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Wednesday, 27 November 1974
Page: 2821

To the Honourable the President and Members ofthe Senate in Parliament assembled. The humble petition of the undersigned citizens of Australia respectfully showeth:

That the reduction of the allowable deduction of education expenses under Section 82j ofthe Income Tax Assessment Act from $400 to $ 1 50 is $50 below the 1 956-57 figure.

That this reduction will impose hardships on many parents who have children attending school, whether non government or government: and particularly on parents with more than one child at school.

That this reduction will further restrict the freedom available to parents to make a choice of school for their children.

That some parents who have chosen to send their children to a non-government school will have to withdraw their children and send them to government schools already over crowded and understaffed.

That the parents to benefit most relatively from educational income tax deductions, in the past and even more in the future, arc the parents of children in government schools and this has a divisive effect on the Australian community.

That parents should be encouraged by the Australian government to exercise freedom of choice of the type of school they wish for their children. The proposed reduction means an additional financial penalty is imposed on parents who try to exercise this choice and discourages them from making an important financial contribution to Australian education over and above what they contribute through taxation.

That an alternative system, a tax rebate system, could be adopted as being more equitable for all parents with children at school.

To compensate for the losses that will follow from the proposed reduction and to help meet escalating educational costs faced by all families your petitioners most humbly pray that the Senate in Parliament assembled should take immediate steps to restore educational benefits to parents, at least at the 1973-1974 level either by increasing taxation deductions or through taxation rebates.

And your petitioners, as in duty bound, will ever pray. by Senator Missen (2 petitions) and Senator Sheil.

Petitions received.

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