Community Newsletter

A budget wrap up from Zali Steggall OAM MP

6 October, 2020

Tonight, the federal government released their budget that outlines how it plans to allocate funds. My team and I have been analysing what it means for you and your families in Warringah:

Based on the average income in Warringah ($101,000), local residents will receive $2,445 in tax cuts this year. Welfare recipients including those on the age pension, disability support pension and carer pension are also pegged to receive cash payments of $500 in two instalments in December and March.

Businesses will receive some great incentives, the instant asset write off has been expanded to businesses with up to $5 billion in turnover, allowing full write-off of investment through to 30 June 2022. Businesses will also have access to the loss-carry back mechanism to allow business to write-off losses from previous years. Losses incurred up to 2021-22 can be carried back against profits made in or after 2018-19.

Unfortunately, the Government missed the mark on supporting the environment and climate. Instead of a visionary and bold green recovery program, we got business as usual. You can read my statement on it HERE

There are positive small investments in recycling, inter-connectors and oceans yet in contrast there are also investments in out-dated oil refineries and plans for expanding gas production and extraction. Overall, the Coalition has failed to protect our environment. 

The Government hopes to address gender inequality through $240 million for the Women’s Economic Security Statement, however, this is a drop in the ocean in the range of reforms that we need to truly shift the dial on gender equality in the workforce. There is no new funding for childcare or any reform to paid parental leave. This was a big missed opportunity.

Young people will be supported into jobs through a wage subsidy for 16-35 year olds. This covers nearly 25% of the electorate, with youth unemployment currently at 12.2% in the electorate. This will be a welcome investment to get our young people back into the workforce.

Employers of people aged 16-29 currently on Youth Allowance or JobSeeker, will receive a $200 a week to subsidise the wage, while those employing 30-35 year old's will receive $100 per week.

I was pleased to see additional support for mental health. You can now get an additional 10 Medicare supported psychological visits per year, taking the total to 20 visits. Mental health organisations Headspace, Lifeline, BeyondBlue, Kids Helpline also received some extra support.

Unfortunately, there wasn’t a great deal of support for integrity measures. The Australian National Audit Office have had their funding frozen and slightly reduced and there has been no substantial new money set aside for a National Integrity Commission.

Locally, it was great to see the Sydney Harbour Trust was given additional funding of $40.6 million that will address the urgent repairs needed for North Head Sanctuary and 10 Terminal. This was a pre-budget announcement last week, which I put out a media statement HERE

I believe the government missed the opportunity to make lasting and significant reforms through their budget tonight. And there are big sectors that have been overlooked like tourism and the arts sector. Read my full statement HERE.
My team and I will continue to advocate on your behalf to fairly represent Warringah.