Page 1092 - Week 03 - Thursday, 26 February 2009

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In estimating the value of the package to the ACT—I know Mr Smyth will be really interested in this part of the answer—Treasury has used data from a range of information sources, such as the ABS, Centrelink and, locally, the Department of Education and Training and the Department of Disability, Housing and Community Services to gauge the likely quantity of spending in the ACT.

For example, in estimating the cash payments to families, taxpayers and students, Centrelink data was used to estimate the number of recipients for youth allowance, Austudy, Abstudy and family tax benefit, parts A and B. ABS census data and estimates of the number of wage and salary earners in the ACT were used to derive an estimate of the taxpayer bonus while ABS survey data and census data were also used to estimate the payments for the energy efficient homes component of the package.

Under the school infrastructure program ACT students will benefit from the $14.7 billion provided under the plan for upgrading of capital infrastructure of schools. It is estimated that there will be a total of $230 million available for upgrades to buildings in every ACT primary school over three years from 2008-09. Further funding will be available for secondary schools based on applications.

In housing the ACT will benefit from the federal government’s $6.4 billion social housing initiative and from the commonwealth’s plans to spend $252 million on new Defence Force housing. Of this, the ACT will receive around $102 million for the construction of social housing and the territory will also receive a share of the repairs and maintenance allocation. The Defence Housing Authority advised that an extra 10 Defence Force homes will be built in the ACT. While not a significant number in itself, it comes on top of the significant investment already being undertaken in the ACT region by the Defence Housing Authority.

The ACT is expected to benefit from additional funds being made available for roads through regional and local communities. It is expected that we will receive around $1 million for the black spot program. Under the repairing regional links on the national highway network initiative an additional $100,000 will be allocated to the ACT.

An amount of $190 million will flow to ACT residents from the cash payments to be made under the commonwealth’s nation building and jobs plan. ACT taxpayers will receive around $141 million in tax bonuses from April 2009. The tax bonuses will be up to $900. A further $52 million is estimated to flow to ACT residents as payments for the $950 back to school and training and learning bonuses and the $900 one-off lump sum payment for an estimated 16,500 single income families.

Businesses in the ACT will benefit from the temporary tax break to boost business investment through asset purchases. It is estimated that, based on the proportion of small businesses in the ACT, this could be worth around $32.5 million to local small businesses.

In respect of the rebates for housing energy efficiency upgrades Canberra home owners and landlords will be able to apply to upgrade the energy efficiency of their

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