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Submission to the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Economics Inquiry into the Tax Laws Amendment (2012 Measures No4) Bill 2012 – (LAFHA changes)

AREEA welcomes the opportunity to make a submission to the committee’s inquiry into the Tax Laws Amendment (2012 Measures No 4) Bill 2012.

This submission builds on AREEA’s February 2012 submission to the Treasury, Philanthropy and Exemptions Unit, Personal and Retirement Income Division on the reforms when they were at the draft proposal stage.

The stated aim of this particular suite of legislative reforms is to reduce what the federal government describes as the ‘exploitation and misuse’ of the current tax system for Living Away From Home Allowances (LAFHA).

In his second reading speech when tabling the Bill in federal parliament on 28 June 2012, Assistant Treasurer David Bradbury said the use of the LAFHA tax concession had ‘dramatically increased’ over the past decade.

That might be true, but in AREEA’s view the government should be careful not to create disincentives for skilled workers from overseas and interstate to work on resource projects in Australia at a time of such a critical skills and labour shortage globally.

Read the full submission here.

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