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Primary Industries (Excise) Levies Bill 1998

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1998-99

 

 

 

THE PARLIAMENT OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA

 

 

 

 

 

 

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PRIMARY INDUSTRIES (EXCISE) LEVIES BILL 1998

 

 

 

 

 

 

SUPPLEMENTARY EXPLANATORY MEMORANDUM

AND CORRECTIONS

 

 

 

AMENDMENTS TO BE MOVED ON BEHALF OF THE GOVERNMENT

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Circulated by authority of the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry,

the Hon Mark Vaile, MP)



PRIMARY INDUSTRIES (EXCISE) LEVIES BILL 1998

 

GENERAL OUTLINE

This explanatory memorandum relates to amendments to the Primary Industries (Excise) Levies Bill 1998 requested by industry and corrections to the original explanatory memorandum tabled in December 1998.

 

FINANCIAL IMPACT STATEMENT

There are no immediate financial implications for the Commonwealth, other than the savings involved when changes need to be made, unless and until new levies are imposed under this Act, as a result of these amendments and corrections.



AMENDMENTS

 

NOTES ON CLAUSES

 

Amendment 1: - Schedule 4 (coarse grains), page 17 (lines 11 to 22)

 

This amendment amends the definition of growers’ organisation for the purpose of this Schedule.

 

The amendment provides that the manner in which ‘growers’ organisation’ is defined for coarse grains will be consistent with similar definitions for wheat, grain legumes, oilseeds and pasture seeds.  The amendment does not alter the present arrangements under which the Grains Council of Australia (GCA) is the growers’ organisation in respect of all coarse grains except triticale.  For triticale the defined growers’ organisation continues to be the Triticale Grain Association of Australia.

 

Amendment 2: - Schedule 4 (coarse grains), page 17 (line 24)

 

This amendment amends the definition of leviable amount for the purpose of this Schedule.

 

The amendment reduces the annual levy liability threshold from $50 to $25, below which levy on coarse grains is not imposed in accordance with subclauses 5(2) and 5(4) of this Schedule.  The amendment, which has been agreed to by the relevant growers’ organisations, will maintain consistency with other grain industry definitions, particularly for wheat growers, regarding the level of production below which an enterprise is not considered to be a commercial operation.

 

Amendment 3: - Schedule 4 (coarse grains), page 20 (line 26)

 

This amendment amends the maximum levy rate imposed on oats, cereal rye, barley and triticale and any other leviable coarse grain added to the scheme by regulations.

 

The amendment reduces the maximum rate of levy which can be prescribed for oats, cereal rye, barley or triticale, from 5% to 3% of the sale value of the grain.  The same maximum levy rate is to apply to all other leviable coarse grains (See Amendment 4). The current maximum figure of 5% in the legislation is an anomaly which arose when the levy for coarse grains was changed to an ad valorem value.  The amendment, which has been agreed to by the relevant growers’ organisations, means that the maximum rate of levy on coarse grains for research purposes will be consistent with the maximum for other commodities which fund the Grains Research and Development Corporation.  The operative rates of levy for the various coarse grains are not altered by this amendment.

 

Amendment 4: - Schedule 4 (coarse grains), page 20 (line 30)

 

This amendment amends the maximum levy rate imposed on any other leviable coarse grain added to the scheme by regulations.

 

The amendment provides that the maximum rate of levy for those grains which are prescribed as ‘leviable coarse grains’ under Clause 1 of this Schedule will be the same as the maximum rate set for oats, cereal rye, barley and triticale by subclause 6(1) ie 3% of the sale value (See Amendment 3).

 

Amendment 5: - Schedule 9 (dried fruits), page 44 (lines 10 and 11)

 

This amendment amends the definition of dried vine fruits for the purpose of this Schedule.

 

The amendment is intended to provide for new grape varieties and existing tablegrape varieties which are increasingly being dried, processed and marketed.

 

Amendment 6: - Schedule 9 (dried fruits), page 44 (lines 13 and 18)

 

This amendment amends the definition of R&D authority for the purpose of this Schedule by repealing paragraph A of the definition.  The paragraph is redundant because the Rural Industries Research Act 1985 was repealed by the Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment Act (No. 2) 1996 .

 

Amendment 7: - Schedule 9 (dried fruits), page 45 (line 21)

 

This amendment amends the maximum levy rate imposed on dried vine fruits.

 

The amendment is required because the research levy is currently operating at its maximum level and therefore provides little scope for increase.

 

By increasing the maximum rate at this time it allows the operative rate to be increased without the need for further amendment to this legislation in the foreseeable future.  It should be noted that any operative rate increase will be through regulatory change and thus subject to scrutiny by Parliament.

 

Amendment 8: - Schedule 9 (dried fruits), page 45 (line 22)

 

This amendment amends the maximum levy rate imposed on dried tree fruits.

 

The amendment is required because the research levy is currently operating at its maximum level and therefore provides little scope for increase.

 

By increasing the maximum rate at this time it allows the operative rate to be increased without the need for further amendment to this legislation in the foreseeable future.  It should be noted that any operative rate increase will be through regulatory change and thus subject to scrutiny by Parliament.

 

Amendment 9: - Schedule 12 (grain legumes), page 53 (line 11)

 

This amendment amends the definition of leviable amount for the purpose of this Schedule.

 

The amendment reduces the annual levy liability threshold from $50 to $25, below which levy on grain legumes is not imposed in accordance with subclauses 5(3) and 5(5) of this Schedule. The amendment, which has been agreed to by the relevant growers’ organisation, will maintain consistency with other grain industry definitions, particularly for wheat growers, regarding the level of production below which an enterprise is not considered to be a commercial operation.

 

 

 

Amendment 10: - Schedule 13 (grapes), page 58 (lines 17 to 22)

 

This amendment amends the definition of representative organisation for the purpose of this Schedule.

 

The amendment is required because the Rural Industries Research Act 1985 was repealed by the Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment (No. 2) Act 1996 .

 

Amendment 11: - Schedule 14 (honey), page 62 (lines 9 and 10)

 

This amendment amends the definition of producers’ organisation for the purpose of this Schedule.

 

The amendment is required because the Federal Council of Australian Apiarists’ Associations (FCAAA) has been replaced as the industry’s representative body by the Australian Honey Bee Industry Council (AHBIC).

 

Amendment 12: - Schedule 14 (honey), page 62 (lines 14 to 19)

 

This amendment amends the definition of R&D authority for the purpose of this Schedule by repealing paragraph A of the definition.  The paragraph is redundant because the Rural Industries Research Act 1985 was repealed by the Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment Act (No. 2) 1996 .

 

Amendment 13: - Schedule 14 (honey), page 64 (line 23)

 

This amendment amends the operative rate for the marketing component imposed on the sale of honey.

 

The amendment is required to reflect changes in the honey industry.  The industry has not sought collection of the marketing component since it ended marketing arrangements with the Australian Horticultural Corporation and the operative rates for the marketing components have been set at zero since 23 November 1995 by Statutory Rules 1995  No 353.  Whilst it is nil at present the industry wishes to retain the potential to introduce it at a future time.

 

Amendment 14: - Schedule 14 (honey), page 64 (line 27)

 

This amendment amends the operative rate for the research component imposed on the sale of honey.

 

The amendment is required to reflect the fact that the operative rate for the research component has been set at 0.75 cents per kilogram since 25 June 1998 by Statutory Rules 1998  No 145.

 

Amendment 15: - Schedule 14 (honey), page 64 (line 28)

 

This amendment amends the maximum rate for the research component imposed on the sale of honey.

 

The amendment is required because the research component is currently operating at its maximum level and therefore provides little scope for increase.

 

By increasing the maximum rate at this time it allows the operative rate to be increased without the need for further amendment to this legislation in the foreseeable future.  It should be noted that any operative rate increase will be through regulatory change and thus subject to scrutiny by Parliament.

 

Amendment 16: - Schedule 14 (honey), page 65 (line 1)

 

This amendment amends the operative rate for the marketing component imposed on honey used in the production of other goods.

 

The amendment is required to reflect changes in the honey industry.  The industry has not sought collection of the marketing component since it ended marketing arrangements with the Australian Horticultural Corporation and the operative rates for the marketing components have been set at zero since 23 November 1995 by Statutory Rules 1995  No 353.  Whilst it is nil at present the industry wishes to retain the potential to introduce it at a future time.

 

Amendment 17: - Schedule 14 (honey), page 65 (line 5)

 

This amendment amends the operative rate for the research component imposed on honey used in the production of other goods.

 

The amendment is required to reflect the fact that the operative rate for the research component has been set at 0.75 cents per kilogram since 25 June 1998 by Statutory Rules 1998  No 145.

 

Amendment 18: - Schedule 14 (honey), page 65 (line 6)

 

This amendment amends the maximum rate for the research component imposed on honey used in the production of other goods.

 

The amendment is required because the research component is currently operating at its maximum level and therefore provides little scope for increase.

 

By increasing the maximum rate at this time it allows the operative rate to be increased without the need for further amendment to this legislation in the foreseeable future.  It should be noted that any operative rate increase will be through regulatory change and thus subject to scrutiny by Parliament.

 

Amendment 19: - Schedule 16 (laying chickens), page 75 (line 14)

 

This amendment amends the definition of who is liable to pay the levy.

 

The amendment is required to reflect the fact that the hatchery is responsible for payment of the levy.

 

Amendment 20: - Schedule 19 (meat chickens), page 87 (lines 14 to 19)

 

This amendment amends the definition of R&D authority for the purpose of this Schedule by repealing paragraph A of the definition.  The paragraph is redundant because the Rural Industries Research Act 1985 was repealed by the Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment Act (No. 2) 1996 .

 

 

 

Amendment 21: - Schedule 19 (meat chickens), page 88 (lines 3 to 10)

 

This amendment amends the definition of certain chickens as being meat chickens for the purposes of this Schedule.

 

The amendment is required as the definition is no longer relevant because of the separate development of the chicken meat and egg industries since the Meat Chicken Levy Act 1969 .

 

Amendment 22: - Schedule 19 (meat chickens), page 89 (line 17)

 

This amendment is required to reflect the fact that the Australian Chicken Meat Federation has been incorporated under the Associations Incorporation Act 1984 (NSW) since 8 May 1997.

 

Amendment 23: - Schedule 19 (meat chickens), page 89 (line 22)

 

This amendment is required to reflect the fact that the Australian Chicken Meat Federation has been incorporated under the Associations Incorporation Act 1984 (NSW) since 8 May 1997.

 

Amendment 24: - Schedule 20 (oilseeds), page 91 (line 11)

 

This amendment amends the definition of leviable amount for the purpose of this Schedule.

 

The amendment reduces the annual levy liability threshold from $50 to $25, below which levy on oilseeds is not imposed in accordance with subclauses 6(4) and 6(6) of this Schedule. The amendment, which has been agreed to by the relevant growers’ organisation, will maintain consistency with other grain industry definitions, particularly for wheat growers, regarding the level of production below which an enterprise is not considered to be a commercial operation.

 

Amendment 25: - Schedule 21 (pasture seeds), page 96 (before line 7)

 

This amendment inserts the definition of growers’ organisation for the purpose of this Schedule.

 

The amendment corrects an anomaly so that the growers’ organisation referred to in sub clause 5(3) of this Schedule for the purposes of recommending changes to pasture seed levy arrangements, will now be defined.  The Grains Council of Australia (GCA) through its Seeds Committee, is currently the peak industry body representing seed growers.  The definition provides that another body could be prescribed as the grower organisation if, for example, the GCA changed its name or structure, or was no longer the body to represent seed producers.

 

Amendment 26: - Schedule 21 (pasture seeds), page 96 (line 7)

 

This amendment omits reference to specified cultivars for the purpose of this Schedule.

 

This is a consequential amendment following the removal of references to ‘cultivars’ in subclause 5(1) of this Schedule (see Amendments 32 and 33).

 

Amendment 27: - Schedule 21 (pasture seeds), page 96 (lines 8 to 11)

 

This amendment is part of the change to remove the requirement to list each cultivar of a species for which the rate of pasture seed levy is specified under subclause 5(1) of this Schedule.  All cultivars of a species are subject to the same rate of pasture seed levy.  This change, which has been requested by the relevant growers’ organisation (the Grains Council of Australia), will remove the need for keeping the cultivar list in subclause 5(1) up to date.  This is a time consuming task for the industry and requires the gazettal of a Ministerial instrument each time a change is made.

 

Amendment 28: - Schedule 21 (pasture seeds), page 96 (line 20)

 

This is a consequential amendment following the removal of references to ‘cultivars’ in subclause 5(1) of this Schedule (see Amendments 32 and 33).

 

Amendment 29: - Schedule 21 (pasture seeds), page 97 (line 2)

Amendment 30: - Schedule 21 (pasture seeds), table of pasture seeds, pages 97-102

 

These amendments remove the requirement to list each cultivar of a species for which the rate of pasture seed levy is specified under subclause 5(1) of this Schedule.  All cultivars of a species are subject to the same rate of pasture seed levy.  This change, which has been requested by the relevant growers’ organisation (the Grains Council of Australia), will remove the need for keeping the cultivar list in subclause 5(1) up to date.  This is a time consuming task for the industry and requires the gazettal of a Ministerial instrument each time a change is made.

 

Amendment 31: - Schedule 22 (pig slaughter), page 104 (lines 11 to 16)

 

This amendment amends the definition of R&D authority for the purpose of this Schedule by repealing paragraph A of the definition.  The paragraph is redundant because the Rural Industries Research Act 1985 was repealed by the Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment Act (No. 2) 1996 .

 

Amendment 32: - Schedule 25 (wheat), page 116 (before line 7)

 

This amendment inserts the definition of growers’ organisation for the purpose of this Schedule.

 

The amendment provides that the manner in which ‘growers’ organisation’ is defined for wheat will be consistent with similar definitions for coarse grains, grain legumes, oilseeds and pasture seeds.  The Grains Council of Australia (GCA) is the growers’ organisation in respect of all these products.  Clause 7 of this Schedule currently provides for the GCA to make recommendations to the Minister concerning changes to wheat levy arrangements.  The new definition continues this role for the GCA, but also provides that another body could be prescribed as the grower organisation if, for example, the GCA changed its name or structure, or was no longer the body to represent wheat producers

 

Amendment 33: - Schedule 25 (wheat), page 117 (line 19)

 

This amendment amends the maximum levy rate imposed on wheat.

 

The amendment reduces the maximum rate of levy which can be prescribed for wheat from 5% to 3% of the sale value of the wheat.  The current 5% maximum rate in the legislation is a cumulative figure for both the research and Wheat Industry Fund (WIF) components of the levy. The WIF component, which is currently paid to the Australian Wheat Board (AWB), will cease when the AWB is privatised on 1 July 1999.  The amendment will not alter the maximum rate for the research component of the levy from the present 3% of sale value.  Also, the present operative rate of levy on wheat for research purposes is not altered by this amendment.

 

This change, which has been requested by the Grains Council of Australia, means that the maximum rate of levy on wheat for research purposes will be consistent with the maximum for other commodities which fund the Grains Research and Development Corporation.

 

Amendment 34: - Schedule 25 (wheat), page 117 (lines 28 and 29)

 

This is a consequential amendment following the insertion of a definition for ‘growers’ organisation’ in Clause 1 of this Schedule (See Amendment 35).

 

CORRECTIONS

 

Schedule 1 - Beef production

 

The title on page 5 should read as follows:

 

OUTLINE

 

 

Schedule 6 - Dairy produce

 

Clause 6:        Imposition of levies

 

The fifth paragraph should read as follows:

 

Clause 6(1)(c) provides for an acquisition offset levy to be imposed on the total quantity of imported dairy produce acquired by a prescribed exporter or a related company (which is not a prescribed exporter) during a particular financial year, providing levy has not been imposed by clauses 2 or 3 of schedule 4 of the Primary Industries (Customs) Charges Act 1998 or sections 8 or 9 of the repealed Dairy Produce Levy (No. 2) Act 1986 on that dairy produce.

 

Clause 14:      Regulations

 

The third paragraph should read as follows:

 

The rate of levy on manufacturing milk required to deliver the level of support which would have been provided had the previous market support arrangements, which ceased on 1 July 1995, had continued to 30 June 2000 are to be calculated annually by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics (ABARE) and, taken into consideration in the recommendation by the Minister to the Governor-General.