Media Release by The Hon Larry Anthony MP

Families advised on extra pay-day

¬†Shadow Minister for Family and Community Services, Wayne Swan’s latest misinformation campaign on Family Tax Benefit is another example of why you can’t believe a word he says, Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Larry Anthony said today.

In a statement loaded with breathtaking spin, Mr Swan has tried to blame the Australian Government for many Australian wage earners having 27 pay days this financial year rather than the usual 26.

This happens once every 12 years when the first traditional Thursday pay-day of the financial year falls on 1 July and the last on 30 June.

“Mr Swan often incorrectly blames the Government for a range of things, but his suggestion that we have arranged the calender for political benefit takes his practice of spinning a line to new heights.

“The Family Assistance Office has been advising families of this issue. Information is on the Family Assist website (www.familyassist.gov.au). This information is in a prominent spot on the ‘Update your Income Estimate’ page and just one ‘click’ away from the main homepage.

“Families contacting the Family Assistance Call Centre are also reminded by staff of this issue and given information about the impact it may have on their family payments. Just last week 33,000 calls were received on this phone line regarding income updates.

“The Family Assistance Office are also writing to families in September with regard to their 2003-04 reconciliation and information on the 27 pay-day issue will be included.

“Mr Swan’s suggestion that this issue will work out in the Government’s favour financially is wrong. The fact is the system ensures families receive their correct entitlement based on their earnings for the financial year.

“Australian families have received record amounts of assistance from this Government and they understand how the system works. It is unfortunate that Mr Swan continues to deliberately set out to scare and mislead Australian families,” Mr Anthony said.