The Federal Nationals in Government have secured a number of important measures to help regular Australians.
Federal Nationals Member for Page Kevin Hogan said the measures were part of the economic plan that will support regional communities and secure a strong economic and jobs recovery.
Tax relief for low and middle-income earners
Low and middle-income earners will receive a benefit when they lodge tax returns from July 1, with millions more to benefit over the next decade. Under the already legislated part of the plan, the Low and Middle-Income Tax Offset (LMITO) will provide tax relief of up to $1080 at the end of each tax year to 2021-22. It is projected that the LMITO will assist more than 10 million Australians.
Small business tax cuts
The tax rate for small businesses structured as companies with turnovers of less than $50 million will decrease from 27.5 per cent to 26 per cent while the unincorporated tax discount will increase from 8 per cent to 13 per cent to ensure that sole traders benefit from the corporate tax cut.
Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program
Under the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program, the Nationals in Government will provide $500 million to local councils and other bodies who are responsible for the provision of local council services to support the delivery of priority local road and community infrastructure projects.
Second Economic Support Payment
The Nationals in Government are providing two separate $750 payments to social security, veteran and other income support recipients and eligible concession card holders. Around half of those that benefit are pensioners. These payments support households to manage the economic impact of the Coronavirus. The second payment will be available to people who are eligible payment recipients and concession card holders on July 10.
Extension of the Instant Asset Write-Off
The Nationals in Government have extended the $150,000 instant asset write-off for six months from July 1 December 31 for Australian businesses with an annual turnover of less than $500 million.
First Home Loan Deposit Scheme
Building on the initial success of the scheme, which saw it fully subscribed, a further 10,000 guarantees will become available to first home buyers from July 1.
Consumer Data Right
Australians will be able to unleash the power of their own data to compare and switch banking products with the Consumer Data Right officially launching on July 1.
Increase the Medicare Levy low income thresholds
The Nationals in Government have increased the Medicare levy low income thresholds for individuals and families, and individuals and families eligible for Senior and Pensioner Tax Offset in line with movements in the CPI.
Temporary early access to superannuation
While superannuation helps people save for retirement, the Nationals in Government recognise that for those significantly financially affected by the Coronavirus, accessing some of their superannuation today may outweigh the benefits of maintaining those savings until retirement. Eligible Australian and New Zealand citizens and permanent residents will be able to apply online through myGov to access up to $10,000 of their superannuation from July 1 until September 24.
Parental Leave Pay — Flexibility
This measure adds flexibility to Paid Parental Leave (PPL) by allowing families to split their PPL into blocks of leave, with an initial PPL period of up to 12 weeks to be taken within the first 12 months without returning to work within this time.
NDIS available across Australia
From July 1 the NDIS will be available across all Australian States, Territories and regions. The last regions to enter the Scheme were Christmas Island and Keeling Island.
Future Drought Fund
From July 1, the Nationals in Government will draw down $100 million from the Future Drought Fund Special Account for programs and projects to build farmers’ and communities’ resilience and preparedness for future droughts.
Bushfire Wildlife Recovery
Over the next two years $150 million will be targeted for native wildlife and habitat recovery across bushfire-affected regions.
Extension of National Partnership Agreement on of Public Dental Services for Adults
The National Partnership Agreement on Adult Public Dental Service supports the states and territories in delivering public dental services.
Suicide prevention and mental health initiatives – 2020-21 measures
As part of the response to initial advice from the National Suicide Prevention Adviser the Government agreed to an:
- Expansion of the Beyond Blue Way Back Support Service: $7 million over two years from 2020-21 to expand the Way Back and other programs to increase the coverage of aftercare services
- Expansion of the StandBy Support After Suicide Service: $10 million over two years from 2020-21 to ensure more Australians have access to the critical care they need after losing a loved one to suicide
- Extension of the National Suicide Prevention Trial sites: $13.4 million in 2020-21 to extend the National Suicide Prevention Trial sites for a further year
- Boosting investment in peer support for young people through organisations such as the Raise Foundation and Reach Out ($4.6m in 2020-21)
- Extending support for the headspace National Youth Mental Health Foundation to deliver suicide prevention training and education sessions in schools ($4.4m from 2020-21)
Indexation of MBS rebates for ultrasound and diagnostic radiology services
In the 2019-20 Budget the Nationals in Government announced they would index the Medicare Benefits Schedule rebates for ultrasound and diagnostic radiology (x-ray) services from July 1. This is in addition to targeted diagnostic imaging services including mammography, fluoroscopy, CT scans and interventional procedures, already scheduled for indexation from July 1. The changes will mean that more than 90 per cent of diagnostic imaging services will be indexed from July 1.