Modest ESL decrease a missed opportunity

The Property Council of Australia has labelled the State Government’s decision to modestly decrease the Emergency Services Levy a missed opportunity.

Over the past three years, the State Government has increased the ESL on a $500,000 house by 205% while over that same period the median sales price across SA has increased by 9.9% with CPI increasing by 4.3%.

The Treasurer today announced that an owner of a median valued property would receive a $3 decrease in their ESL bill.

SA Executive Director Daniel Gannon said this was a missed opportunity for the State Government to provide genuine relief to over-taxed property owners.

“An owner of a median valued property wouldn’t even be able to purchase a takeaway coffee with a $3 reduction in their ESL bill,” he said.

“As it stands, property owners are already overburdened when it comes to paying their fair share of taxes. The property sector accounts for almost 60% of the state’s total taxation revenue.

“An ESL increase of more than 200% in the past three years against a 10% increase in the median sales price of a house is unbelievable, unsustainable, unfair, and unaffordable. That’s why a $3 reduction in the average ESL bill from next year is a missed opportunity.

“South Australia needs increased demand and economic growth, but that won’t be delivered through higher taxes for ratepayers.

“In recent times the State Government has made a positive and lasting contribution to increasing this state’s investment attractiveness by taxing an axe to commercial stamp duty. But this can’t be done in isolation from other important areas of tax reform, including land tax, council rates and the ESL.

“In the lead-up to the State Budget, it’s clear that South Australians want a budget that is focused on cuts and carrots, not whacks and tax.”

 

Background information
Property is South Australia’s largest private sector employer and biggest industry, accounting for 10.8% of the state’s economic activity (or $10.5 billion).

It builds prosperity by paying $4.4 billion in wages and salaries – one in six people draw their wage directly or indirectly from property – and one million South Australians have a stake in property through their super funds.

Property is the largest single industry contributor paying 56.6% of state taxes, local government rates, fees and charges.

 

Media contact: Daniel Gannon  | E dgannon@propertycouncil.com.au