FTB B targeted

SUPPORT for Gippsland families is expected to tighten if the Abbott Government acts on recommendations to reduce family tax benefits.

The Federal Government’s Commission of Audit Report suggests abolishing the Family Tax Benefit Part B, currently received by 60 per cent of families, and designed to provide assistance to sole parents and families where one parent stays home to care for children.

The commission also proposes that eligibility arrangement for Family Tax Benefit A should be tightened and simplified.

In a case of an eligible family with two children under 13, under the proposed arrangement FTB-A would be phased out at a family income of $99,220 versus the current cut off income of $112,785.

Anglicare Gippsland regional director Jane Anderson said she knew from recent reports families who required government assistance were doing it on a tight budget. Without commenting on the Commission of Audit specifically, Ms Anderson said she was concerned more broadly about rumours vulnerable people will be affected by budget cuts.

“People can’t afford further financial hardship. They’re already having to make choices about their day-to-day living expenses and are doing without things that families need,” Ms Anderson said.

“We support thousands of people in Gippsland who are disadvantaged and rely on government payments because of health issues, unemployment and family concerns.”