Chairman Mal is brought to you today by the words "careful" and "carefully". Ewen Jones not so much.
Request for Update from Victoria Police regarding result of investigation into The AWU Scandal

What happened when Chris Bowen said salary-sacrifice changes to car packaging wouldn't hurt?

Chris Bowen, master craftsmen of the unintended consequence.

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(Bowen, pictured trying out new Western-Sydney-Electorate-Friendly look on Insiders yesterday)

Negative gearing: Chris Bowen dismisses 'false' attack on Labor policy

February 14, 2016 - 2:48PM 

Shadow treasurer Chris Bowen has dismissed criticism of Labor's negative gearing policy, insisting the major economic reform would not worsen housing affordability or unfairly hit middle-class investors.

Mr Bowen said the attacks from Treasurer Scott Morrison, the housing lobby and some economists amounted to falsehoods and myths.

"The proponents of the current arrangement say negative gearing increases housing supply. It doesn't; it's a falsehood," he told the ABC's Insiders program on Sunday.

On Saturday, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten announced a Labor government would stop negative gearing on existing homes, limiting the tax write-off to recently built properties and saving the federal budget $32 billion over a decade.

Remember when Chris and Kev and that other guy made changes to salary sacrifice car packaging?

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(note The Rudd "Visage o' Wisdom".  It is to the UN Secretary Generalship as Blue Steel is to catwalk)

Salary packaging industry licks its wounds after seven weeks in limbo

Friday, 13 September 2013 0:38
For Australia’s salary packaging industry, July 16 this year was a bolt out of the blue.

New prime minister Kevin Rudd, flanked by his new treasurer Chris Bowen, said he would remove the carbon tax, and flagged a range of measures to pay for the loss of revenue.

The most controversial of these was the removal of the statutory method for calculating fringe benefits tax on salary-sacrificed cars.

From that day onwards, Bowen said, employees hoping to gain a tax concession on the use of their cars for work would need to keep a log book of their usage, as opposed to just assuming 50% of their usage was for business use as allowed by the statutory method.

It would save the government $2 billion a year. And it wasn’t a big deal, Bowen said, adding that the development of smartphone applications to track car usage meant it was much easier to log the use of a company vehicle than it had been previously.

“There is no longer any justification for this statutory percentage method of claiming fringe benefits tax on cars,” he said.

“It’s important to note that many tradespeople and others who already use log books are not affected by this change. And it doesn’t affect the 3.6 million Australians who directly claim the fringe benefits tax relief through their tax return.

“It does affect the 320,000 people who are no longer able to justify that percentage claim.”

The change was technical and not immediately understood by most. But it had a big impact. And though it’d take a while to introduce the legislation into parliament, the then government said that when it did, that legislation would be backdated to apply from its July 16 announcement.

In the weeks following July 16, salary packaging and novated lease companies spoke to SmartCompany and anyone else who would listen about just what this meant for their business.

Suddenly, sacrificing your salary for use of a car didn’t make as much sense, they said. New orders were drying up, and retrenchments were the order of the day. Companies like Fleet Network told us with no business coming in, they had no choice but to downsize their businesses.

Among the companies hit the hardest was listed salary packaging giant McMillan Shakespeare, whose shares lost most of their value on that fateful day.


As it felt the full Bowen Benefits in 2013, the salary packaging industry asked who's next?

Now we know.

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