Second reading - Treasury Misc. (Cost of Living & Affordable Housing Support) Bill 2021 (12 of 2021)
Wednesday 30 June 2021, Second reading speech
[11.17 a.m.] Ms ARMITAGE (Launceston) - Madam Deputy President, before I go into any detail I will ask a question with regard to the last comments by the member for McIntyre with regard to the quarterly payments. My understanding is when it was six monthly payments it actually cost slightly more. My question is how much more per annum will it actually cost people to have it quarterly as opposed to if they paid in one hit?
If it is going to cost them substantially more, and I think it was a reasonable amount more for six monthly, it may actually be more detriment than benefit to people with financial hardship. I support the initiatives before us. Anything that helps people in these difficult times is certainly worthwhile. Some of them are retrospective and I accept the reason behind it with the amendments to the first home buyer duty concession and the pensioner concession being 16 March 2021 and the amendments to the First Home Owner Grant respectively from 1 April 2021.
As the Leader will understand, I cannot let it go without actually making some comments on the First Home Owner Grant, which I find is great. I actually do not like the words 'first home owner', because it is not quite accurate - it is first home builder. The first home owner should also support those people in the community who cannot afford to build a new home, but can buy their first home.
While I do accept there are concessions to do with stamp duty and am grateful for that and think it is great, I also notice the dutiable value of property threshold from $400 000 to $500 000 for eligible transactions for their first homebuyer. You will never convince me that giving a first homebuyer grant increases the property price. Having been a real estate agent I can remember if I had a house for sale at $400 000 and a first homebuyer looked at it, the owners did not put it up by $30 000 or $40 000, the price was the price.
Many of those first homebuyers used that towards their deposit and it was a great help to them. Therefore, I will never agree with the government - whichever party is in power. I have had the argument with previous governments because I believe it is inappropriate to describe the funding as a first homebuyer grant. It should be described as a first home builder grant, because first homebuyers are not eligible. I support capping the Motor Accidents Insurance Board premium at $20 per annum and allowing the duty to be calculated in line with the vehicle's registration renewal period, whilst still enabling the existing calculation.
I know that the member for Hobart will comment on the exclusions to providing the two-year waiver of duty on the purchase on new and second-hand electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles. That is his area of expertise and I will comment on that initiative later when he moves his amendment. I support the initiatives and I appreciate the Government bringing them forward in a timely manner. I will support the amendments.