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Monday, 30 August 1993
Page: 473

Senator PARER —My question is addressed to the Minister representing the Treasurer. Are the government's proposed new taxes on accumulated holiday and long service leave being collected? If so, is this legal considering that there has been no change to the act and therefore no change to the rates? Has the Australian Taxation Office taken steps to inform employers not to collect this increased tax until the act is changed? What happens to tax already collected illegally?

Senator McMULLAN —I am not sure that I heard the question correctly. Does the question relate to the long service and annual leave tax?

Senator Parer —Yes.

Senator McMULLAN —I am not aware of any steps being taken to collect this tax prior to the legislation. If there are, I will inquire into it. I am not aware of it. I have not been informed of any such measure. It is different from the circumstances with regard to other legislation in the sales tax area where the history has sometimes been different because of the nature of the operation of sales taxes. I will inquire into it for Senator Parer. I am not aware of that situation occurring. So far as I know it is not occurring, but I cannot say definitely because I do not know. I will inquire and I will advise the honourable senator.

Senator PARER —Mr President, I ask a supplementary question in response to that answer from Senator McMullan in respect of taxes being collected prior to legislation being introduced. What is the case in respect of the proposed tax increases on leaded fuel if, as it appears, the government is going to amend that tax on leaded fuel? What happens now to the taxes already collected?

Senator McMULLAN —While I think it is highly unlikely that the question is actually a supplementary to the first, I will say that the assumption upon which Senator Parer has based his question is not well founded.