Australia plans major spending plus surplus in 3 years

Mr Morrison said it was "fair" to ask the banks to do their part to fix the budget.

With the cost of living continuing to climb, coupled with the crippling housing crisis, the Federal Government has pledged to take the pressure off Australian families though a $1 billion National Housing Infrastructure Facility.

Also, if people fail to show up for appointments, or don't do their best to find work, or are welfare cheats, they may have their payments cut or face financial penalties - "it has to be a two-way street", said Morrison.

"This is an honest Budget", Mr Morrison told Parliament. A 2 percent so-called Temporary Budget Repair Levy paid on incomes exceeding AU$180,000 ($133,000) over three years ends in July.

Banks will face a new tax that is expected to recoup $6.2 billion over the forward estimates and help to fix the budget.

"It's hard to look someone with a disability in the eye and say, "we (Coalition and Labor) can't agree on a way to pay for it so you'll just have to live with uncertainty", he said.

The budget involved a textbook manoeuvre by Mr Morrison - disarm your opponents by grabbing some of their ideas.

The Treasurer argues there is no other feasible way of paying for the scheme, and says now is the time to stop debating how to pay for the NDIS and just do it. "We could all potentially be recipients of this scheme".

The Federal Government will also give $125m over the next five years to representative bodies of Independent schools in the States and Territories to implement the Federal Government's reforms.

The government will impose a fee on businesses that employ foreign workers, which is expected to raise AUD1.2 billion over four years.

That equates to $6.2 billion of new taxes from the banking sector over the next four years. In a clever political move, the Treasurer has exempted customer deposits of less than $250,000, as well as superannuation and insurance funds. "Banks will also be held to account if they try and hide misconduct by executives with new mandatory reporting requirements".

The government also plans to create the Australian Financial Complaints Authority for dispute resolution.

Small business $20,000 instant asset write-off extended (as with last year). The consumer and competition regulator would be monitoring banks' actions on rates very closely, and described as "nonsense" any claim that the levy threatened the stability of the banking system, he said.

"Plans to tax vacant homes, limit the share of foreign investment in new projects and increase foreign investor duties all send exactly the wrong signal to potential investors in Australia", he said in a statement.

A 2.5 per cent efficiency dividend will be applied to universities for the next two years to ensure taxpayers and students get better value for their investments.

But he believes the government had "wimped out" on tackling housing affordability with its new measures unlikely to make a significant difference.

"This measure is meant to encourage foreign owners of residential property to make their properties available for rent where they are not used as a residence and so increase the number of dwellings available for Australians to live in", Mr Morrison said.

Morrison painted an optimistic picture of the economic outlook, while acknowledging the pain Australians have been feeling, saying that not all people had shared the country's economic growth and "many remain frustrated at not getting ahead".


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