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Wednesday, 10 December 1930

Senator DALY - Does that not apply to every manufacturer?

Senator PAYNE - No. A tailor should not be treated as a manufacturer. That is merely a device to obtain further revenue. I have received the following letter on this subject from the Victorian Chamber of Manufactures: -

On behalf of the tailors of Victoria, 1 desire to draw attention to a very great disability with which our industry is burdened under tlie provisions of the existing Sales Tax Act.

Unlike other industries, we are called upon co pay sales tax on the full retail price of our gondii, for the reason, it is held, that we do not come within the scope of section 18 (2) nf the Assessment Act No. 1.

At present, a tailor manufacturing garments of a class known as " ready made " pays tax on the wholesale value, whilst tailors making "suits to order" out of the same material pay tax upon the full retail price.

Under the amendment, a tailor will be called upon to pay sales tax on the full retail price of goods manufactured by him. Parliament intended that the sales tax should apply only to the wholesale value of goods, or to the value of goods when imported.

Senator Daly - Would not a furniture manufacturer be in the same position?

Senator PAYNE - Furniture manufacturers are wholesale traders. The goods they manufacture are sold by them to retailers, who, in turn, sell them to the public at a profit. A furniture manufacturer is not asked to pay sales tax on the difference between the wholesale price of the timber in, say, a table, and the price received by the retailer for the article so manufactured by him, but a tailor is asked to do so.

Senator Daly - He pays sales tax ou the manufactured product.

Senator PAYNE - A tailor will be called upon to pay sales tax on the retail price, whereas the vendor of furniture will not. A retailer who is a tailor will be called upon to pay the sales tax on the retail .price of the suit he makes for a customer. The bill makes an invidious distinction.

Senator Sir WILLIAMGLASGOW (Queensland) [9.12]. - The position" is as set out by Senator Payne. A tailor pays -sales tax, not only on the material used in the making of a suit, but also on the cost of his labour. A plumber who doeswork for a householder would pay sales tax only on the material he supplies; he would not pay sales tax on his own labour. But a tailor pays the tax on both material and labour. I am not so much concerned with the effect of this legislation on the tailor as with its effect on the purchaser of the suit he makes. It will have the effect of keeping up the cost of clothing. If the bill is agreed to in its present form, tailors will be justified in selling to their customers the material used in the making of suits, and then charging so much for their labour. I hope that it will be found possible to grant some relief to these people.

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