Legislative Council: Thursday, March 23, 2023


Regions, Tax Cuts

The Hon. R.A. SIMMS (14:39): I seek leave to make a brief explanation before addressing a question without notice to the Minister for Regional Development on the topic of stage 3 tax cuts and the regions.

Leave granted.

The Hon. R.A. SIMMS: The stage 3 tax cuts, which involve handing out $254 billion of taxpayer money to high-income earners, were legislated by the former Coalition federal government with the support of the then Labor opposition and are due to come into effect from July next year.

Anglicare has analysed the eligibility for the tax cuts by demographic and geographic area and found that South Australians, particularly those living in the regions, will be short-changed. Their findings are reported in today's InDaily. They found that just 13.9 per cent, or just over 209,000 South Australians, will benefit from the tax cuts and only 9.4 per cent of residents in the South-East of South Australia will benefit, compared to more than 20 per cent of residents in Adelaide and the Hills. My Greens colleagues in Canberra have been outspoken in opposing these tax cuts and instead advocated for the money to be spent on public services.

My question to the minister therefore is: given so few South Australians living in the regions will see any benefit at all from Labor's tax cut plan, has she advocated for the federal government to reconsider and, in particular, has she advocated for additional investment in regional South Australia from the commonwealth to address growing income inequality?

The Hon. C.M. SCRIVEN (Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development, Minister for Forest Industries) (14:41): I thank the honourable member for his question. Stage 3 tax cuts are a federal matter. I am frequently advocating on behalf of regional citizens to the federal government as well as in other forums for things that will benefit them.