Page 4006 - Week 13 - Tuesday, 17 November 2015

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The territory government is committed to reducing the regulatory obligations of the Australian not-for-profit sector, but it is important that the government acts to clarify the intent and operation of our legislation, most particularly around taxation exemptions. For the fourth time I repeat: this bill is about taxation exemptions, not regulation. I commend it to the Assembly.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill agreed to in principle.

Leave granted to dispense with the detail stage.

Bill agreed to.

Revenue Legislation Amendment Bill 2015

Debate resumed from 29 October 2015 on motion by Mr Barr:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

MR SMYTH (Brindabella) (12.22): Madam Speaker, we are very used to getting what we call SLABs from the Attorney-General’s department. Now we have what would appear to be a SLAB from the Treasurer’s department. This is an omnibus bill that makes amendments to a series of acts, firstly to concessions in the Duties Act. It changes the way we deal with concessions for deceased estates and for corporate reconstruction duty, where it will provide a full relief on corporate reconstruction transactions in relation to the dutiable property transactions.

It looks at the status of forces agreement, and given the large number of military people in the ACT it will:

…provide an express exemption from motor vehicle registration duty for foreign military personnel who are eligible to import their vehicles duty free under the Status of Forces Agreement between Australia and their home country.

It helps clarify what a new home is for the purpose of first home owner grants. Under the Land Tax Act it looks at relevant years of income and clarifies that applications for discounted land rents are not always required to include evidence of the lessee’s income for the previous two financial years. Backdating applications for discount land rent gives the Commissioner for ACT Revenue the discretion to approve an application for discounted land rent and apply an approval retrospectively in appropriate cases.

Under the Land Tax Act it looks at applications for corporate builders’ exemptions that currently require a builder or a developer to apply to the ACT Revenue Office for the exemption rather than have the exemption automatically applied. In regard to objections to land interest under the Rates Act, it looks at objections to a rates interest. As with the Land Tax Act, the Rates Act will be amended to allow the taxpayers to object to the interest payable on overdue rates through an objection to a decision of the commissioner.

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