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Monday, 12 November 1973
Page: 3098

Mr MORRIS (SHORTLAND, NEW SOUTH WALES) - Has the Treasurer's attention been drawn to Press reports regarding the abolition of the age allowance scheme for income earners and its effect on New South Wales Railways superannuitants? As a result of the treatment of pension as income for tax purposes as from 1 July 1973, and following the 2 increases in pension since Labor came to office in December last, is it a fact that only a minor percentage of pensioners will be affected and that tax deduction will not be made from superannuitants receiving less than $40 superannuation a fortnight? When will the explanatory booklets on tax on pensions be distributed to pensioners?

Mr CREAN - As the honourable member knows, we have made changes in the conditions of taxation for people over 65 years of age. Insofar as any of them are recipients of superannuation above a certain level - as the honourable member said, above $40 a fortnight - it may be necessary that there be changes in the deductions that formerly operated. A booklet is available at post offices on this subject and we have endeavoured to make it accessible to everybody as soon as possible so that people can see .for themselves what the position is. I repeat that at least four out of five existing pensioners will not pay any additional tax as a consequence of the changes, but in some cases additional amounts will be payable. Where weekly or fortnightly deductions are made we think it only wise that increased deduction be made so that instead of the sum being payable in one lump there will at least have been provision to meet it.

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