»

Overview

  • Budget deficit: $29.8 billion in 2014-15
  • Unemployment forecast: 6.25% in 2014-15
  • Economic growth: 2.5% in 2014-15

Health

  • All Australians to pay at least $7 for GP visits, blood tests and X-rays
  • General patients to pay $5 more and concessional patients 80c more for prescription drugs
  • Billions slashed from hospitals, which will be free to charge for emergency departments

Education

  • Complete deregulation of university fees
  • Commonwealth funding extended to students at TAFEs, private colleges and sub-bachelor degrees at a cost of $820 million over three years
  • Labor's "Gonski" school funding commitments scrapped from 2017-18 with school funding indexed to inflation from 2018
  • School chaplaincy program continued at a cost of $243.5 million over five years

Welfare

  • Enforced six-month waiting period for under-30s signing on for the dole. After first six months on dole they will again be cut off for a six-month period
  • Tightened eligibility criteria for disability support pensioners under 35
  • Newstart recipients aged between 22 and 25 will be pushed back onto the lower-value Youth Allowance (other) payment

Retirees

  • Age pension age to reach 70 by July 1, 2035
  • Pension means test thresholds to be frozen for three years
  • Tougher income test for self-funded retirees to receive Commonwealth Seniors Health Card

Communications

  • ABC-operated Australia Network to close, saving $198 million over four years
  • Combined cuts to ABC and SBS of $43.5 million over four years
  • $10 million for children's safety online including a "Children's e-Safety Commissioner"
  • $100 million for mobile blackspot and wireless coverage in regional areas

Public service

  • 16,500 full-time jobs gone in three years
  • Tax Office suffers biggest hit; Department of Human Services one of few winners
  • Razor gang to target the bureaucracy's spin doctors
Abbott and Hockey
Housing
Health
Welfare
Families
Savings
Overview
Health
Education
Welfare
Retirees
Communications
Public Service

Federal Budget 2014

How Hockey ended the age of entitlement

<i>Illustration: Rocco Fazzari.</i>

Peter Hartcher   As Joe Hockey set about deciding how to cut welfare payments, he asked for a comprehensive list of all entitlement programs. He couldn’t find one. So he had the 'Team of Bastards' make one.

Comments 203

Labor will block key budget reforms: Shorten

"The government forgot a lot of people on budget night.: Bill Shorten.

Mark Kenny   Key elements of the Abbott government’s economic strategy have been thrown into chaos after Bill Shorten declared its first budget a document based on lies and committed the Labor opposition to combine with the Greens in the Senate to block them.

Bill Shorten's budget reply promise: I'll be as negative as Tony Abbott

Michael Gordon dinkus.

Michael Gordon   Bill Shorten’s blunt message for Tony Abbott in his budget reply is that he intends to be every bit as negative as the man whose negativity tore down two prime ministers and a government.

Less than two middies: Hockey defends GP fee

Joe Hockey

Matthew Knott   Forget inflation; forget the government bond rate. Treasurer Joe Hockey this morning injected a new price measure into the political lexicon: the Middy Exchange Rate (MER).

Bill Shorten dismisses Tony Abbott's threats on calling another election over the budget

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten says Tony Abbott is unlikely to call an election over the unpopular budget.

Lisa Cox   Opposition Leader Bill Shorten says Prime Minister Tony Abbott will not be brave enough to call a double dissolution election if the Senate refuses to pass the government's budget bills.

Joe Hockey avoids question of a higher GST

Peter Martin dinkus

Peter Martin   Don't think for a moment that Joe Hockey doesn't get the case for a higher GST.

APS begins to count the cost

Flag pole at Parliament House, Canberra

Noel Towell   Canberra was confronted on Wednesday by the full impact of the federal budget on the jobs, careers and families of tens of thousands of local public servants and other government workers.

Graduates could pay up to $120,000 in debt, HECS architect warns

"Fees will go up and they will go up quite significantly": Bruce Chapman.

Matthew Knott, Heath Gilmore   University degrees will cost up to three times as much under a deregulated fee system, leaving graduates with $120,000-plus debts, according to the architect of the HECS student loan scheme.

Abbott in denial over broken promises

Michael Gordon dinkus.

Michael Gordon   Phase one of Tony Abbott's strategy to sell the budget is to deny, point blank, that it is based on the deceit of broken promises made before last year's election.

Then and now: Abbott's broken promises

Recommended to break his pledge: Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

On the eve of the 2013 federal election Tony Abbott promised no cuts to education, health, or the ABC and SBS, and no changes to pensions. Fairfax Media looks at how those promises fared in the Abbott government's first budget.

ABC, SBS bosses blast Tony Abbott's broken promise on funding

ABC managing director Mark Scott: "Clear commitments were made not to cut ABC funding before and after the last election – it was unambiguous."

Matthew Knott   The managing directors of ABC and SBS have blasted the Abbott government for breaking a pre-election promise not to cut funding to the broadcasters.

Federal and state governments on GST collision course

Treasurer Joe Hockey addressing the media in the traditional post-budget speech to the National Press Club.

James Massola   The federal and state governments are on a collision course over $80 billion in cuts to health and education, with Victoria, NSW and Queensland demanding an emergency meeting over the federal budget and NSW Premier Mike Baird labeling the budget a "kick in the guts".

John Howard predicts pain for battlers

Former prime minister John Howard says the 2014 budget will hurt battlers but he insists it is not the end of the “fair go”.

Cameron Atfield   Former Prime Minister John Howard has backed the first Coalition federal budget since he left politics, but has warned its impact on the vulnerable should not be underestimated.

Comments 40

Angry head of renewable energy agency says axing will leave energy sector obsolete

A second wind for renewables if axe falls on ARENA?

Peter Hannam   The head of Australia's flagship clean energy development agency says the organisation's planned axing is a broken promise that will leave the country's energy sector obsolete.

'I have never heard such rubbish in all my life': Pensioner has a go at Tony Abbott over age pension changes

Prime Minister Tony Abbott was confronted by an angry pensioner on national television.

Jessica Wright   Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Treasurer Joe Hockey are defending accusations of untrustworthiness, saying their first budget was “fundamentally honest” and drafted in good faith. 

Comments 631

Joe Hockey 'daring' states to ask for a rise in the GST, says Labor

Prime Minister Tony Abbott in Canberra. Labor has accused the government of daring the states to ask for a rise in the GST.

Jessica Wright   Labor has accused the Abbott government of daring the states to push for an increase in the GST after Treasurer Joe Hockey revealed in the budget that the states would be stripped of billions of dollars of funding for health and education.

Hockey gets a grilling by ABC's Ferguson

hockey

Alexandra Back   Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey has sweated his way through his first post-Budget interview.

Budget 2014 in words

The words that don't appear are just as telling as those that do.

Alexandra Back   We’ve bundled the more than 3500 of the Treasurer’s words on budget night into this word cloud.

Federal budget 2014: At a glance

Aussie dollar reaches new four-month high (Thumbnail)

Federal Budget 2014: The budget at a glance

Social media reactions to Hockey's budget

<p>

Sophia Phan   People have taken to social media to express their emotions over Treasurer Joe Hockey's first budget. 

Federal budget 2014: Winners and losers

Australian Australia cash money currency note twenties fifties 20 50 dollars generic.        25209519

Those who gain and those who feel the pain of Treasurer Joe Hockey's budget

Highlights

Gittins' Budget verdict - boring but good

Ross Gittins combs through the figures to deliver a budget verdict.

Grattan: Tight purse strings for budget

The Age political editor Michelle Grattan discusses the virtues of small amounts of spending in the budget.

Zen and the art of balancing the budget

Peter Hartcher examines the political motivation behind the 2010 election year budget.

How much can a deficit shrink?

Economics correspondent Peter Martin discusses the possibilities of reaching a surplus in the budget.

Analysis

The populist PM is gone, meet Abbott the ideologue

Joe Hockey says this budget is not the last word in fixing the nation's finances but the first. And that first word is "surprise".

Tough and unfair, it's business as usual

I give Joe Hockey's first budgetary exam a distinction on management of the macro economy, a credit on micro-economic reform and a fail on fairness.

Crisis? What crisis? Budget bluff finally becomes clear

The sense of urgency that the government engineered going into this budget can now be seen in perspective. There was no crisis forcing savage spending cuts and revenue-raising measures.

Trust deficit spells death for a salesman

Treasurer Joe Hockey describes this as ''the budget that gets on with the job'' of repairing a budget which was otherwise headed towards the rocks.

Joe Hockey picks ancient charts above arts

Treasurer Joe Hockey presented his inaugural budget speech from a bespoke kangaroo skin document sleeve, a gift from his family on the eve of his big day.

An indexation trick without an asterisk

Honest Joe has delivered a stunning first instalment. His second, due within two years, will deal with tax.

Federal budget 2014: Will the pain be worth it for Tony Abbott?

Joe Hockey gets a 10 for courage, an eight for fiscal responsibility and a three for keeping commitments in a high-risk budget that will test the discipline, cohesion and salesmanship of the entire Abbott government.

A budget where some are more equal than others

Comment: Joe Hockey's chant that everyone must pucker up and ''contribute now'' smacks of George Orwell's Animal Farm.

'Age of opportunity' a chance to kick props away from leaners

This is more the political version of a footy coach's three-quarter time motivation session than classic budget speech.