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Wednesday, 25 September 2002
Page: 4948

Senator Sherry asked the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, upon notice, on 30 August 2002:

(1) For each department within the Minister's portfolio, how is superannuation calculated (i.e. is the superannuation entitlement calculated on base salary and other income payments, such as overtime allowance or performance bonuses, or on base salary alone).

(2) If the department calculates superannuation on a broader basis, by incorporating all income payments in the calculation of superannuation entitlements, but allows employees to opt out of the arrangement so as to reduce the base upon which superannuation is calculated, what proportion of employees do this.

Senator Ian Macdonald (Minister for Forestry and Conservation) —The Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

(1) The Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry has advised that it calculates superannuation in accordance with the Superannuation Act 1976, the Superannuation Act 1990, or the Superannuation (Productivity Benefit) Act 1988 and the Regulations or Rules which append to the relevant Legislation.

Accordingly, the superannuation salary comprises base salary and any allowance or fee which the Regulations or Rules determine are to be treated as salary. The calculations do not include overtime payments or performance bonuses.

(2) Employees are unable to opt out of the relevant Legislative arrangements that determine the salary on which superannuation is calculated.