Rates changes for fair and equitable Canberra

The ACT Greens today reinforced our commitment to ensure tax reform and rates concessions are made accessible to vulnerable Canberra households on low and fixed incomes.

In September last year, the Greens worked to commit the Government to conduct financial and social impact analysis on how recent tax and rates concession policy changes may affect Canberrans on low- and fixed-incomes.

“The Greens believe that our taxation system must be both economically efficient, and equitable for all Canberra residents.

“The move away from stamp duty to rates will increase the efficiency of our system, but we need to consider social justice as well.

“The Greens supported the motion today to refer these considerations to a Public Accounts Committee (PAC). It is appropriate to consider the relationship between rates charged for single residential properties and apartments.

“Given a number of existing inequities, the Greens are hopeful that the PAC enquiry will consider the concessions scheme and a range of other policy reforms to make our tax system fairer and more equitable for all Canberrans.

“For example, some rates deferment schemes, especially the Aged Deferment Scheme, are barely utilised, and remain inequitable and inaccessible. There are questions here as to whether the Government is doing enough to promote these programs to low-income households,” Ms Le Couteur added.