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Tuesday, 20 September 2011
Page: 10817

Clean Energy Future Legislation

Mr FRYDENBERG (Kooyong) (15:12): My question is to the Prime Minister. I refer the Prime Minister to the situation of my constituent, Gabrielle Whiting, who as a single, self-funded retiree under the age of 65 earning $35,000 a year has been told by the government's clean energy hotline that she will not be entitled to any compensation under the carbon tax. In fact, according to the government's own household assistance estimator, Ms Whiting will be $251 a year worse off. Prime Minister, why are you determined to introduce a new tax that will add to the cost-of-living pressures faced by hundreds of thousands of self-funded retirees who responsibly planned for a modest retirement?

Ms GILLARD (LalorPrime Minister) (15:06): To the member's question, there are arrangements for self-funded retirees in the package. It does depend on people's individual circumstances—of course it does—but for anybody to gain the impression from his question that somehow if you are a self-funded retiree there is no assistance available is not right. In fact, some self-funded retirees will see the increase in the pension that full pensioners will receive; they will also experience a tax cut on income earned.

Mr Frydenberg: Mr Speaker, I rise on a point of order on relevance. I specifically asked about a single self-funded retiree under the age of 65 earning $35,000 a year.

The SPEAKER: The Prime Minister is responding to the question.

Ms GILLARD: Before the point of order, what I was about to say to the member for Kooyong is that I have outlined the general circumstances for self-funded retirees. For an individual, I would obviously have to get a lot of detail about their personal circumstances and financial affairs. I do not believe it is appropriate to do that in the parliament in this manner, but if the member wants to bring those circumstances to me then we will be happy to get him a very direct answer for his constituent.