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Thursday, 21 August 1980
Page: 588

Mr BAILLIEU (LA TROBE, VICTORIA) - Has the Treasurer's attention been drawn to the Nationwide program interview last night which described the effect of the Budget and the Government's policies on a single income family with three children? The program showed such a family as paying $70 a week in tax and having only $3 a week left after expenses of $2 1 7? Is the Treasurer able to comment on the accuracy of the figures provided on the program?

Mr HOWARD - I did not actually see the program.

Mr Young - You should, lt is a very good program.

Mr HOWARD - If the honourable gentleman is interested in the average family he will keep quiet and listen to the facts instead of the fiction. My attention has been drawn to the figures that were used. I understand that the claim was made in respect of a family with three children- the implication clearly was that they were dependent children - and an income of $290 a week. It was claimed that the net effect, after making allowance for various living expenses, was a surplus of $3 a week. On examination, the calculations did not include two very important allowances which rather dramatically alter the picture. Firstly, no allowance whatever was made for the spouse rebate, which is worth $800 as from 1 July. Secondly, no allowance was made for family allowances for three children. I think that in a fairly simplistic way the example given was quite wrong. If we make allowance for those two items - in the time available I have not had an opportunity to check any of the other calculations and further revisions could be necessary- we find that instead of the net amount of $3 used in the program we get a net amount of $32.52.

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