Car­bon tax to hit busi­ness

Townsville Bulletin - - Inside Today - by Ryan Mathe­son

T O W N S V I L L E s m a l l busi­ness own­ers will be forced to ac­count for an ex­tra $ 30,000 a year as part of the fed­eral gov­ern­ment’s car­bon tax pol­icy, op­po­nents to the move claim.

They are tip­ping elec­tric­ity bills to rise at least 25 per cent when t he mea­sure is in­tro­duced from July next year.

Lam­berts Fresh Pro­duce part owner Michael Burge fears the lat­est bur­den could spell the end for small busi­nesses in Townsville.

Mr Burge said North Q u e e n s l a n d b u s i n e s s own­ers were al­ready fac­ing tough times.

‘‘ It’s con­cern­ing from a busi­ness per­spec­tive be­cause we know this de­ci­sion will carry added costs for us that we will have to pass on to the con­sumer,’’ he said.

‘‘ It’s not just a blan­ket tax on store own­ers, it will be felt through all lev­els of busi­ness.

‘‘ All our sup­pli­ers have a power bill and will be forced to pass on any in­put costs associated with the car­bon tax on to us as well.

‘‘ We all fear what we don’t know and right now we don’t have any clear un­der­stand­ing of DETRI­MEN­TAL: Char­ters Tow­ers MP Shane Knuth the car­bon tax will crip­ple al­ready suf­fer­ing North Queens­lan­ders what is go­ing to hap­pen.’’

Dal­rym­ple MP Shane Knuth said t he price hikes could be detri­men­tal to the peo­ple of North Queens­land.

‘‘ About 30 per cent of the gross in­come that comes from my re­gion re­lates to agri­cul­ture so t h i s w i l l n o d o u b t se­verely im­pact a lot of peo­ple in this area,’’ he said. ‘‘ The peo­ple out there are bat­tling with cy­clones and floods and the ru­ral econ­omy is re­ally suf­fer­ing, so the last thing we want to hear is a mas­sive tax.

‘‘ The talk­ing point here i s n ’ t a b o u t c l i m a t e change and global warm­ing, it’s about peo­ple try- ing to stand on their feet.

‘‘ We have pen­sion­ers who are al­ready strug­gling to pay their elec­tric­ity bills let alone hav­ing to deal with a rise of 25 per cent. There are a lot of bat­tlers out there that don’t want to hear about a tax that sci­en­tists are still hav­ing trou­ble agree­ing with.’’

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