Tuesday, 27 November 2018
The cranes and high-vis vests on construction sites all over my electorate of Fisher attest to our strong local economy and the jobs we're creating with the support of our government. I was involved in the construction industry for three decades and I know how quickly boom can turn to bust. The Labor Party's disastrous plan to end negative gearing and halve the capital gains tax discount on housing represents a massive new tax on property. If their misguided cash grab is allowed to happen, it will have a terribly destructive impact on the Sunshine Coast's future.
On the coast thousands of young people, just like my own daughter, have recently bought their first home in one of our new local developments. In total, 82,000 Sunshine Coast families own a house in our community. But make no mistake, under Labor every one of these properties will be worth less. It isn't complicated; it isn't rocket science. If you make it less worthwhile and more expensive to own a property, then fewer people will want to buy one and it will be harder to get the price you want when you are selling your house.
Thirty-seven thousand of us on the Sunshine Coast rent a home. Many who do so are young or struggling to make ends meet as it is. Without negative gearing, many landlords will have to raise their rents, while competition for rentals will increase as the number of new properties coming onto the market will fall. Under Labor's property taxes, many Sunshine Coast people are going to see their rents rise just when they can least afford it. For all of us, construction and development on the coast adds a vital $3.5 billion to the local economy. Directly and indirectly, it supports thousands of local workers. Apprentice training rates in our community are at an all-time high. But what are all of those skilled apprentices going to do for work if the construction industry tanks because of Labor's irresponsible property taxes?
If Labor are allowed to make it less worthwhile to buy a property, then fewer will be constructed. Master Builders have shown that, across the country, 42,000 fewer homes would be built, 32,000 jobs would be cut and the economy would take a recession-risking $12 billion hit. As one of the fastest-growing regions in the country with construction at its heart, the Sunshine Coast would be hit far harder than most. The Labor Party need to listen, admit that they've got it wrong and ditch their devastating property taxes. Whether you own your own home or you rent it, whether you want to invest in your family's future or you are looking for a job in our region, these policies would hurt all of us. (Time expired)