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23 Jul 1010 Preamble - Friday, 23 July 2010

With the Prime Minister having set 21 August 2010 as the Federal Election date, the Government has officially assumed a 'caretaker role'. This convention acknowledges that because the Parliament has been dissolved for the period of the election campaign, the Executive arm of government cannot be held accountable for its decisions in the same way. This caretaker period continues until the election result is clear, or if there is a change of government, until the new government is appointed.

During this time the ordinary business of government continues, but the government must not act to bind an incoming government. This means that the government avoids: making major policy decisions that are likely to commit an incoming government; making significant appointments; and entering major contracts. If the government does do any of the above, it must consult the Opposition beforehand.

However, the convention applies only to the making of decisions rather than their announcement, so decisions made by the government before the dissolution of Parliament (for example at a Cabinet meeting last week) can be announced during the caretaker period without breach.

The effect of this on the Taxation Institute’s advocacy on behalf of Members is that whilst interaction with the various arms of government can and will continue, the active decision making of government will not recommence before 21 August.

With this in mind, the Taxation Institute has invited the leaders of both major political parties to engage the tax professional community on tax issues. Members' input is vital in communicating the key policy concerns. By following this link please nominate the top three tax issues you regard as the most important in the 2010 Federal election.

Please see below for details of other activities this week.

Kind regards
Robert Jeremenko FTIA

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