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Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Moving slowly in the right direction? 

Michael Cullen and friends seem to be taking our criticism seriously, and are at least beginning to think pragmatically about tax issues. OK, we can't claim any credit, but it would be fair to say Cullen & Dunne were making "encouraging noises"

But again, their "conservatism" is stifling - we *might* do something, *possibly* in time for April 2008. I don't know about you, but April 2008 seems a long way off. Decisive action is preferrable here: indeed, while I was in Canada, the Federal Liberal government on one occasion (2003 I think) announced an income tax cut to take effect almost immediately, in the middle of the tax year, with Revenue Canada to sort it out retrospectively, in combination with taxpayers completing their annual returns (i.e., most people were in for a slightly larger-than-normal rebate at the end of the year, as they would have been taxed at a slightly higher-than-required rate for half the year). The same thing would be possible here ... or if it's just too much effort for the mandarins at the IRD, how does April 2007 sound?

For god's sake Scrooge, National has gained (and is gaining) considerable momentum on this issue, and you're content to wait for 2008!? Why not say: "We'll cut the rates by 2% in 2007, and a further 1% in 2008" (or vice-versa if you prefer) just to take some wind out of the windbag's sails? Fuck this maybe-I-will-and-maybe-I-won't business. Get on with it! (And the same goes for the Spaghetti Junction re-alignments and connections ... construction now into its sixth year by my reckoning!)

"National has gained (and is gaining) considerable momentum on this issue, and you're content to wait for 2008."

two words: election. bribe.

people might be grateful for a cut now, but sunch 'generosity' might all be forgotten by 2008. better to wait until such a magnamonious move will be remembered by one and all.
Unfortunately I largely agree with you. However, I think National's strategy includes a "best case scenario" plan of moving so far ahead in the polls that anything Labour does in '08 will be ignored/seen as desperate.

In any case election bribery doesn't preclude splitting the tax cut over two years (with a first installment in 07).
In Auckland City this year: water rates to go up 10%, rates up 13%, petrol up 23%, wages up 3.3%

Can't afford to give people some tax relief?

Well can they afford to keep on working legally and paying taxes?

ALL rates should be tied into inflation simple as that. It's something that people have no control over and no choice over. At least with petrol increases people can use the car less or get rid of it all together.
GST should be removed from rates - a rate is neither a good nor a service.

Perhaps rates could also be income tax deductible, at least up to a certain level (say, the first $1000 or $1500).

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