2014 Budget

A Regional Perspective

14 MAY 2014

The delivery of last night’s ‘Contribute and Build’ budget showcased numerous growth measures and as promised, contained minimal changes to taxation.

Dodgshun Medlin Senior Trusted Advisor and Taxation specialist Matt Curran commented that while there has been the introduction of the Temporary Budget Repair Levy, this will only affect a very small portion of the population.

“The 2% levy will apply to individuals with taxable incomes in excess of $180,000 per annum, which leaves most unaffected,” Mr Curran said.

While changes to indexation of the fuel excise could mean we are paying slightly more at the pump in future, businesses can rest easy when it comes to concerns over changes to the diesel fuel rebate.

“The diesel rebate will remain unchanged, which is good news for many businesses in the region,” said Mr Curran. “Another possible bonus for businesses is the introduction of the ‘Restart’ program, which provides up to $10,000 for those who employ a mature aged job seeker, fifty years or over.”

Previously announced income support for farm households and concessional loans for eligible farm businesses affected by drought have been confirmed in this year’s budget. “The government has shown a commitment to supporting our primary producers in need. These concessional loans will certainly alleviate some pressure for those farmers suffering hardship,” said Mr Curran.

Some relief is awarded to businesses with the reduction in company income tax rates to 28.5%, effective 2015 and the freezing of the Superannuation rate at 9.5% until 2018.

Focus has been placed on benefits for families, youth and pensioners with changes to income deeming thresholds and eligibility requirements tightened.

“On the whole some smaller payments have been reduced while others have been increased, but the significance is in the eligibility. Assistance will now be restricted to focus on those most in need,” said Dodgshun Medlin Senior Wealth Management Trusted Advisor, Kerry McDonald.

“Compared with many countries Australia has developed a reliance on welfare, which is difficult for the nation to afford into the future. What we can see come out of this budget is the Government’s desire for a cultural change, shifting mindsets away from a reliance on welfare,” said Mrs McDonald.

Mrs McDonald believes that while changes to benefits will be a difficult adjustment for many, it does reiterate the need for individuals to seek financial guidance.

“The best possible financial situation for someone to be in is to have control of their financial situation and have a plan focused on building and maintaining their wealth,” said Mrs McDonald.

“Difficult decisions have had to be made by Government in order to ease the Australian economy onto a more solid footing. Overall, I would say this year’s budget follows a responsible framework, which is a good step forward.”

"It's very true broken promises are hard to accept, but that's politics for you," says Dodgshun Medlin's managing partner, Ian Dodgshun. "But the fact of it is that this budget stands up for regional Australia."

About Dodgshun Medlin

Dodgshun Medlin is a generations-deep provider of holistic business management, wealth creation, agronomy services and accountancy guidance to the Victorian & South Australian Mallee & Wimmera Regions.