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(generated from captions) through. Taking a look ahead to tomorrow and we can see that most of the rain will be up around that tropical region again. We're expecting very high falls over the next four days throughout the north-west and also along the Queensland coast as that high that moves into the Tasman continues to drive those south early winds up along the east coast. Continuing to stee stormy weather as well inland with that trough lingering over the region. Let's take a look around the capital cities for tomorrow:


Now, if you would like to have your say on any of the stories we're following today, you can get in touch:

Well, let's go live now to Parliament House in Canberra. Question Time is due to get under way at any moment.

statements has concluded. The Prime Minister has the call.

P Order! The Prime Minister has the call.Thank you very much, Speaker. I inform the house that the Minister for Climate Change and energy efficiency, industry and innovation will be absent from Question Time today for personal reasons. The Attorney-General will answer questions in relation to climate change and energy efficiency and the minister for tertiary education, skims, science and research and small business will answer questions in relation to industry and innovation.Are there any questions without notice? The Leader of the Opposition has the call.My question is to the Prime Minister.I remind the Prime Minister of her statement one day after she personally renegotiated a heads of agreement with the big three miners that, and I quote, "I've obviously stamped my authority on these negotiations." Given that the tax 10% of the revenue forecast is the Prime Minister still satisfied with the outcome she negotiated?The Prime Minister has the call.Thank you very much, Speaker. I refer to my answers earlier this week on this question. I do believe that Australians are entitled to a share of the mineral wealth within their grounds. I do believe that businesses at the peak of the profitability cycle should pay a tax, the Minerals Resource Rent Tax. I worked hard with Australia's biggest miners to make sure we had an agreement and got this done. It is unashamedly a profits-based tax. We have seen volatility in commodity prices. We've seen a strong Australian dollar and that has had implications for revenues. But as the Treasurer has said to this house repeatedly across this week, when you design an arrangement like the Minerals Resource Rent Tax you are designing a revenue stream that matters to the nation not just now but into the future. It will matter to the nation's children and grandchildren. I'm a little bit surprised, a little bit surprised, I'd
have to say that the Leader of the Opposition would today, of all day, decide that he wanted to ask a question on tax because the Leader of the Opposition today has been out doing media interviews and, Speaker, it is no surprise that they have retired him from breakfast television because he can just not hold up under questioning. The Leader of the Opposition has said today that the right amount of company tax is the current rate. Well, what that means is one of three things, Speaker - one of three things - either he has walked away from his paid parental leave scheme...The Prime Minister will resume her seat. The Manager of Opposition Business on a point of order.The Prime Minister was asked if she was satisfied with the outcome she negotiated in the mining tax and she is not even attempting to answer that question she is just ranting against the Leader of the Opposition.The Manager of Opposition Business will resume his seat. Up until that his seat. his Point of Order was his seat. Up until and I was going to call and I was going to call the Prime Minister back to the question but the continual abuse of points of order is wearing thin. The Prime Minister has the call.Thank you very much, Speaker. My point to the parliament is this, we are very happy to debate in this parliament and beyond economic matters, taxation matters, based on the facts, based on a real understanding of the future, what is apparent from the Leader of the Opposition's media interviews today is he cannot hold up in a discussion of tax policy for five minutes, not even his own. He doesn't even know his own tax policy. He has made a major gaffe today. He needs to be explaining to the Australian people if the current amount of company tax is right then how is he going to fund his paid parental leave scheme? Has he cancelled his paid parental leave scheme or is he out looking for another $2.7 billion worth of cuts?

The Prime Minister will return to the question. The Member for beakin has the call.My question is to the Prime Minister. Prime Minister , how is the Government helping to ensure Australian workplaces can meet the needs of modern families?

I thank the Member for Deakin for his question. I know his part of Melbourne well and I know that his part of Melbourne is full of families who do face the pressures of juggling modern life. They are families where dad works, where overwhelmingly mum works too, where they are putting together a combination of jobs - a full-time job, a part-time job, two full-time jobs - in order to help families make ends meet. That does put real pressure on. What modern families need are modern workplaces which help them balance work and family life. We understand that we do not live in a world of 9 to 5 work with a parent at home. That means that the pressure can be there when you've got to care for the kids, when you've got to make arrangements nor ageing parents and their care, when you're coming back to work after having had a child. That's why across this week we have announced a new series of policies to help families with these modern pressures. We have specifically said we would extend the national employment standard, part of the system we put into place to get rid of the hated WorkChoices to provide the right to request flexible work arrangements for more workers, for carers, for mature age workers for workers with school age children and those experiencing or caring for those undergoing domestic violence or recovering from it. We will also make it clear to employers and employees how to reasonably deal with these requests. We are making it easier for mums who are returning to work having had a child to request part-time work arrangements so that they don't have to choose between work and family. It can be easier to balance putting the two together. We're better protecting mums to be by ensuring that they can get transferred to a safe job, whether or not they have been with their employer with a year. We are also boosting protections for workers against having their rosters and hours of work unexpectedly changed. People obviously organise their lives, their child care, their pick-up of the kids from school, the help that they provide aged parents around their roster and all of these arrangements can be disrupted by an unexpected change. And too we are addressing the modern challenge of workplace bullying. Too many young people in particular have lived with this burden of bullying not knowing who to go to and we will make sure that the industrial umpire is there to help them. During the week to come we will be outlining our plan for Australian jobs but we will also ensure that workplaces have - always ensure that workplaces have fair and decent working conditions and we have added to that fairness and decency this week.The Member for North Sydney, I welcome him and I give him the call.My question is to the treasurer. I remind the treasurer of his statement that, "The Government will never increase the rate or broaden the base of the GST or remove tax tree remove tax tree superannuation
payments for the over 60s." I remind him of his statement last year, "That we have ruled death duties out." Why did the treasurer claim this morning when asked about increases to taxes that he never rules anything in or out when this is simply untrue?Can I say I'm delighted to receive a question on tax from the shadow Treasurer, absolutely delighted because like every one on this side of the house I'm proud of our record when it comes in particular to personal income tax $47 billion worth of income tax cuts and the measure that I'm most proud of and it is most important, particularly in terms of fairness to the low paid workers, is the tripling of the tax free threshold. Workers don't pay a dollar of tax until they earn $18,200. So a combination of those measures means that someone who was on $50,000 a year is paying $2,000 less in tax each and every year. So I think that's a pretty good record. What we understand is that it is very important for working families to get a fair go in the tax system. Now, of course the only one advocating an increase in tax in this house is, in fact, the Leader of the Opposition. The Leader of the Opposition is going to increase the corporate rate of tax to fund his PPL scheme for millionaires. He is on the record saying that yet he denied this this morning. Even worse than that those opposite have said very, very clearly that they intend to abolish the tripling of the max-free threshold. What that means is a tax hike for over 6 million Australians.The Treasurer will resume his seat. The Member for North Sydney on a Point of Order.It does go to relevance. He was asked a question about his own words and his hypocrisy in that regard.The Member for North Sydney will resume his seat. The question went to taxation. The Treasurer has the call. Look, I do thank him for his assistance because what he's really pointing to is that those opposite do have a plan to smash hardworking Australian families by abolishing the tripling of the tax free threshold. On top of that they have their Coles and woollies tax as well. The one denied by the Leader of the Opposition this morning. The fact is that they have a $70 billion crater in their budget bottom line and the consequence of that is a set of policies to smash hardworking Australians.The Member for for North Sydney on a supply meantry.I ask the Treasurer will he rule out increasing income taxes in this year's budget? Yes or no?.As I said before the only party advocating an increase in income tax in this House is those opposite. We will not be increasing personal income taxes. What we will be doing is continuing to reform the system so people on low incomes get a fair go.

Just before I call the Leader of the Opposition or the Member for La Trobe I want to inform the house that we have present in the gallery this afternoon members of a parliamentary deal sgation from India. I want to welcome them on behalf of the House and extend a very House and extend a very warm
welcome to our visitors. They changed their schedule so they could come and see Question Time. I do want to say thank you to our visitors from India.

The Leader of the Opposition...A further supply meant try to the treasurer, given Na the Treasurer also ruled out a Carbon Tax before the last election, how can anyone take this latest reassurance seriously?The Treasurer has the call.I certainly do welcome that supply meantry. There are two propose ales to increase taxation in this parliament and both come from that side of the House. The Leader of the Opposition's proposal to increase company tax on the largest and medium sized Australian companies and in adogs that to give a tax increase of up to 600 or $500 for people on the lowest incomes in our community. We know what the priorities are here. We stand for low income earners, those Opposite go down on bended knee to the mining billionaires.Will the treasurer update the house on amendments for the global economy.Why is it important that these economic reforms are implemented in a detailed properly costed way?The Treasurer has the call.I thank the Member for her the Member for her question.
This afternoon I'm flying off to Moscow for the G20 finance ministers meeting. It is very important - I know those opposite aren't interested in the facts of the national economy or the global economy - but most importantly it is an opportunity to take the temperature of the global economy and to sit round the table with the Finance Ministers from the 20 countries who make up the G20. What's important about that is when you're sitting there you can look at all of the developed economies and you see there is one thing very different about the other developed economies around the table. Every single one of them went into recession during the global financial crisis. So this reminds us of how well Australia did and is continuing to do given the consequences of the global financial crisis. What it really points to is the fact that this Government got the big economic calls right. Every step of the way when there were challenges in the global economy and the coon squence of that is the creation of something like 850,000 jobs. If those opposite would have had their way we know what would have happened - Australia would have went into recession and hundreds of thousands of people would have lost their jobs. So we on this side of the house put jobs and growth first, unlike those opposite. We understand that to get jobs and growth you've got to put in place some of the most significant economic reforms that will generate prosperity into the future. Carbon pricing is one such reform. Of course to get in place those reforms you've got to do it in a methodical and responsible way. That is what you need to do when you're putting in place big reforms. Of course we have seen another leak from those opposite over the past 24 hours. There is so many leaks now there is a very big hole in their policy dyke. What we have seen is a $30 billion proposal to put large plastic water bags up the Queensland coast that. Is simply bizarre. It is like something out of a Woody Allen movie. The fact is $30 billion in terms of Dams and floating water up the coast, a $70 billion crater in their budget bottom line. No wonder the shadow treasurer over there is using every excuse under the sun to avoid putting his policies out there for scrutiny because what this demonstrates yet again is the size of the hole in their budget bottom line and the fact that the price will be paid by working Australians to fill that hole because we know what they're going to do. They will abolish the school kids bonus - gone. They will abolish the contribution to the superannuation savings of the lowest income workers in Australia - gone. What they're going to do is abolish pension increases - gone. What they're going to do is abolish the instant asset write off - done. Damage to working Australians and small business.The Treasurer's time has expired.


The individuals are denying the leader of the Nationals the call.

The leader of the Nationals has the call.Madame Speaker, my question is to the Prime Minister. I refer her to the Treasurer's statement that certainty is paramount when certainty is paramount when it
comes to the retirement income system. We want people to have confidence that they can save in the way in which they have in the past. To end the uncertainty surrounding superannuation, will the Prime Minister join the Coalition and rule out changes to the tax treatment of Australia's 500,000 self managed superannuation funds?The Prime Minister has the call.Thank you very much. Let me say to the leader of the National Party I most certainly will not join with the Coalition in attacking the superannuation benefits of low income Australians. I will not join with the Leader of the Opposition in attacking 2.1 million working women. I will not join with the Leader of the Opposition in attacking more than 3 million low income Australians and attacking their retirement savings. We will not do that. I will not join with the Leader of the Opposition in attacking superannuation for working Australians and preventing contributions from rising from 9% to 12%. I want to see working Australians able to retire with a decent retirement income. I will not join with the Leader of the Opposition...The Prime Minister will return to the question before the Chair.I think people are entitled to the contrast. On this side super - 9 to 12. On this side care and concern for low income Australians. On this side a plan to support low income working women, not hit them with a cut.The Prime Minister will resume her seat. The Manager of Opposition Business on a Point of Order.With great respect how can the Prime Minister be accusing the Opposition of hurting low income superannuation when it was this Government that reduced the low income contribution from 1,500 to $500 were.He will resume his seat and he is warned. If you wish to take a Point of Order on relevance that is one thing but the dispatch box for points of order is not an opportunity to enter into debate.The Prime Minister has the call.I was asked about stability and certainty in superannuation and I am addressing that question. I can clearly say to working Australians under this Government they will see their superannuation contributions rise from 9% to 12%. I can say to low income working Australians, disproportionately women that under this Government they will see benefits that assist them with their superannuation. Yes, there are a tax on certainty and stability for those Australians in the superannuation system and they come from the Leader of the Opposition's plans to attack the superannuation of working people. Why? Because he has always thought superannuation was a con - his words, not mine.

The member Member for for Moncrief on a Point of Order.I wanted to clarify whether it was probe quite for the Leader of the House to interfere with the parliamentary attendance presenting gifts to the Member for Griffith.The Member for Moncrief will resume his seat. The Member for Fisher has the call.My question is addressed to the minister for infrastructure and transport. Given the success of my lobbying and that of others resulting in the upgrade of the Bruce Highway to six lanes from Brisbane to Caboolture and in view of the commendable investment by the Government to further improvements north of Fisher, including the Cooroy Kurra section that will save lives when can the sun shine cost expect the Bruce Highway from Caboolture to the sun shine coast upgraded to six lanes removes appalling congestion and providing road access from Brisbane to the sun shine similar to that from Brisbane to Ipswich?I can get some questions from those opposite just not from the shadow minister. We have significantly increased funding for the Bruce Highway. Some $3.3 billion in funding for the Bruce Highway. This compares with $1.3 billion over 12 long years from those opposite investing more than twice as much in half the time. Our record is currently putting some 3,500 people to work, rebuilding more than 90 kilometres of the highway right now. During the break I opened section B of the Cooroy to Kurra upgrade, promised, funded, constructed and opened under this Government. I also announced joint funding with the Queensland Government of $790 million for section A upgrade. Now 24 is the sections of the highway that are in the Wide
electorate of the Member for Wide Bay, the shadow minister. He was the Minister for Transport. His described this section as the worst section of road in Australia but couldn't deliver a cent in spite of the fact that he was the local member and the minister and couldn't even turn up to the road opening, so embarrassed was he. Just today I have announced funding in the electorate of the Member for Fisher of $80.7 million for a new interchange at Roy's road and bells creek road near Beerwah with work to start in the middle of this year. 10 people have lost their lives on this 2 kilometre stretch of the Bruce Highway since 2002. I have had representations from the Member for Fisher as well as community members about this and that is why it is important in terms of this funding proceeding. What I can guarantee also is the work we are doing further north of the member's electorate on the Bruce Highway from cabbage tree creek to car men road. I can guarantee we will have real projects with real funding and real time frames. There is some support from those opposite. Indeed the Member for Herbert had this to say, and I quote, "I'll give Labor a pat on the back and say they have spent more in their four or five years on the Bruce Highway than we did before." That's what they say in their electorates because they know that it is the case. They're embarrassed by the performance by the Member for Wide Bay, that is why there is no opportunity to get a question since 2010 on infrastructure from the leader of the National Party.The Member for Fisher on a supplementary.While I thank the minister for the welcome news contained in his answer, given the fact the population of the sun shine Coast will double over the next 15 years or so, will the Government look as soon as possible at fully upgrading to six lanes the Bruce Highway from Caboolture to the sun shine coast.We certainly have con top of today's announcement, we've allocated additional funding for the section of the highway that the member refers to. We are also in discussions with the Queensland Government about nation building 2, the next program that begins in 2014-15. We are absolutely committed to upgrades on the Bruce Highway which is why we have, as I've said, invested more than twice as much in half the time of our predecessors. I'm aware that in terms of identifying the areas that are most dangerous, I'm aware that a number of those are in the area referred to by the member because of the population growth that has occurred. Indeed, the section, Cooroy to Kurra which construction will begin on later this year is a section in which about 1 in 5 of the vehicles that use that particular stretch of highway are heavy vehicles. That makes it particularly dangerous and makes it particularly appropriate that you have dividing carriageway. I look forward to the discussions with the Queensland Government about the priorities for the Bruce Highway but this Government will maintain our commitment to upgrading the Bruce as part of our upgrading of the nation's road network.

P I want to welcome into the house this afternoon a delegation of parliamentarians and civil leaders from Afghanistan and hope they enjoy their visit to the parliament today.

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Pe Sunshine Coast. Will the minister juch date the house on Australia's commitment to improving Australia's water community. How have Dams factored into the Government's approach and what kind o issues need to be taken into account in the building, funding and approval of Dams.

This will be good!The Member for Riverina will abide - will also show his ability to abide by the Standing Orders. The minister for sustainability, environment, water population and communities has the call.I want to thank both the Member for bass and the Member for Riverina for their comments on that question. It is no surprise the question is coming from the Member for bass because he is aware of the done through Tasmania, the whole Midlands project we building of the Milford damn and building and the headquarters road dam, establishing a new irrigation area through there just as the Member for New England would be aware of the work we have done augmenting the Chaffey dam. There are occasions where the footprint of Dams can be increased and done in a way that works and done in a way that is environmentally responsible. When I read Simon Benson's article today I saw something that was not in any way responsible but will congratulate whoever wrote this document for breath taking logic because what they proposed in that document and what Government policy absolutely rejects is that you can use your Dams in this magical way that they will provide against drought, provide against flood and provide renewable energy. If you are managing a dam to avoid drought your dam has to be constantly full. If you are managing a dam to avoid flood you need to keep your dam empty, if you are managing your damn to be able to provide hydro electricity you need to keep the dam flowing. Only the Opposition could come up with a dam's policy where they will have Dams that will be always full, always empty and always flowing. That is what they have decided to release. Let's not forget what happened the last time there were major Dams proposals in Australia. When the Traveston dam was proposed who was there in this part and on the side campaigning against the building of the Traveston dam. It may well have been the leader of the National Party there in the frontline saying all the reasons why it was so bad to build a new dam. So I thought, "Maybe there's been an occasion where the Opposition have had a rethink and they want to ditch their old view on this and they have moved forward." So I looked at whether they have been out there in social media arguing in favour of the policy today. So the Opposition Leader has not touched it. The Member for the environment did something about it last night and has not gone near the policy today. The Member for patterson did decide to comment on the policy today. His tweet was to tell us that under no circumstances will there be a Tilegra dam. The one thing that they're willing to back in is the old style opposition against Dams which they have always followed because they have a policy that they have now put want they have now put out that they
want to run away from because they know want to run a million miles when you promise away from because they when you promise everything to when you everyone in every when you promise everything to everyone in every contradictory
fashion it is fashion it is a policy that cannot work.The Member for for Bas on a supply meantry.In Bas on a supply meantry.In the minister's answer he talked Bas on a supply about some of the problems minister's answer about some of the problems that
can arise about some of the can arise if dam policies are can arise if dam policies not implemented responsibly, can the minister also outline the impacts this approach would have on consumers?The minister has the call.Thanks Speaker. I thank the Member for Bas for the supplementary. I wish the Member for Riverina had chimed in again but he has gone quieter now.Don't encourage him to break the Standing Orders.How do the opposition plan to pay for this? It is extraordinary. They decided they will come up with this increasebly clever idea that must have sounded really smart around the table that industry will come in and it will be private investment that will pay, that way they don't need to put down the dollars to fund it. Often roads are done in in way but when roads are done in this way, what does a private investor get back in the end, it is talled a toll. That is how the return ends up being paid. How do you pay the toll on private investment on a dam? Yuan simple way. What they have decided to lawn n their policy is something that will be paid for every time someone receives a water bill. What they decided in their policy is if it is in an agricultural area will be the irrigators who pay for it every time they get