It's a bit over a year since the last Federal election and I had been considering doing a post to show the changes that have occurred in the tax-transfer system over the first 12 months of Parliament 44. I have to confess though, that the charts showing the 12 month results are, for the most part, pretty boring, and to date this had stayed my hand.
However, I have been intrigued by the continuing coverage that the Government's first budget has been getting, a recent example being this opinion piece by Ross Gittins. The article outlines a number of budget measures that might be perceived as unfair, suggesting that this is giving the Government continuing grief, popularity-wise. What struck me about this is that almost none of the measures mentioned in the article have actually come into effect, having been held up, voted down or amended by the Senate.
In fact, despite the rhetoric around the impact of the Government's budget measures, the changes to the tax transfer system that have actually occurred over the first 12 months arguably look more like stereotypical Labor outcomes. That's not to say that this will remain the case. Many budget measures have had their implementation dates pushed back as part of the wheeling and dealing to get them through Parliament. Others are still before Parliament and may yet see the legislative light of day. But the key thing, for me at least, is that most of the 'horror' budget has yet to actually bite.
So, let's look at how the first 12 months has treated some selected household types, but with an added twist: we'll also look at what the Government had intended to achieve, tax-transfer wise, and thus see the difference between intention and outcome.