Australia plans major spending plus surplus in 3 years

The Liberal-National coalition has been trailing Labor for months in opinion polls, after scraping back into office a year ago with a razor-thin majority.

Mr Morrison lamented that the government had failed to pass its attempted savings from the 2014-15 and 2015-16 budgets due to difficulties negotiating with Senate crossbenchers.

The Government aims to raise $1.2 billion from this levy over the next four years, in a bid to contribute directly to a new "Commonwealth-State Skilling Australians Fund".

"These are principles that are very important to the Liberal Party".

Admittedly a Federal Budget driven largely by fiscal responsibility is never easy to create as selling point least of all when it is significantly lacking in the infrastructure spending that has so often been talked about.

Funding for each student across all sectors will grow at an average of 4.1% each year.

The Treasurer forecasts a slightly wider deficit than expected for the coming year, but projects that the country's 12th-straight shortfall (in 2019-20) will bring the government's run of red ink to an end.

"There's a potential for the stability of our banking system to be undermined by this reckless move", she said. "Why such a drastic change?"

Only Australia's five biggest banks will be hit with the new tax which will be on liabilities.

"It is the biggest spending budget in Australian history outside of an emergency or a recession".

The new, seemingly minute levy of 0.006 per cent levy will apply to certain key funding sources, which will affect only banks with debts of more than $100 billion.

Labor immediately described it as a tax hit to workers, while the highest income earners were relieved of the deficit levy in the budget, but the opposition will consider supporting the rise. "It's not a tax on mortgages", he said.

"What the commission will be doing will be keeping an eye on them to make sure they don't lie to their customers about this", he told the Seven Network.

"This isn't a tax. on pensioner's bank accounts". Customer deposits of less than $250,000 as well as additional capital requirements imposed by the regulators will also be excluded. This is a smart tax.

"This budget is an admission that the last four years of coalition government have been an economic disaster for working people, ".

But there's no serious, and hard, reform in this budget.

First-home buyers are also a victor as a result of the government's budget measures, with those saving to buy their first property now able to "salary sacrifice" their deposit money into their superannuation account, allowing them to fast-track their saving by up to 30 percent. "The Medicare levy does not fully fund either and therefore the remainder has to be pulled out of general taxation", he said.

Tonight, we put to rest any doubts about Medicare and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme. It's a big decision.

"On demand management, we will continue to prefer the scalpel to the chainsaw, to avoid a housing shock", Morrison said.

And in recognition of the pounding on health policy it received at the election a year ago, it wants to legislate a Medicare Guarantee Bill with a Medicare Guaranteed Fund to cover all expenses of the scheme.

While Save the Children welcomed confirmation that Australia's annual humanitarian intake will increase to 16,250 places in 2017-18 and then to 18,750 a year as previously flagged by the Prime Minister, it is disappointed a path to a more generous refugee resettlement program has not been set given the record number of globally displaced people. "It takes commitment and values", he said.

"We're still going to have the world's oldest retirement age".

"If in breach, they can be deregistered and disqualified from holding executive positions, and be stripped of their significant bonuses", the Treasurer said.


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