THE Commission of Audit – containing a total of 86 recommendations aimed at saving the budget up to 70 billion dollars a year – has finally been released after being handed to the Federal Government last month.
Significant changes to the pension, aged care and superannuation are among the suggestions outlined to the Abbott Government to rein in spending and bring the budget back into surplus.
Recommendations include lifting the pension age to 70, requiring high-income earners to take out private health insurance and co-payments of 15 dollars for doctor visits.
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The commission suggests Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s signature paid parental leave scheme is still considered too expensive, recommending it be capped at the annual average earnings rate which currently stands at $57,460. That’s almost $50,000 lower than Mr Abbott’s reduction on Wednesday from $150,000 to $100,000.
The government is expected to announce which, if any, of the commission’s 86 recommendations it will accept, defer or reject in 10 days.
The commission estimates total spending will balloon to $690 billion over the next 10 years, from $409 billion.
SOME OF THE MOST SIGNIFICANT RECOMMENDATIONS INCLUDE:
- End of universal health care
- Cutting 15,000 public service jobs
- Charging $15 for doctors’ visits
- Slower rollout of the NDIS
- Raising the pension age to 70
- Selling off state-owned assets like Australia Post and the Snowy River Dam
- Abolish seven Commonwealth agencies, merge 35 and privatise nine
- Reject paid parental leave in favour of focusing on child care
- Provide in-home care such as nannies
- Strip the dole from young unemployed people who don’t move to areas with jobs
- Freeze the minimum wage for 10 years
- Include the family home in means testing for the age pension
- Premiers should have the power to decide income tax rates in their states