TAXATION RELIEF BILL 2013
Mrs ARMITAGE ( Launceston ) - Most of what I was going to say has been said, so it will shorten my contribution. The member for Huon said it all very well. I will support the bill. I will not go into a lot of what has already been covered, but I agree with lifting the threshold of the payroll tax. It will assist many smaller businesses and I see that as a good thing.
I want to comment on the first home buyers grant. It is something I have a particular interest in, having been in real estate, and I am hearing all the time that it inflates the price of houses. Having been on the ground, I agree with the member for Huon that that simply is not true. It helps a young couple that may not have the ability to raise a deposit on their own; it gives them the start and encourages them to add to that and they get into their first home. It was also suggested by the Real Estate Institute of Australia that two-thirds of first home buyers prefer established housing, so it is essential that the scheme continues to apply equally to buyers of new and established homes. I do not know how many young people could afford to build a brand new home. They can afford to get into an older home, they do it up, and then sell it and move on up. It gives them that first basis to get started. For people on a lower income, it sometimes gets them off the rental market, particularly the state housing market. In one way we are revenue shifting. It is like we are moving the deckchairs on the Titanic. People we are not giving money to now who may not have gone into Housing Tasmania because they may have been able to afford to buy an older home and get started, now will not have that start. I see a problem with that. The only light at the end of the tunnel is the fact it continues until 1 July 2014 and there is a very high probability we will have a new colour of government by that stage and they may change the first home buyers grant. I am sure they would get a lot of support from many in the community if they did.
On another area, I agree with the member for Elwick that it would be good if motorhomes were included, along with camper trailers and caravans. I am sure it has been noticed how many there are now. My accountant was telling me recently that they have purchased a motorhome, not to go off anywhere long distance, but every weekend they take the motorhome and travel around Tasmania. They go to a different camping site or different spot. Going on a Friday night and coming back on a Sunday is becoming more and more common. Instead of people having shacks, they have a motorhome because it is much more convenient and you do not have the upkeep and the rates. I hope that can also be looked at, that we might extend it to help other industries because I appreciate it has to be far-reaching and we need to cover as many areas as we can to help everyone in these trying times. I support the bill.