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Thursday, 16 September 1971
Page: 1400

Mr HUGHES (BEROWRA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - My question is directed to the Treasurer. Bearing in mind that the present system of concessional tax deductions confers greater benefits on taxpayers with higher incomes than on taxpayers with low incomes, will the honourable gentleman have an investigation made as to the feasibility - and, as one aspect of feasibility, the cost to revenue - of amending the taxation law so as to provide for taxpayers who incur expenses on such items as educating their children the option of a tax rebate up to a certain amount in respect of such expenses as an alternative to claiming a concessional deduction? If the Treasurer wants any further details of this proposal, 1 refer him to a powerful speech made yesterday in the debate on the Budget.

Mr SNEDDEN (BRUCE, VICTORIA) (Treasurer) - It has been reported to me that the honourable gentleman made a powerful speech yesterday. I confess to him that the speeches of honourable members are reported to me in note form and examination is being made of any suggestion made by any honourable member in relation to the Budget debate. I will be examining the honourable member's speech in that context, and when I have done that I will communicate with the honourable gentleman. I do not want to anticipate what the result of my examination will be but I would remind him that to adopt such a course would very considerably redistribute the incidence of taxation within the community and therefore is a much bigger question than it at first appears.

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