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Thursday, 15 March 2012
Page: 3104

Carbon Pricing

Mrs PRENTICE (Ryan) (14:17): My question is to the Prime Minister. I remind the Prime Minister that the bus industry will face a $50 million hit each year because of her carbon tax. Why should children who catch the school bus have to pay your carbon tax while those who are dropped off in cars will not, or at least not yet?

Ms GILLARD (LalorPrime Minister) (14:17): The fear campaign continues and as part of that campaign we get the recycling of the same old questions. To the member who asked the question I say this: how will the families and children she is worried about react to the Leader of the Opposition's Coles and Woolies tax? How will they feel about that when prices are up in the shops as a result of the Leader of the Opposition increasing company tax to 31½ cents? On the matter of carbon pricing and public transport—

Mr Pyne: I rise on a point of order concerning relevance. The Prime Minister is already off the subject of the question. She was simply asked why children who catch a bus have to pay her carbon tax and children who take cars to school do not. That is the question the Prime Minister has to answer.

The SPEAKER: The Prime Minister was diverting. I am sure she is anxious to get back to the substance of the question.

Ms GILLARD: I am very anxious to get back to the question. On the carbon pricing regime, bus prices and children catching buses, all of this has of course been factored in to the compensation that families will receive. The member who asked the question should recognise that under the government's plans the mums and dads of the children catching public transport are very likely to have got a tax cut. The mums and dads are very likely to have seen an increase in their family payments. The grandparents of those children will have seen a pension increase.

Mrs Gash interjecting

The SPEAKER: The honourable member for Gilmore.

Ms GILLARD: Under the Leader of the Opposition's plan they would have had all of that money taken out of their hands, and then a bill for $1,300 on top. That is what would have happened. And if the children's mums and dads operate a small business they will be paying more tax as well.

When it comes to running the economy in the interests of working families, children catching buses and children going to quality schools, schools that have not had to face cutbacks, the member had better endorse the policies and plans of this side, because the policies and plans of the Leader of the Opposition are a disgrace for those working families, because they are all about placating billionaires.