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Wednesday, 29 June 1938

Mr BLACKBURN (Bourke) .- In Victoria and, I believe, other States, there are two classes of income tax. One is the income tax which is collected from persons for general purposes, and the other is the income tax collected from them for the relief of unemployment. By means of the second tax, money is collected from persons receiving very small wages. In fact,, it is a wages tax. This bill looks like a means to extend that wages tax to Commonwealth employees. I am opposed to the wages tax being collected from persons who earn only a pound or two a week. If this measure is agreed to, the Government of Victoria will be able to collect a tax not only from its own employees, but also from Commonwealth employees, from whom it is not practicable at present to collect that tax.

Mr. Casey.Why not?

Mr BLACKBURN - Because there is no authority to deduct the tax from the wages of Commonwealth employees. The tax imposed in Victoria can be collected from the wages of employees of the State as well as from the employees of private persons. As I understand it, there is no authority for the State to deduct this tax. from the wages of Commonwealth employees.

Mr Casey - There is no authority to collect the tax at the source, but that does not lessen the liability of Commonwealth public servants to pay the tax.

Mr BLACKBURN - Unless the tax be deducted at the source, it will not be deducted at all.

Mr Casey - That would imply evasion. The wages tax is already applicable to Commonwealth public servants in the

State of Victoria. It cannot be applied to Commonwealth public servants in Canberra. This bill applies only to persons who are liable to pay the tax to State governments.

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