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‘GST off rates’ campaign gets big boost

Thursday, 24 June 2004

‘GST off rates’ campaign gets big boost

United Future’s finance spokesperson Gordon Copeland is delighted his
Goods and Services Tax (Exclusion of Rates) Amendment Bill has been drawn
from the ballot of private Members’ Bills.

“Removing GST from the rates burden faced by thousands of New Zealand
homeowners is a simple, practical and affordable measure the Government
can take to put more money in the pockets of ordinary New Zealanders,” Mr
Copeland said.

“When GST was implemented in 1986, it was argued that GST on rates was a
tax on a tax and logically, should be applied to income tax. That didn’t
happen and this Bill seeks to correct the anomaly that it was applied to
local body rates.

“It’s worth pointing out that Finance Minister Michael Cullen opposed
applying GST to rates back in 1986,” said Mr Copeland.

It’s estimated dropping rates by 12 ½ % would decrease Government revenue
by about $260 million a year.

Mr Copeland, currently in Australia with Parliament’s finance and
expenditure select committee, confirms that GST is not applied to rates
across the Tasman.

ENDS

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