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Tax Institute Calls for Reform Commission

Publication date: 23 Sep 11 | Source: THE TAX INSTITUTE

The Gillard Government’s October Tax Forum needs a high-powered independent advisory body as one of the tangible outcomes to keep the reform ball rolling, The Tax Institute says.

The establishment of a Tax Reform Commission is on a list of priorities submitted to Treasury for the Forum.

“The Henry Review provided the tax reform vision, now we need further work on developing the road map for its implementation,” said Institute Senior Tax Counsel, Robert Jeremenko.

“The Government should demonstrate a commitment to reform by establishing a commission drawing members from the community and business sectors, as well as from the three tiers of government.  
“The Commission would consult widely and have a clear remit to conduct modelling and provide advice to government on implementation options across a range of reform proposals.”
Mr Jeremenko said the Commission would take its initial direction from policy priorities identified by the Tax Forum.

Other priorities nominated by the Institute are the reform of inefficient state taxes like stamp duty, an overhaul of the tax transfer system and consideration of a system of integrated road user charges.

“State taxes are increasingly irregular, inconsistent, inefficient and an impediment to investment and growth,” Mr Jeremenko said.

“We urge the Commonwealth Government to take the reins on this issue and bring the States on board with a unified vision for tax reform in Australia.”

“In order to create a certain, simple and equitable environment for business and individuals, it is essential that options for reform of the GST be considered fully, from a taxation and economic viewpoint,” Mr Jeremenko said.

The Tax Institute is the country’s leading professional association in tax. Its 13,000 members include tax agents, accountants and lawyers as well as tax practitioners in corporations, government and academia.  The Tax Institute supports the tax profession and its members by holding more than 350 tax events each year. It conducts educational courses, develops publications, maintains an online information resource and provides a comprehensive tax library and research service. It works to continually improve tax law and its administration.

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For more information contact:

Robert Jeremenko, Senior Tax Counsel, The Tax Institute, T: 02 8223 0011, M: 0468 987 300

Craig Regan, Lighthouse Communications Group, T: 02 9262 3868, M: 0408 448 527.