Labor's payroll tax policy copied

Franklin Labor MHR David O'Byrne, Island Berries owner Andre Richardson and Premier Lara Giddings.
Franklin Labor MHR David O'Byrne, Island Berries owner Andre Richardson and Premier Lara Giddings.

THE Liberal Party is copying Labor in what it's calling a "major policy to create jobs" by waiving the payroll tax for new employees.

Opposition treasury spokesman Peter Gutwein yesterday announced the $4 million program that will give employers a rebate for the payroll tax payed on employees hired between July 1 this year and July 1, 2015, for a period of up to two years.

Mr Gutwein said the rebate would apply from the moment of hiring until July 1, 2016, provided the employee was employed up to that time, and it was expected to create 600 jobs.

The policy would take over from an identical Labor policy that ends on June 30 this year.

Labor says its program to waive the payroll tax paid by small business for the first 12 months of a new employee's employment has helped create 1650 jobs since 2012.

"It's similar in operation but Labor don't have this policy on the table," Mr Gutwein said.

"This is a Liberal initiative from June 30 this year."

Premier Lara Giddings also focused on jobs yesterday, re- announcing a $5 million investment fund to take over from an expired $3 million investment fund that she says generated $34 million in private investment and created 700 jobs. She said the proposed Tasmanian Jobs and Investment Fund would be broader in scope than previous investment schemes and would create 900 jobs. "This is about working with businesses to help create that investment environment for them to start employing more people," she said.

Island Berries owner Andre Richardson, whose business received a $96,428 grant under the previous innovation and investment fund, said it took the risk out of investing and would allow him to quadruple his business.

Ms Giddings said Labor did not propose extending the payroll tax rebate, and questioned how the Liberal Party could afford it.


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