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Social Services Legislation Amendment (Welfare Reform) Bill 2017

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2016-2017

 

The Parliament of the

Commonwealth of Australia

 

THE SENATE

 

 

 

 

Social Services Legislation Amendment (Welfare Reform) Bill 2017

 

 

(1)     Clause 2, page 3 (table item 16), omit “Schedules 12 and 13”, substitute “Schedule 13”.

[removal of Schedule 12]

(2)     Schedule 1, page 14 (after line 23), after item 93, insert:

93A  Subsection 603AA(2)

Omit “newstart allowance”, substitute “jobseeker payment”.

93B  Subsection 603AA(2) (note)

Omit “newstart allowance”, substitute “jobseeker payment”.

93C  Subsection 603AA(2A)

Omit “newstart allowance” (wherever occurring), substitute “jobseeker payment”.

[activity test for persons aged 55 or over but less than 60]

(3)     Schedule 1, item 352, page 46 (after line 8), after subitem (1), insert:

(1A)     If:

                     (a)  immediately before the commencement of this item, a person was receiving newstart allowance under the Social Security Act 1991 ; and

                     (b)  at the commencement of this item, the person starts to receive jobseeker payment;

then, while the person continuously receives that jobseeker payment on and after that commencement, the reference in subsection 603AA(2) of that Act to jobseeker payment is taken to be a reference to newstart allowance.

[activity test for persons aged 55 or over but less than 60]

(4)     Schedule  1 , Part  4 , page 51 (line 1) to page 52 (line 19) , to be opposed .

[removal of Schedule 12]

(5)     Schedule 4, item 39, page 100 (line 25), after “period”, insert “(the relevant period )”.

[one-off payment]

(6)     Schedule 4, item 39, page 100 (line 34) to page 101 (line 1), omit section 567FB, substitute:

567FB   Amount of payment

             (1)  The amount of the person’s payment is worked out using the following formula (except if paragraph 567FA(g) applies in relation to the person):

             (2)  If subparagraph 567FA(g)(i) applies in relation to the person, the amount of the person’s payment is worked out using the following formula:

             (3)  If subparagraph 567FA(g)(ii) applies in relation to the person, the amount of the person’s payment is worked out using the following formula:

where:

additional amount means the amount worked out in accordance with the following table:

 

Additional amount

Item

If the relevant period is:

the additional amount is:

1

More than 14 weeks but not more than 16 weeks

$2,250

2

More than 16 weeks but not more than 18 weeks

$2,700

3

More than 18 weeks but not more than 20 weeks

$3,150

4

More than 20 weeks but not more than 22 weeks

$3,550

5

More than 22 weeks but not more than 24 weeks

$4,000

6

More than 24 weeks but not more than 26 weeks

$4,450

7

More than 26 weeks but not more than 28 weeks

$4,900

8

More than 28 weeks but not more than 30 weeks

$5,350

9

More than 30 weeks but not more than 32 weeks

$5,800

10

More than 32 weeks

$6,250

[one-off payment]

(7)     Schedule 4, item 54, page 105 (line 27), after “period”, insert “(the relevant period )”.

[one-off payment]

(8)     Schedule 4, item 54, page 106 (lines 1 to 4), omit section 660LI, substitute:

660LI   Amount of payment

             (1)  The amount of the person’s payment is worked out using the following formula (except if paragraph 660LH(g) applies in relation to the person):

             (2)  If subparagraph 660LH(g)(i) applies in relation to the person, the amount of the person’s payment is worked out using the following formula:

             (3)  If subparagraph 660LH(g)(ii) applies in relation to the person, the amount of the person’s payment is worked out using the following formula:

where:

additional amount means the amount worked out in accordance with the following table:

 

Additional amount

Item

If the relevant period is:

the additional amount is:

1

More than 14 weeks but not more than 16 weeks

$1,150

2

More than 16 weeks but not more than 18 weeks

$1,500

3

More than 18 weeks but not more than 20 weeks

$1,850

4

More than 20 weeks but not more than 22 weeks

$2,150

5

More than 22 weeks but not more than 24 weeks

$2,500

6

More than 24 weeks but not more than 26 weeks

$2,850

7

More than 26 weeks but not more than 28 weeks

$3,200

8

More than 28 weeks but not more than 30 weeks

$3,550

9

More than 30 weeks but not more than 32 weeks

$3,900

10

More than 32 weeks

$4,250

[one-off payment]

(9)     Schedule 6, item 3, page 141 (lines 29 and 30), omit paragraph 603AC(1)(c), substitute:

                     (c)  she ceased to be a member of a couple after turning 40;

[relief from activity test]

(10)   Schedule 9, items 1 and 2, page 166 (lines 5 to 19), omit the items, substitute:

1  Subsection 603AA(1)

Omit “subsection (3)”, substitute “subsections (2) and (3)”.

[activity test for persons aged 55 or over but less than 60]

(11)   Schedule 9, page 166 (after line 27), after item 6, insert:

6A  After subsection 603AA(1)

Insert:

             (2)  Subsection (1) does not apply in relation to a person who has reached 55, but is under 60, years of age and to a period of 2 weeks (the relevant period ) if that period begins before the end of 12 months starting on the day the person starts to receive newstart allowance. Instead the person is taken to satisfy the activity test in respect of the relevant period if the person:

                     (a)  is engaged, for at least 30 hours in the relevant period, in a combination of:

                              (i)  approved unpaid voluntary work for an approved organisation; and

                             (ii)  paid work that the Secretary regards as suitable and that is at least 15 hours in the relevant period; or

                     (b)  is engaged for at least 30 hours in the relevant period in paid work that the Secretary regards as suitable.

Note:          Because of the definition of receive in section 23, this subsection applies separately in relation to each occasion the person starts to receive newstart allowance.

          (2A)  If newstart allowance ceases to be payable to a person for a period of less than 3 months (except because the newstart allowance was cancelled), then, for the purposes of subsection (2), the person is taken to be receiving newstart allowance during that period.

[activity test for persons aged 55 or over but less than 60]

(12)   Schedule 9, items 8 and 9, page 167 (lines 4 to 20), omit the items, substitute:

8  Subsection 731G(1)

Omit “subsection (3)”, substitute “subsections (2) and (3)”.

[activity test for persons aged 55 or over but less than 60]

(13)   Schedule 9, page 167 (after line 22), after item 10, insert:

10A  After subsection 731G(1)

Insert:

             (2)  Subsection (1) does not apply in relation to a person who has reached 55, but is under 60, years of age and to a period of 2 weeks (the relevant period ) if that period begins before the end of 12 months starting on the day the person starts to receive special benefit. Instead the person is taken to satisfy the activity test in respect of the relevant period if the person:

                     (a)  is engaged, for at least 30 hours in the relevant period, in a combination of:

                              (i)  approved unpaid voluntary work for an approved organisation; and

                             (ii)  paid work that the Secretary regards as suitable and that is at least 15 hours in the relevant period; or

                     (b)  is engaged for at least 30 hours in the relevant period in paid work that the Secretary regards as suitable.

Note:          Because of the definition of receive in section 23, this subsection applies separately in relation to each occasion the person starts to receive special benefit.

          (2A)  If special benefit ceases to be payable to a person for a period of less than 3 months (except because the special benefit was cancelled), then, for the purposes of subsection (2), the person is taken to be receiving special benefit during that period.

[activity test for persons aged 55 or over but less than 60]

(14)   Schedule 9, item 13, page 168 (line 3), after “item”, insert “, whether the person started to receive newstart allowance or special benefit before, on or after that commencement”.

[activity test for persons aged 55 or over but less than 60]

(15)   Schedule 12, page 174 (line 1) to page 188 (line 9), to be opposed .

[removal of Schedule 12]

(16)   Schedule 13, item 2, page 189 (lines 21 to 24), omit subsection 28C(3).

[declared program participants]

(17)   Schedule 15, item 1, page 195 (lines 26 to 34), omit paragraph 42AC(1)(a), substitute:

                     (a)  the person fails to comply with a requirement that was notified to the person under subsection 63(2) or (4);

[removal of Schedule 12]

(18)   Schedule 15, item 1, page 196 (lines 6 to 8), omit “(except a notice containing a requirement described in subparagraph (a)(i) of this subsection)”.

[removal of Schedule 12]

(19)   Schedule 15, item 1, page 196 (line 36), omit “Note 1”, substitute “Note”.

[removal of Schedule 12]

(20)   Schedule 15, item 1, page 197 (lines 1 and 2), omit note 2.

[removal of Schedule 12]



 

Parliamentary Counsel

 

Social Services Legislation Amendment (Welfare Reform) Bill 2017

JC466

Statement of reasons: why certain amendments should be moved as requests

Section 53 of the Constitution is as follows:

Powers of the Houses in respect of legislation

53. Proposed laws appropriating revenue or moneys, or imposing taxation, shall not originate in the Senate. But a proposed law shall not be taken to appropriate revenue or moneys, or to impose taxation, by reason only of its containing provisions for the imposition or appropriation of fines or other pecuniary penalties, or for the demand or payment or appropriation of fees for licences, or fees for services under the proposed law.

The Senate may not amend proposed laws imposing taxation, or proposed laws appropriating revenue or moneys for the ordinary annual services of the Government.

The Senate may not amend any proposed law so as to increase any proposed charge or burden on the people.

The Senate may at any stage return to the House of Representatives any proposed law which the Senate may not amend, requesting, by message, the omission or amendment of any items or provisions therein. And the House of Representatives may, if it thinks fit, make any of such omissions or amendments, with or without modifications.

Except as provided in this section, the Senate shall have equal power with the House of Representatives in respect of all proposed laws.

Amendment (6)

The effect of this amendment is to increase the amount of a one-off payment to certain recipients of youth allowance under the Social Security Act 1991 . It is covered by section 53 because it will increase the amount of expenditure out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund under the standing appropriation in section 242 of the Social Security (Administration) Act 1999 , and so will increase a “proposed charge or burden on the people”.

Amendment (8)

The effect of this amendment is to increase the amount of a one-off payment to certain recipients of jobseeker payment under the Social Security Act 1991 . It is covered by section 53 because it will increase the amount of expenditure out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund under the standing appropriation in section 242 of the Social Security (Administration) Act 1999 , and so will increase a “proposed charge or burden on the people”.

Amendment (9)

The effect of this amendment is to provide relief from the activity test for newstart allowance under the Social Security Act 1991 , which will increase qualification for newstart allowance. It is covered by section 53 because it will increase the amount of expenditure out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund under the standing appropriation in section 242 of the Social Security (Administration) Act 1999 , and so will increase a “proposed charge or burden on the people”.

Consequential amendments

The following amendment(s) are consequential on the amendments mentioned above:

Amendments (5) and (7).



 

Social Services Legislation Amendment (Welfare Reform) Bill 2017

SHEET JC466

 

 

 

Statement by the Clerk of the Senate pursuant

to the order of the Senate of 26 June 2000

 

 

 



Amendments (6) and (8) - These amendments willincrease the amount of a one-off payment to certain recipients of youth allowance and jobseeker payment.

 

Amendment (9) - This amendment will provide relief from the activity test for newstart allowance.

 

The statement of reasons for moving these amendments as requests advises that they will increase expenditure under the standing appropriation in section 242 of the Social Security (Administration) Act 1999 .

 

The Senate has long followed the practice that it should treat as requests amendments that would result in increased expenditure under a standing appropriation. If that is the effect of the amendments, then it is in accordance with the precedents of the Senate that they be moved as requests.

 

Amendments (5) and (7) - These amendments are consequential on amendments (6) and (8). Senate practice provides that amendments that are consequential on requests may also be framed as requests.