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Thursday, 21 August 1980
Page: 588

Mr BRAITHWAITE (DAWSON, QUEENSLAND) - Can the Treasurer advise the Parliament whether taxpayers who work at sugar mills, following the introduction of section 26AAAA of the Income Tax Assessment Act, are now to have their objections for the year ending 30 June 1978 heard on the new basis of housing values and are to have their assessments for the year ending 30 June 1979 issued and payasyouearn taxation reduced in accordance with the new values? When will such objections and assessments be heard and issued?

Mr HOWARD - I inform the honourable member for Dawson and a number of other honourable members, including the honourable member for Herbert, who have made inquiries of me about the same matter, that the people who are the subject of the question will have the benefits of the liberalising provisions of that section which passed into law in April this year. Those benefits will be retrospective. In other words, they will go back to the beginning of the 1 977-78 taxation year, so that in respect of assessments from then on, the benefit of the new section will operate. This will mean that there will be a lower amount of taxation payable than otherwise would have been the case. Of course, this serves to underline in an indirect fashion, but in a very tangible way so far as these employers are concerned, the reasonableness of the approach that the Government has taken in this area. I take this opportunity of reminding the House that the people who are the subject of the honourable member's question are in precisely the same position as the coal miners of central Queensland but they have negotiated in a reasonable fashion with the taxation authorities. I can assure the honourable member for Dawson that, taking into account the operation , of the new law, the assessments will issue very shortly.

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