In Australia we pay tax through several different methods, Income tax, payroll tax, company tax, business tax, Goods and services tax (GST), sales tax, stamp duty, capital gains tax and through fines and penalties due to the breaking of summary laws. In Australia most of our taxation is progressive and based on income table methods or fee’s are reduced for those on pensions, aged, or unemployed.
"A progressive taxation method works on the assumption that the penalty or contribution shall be based on affordability to give a sense of fairness."
A regressive tax or tax method is a tax that takes a larger percentage of income from low-income earners than from high-income earners. A regressive tax is applied uniformly to all situations regardless of the payer.
"A regressive tax effects people of low-income more severely than people with high-incomes."
Progressive taxation is even included in our fines and penalties when dealing with many federal and state/territory acts and laws. In Australia several Councils attempt to enforce regressive taxation through fines and fees. While it may be considered fair in some instances to tax everyone the same rates, it is seen as unjust to lower-income people and the vulnerable.
In several states regardless of land valuation or property type the rates are the same, parking fines generally all over are the same, residential tip fees the same etc. The most common forms of regressive taxation in our Modern society are arguably the GST, user fees and parking fines.
In 2000 a neoliberal government on the advice from multinational corporations and their donors implemented the GST. In regards to the GST, it is applied uniformly to all consumers based on the value on what they buy. Even though the tax is uniform, lower-income consumers are more affected. For example, imagine two people each purchase $200 of groceries and they pay $20 each in GST. The first person earns $2,000 per week, making the tax 1% of their income. In contrast the other earns $650 per week and the GST equates to 3.1% of their income. The person with the lower income pays a higher percentage of income, making the GST a regressive tax.
"In order to compensate for the clear social and financial divide created by a regressive taxation method, tax was abolished from several items including food."
User fees levied by Councils on parking spaces are another form of regressive tax. For example if two persons paid $5 per day for all day parking, the person with the higher income pays a lower percentage of their income to access the car parking space, while the person with the lower income pays a higher percentage. Although the parking fee is the same it constitutes a more significant burden on the person with the lower income, making it a regressive tax.
"When investigating town planning and future developments it is important that Cities do not push out the lower-income due to regressive taxation as they actively reduce the workforce of the commercial properties they seek to attract and seriously reduce re-development, expansion and the local government revenue."
Many Councils Australia-wide have been influenced by neoliberal idealism taught in many of the economics departments in universities. The lack of real world financial intelligence in most government bureaucracy is impeding the progress of the nation.
The purpose of a democratically elected Council is to ensure that the community is adequately represented when bureaucracies fail to meet the needs of society. The Council’s job is to listen to, guide and create in association with an incumbent bureaucracy a progressive outcome.
So on the 26th of August 2016 it is important that your choices are progressive. I am a proven progressive and experienced business person and consultant, Vote 1 for Sam Wilks for the Ward of Richardson.
Written and Authorized by Sam Wilks. The views included may not be those of others mentioned in the article but are those of Sam Wilks. If you have other idea’s feel free to comment below. Idea’s and differing opinion is recognition of a free and just democratic society. A Society I am happy to live in. Please however try not to be abusive or discriminate, you may be. But if I feel that your opinion may be harmful or is reported as being harmful, I will delete it.
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