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Harriet Shing MP:
Local Businesses Saving Big on Payroll Tax

Future savings with regional payroll tax cuts.

By Portal Admin - 1st March 2020 - Back to News

Businesses in regional Victoria are saving millions thanks to the Andrews Labor Government’s regional payroll tax cuts, with more savings on the horizon.

More than 4,400 businesses in regional Victoria – including 140 in Baw Baw and 223 in Latrobe – are forecast to share in $154 million in savings just this financial year.

It includes savings of more than $31 million for businesses in Greater Geelong, almost $15 million in Ballarat and $11 million in Bendigo.

The Labor Government is making it easier to do business in regional Victoria – and in turn supporting local jobs – by cutting regional payroll tax to just a quarter of the metropolitan rate, phased in over three years.

For the current financial year, it sits at 2.425 per cent – half the metro rate.

From 1st July, the regional payroll tax rate will be cut by 0.4 percentage points each year until it hits a quarter of the metro rate in 2022-23 – making it the lowest payroll tax rate in Australia.

That’s on top of the cut the Government made in July 2018, which brought the regional rate down from 3.65 per cent to the current rate.

The Labor Government has also relaxed the eligibility requirements so that more businesses can access the regional tax rate even if their business is registered in the metro area or interstate. They now qualify as long as 85 per cent of their wages are paid to staff working in regional Victoria.

Bushfire-affected businesses are receiving extra assistance, including:

  • Immediate payroll tax reduction to a quarter of the metro rate.
  • Waiving of water rates for 12 months for businesses destroyed or significantly damaged by fire.

Victoria’s regional unemployment rate remains consistently low, at 3.7 per cent in the three months leading up to December – the lowest in the nation and well below the national average.

The current unemployment rate (November 2019 three month moving average) in Latrobe/Gippsland is 3.3 per cent - down from 7.9 per cent in November 2016. This equates to an additional 11,600 jobs since November 2016 when the LVA was established.

Across the state, more than 23,000 people found a job in regional areas during this period – an increase of 3.3 per cent, the highest growth in the country.

Quotes attributable to Treasurer Tim Pallas

"These tax savings are worth thousands of dollars to thousands of businesses – it’s about making life easier for regional employers."

"In just a few months’ time, we’ll be cutting the payroll tax rate again to 2.02 per cent, less than half the metropolitan rate."

"We’re giving regional businesses the security they need to keep creating jobs, with a fairer tax system that spreads the benefits right across the state."

Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing

"For every small to medium business that pays regional payroll tax, these changes have meant thousands – if not millions – in savings."

"This is about supporting businesses right across our state so that they can continue supporting local jobs and economic growth in the region."


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