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Julia Gillard's unnecessary and costly $9 billion tax will hurt families



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JOINT PRESS RELEASE

THE HON. TONY ABBOTT MHR, LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION THE HON. JOE HOCKEY MHR, SHADOW TREASURER THE HON. GREG HUNT MHR, SHADOW MINISTER FOR CLIMATE ACTION, ENVIRONMENT AND HERITAGE

JULIA GILLARD’S UNNECESSARY AND COSTLY $9 BILLION TAX WILL HIT FAMILIES

The Labor-Green carbon tax will drive up prices, threaten jobs and do nothing for the environment.

Australians will pay more for everything under Julia Gillard’s carbon tax - the biggest and most punitive carbon tax in the world.

Australia’s forgotten families are already struggling and the carbon tax will make a bad situation worse with a $515 a year hit on their cost of living. And that’s just for starters.

The carbon tax means:

a $9 billion a year new tax. a 10% hike in electricity bills in the first year alone. And that’s just for starters. a 9% percent hike in gas bills in the first year alone. And that’s just for starters. higher marginal tax rates for low and middle income earners. a $4.3 billion hit on the budget bottom line.

Millions of middle income families will be worse off under Julia Gillard’s carbon tax.

For example, a policeman and a nurse each earning $70,000 a year with one dependent child will be on average $230 a year worse off even after compensation. And that’s just for starters.

Should this couple do some extra shifts and each earn an extra $5,000 a year, that bill will increase to $528.

These parents, trying to get ahead and provide for their families, will be penalised by Julia Gillard’s carbon tax.

There are three certainties under this Government - it always taxes, it always wastes, and it always deceives.

The carbon tax means higher marginal tax rates for low and middle income earners - penalising hard work and reducing incentive.

This is the first series of increases in marginal tax rates since the 1980s. The 15% tax rate will rise to 19% and the 30% rate will increase to 33%.

The carbon tax is the first so-called “economic reform” in modern Australian history to increase marginal tax rates.

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The carbon tax is not revenue neutral - another Labor broken promise. This means a bigger deficit this year, higher debt, more taxes, smaller forecast surpluses in the future and greater pressure on interest rates. Julia Gillard has betrayed the Australian people.

Six days prior to the last election, she said “there will be no carbon tax under the government I lead”. The day before the election she said: “I rule out a carbon tax”.

The Australian people deserve a say on the carbon tax. It should not be introduced before the next election.

This go-it-alone carbon tax will also impose a heavy cost on Australian industries that their overseas competitors will not face. Australian jobs will be sent offshore for no environmental gain.

It will push up the price of electricity, gas, transport and food. Airfares will increase because the tax applies to aviation fuels. And freight transport is only exempt until after the next election.

Australia’s over two million small businesses will face increased costs, with no direct support.

Regional Australia will be hit hardest by the carbon tax. Most of the jobs in our mining, manufacturing and electricity generation sectors are based outside our capital cities. Under the carbon tax the gap between city and country will just get bigger.

When Julia Gillard talks about a “clean energy future” what she really means is higher electricity bills and fewer jobs with no environmental benefit.

The whole point of a carbon tax is to change the way everybody lives and works. And that’s why every year it will go up and up and up.

In other words, if it doesn’t hurt you it doesn’t work.

The design of the tax is a quagmire of complexity and you cannot trust this Government to get it right. It is a massive and permanent increase in the size of government, and includes a $10 billion Gillard Bank to finance high risk, speculative projects.

In the first four years alone, $382 million will be spent to manage this massive money-go-round.

The Gillard Government is the most incompetent government in Australia’s history. Having mishandled roof batts, border protection, Building the Education Revolution and the live cattle industry, this Government cannot be trusted with a $9 billion new tax.

There is a better way. The Coalition’s Direct Action plan is a strong and effective policy that will reduce carbon emissions by 5% by 2020 without a new tax.

Our Direct Action plan is costed, capped and fully funded from savings to the budget.

Direct Action means no costs to households, no new taxes, and no increase in electricity prices as a result of the policy.

The Coalition believes Australia has a great future. We want to rebuild hope, reward and opportunity for all Australians.

Our commitment to the Australian people is that we will do everything in our power to fight this toxic tax.

We will oppose it in opposition and rescind it in government.

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10 July 2011