Assistant Treasurer: Misunderstanding or just plain misleading?

17 November 2015

The Assistant Treasurer's gaffe-riddled performance in her new portfolio continues today with her claims in the press that:

"The Government is focused on making sure employees get superannuation guarantee payments."

The reality is that Australians are losing $2.6 billion in super annually, this figure is growing, and the Assistant Treasurer is making it easier for employers to flaunt their superannuation guarantee obligations.

She also claims the changes in her Treasury Legislation Amendment (Repeal Day) Bill 2015 "are specific to the period in which penalty interest is charged".

The fact is that her legislation not only changes the interest calculation as she has stated, it also decreases the base of the penalty calculation and entirely repeals the additional SG Charge Penalty of up to 200 per cent, as the Bill's explanatory memorandum makes clear.

The Assistant Treasurer should come clean and admit that her legislation will make it easier for bosses to avoid paying superannuation on time, not improve compliance which she claims is the Government's focus.

This clear error of understanding comes after her gaffe last week when she claimed on Sky News that "this idea that people can amass multi-millions of dollars in their superannuation funds is just simply not correct" when in fact there are around 100,000 people with a super balance over $2 million who receive generous tax concessions from the Government.

Australians should expect more from the Assistant Treasurer than false claims which obscure the real challenges in the superannuation sector and hide the Government's misguided super priorities.