IR Reform: Banks and P.A.Y.E.

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IR Reform: Let Banks Collect P.A.Y.E. Tax

The Howard government’s industrial relations agenda attacks the wages and conditions of workers as if this were the only way to reduce the cost of hiring. What about the administrative costs imposed by government? For example:

* If you become an employer, you must also become a tax collector and tax agent, deducting and remitting pay-as-you-earn income tax from employees, and issuing group certificates.

* If you become an employer, you must also become a superannuation agent, paying 9 percent of your employees’ wages into personal superannuation funds. You may even have to give a choice of funds — just like the independent brokers, except that you don’t get any commission!

Infrastructure: Free Riders On The Tollway

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The Mitcham-Frankston tollway, also known as EastLink, will reduce commuting times in suburbs serviced by the tollway and in suburbs serviced by alternative routes, such as the untolled Springvale and Stud roads, whose congestion levels will be reduced by EastLink. The market value of this benefit (net of tolls) will be manifested as uplifts in land values in the lucky suburbs (because you have to live or work in those suburbs to get the benefit). So owners of property in those suburbs will benefit from EastLink even if they don’t use it and don’t pay the toll on it. But people who live in rental accommodation and who commute via EastLink will pay for it twice — they’ll pay the toll and their rents will go up. How equitable is that?