Labor's proposed shared equity of up to 40 per cent in a person's new home would appear to have more hairs on it than a feral cat.
Where does land tax fit into the scheme? Not to mention capital gains tax further down the track? In the ACT an entity that has title (leasehold this is) in a property that they do not reside in is subject to ACT's exorbitant land tax provisions. That is even if the property is vacant.
Assuming that Albo is not planning to take up residence in one of the bedrooms, then will his government be liable for land tax on 40 per cent of the unimproved capital value of the property?
I can just see Barr and his team rubbing their hands together with expectations of all the additional revenue that may head their way. Wow. Let's start on planning to take the tram to Belconnen and beyond.
And then, when the lucky residents of said shared equity property decide it's time to move on, normally the residence would be exempt from capital gains tax. So now what happens to the 40 per cent government stake in said property? Is Albo's government going to declare a taxable gain on the 40 per cent equity? That said, this may not be a real issue because any tax due would simply pass from the federal coffers to the ATO which in turn ends up back in the federal coffers.
What if the shared-equity home owner later decides to leverage their home as equity to fund the purchase of a business or investment property? Albo's government would have to approve the increased exposure of the property to any new finance arrangement.
And what happens upon the demise of the shared-equity home owner? Bring in the lawyers to sort out the estate issues. The list of complications goes on and on.
The ALP's proposal to introduce a shared equity arrangement scheme with eligible home buyers, where up to 40 per cent of the equity is purchased by the federal government has all the hallmarks of Labor's other off-the-cuff "dodo" schemes such as fuel watch, grocery watch and so on.
Also, caps will apply to the proposed scheme. Canberrans will apparently be limited to a maximum $600,000 purchase price to be eligible. Given the latest Domain House Price Report showed Canberra's median price for houses was $1,124,952, and for units $564,984, it just goes to show how out of touch the ALP is with reality in general and the economy in particular.
Labor claims the money will be recouped following a sale and, unrealistically in my view, suggests it will make a profit on capital gains. With a red-hot market now reaching its peak and interest rate rises looming, a loss at the taxpayers' expense is more probable than a gain.
My advice to voters is to "look before you leap". You might be jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire.
The discovery of the life-seeding chemicals needed to form the DNA from which all earthly life is formed on an Australian meteorite should not raise false hopes of their being intelligent life elsewhere in the universe. Even a cursory review of the conditions currently prevailing across this planet, particularly during the federal election campaign, will show that any basis for a belief in intelligent life is far from proven on this planet.
Why should we expect it to be different anywhere else?
I write in response to Dr Anthony Burton (Letters, April 27).
The paper referred to in my original letter (Letters, April 25) was that of Professor David Bowman and colleagues published in 2022: "Reply to: Logging elevated the probability of high severity fire in the 2019-20 Australian forest fires".
It was the latest in a series of back-and-forth papers on the topic that have been running for the last two years.
As with Dr Burton, I have also followed Professor Lindenmayer's work in detail. However, I also make a point of considering the broader range of scientific literature and evidence to inform my views.
Consensus in science is a difficult concept. Eventually all science is wrong, even for those positions on which there may previously have been consensus. One authorship group, in this case that of Professor Lindenmayer, cannot create consensus simply through prolific publication, as Dr Burton seems to imply.
We should expect scientific understanding to evolve with time and, as a scientific community, it is our responsibility to consider objectively the broad range of evidence.
Forestry Australia is an independent, not-for-profit association of scientists, professionals and growers who manage, study and care for our forests. We promote the need for science-based active management and conservation of all forests and values.
Suggesting Forestry Australia is using dirty tactics to influence readers is a dirty tactic in itself and distracts from the discussion we need to have about securing the future health and resilience of our forests and communities.
Prime Minister Morrison insists that the robodebt problem "has been addressed".
Federal Court Justice Bernard Murphy, who heard the class action on the alleged illegal recoupment of overpayments by Centrelink, noted that this was responsible for "financial hardship, anxiety and distress, including suicidal ideation and in some cases suicide".
Did Mr Morrison's government sympathise with, or apologise to, the families of suicide victims? No, it threw money at their tragic losses. Sincere apologies and wise counselling would have been far preferable.
I agree with W Dankiw (Letters April 26) that the Russian ambassador should be expelled from Australia along with all the staff.
I see the staff at the Russian embassy coming and going from their resort-like complex with a huge swimming pool and so forth.
Russian embassy staff are enjoying the peace and freedom of our democracy while Russia tragically kills civilians and unnecessarily destroys the peace and freedom of the Ukrainian community. It is not just.
Whichever party wins the coming election they need to put an expulsion on the top of the foreign affairs agenda.
Even as Ukrainians were celebrating Easter recently week, KGB thug Putin wouldn't even allow a corridor for civilians to leave Mariupol which Russian military has been bombing for over a month now. The city is beginning to look like a destroyed Hiroshima.
Only a heartless brute with the mentality of an orc would behave like this. The civilised world should support Ukraine and supply it with deadly military hardware urgently so that Ukraine can defend itself or the rest of Ukraine will look like an uninhabitable wasteland.
Putin's intention is to destroy Ukraine as a viable state. It is now time for the West to stand up to and confront the Kremlin psychopath.
Mario Stivala's negative view (Letters, April 27) of the Gillard government, made in the context of discussion on negotiating skills and minority government, is not supported by the evidence.
The Gillard government, despite being in minority for much of its time, delivered great achievements.
It passed over 200 pieces of legislation, progressed major reforms, such as implementing much of the Gonski review on education, the National Broadband Network (later weakened by Abbott government), the Clean Energy Act and the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
The achievements of these reforms, many during a minority government, is an outstanding testament to Gillard's negotiating skills and those of her leader of the House of Representatives, Anthony Albanese. Anthony Albanese has proven he has excellent negotiating skills to lead a minority government.
The National Capital Authority has warned the Russian Embassy in Canberra more than once about the need to proceed and complete its construction of a new embassy in Yarralumla without any apparent progress on the job.
Perhaps it would be a useful, if symbolic, indication of Australia's disapproval of Russia's invasion of Ukraine to withdraw permission and cancel any lease granted on the site.
I always vote for good leadership. In 2019 I looked for Jacinda Ardern on the ballot paper but couldn't find her. I hope this year to find Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
So much for the LNP claim that they are better economic managers than Labor. The latest inflation figures are the highest for since the GST. Watch out for the pronouncement from the Reserve Bank on Tuesday when they will surely lift interest rates.
Inflation is 5.1 per cent, the highest in decades. The RBA should do the right thing and put up the cash rate regardless of whether or not there is an election campaign on.
Between them, China and India produce a little over 40 per cent - and increasing - of the world's carbon dioxide emissions. We contribute a little over one per cent - and deceasing - of world emissions. Yet it seems claims about tiny reductions to our tiny emissions could decide the election result. The ancient Greeks were right; those the Gods would destroy they first make mad.
Liberal MP Jason Falinski thinks it is immoral for independent candidates to spend large amounts of money on election campaigns. He says they should give the money to charity instead. Jason, why don't you lead by example and donate your campaign budget to charity? What hypocrisy.
The odd notion of Minister Dutton
To keep us all safe in our beds:
For peace to ensure
Prepare for a war!
Our subs will scare off the Reds.
On April 26 U3A hosted a well-attended forum for ACT election candidates. Labor, the Greens, Kim Rubenstein and David Pocock all answered questions from the community. The Liberal Party has candidates in each of the ACT's three House of Representatives seats as well as Zed Seselja in the Senate. None attended. Were they all "too busy" or is Senator Seselja and his colleagues unwilling to face community scrutiny?
If Zed Seselja spent as much time and effort listening to and representing his community as he does smearing his political challengers there wouldn't be independents threatening his position as a senator.
Surely if our Prime Minister and our Defence Minister want war to come to Australia, then they will happily lead from the front.
I'm puzzled as to why the falsehood that David Pocock belongs to a certain political party has been characterised as a "smear". It's not as if he's been portrayed as belonging to a bunch of ratbags like Advance Australia. Now that really would be a smear.
Halfway through the campaign and the promises keep coming. I'm beginning to wonder if the final weeks will come down to how many free steak knives will be on offer.
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