Bendigo candidates spar over super tax

LABOR’S superannuation changes will create a fairer system,   the party’s Bendigo candidate Lisa Chesters says.

But local Liberal candidate Greg Bickley says the government is “raiding” people’s superannuation through taxes.

Ms Chesters said changes to the superannuation system would only affect a very small number of people, but the Coalition’s plan could affect up to 65 per cent of Bendigo residents. 

“It’s saying self-funded retirees who earn over $100,000 a year will pay a rate of 15 per cent tax only on the amount that exceeds $100,000,” she said. 

“If you spend over $100,000 of that each year, it’s the bit over that you’ll pay tax on. 

“That’s a very generous superannuation system. 

“There aren’t too many people in Bendigo who are self-funded retirees who have that money to spend each year. 

“I believe these reforms will affect very few people in Bendigo.”

Ms Chesters said Labor would increase guaranteed super contributions from nine per cent to 12 per cent in increments over several years. 

She said the Opposition’s plan would tax up 3.6 million people earning up to $37,000 a year 15 per cent on contributions. 

But Liberal candidate for Bendigo Greg Bickley said there would be “no unexpected detrimental changes” to the system under his party’s plans. 

“We’ve been very clear in our discussions about superannuation that there will be no unexpected detrimental changes to our superannuation system,” he said. 

“We simply cannot believe that the federal government does not have further attacks on the savings of ordinary Australians in the pipeline. 

“We should encourage as many Australians as possible to save more so they can look after their own needs in retirement and not be a burden on the public purse by having to rely on the age pension.”

Mr Bickley said there could be more government “raids” on superannuation. 

“Wayne Swan won’t rule out more superannuation taxes in the budget,” he said. 

“Australians have a right to be concerned about this government raiding superannuation in a cash grab to prop up bad financial management.”

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