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Wednesday, 5 October 1983
Page: 1360

Mr HURFORD (Minister for Housing and Construction and Acting Treasurer) -by leave-The fact is that the Government supported the reference of this matter to the Senate Standing Committee on Finance and Government Operations. We have said all along that this system was difficult to administer and that it required a little experience of the administration in order to be able to make that administration as smooth as the present pay as you earn system. The only thing the Deputy Leader of the Opposition (Mr Howard) said that was true was that he introduced the outline of this system to this Parliament, and now he is trying to run away from it. He would have introduced such a system at a withholding tax rate of 25 per cent. That would have caused enormous hardship to the community generally. This is a difficult system to administer but I am pleased to tell the House that until 19 September nearly 16,500 new tax files had been applied for. All the agony of the system is worth while in smashing tax evasion. Thank goodness we have a government which is prepared to have the courage of its convictions and which is, as the Valder report recommends, looking at principles and not just running after expediency, as the Opposition is doing.