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What the 2019-20 State Budget means for you

Wondering how the 2019-20 Western Australian State Budget will impact on you and your small business?

While there is no targeted tax relief for small businesses in this budget (including payroll tax), there are a number of opportunities available through the numerous construction, infrastructure and maintenance projects announced across the State.

Here is an overview of the areas of the budget that are likely to have an impact on small businesses.

Opportunities to work on government projects

The State Government’s focus on infrastructure projects will provide a number of opportunities for small and medium businesses including:

  • hospital expansions
  • school maintenance, upgrades and construction
  • Metronet projects
  • new roads and upgrades, including cycling infrastructure
  • removal of dangerous level crossings
  • upgrades to dangerous metropolitan intersections

Increases to utilities and government services

A number of fee increases to utilities and public sector services will have an impact on your operating costs. The breakdown of fee increases is:

  • 1.75% for electricity
  • 2.5% for water charges
  • 2% for public transport
  • 2.7% for the Emergency Services Levy (ESL)
  • 2.6% for vehicle licence registration and insurance overall
  • No increase for drivers licences

Greater business sector funding and grants

Apprenticeships

To provide financial support to encourage businesses to take on more apprentices and trainees the Government has announced $182.4 million for a new Employer Incentive Scheme and training delivery, including $45 million for regional WA.

Regional economic development

Through Royalties for Regions, the State Government has committed:

  • $22.5 million for the Regional Economic Development Grants Scheme to drive economic development.
  • $60.1 million for the Collie Industry Attraction and Development Fund, aimed at attracting large-scale initiatives to diversify and grow the local economy and create long-term jobs in the area.

Taxi Industry

The Government has announced staged implementation of the new on-demand transport fee structure, with new fees to booking services to apply from 1 July 2019.

A new $3.4 million Regional Taxi Transition Support Package has been announced. While regional taxi operators are ineligible for the taxi-plate buyback for privately-owned plates, they will be able to apply for:

  • payments of $10,000 per taxi-car licence, capped at 10 licences per licence holder;
  • waiving of the on-demand booking service authorisation fee for an additional three years above the existing one-year waiver for all operators; and
  • waiving of the passenger transport vehicle authorisation fee for three years.

Agriculture

The State Government has announced $131.5 million of additional expenditure to support agriculture in WA, grow export markets, and create long-term jobs. This includes $39.6 million for programs that were previously funded on a short-term basis including Boosting Biosecurity Defences, Asian Market Success and Grains Research and Development.

Container deposit scheme

The Government has included $4.44 million to implement the container deposit scheme, which will commence in 2020. It has also announced an additional $22 million for the creation and ongoing management of national parks, marine parks and conservation reserves.

Looking for help to manage the impact of these changes?

If you’re concerned about the impact of these fee increases on your business you can:

  • Speak to your accountant about your business finances. If you don’t have an accountant, use our Building your support team guides to help you choose an accountant who will meet the needs of your business.
  • Use our business template and tools to help you work out what these increases will mean in dollars and cents terms.
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