Mr SOUTHWICK (Caulfield) — The matter I raise is for the Treasurer, and the action I seek is that he speak to business owners in my electorate about the government’s new payroll tax cuts and how this budget announcement will be of benefit to those businesses. Many business owners in my electorate employ people and are successful in their businesses but would struggle with increased payroll tax bills.
We often hear payroll tax described as a disincentive for businesses to employ people. It can be a huge burden on businesses that seek to employ people. The latest budget includes a payroll tax cut which will reduce the cost of job creation for 39 000 Victorian employers and their 1.6 million employees. This will result in savings of $234 million over four years. This measure will make Victoria’s tax for payrolls between $4.7 million and $26.7 million the lowest in Australia.
Probe Security is a business in my electorate. It has a call centre that employs a substantial number of people. It competes with the international market, which includes many call centres that are located offshore and have very competitive rates. When organisations like Probe Security have to tender for contracts they are at the beck and call of a competitive marketplace, and I believe payroll tax cuts like this will be of benefit to those businesses.
As we have said on many occasions in this house, it is important that it is employers who create jobs, not governments. I have been a very strong advocate for tax reduction. This payroll tax reduction will be of great benefit to businesses in my electorate and certainly to many business owners. Many of those business owners run family businesses, and those family businesses struggle each year. Often the owners employ lots of people and are the last to get paid. Anything we can do to provide relief to such business owners is very important.
I would be very interested to hear from the Treasurer how this budget announcement of a payroll tax cut will be of benefit to those businesses, those owners and those employees within my electorate of Caulfield.