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Wednesday, 30 May 2012
Page: 6291

Economy


Ms OWENS (Parramatta) (14:57): My question is to the Assistant Treasurer and Minister Assisting for Deregulation. What is the government doing through the budget to make sure hardworking families benefit from the strong Australian economy, and what does this mean for families in my electorate?


Mr BRADBURY (LindsayAssistant Treasurer and Minister Assisting for Deregulation) (14:57): I thank the member for Parramatta for her question. She is a very hardworking and passionate advocate for the people of Western Sydney. She is right in pointing to the strength of the Australian economy. It is one of the strongest economies in the developed world, with low unemployment, contained inflation, low net debt and a record pipeline of investment—in fact, half a trillion dollars are coming into the resources sector alone. On top of that, we are returning this budget to surplus and, in returning the budget to surplus, we are determined to spread the benefits of the mining boom—

Mr Tony Smith interjecting

The DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Ms AE Burke ): The member for Casey might be looking outside soon.

Mr BRADBURY: to ensure that hardworking families, in electorates like the member for Parramatta's, not only have the opportunity to make ends meet but to get ahead. I am pleased to advise the member for Parramatta that, in her electorate alone, some 9,000 families will be receiving the schoolkids bonus. In addition to that, 45,000 hardworking individuals will receive a tax cut. On top of that, 14,000 families in the electorate of Parramatta will get an increase to their family payments. And of course our responsible economic management is giving the Reserve Bank the space that it needs to cut interest rates, if it chooses to do so, to deliver more relief to working families.

These benefits are not just confined to the electorate of Parramatta but will be spread right across Western Sydney and, indeed, right across the country. I note that, in the electorate of Macarthur, which is also in Western Sydney—

Ms Julie Bishop interjecting

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Deputy Leader of the Opposition has had her fun.

Mr BRADBURY: 12,000 families are set to receive an increase in their family payments and 11,000 families will receive an increase in their payments through the schoolkids bonus. The member for Macarthur likes to stand up for working families—or at least he likes to come into this place and pretend that that is what he does. Just a couple of weeks ago he came in here and said, yes, parents in Macarthur are struggling, they need all the help that they can get. But then he came straight back into the chamber and voted against giving them a schoolkids bonus. He goes back to his electorate and tells people he is here for working families, but then he comes in here and he votes no. Why did he vote no? He voted no because he wants to stand up for those families but the relentless and destructive negativity of the Leader of the Opposition is getting in the way. The Leader of the Opposition says no to increases in family payments, no to increases in the pension, no to the schoolkids bonus. I know they are addicted to saying no, but the member for Macarthur, if he really must say no, should say no to the Leader of the Opposition and come in here and say yes to the relief that we want to provide to working families in his electorate.