Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 6 Hansard (9 June) . .
MR SMYTH: My question is to the Treasurer: how much will rates for units and townhouses increase in percentage terms for each year between 2017-18 and 2020-21?
MR BARR: The rating methodology for units will change in 12 months' time, and that will lead to a one-off adjustment that will be phased in over two years. Rate increases for units vary, of course, according to changes in land values around the city. But they will be the same other than for that change in methodology, for which the detail is outlined in the budget papers.
MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Smyth.
MR SMYTH: Treasurer, why will the rates bills for many units and townhouses have doubled between 2012 and 2020?
MR BARR: There will have been a range of factors associated with changes in rates. Rates go up every year. They have gone up every year. They have gone up every year under Liberal governments; they will go up every year under governments of either political persuasion into the future. Whilst rates have increased, stamp duty has come down, insurance tax has been abolished, payroll taxes have been cut, and the territory transitions to a simpler, fairer and more efficient tax system.
Opposition members interjecting—
MR BARR: The point remains that if those opposite are so opposed then they should go to the next election and say that they will put stamp duty back up, they will reinstate a tax on insurance products and they will decrease the payroll tax free threshold. I know they will not do that, because the Leader of the Opposition, despite opposing every change we have made, intends to retain those changes after the fact. That demonstrates just how hypocritical this attack is. If you are genuine in your belief that this is the wrong path to pursue—
MADAM SPEAKER: Address the chair, Mr Barr.
MR BARR: Madam Speaker, if those opposite are genuine in their belief that this is the wrong path to pursue then they should unwind the changes, put stamp duty back up, put a tax back on insurance and increase payroll taxes. Let us see them try.
MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Doszpot.
MR DOSZPOT: Minister, how will the AUV be split between the various units on a block? Will the size and position of the unit be taken into consideration?
MR BARR: The change in methodology is outlined in the budget papers, and I invite the member to look at the detail there.
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