tax cuts but they won’t be “mammoth”. Possible changes to the low-income tax offset.
– Those earning above $180,000 a year may have to wait until 2024
– States and territories to benefit from an extra $3.4 billion in GST revenue in 2018/19. NT and WA benefit from top-ups.
– Government will budget for a corporate tax rate to fall for all companies to 25 per cent by 2026/27, despite the bill being stalled in the Senate
– $140 million to boost tax rebate for filmmakers
– Tax break for craft brewers and distillers
– Small businesses to benefit from extension of $20,000 instant asset write-off, first introduced in 2015. Allows firms with a turnover of up to $10 million a year to instantly claim tax deductions on all equipment purchases worth less than $20,000.
– Australian Border Force-led taskforce set up to crack down on illicit tobacco trade, predicted to raise $3.6 billion in revenue
– Changes to the way the $3 billion R&D tax incentive can be accessed to prevent firms claiming tax breaks for business-as-usual activities
– Needs-based funding to deliver an extra $23.5 billion to schools over the decade
– New child care and early learning system starts July 2
– $271 million Community Child Care Fund for regional and disadvantaged communities
– One year extension of preschool into 2019 at cost of $440 million
– Extra funding for school chaplains expected
– University funding frozen and changes to Higher Education Loan Program
– $24.5 billion for road and rail over the year
– $75 billion plan over the decade
– Melbourne airport rail link $5 billion
– M1 upgrade between Brisbane and Gold Coast, at cost of $1 billion
– Other rail projects including Inland Rail, metropolitan commuter rail projects, study into possible Western Sydney Airport rail link
– Package of projects for Western Australia. $3.2 billion for 2018/19 including $1.84 billion for Metronet rail
– New laws to guarantee tax rates and rules regarding superannuation
– Expand limit on the maximum number of members in self-managed super funds from four to six
– $4.6 billion to address housing affordability, working with the state and territory governments
– New counter-espionage unit in the Department of Home Affairs, under a national countering foreign interference coordinator
– $500 million Great Barrier Reef rescue plan including programs to tackle runoff from farming, the destructive crown-of-thorns starfish, and fund new research on coral bleaching
Australian Associated Press