GRAZIERS TOLD TO RESIST LAND TAX
Won't Increase Their Liabilities WANT ABOLITION
The difficulty of finding money to pay the Federal land tax is forcing well-known men into an attitude of "passive resistance." according to a state- ment issued by the Graziers' Federal Council.
AGENTS, it is stated, have advised their clients to sit down aud do nothing, and men are gradually being led into this attitude rather than go on in- creasing their liability by further borrow ing. When the Graziers' Federal Council met in Adelaide recently it decided to press for the total abolition of the Federal land tax. The council contends that when the grazier examines his costs he finds that a considerable percentage is controlled by regulation or Government taxation. Having reduced costs over which he has control, he is now turning to the Govern- ment for relief from taxation. WHAT TAX REPRESENTS
That Federal land taxation is a definite faetor in such ''controlled" expenses is exemplified by the figures. On an unim- proved value of £4 10/ a head of sheep carried, which is below the average assess- ment as at June 30, 1931. the tax repre- sents:— For each. bale Sheep. Produced. & a. d. On 3.0W .. .. *. « ? 1* 8 On 5,000 .. M .. M .. *. M U On 10.000 ? .? .. .. .. £1 « 4 On 2fl,00fl .- .. .. ? ? £2 IS 1 On 3».«06 ? £3 1* « On 50,008 ? £4 4 0 The average price obtained for greasy ?wool for the year ended June 30, 1932, tras £10 18/3 a bale, and for the month of June £8 0/3 a bale. This statement, says the council, indi cates without exaggeration. Cases can be quoted of larger properties on which the tax amounts to £6 4/9 a bale. Production costs controlled by legisla tion include: — Wages under awards. Freight. Crown rents. Rates and taxes. Believing that land tax is wrong in principle because it is levied irrespective of whether there is any income earned or r.ot from the land, which is the subject of the tax. the council cannot see its Vray to suggest any altered form. It believes that abolition k the only remedy.
NO ALTERNATIVE It has examined the suscestiou that productivity be adopted as a basis of assessment as against sale value of com parable land, but has been obliged to te The Government in New Zealand has suspended the graduated land tax and substituted a flat rate of Id. in the £. The Western Australian Government as a State, has suspended land tax on land used for primary production. It has been officially stated that the annual cost of collecting the land tax is £127.121. The revenue from lajid taxation for the year 1931-2 amounted to £2.156:936. and as the amount collected under present conditions must become Jrss Iweanse the taxpayer has no money out t)f whicli to pay, the cost of collec tion on a percentage bask, must become greater.