Bill Shorten’s budget reply speech slammed the government over announcements made in the federal budget, and promised to deliver better commitments if elected next month.
Mr Shorten said the same promises were made and broken, six years running, and still delivered the same Liberal budget…
“The same void where an energy policy should be, the same failure on stagnant wages and rising cost-of-living, the same denial on climate change, the same $14 billion cut to schools, and the same $2.8 billion cut to hospitals,” he stated.
Fairer tax cuts for 10 million Australians has been supported in this budget, with Mr Shorten confirming that from July 1st, no matter who you vote for, if you earn between $48,000 and $126,000 you will get the same tax refund.
However Mr Shorten said the Liberal tax plan does not do enough for the 2.9 million Australians who earn less than $40,000, with approximately 57% being women.
“In a lot of cases these are the very same workers in retail, hospitality, pharmacy, and fast food who have already had their penalty rates arbitrarily cut,” he said.
He was pleased to announce that Labor will provide a bigger tax refund for 3.6 million Australians.
A committed one billion dollars, for low income earners.
“6.4 million working people will pay the same amount of income tax under Labor as the Liberals,”
“And another 3.6 million will pay less tax under Labor,” Mr Shorten said.
The opposition said the budget papers reveal a much paler shade of grey, as opposed to being in the black like the Liberals talk about.
Mr Shorten said instead of patronising millions of young Australians with lectures about cutting back on smashed avo, why don’t we tell them the truth, that getting together a 20 per cent deposit, plus stamp duty, is so much harder than it was 20 or 25 years ago.
“And it’s even more difficult when your government uses your tax payer money to subsidise the property investors bidding against you,”
He commented on the intergenerational bias that the tax system has against young people must be called out.
“A government has to be brave enough and decent enough to stop the bias against first home buyers and young Australians,”
“And we will be that government,”
The current Government has been paralysed by the climate change debate, with Labor recognising climate change is real and is doing damage to our economy and our environment.
A $2,000 payment will be provided for families who want to lower their power bills by installing a battery storage system.
“We already have every single resource to make a lithium battery right here in Australia, so instead of the usual trope of shipping the minerals overseas and buying back the finished product at vastly inflated prices, let’s make the batteries here,” Mr Shorten said.
Labor is offering a fully funded Fair Go Action Plan, including building an economy that works for everyone, investing in an education system, fixing the wages system and reforming the tax system so it is fair for everyone, and funding a health system that is there for everyone.
This also includes uncapping universities to open higher education to an additional 200,000 Australians, and backing TAFE vocational education.
Mr Shorten stated only a Labor Government will be prepared to properly fund both.
“Nine out of ten new jobs created in the next four years will require either a university degree or a TAFE qualification,” he said.
Mr Shorten outlined one of the most important commitments he is making, which is putting back every single dollar the Liberals have cut from public schools and public hospitals.
“If these things matter to you, if you believe that when all is said and done about politics, the most important things are family and health,” he said, adding that’s why you should vote Labor in May.