How Michael Sukkar voted compared to someone who believes that the federal government should limit the availability of government social security payments

Division Michael Sukkar Supporters vote Division outcome

23rd Oct 2017, 12:28 PM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment (Better Targeting Student Payments) Bill 2017 - Second Reading - Agree with bill's main idea

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The majority voted to agree with the bill's main idea. In parliamentary jargon, they voted to read the bill for a second time.

What is the bill's main idea?

According to the bills digest:

The purpose of the Social Services Legislation Amendment (Better Targeting Student Payments) Bill 2017 (the Bill) is to amend the Social Security Act 1991 (SS Act) and the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 (VE Act) to:

  • limit eligibility for the relocation scholarship provided to some Youth Allowance recipients to those whose parental family home or usual place of residence is in Australia, and to those who relocate for study in Australia only. Students who relocate outside Australia to undertake part of their Australian course will no longer qualify for the relocation scholarship

  • introduce new payment rates for the Pensioner Education Supplement (PES) and the Education Entry Payment (EdEP) that correspond with different study loads undertaken by recipients and

  • no longer pay the PES during semester breaks and end-of-year holidays.

Yes Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

29th Mar 2017, 6:01 PM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment Bill 2017 - Consideration in Detail - Agree to the bill

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The majority voted to agree with the bill. The House will now decide whether to pass the bill, which will be the final stage the bill must pass through and is known in parliamentary jargon as the third reading stage.

What does the bill do?

The purpose of this bill is to make savings for the government in the social services sector (social welfare etc).

According to the bill's homepage, it was introduced to:

  • pause for three years the indexation of various income thresholds that apply to certain social security benefits and allowances and the income test free area for parenting payment single
  • extend the ordinary waiting period to youth allowance (other) and parenting payment
  • include additional evidentiary requirements for the ‘severe financial hardship’ exemption from the ordinary waiting period
  • remove the ability for claimants to serve the ordinary waiting period concurrently with other waiting periods
  • enable automation of the regular income stream review process; and
  • maintain the standard family tax benefit (FTB) child rates for two years, from 1 July 2017, in the maximum and base rate of FTB Part A and the maximum rate of FTB Part B.
Yes Yes Passed by a small majority

29th Mar 2017, 5:42 PM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment Bill 2017 - Second Reading - Agree with the bill's main idea

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The majority voted to agree with the main idea of the bill. In parliamentary jargon they voted to read the bill for a second time.

The House will now discuss the bill in more detail.

What is the bill's main idea?

The purpose of this bill is to make savings for the government in the social services sector (social welfare etc).

According to the bill's homepage, it was introduced to:

  • pause for three years the indexation of various income thresholds that apply to certain social security benefits and allowances and the income test free area for parenting payment single
  • extend the ordinary waiting period to youth allowance (other) and parenting payment
  • include additional evidentiary requirements for the ‘severe financial hardship’ exemption from the ordinary waiting period
  • remove the ability for claimants to serve the ordinary waiting period concurrently with other waiting periods
  • enable automation of the regular income stream review process; and
  • maintain the standard family tax benefit (FTB) child rates for two years, from 1 July 2017, in the maximum and base rate of FTB Part A and the maximum rate of FTB Part B.
Yes Yes Passed by a small majority

29th Mar 2017, 5:37 PM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment Bill 2017 - Second Reading - Don't agree with bill's main idea

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Labor MP Jenny Macklin against the bill, which means it failed.

The motion effectively asked the House of Representatives to reject the bill's main idea. In parliamentary jargon, it asked the House to refuse to give the bill a second reading.

What is the bill's main idea?

The purpose of this bill is to make savings for the government in the social services sector (social welfare etc).

According to the bill's homepage, it was introduced to:

  • pause for three years the indexation of various income thresholds that apply to certain social security benefits and allowances and the income test free area for parenting payment single
  • extend the ordinary waiting period to youth allowance (other) and parenting payment
  • include additional evidentiary requirements for the ‘severe financial hardship’ exemption from the ordinary waiting period
  • remove the ability for claimants to serve the ordinary waiting period concurrently with other waiting periods
  • enable automation of the regular income stream review process; and
  • maintain the standard family tax benefit (FTB) child rates for two years, from 1 July 2017, in the maximum and base rate of FTB Part A and the maximum rate of FTB Part B.

Motion text

That all the words after "That" be omitted with a view to substituting the following words:

"The House:

(1) declines to give the bill a second reading because it includes cuts to Family Tax Benefit that will leave 1.5 million families worse off, freezes income free areas for 264,500 recipients of income support and student payments, and forces young people and single parents to wait one week to access income support; and

(2) calls on the government to drop their unfair cuts to families and vulnerable Australians on very low incomes.

No No Not passed by a small majority

1st Mar 2017, 11:41 AM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment (Omnibus Savings and Child Care Reform) Bill 2017 - Third Reading - Pass the bill

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The majority voted in favour of passing the bill in the House of Representatives. In parliamentary jargon, they voted to read the bill for a third time. The bill will now go to the Senate for their consideration. It won't become law unless the Senate agrees to vote to pass it.

What does the bill do?

The bill does a lot!

The main two focuses for the bill are to make savings for the Government (that is, to let them spend less money on social services) and to amend the current childcare arrangements. For example, the child care benefit and child care rebate will be cancelled and a new child care subsidy (CCS) will be introduced that will be subject to both income and activity tests.

The bill's homepage gives a brief introduction to just how wide the changes are that the bill is making:

The bill will -

  • increase the family tax benefit (FTB) Part A fortnightly rates by $20.02 for each FTB child in the family up to 19 years of age;
  • remove the entitlement to FTB Part B for single parent families who are not single parents aged 60 or more or grandparents or great-grandparents from the start of the calendar year their youngest child turns 17 years of age;
  • phase out the FTB Part A and Part B end-of-year supplements;
  • increase certain youth allowance and disability support pension fortnightly rates by approximately $19.37 for recipients under 18 years of age;
  • reduce from 26 to six weeks the period during which age pension and other payments with unlimited portability can be paid outside Australia at the means-tested rate;
  • pause for three years the indexation of various income thresholds that apply to certain social security benefits and allowances and the income test free area for parenting payment single;
  • extend and simplifies the ordinary waiting period for all working age payments;
  • extend youth allowance (other) to 22 to 24 year olds in lieu of newstart allowance and sickness allowance;
  • provide for a four-week waiting period for certain persons aged under 25 years applying for youth allowance (other) or special benefit and require these job seekers to complete certain pre-benefit activities;
  • cease the child care benefit (CCB) and child care rebate;
  • introduce a child care subsidy (CCS) which is subject to both an income and activity test;
  • introduce various rates of additional child care subsidy (ACCS) that are available in certain circumstances;
  • make amendments in relation to CCS and ACCS claims, reviews of decisions, provider approvals, and compliance obligations of approved providers of child care services;
  • abolish the pensioner education supplement;
  • abolish the education entry payment;
  • prevent new recipients of welfare payments or concession cards from being paid the energy supplement from 20 September 2017;
  • cease the payment of pension supplement after six weeks temporary absence overseas and immediately for permanent departures;
  • enable automation of the regular income stream review process;
  • trial a social security income test incentive aimed at increasing the number of job seekers who undertake specified seasonal horticultural work, such as fruit picking;
  • provide that parental leave pay under the Paid Parental Leave scheme will only be provided to parents who have no employer-provided paid primary carer leave, or whose employer-provided paid primary carer leave is for a period less than 20 weeks or is paid at a rate below the full-time national minimum wage; and
  • remove the requirement for employers to provide paid parental leave to eligible employees, unless an employer chooses to manage the payment to employees and the employees agree for the employer to pay them.

The Explanatory Memorandum gives a more detailed explanation of these changes.

Yes Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

1st Mar 2017, 10:40 AM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment (Omnibus Savings and Child Care Reform) Bill 2017 - Second Reading - Agree with the bill's main idea

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The majority agreed with the main idea of the bill. In parliamentary jargon, they voted to read the bill for a second time. The bill can now be discussed in more detail.

What's the bill's main idea?

The main idea of the bill is to make changes to Australia's social security system.

The main two focuses for the bill are to make savings for the Government (that is, to let them spend less money on social services) and to amend the current childcare arrangements. For example, if the bill's passed, the child care benefit and child care rebate will be cancelled and a new child care subsidy (CCS) will be introduced that will be subject to both income and activity tests.

The bill's homepage gives a brief introduction to just how wide the changes are that the bill is making:

If it's passed, the bill will -

  • increase the family tax benefit (FTB) Part A fortnightly rates by $20.02 for each FTB child in the family up to 19 years of age;
  • remove the entitlement to FTB Part B for single parent families who are not single parents aged 60 or more or grandparents or great-grandparents from the start of the calendar year their youngest child turns 17 years of age;
  • phase out the FTB Part A and Part B end-of-year supplements;
  • increase certain youth allowance and disability support pension fortnightly rates by approximately $19.37 for recipients under 18 years of age;
  • reduce from 26 to six weeks the period during which age pension and other payments with unlimited portability can be paid outside Australia at the means-tested rate;
  • pause for three years the indexation of various income thresholds that apply to certain social security benefits and allowances and the income test free area for parenting payment single;
  • extend and simplifies the ordinary waiting period for all working age payments;
  • extend youth allowance (other) to 22 to 24 year olds in lieu of newstart allowance and sickness allowance;
  • provide for a four-week waiting period for certain persons aged under 25 years applying for youth allowance (other) or special benefit and require these job seekers to complete certain pre-benefit activities;
  • cease the child care benefit (CCB) and child care rebate;
  • introduce a child care subsidy (CCS) which is subject to both an income and activity test;
  • introduce various rates of additional child care subsidy (ACCS) that are available in certain circumstances;
  • make amendments in relation to CCS and ACCS claims, reviews of decisions, provider approvals, and compliance obligations of approved providers of child care services;
  • abolish the pensioner education supplement;
  • abolish the education entry payment;
  • prevent new recipients of welfare payments or concession cards from being paid the energy supplement from 20 September 2017;
  • cease the payment of pension supplement after six weeks temporary absence overseas and immediately for permanent departures;
  • enable automation of the regular income stream review process;
  • trial a social security income test incentive aimed at increasing the number of job seekers who undertake specified seasonal horticultural work, such as fruit picking;
  • provide that parental leave pay under the Paid Parental Leave scheme will only be provided to parents who have no employer-provided paid primary carer leave, or whose employer-provided paid primary carer leave is for a period less than 20 weeks or is paid at a rate below the full-time national minimum wage; and
  • remove the requirement for employers to provide paid parental leave to eligible employees, unless an employer chooses to manage the payment to employees and the employees agree for the employer to pay them.

The Explanatory Memorandum gives a more detailed explanation of these changes.

Yes Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

1st Mar 2017, 10:34 AM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment (Omnibus Savings and Child Care Reform) Bill 2017 - Second Reading - Don't agree with bill's main idea

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Labor MP Jenny Macklin, which means it was unsuccessful.

The motion called for the House not to agree with the bill's main idea (which would have meant that the bill was rejected). In parliamentary jargon, the motion called for the House to not give the bill a second reading.

Motion text

That all the words after "That" be omitted with a view to substituting the following words:

The House:

(1) declines to give the bill a second reading because it will hurt pensioners, families, new mums and young Australians while holding child care assistance and the National Disability Insurance Scheme to ransom; and

(2) calls on the Government to:

(a) drop their unfair cuts to pensioners, families, new mums and young Australians; and

(b) fix their child care changes so that vulnerable and disadvantaged children are not worse off and Indigenous and country services do not face closure.

What's the bill's main idea?

The main idea of the bill is to make changes to Australia's social security system.

The main two focuses for the bill are to make savings for the Government (that is, to let them spend less money on social services) and to amend the current childcare arrangements. For example, if the bill's passed, the child care benefit and child care rebate will be cancelled and a new child care subsidy (CCS) will be introduced that will be subject to both income and activity tests.

The bill's homepage gives a brief introduction to just how wide the changes are that the bill is making:

If it's passed, the bill will -

  • increase the family tax benefit (FTB) Part A fortnightly rates by $20.02 for each FTB child in the family up to 19 years of age;
  • remove the entitlement to FTB Part B for single parent families who are not single parents aged 60 or more or grandparents or great-grandparents from the start of the calendar year their youngest child turns 17 years of age;
  • phase out the FTB Part A and Part B end-of-year supplements;
  • increase certain youth allowance and disability support pension fortnightly rates by approximately $19.37 for recipients under 18 years of age;
  • reduce from 26 to six weeks the period during which age pension and other payments with unlimited portability can be paid outside Australia at the means-tested rate;
  • pause for three years the indexation of various income thresholds that apply to certain social security benefits and allowances and the income test free area for parenting payment single;
  • extend and simplifies the ordinary waiting period for all working age payments;
  • extend youth allowance (other) to 22 to 24 year olds in lieu of newstart allowance and sickness allowance;
  • provide for a four-week waiting period for certain persons aged under 25 years applying for youth allowance (other) or special benefit and require these job seekers to complete certain pre-benefit activities;
  • cease the child care benefit (CCB) and child care rebate;
  • introduce a child care subsidy (CCS) which is subject to both an income and activity test;
  • introduce various rates of additional child care subsidy (ACCS) that are available in certain circumstances;
  • make amendments in relation to CCS and ACCS claims, reviews of decisions, provider approvals, and compliance obligations of approved providers of child care services;
  • abolish the pensioner education supplement;
  • abolish the education entry payment;
  • prevent new recipients of welfare payments or concession cards from being paid the energy supplement from 20 September 2017;
  • cease the payment of pension supplement after six weeks temporary absence overseas and immediately for permanent departures;
  • enable automation of the regular income stream review process;
  • trial a social security income test incentive aimed at increasing the number of job seekers who undertake specified seasonal horticultural work, such as fruit picking;
  • provide that parental leave pay under the Paid Parental Leave scheme will only be provided to parents who have no employer-provided paid primary carer leave, or whose employer-provided paid primary carer leave is for a period less than 20 weeks or is paid at a rate below the full-time national minimum wage; and
  • remove the requirement for employers to provide paid parental leave to eligible employees, unless an employer chooses to manage the payment to employees and the employees agree for the employer to pay them.

The Explanatory Memorandum gives a more detailed explanation of these changes.

No No Not passed by a small majority

10th Feb 2016, 11:43 AM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment (Family Payments Structural Reform and Participation Measures) Bill (No. 2) 2015 - Second Reading - Agree with bill's main idea

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The majority agreed with the main idea of the bill. In parliamentary jargon, they agreed to read the bill for a second time.

Main idea of the bill

The bill makes changes to the Family Tax Benefit Part A and Part B, known as FTB-A and FTB-B.

The bills digest summarises the changes:

Overall, the measures will see an *increase** in FTB-B rates for families whose youngest child is aged under one year, accompanied by a reduction in payment rates for all FTB-A families, a significant reduction in FTB-B payment rates for single parents and grandparent carers with teenagers, and the loss of FTB-B for couple families whose youngest child is aged 13 or over, and for single parents and grandparent carers whose youngest child is aged 17 or 18.* [Emphasis added]

In other words, there are increases in benefits for some families with children under one year old and reductions for some families with teenage children.

Read more in the bills digest.

Yes Yes Passed by a small majority

8th Feb 2016, 3:19 PM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment (Budget Repair) Bill 2015 - Second Reading - Agree with the bill's main idea

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The majority agreed with the main idea of the bill. In parliamentary jargon, they voted to read the bill for a second time.

Main idea of the bill

This bill introduces four measures that will save the Government money. They were first announced in either the 2014 budget or the 2015 budget and this is the second time the Government has tried to pass them. The measures include:

To find out which benefits are affected and more about these and the other measures the bill is introducing, read the bills digest.

Yes Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

22nd Oct 2014, 7:48 PM – Representatives Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (Seniors Supplement Cessation) Bill 2014 and two related bills - Third Reading - Pass the bills

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The majority wanted to pass the bills in the House of Representatives (in parliamentary jargon, they voted to give the bills a third reading). The bills will now go to the Senate to see if the senators agree with the members of parliament (MPs) and also want to pass the bills. If they do, the bills will become law.

What do the bills do?

The bills introduce several of the Social Services Portfolio budget measures that the Government hasn't been able to pass yet.

The Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (Seniors Supplement Cessation) Bill 2014 will get rid of the senior supplement for people who have a Commonwealth seniors health card or a veterans’ affairs gold card from 20 September 2014 (see the bills digest).

The Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (Student Measures) Bill 2014 will allow interest rates to be applied to certain student assistance debts and create a new student start-up loan to replace current student start-up scholarships (see the bills digest).

For an overview of the measures included in the Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 4) Bill 2014, see its bills digest.

Background to the bills

The measures in these bills were originally included in the Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) Bill 2014 and the Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 2) Bill 2014. These bills didn't get beyond the second reading stage in the Senate so the Government decided to split the measures into four bills (see ABC's The World Today), including these three.

Yes Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

2nd Sep 2014 – Representatives Minerals Resource Rent Tax Repeal and Other Measures Bill 2014 - Consideration of Senate Message - Agree to the amendments

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The majority voted in favour of a motion to agree to the amendments made in the Senate,(Read more about the amendments here. ) which means that the bill will now become law. This is because the Senate had agreed to the bill, subject to their amendments being accepted by the House of Representatives, which had previously agreed to the bill.(Read more about the stages that a bill must pass through to become law here. )

Background to the bill

This bill was introduced following the Minerals Resource Rent Tax Repeal and Other Measures Bill 2013 (No. 2) being laid aside because it could not "be progressed in its current form".(Read more about this bill being set aside here. The division which resulted in that bill being laid aside is available here. )

This bill repeals the Minerals Resource Rent Tax as well as related measures such as the low income superannuation contribution, the income support bonus and the schoolkids bonus. The bill also revises the capital allowances for small business entities and the superannuation guarantee charge percentage increase.(Read more about the changes made in the bill in the explanatory memorandum. ) Under the previous Labor government, the superannuation was set to increase to 12 per cent by 2019 (as of 1 July 2014, it is at 9.5 per cent).(Read more about superannuation in Australia here.) However, this bill will push that rise up until 1 July 2025.

Yes Yes Passed by a small majority

1st Sep 2014, 1:59 PM – Representatives Minerals Resource Rent Tax Repeal and Other Measures Bill 2014 — Third Reading — Read a third time

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The majority voted in favour of a motion to read the bill for a third time.(Read more about the stages that a bill must pass through to become law here. ) This means that the bill is passed in the House of Representatives and that it will now be sent to the Senate for their consideration.

Background to the bill

This bill was introduced following the Minerals Resource Rent Tax Repeal and Other Measures Bill 2013 (No. 2) being laid aside because it could not "be progressed in its current form".(Read more about this bill being set aside here. The division which resulted in that bill being laid aside is available here. )

This bill repeals the Minerals Resource Rent Tax as well as related measures such as the low income superannuation contribution, the income support bonus and the schoolkids bonus. The bill also revises the capital allowances for small business entities and the superannuation guarantee charge percentage increase.(Read more about the changes made in the bill in the explanatory memorandum. ) Under the previous Labor government, the superannuation was set to increase to 12 per cent by 2019 (as of 1 July 2014, it is at 9.5 per cent).(Read more about superannuation in Australia here.) However, this bill will push that rise up until 1 July 2025.

Yes Yes Passed by a small majority

1st Sep 2014, 1:52 PM – Representatives Minerals Resource Rent Tax Repeal and Other Measures Bill 2014 — Consideration in Detail — Agree to the bill

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The majority voted in favour of a motion to agree to the bill.(Read more about the stages that a bill must pass through to become law here. ) This means that the majority agreed with the bill and that the House of Representatives can now decide on whether to read the bill for a third time and therefore pass it in the House.

Background to the bill

This bill was introduced following the Minerals Resource Rent Tax Repeal and Other Measures Bill 2013 (No. 2) being laid aside because it could not "be progressed in its current form".(Read more about this bill being set aside here. The division which resulted in that bill being laid aside is available here. )

This bill repeals the Minerals Resource Rent Tax as well as related measures such as the low income superannuation contribution, the income support bonus and the schoolkids bonus. The bill also revises the capital allowances for small business entities and the superannuation guarantee charge percentage increase.(Read more about the changes made in the bill in the explanatory memorandum. ) Under the previous Labor government, the superannuation was set to increase to 12 per cent by 2019 (as of 1 July 2014, it is at 9.5 per cent).(Read more about superannuation in Australia here.) However, this bill will push that rise up until 1 July 2025.

Yes Yes Passed by a small majority

1st Sep 2014, 1:27 PM – Representatives Minerals Resource Rent Tax Repeal and Other Measures Bill 2014 — Second Reading — Read a second time

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The majority voted in favour of a motion to read the bill for a second time.(Read more about the stages that a bill must pass through to become law here. ) This means that the majority agreed with the main idea of the bill and that the House can now discuss it in more detail.

Background to the bill

This bill was introduced following the Minerals Resource Rent Tax Repeal and Other Measures Bill 2013 (No. 2) being laid aside because it could not "be progressed in its current form".(Read more about this bill being set aside here. The division which resulted in that bill being laid aside is available here. )

This bill repeals the Minerals Resource Rent Tax as well as related measures such as the low income superannuation contribution, the income support bonus and the schoolkids bonus. The bill also revises the capital allowances for small business entities and the superannuation guarantee charge percentage increase.(Read more about the changes made in the bill in the explanatory memorandum. ) Under the previous Labor government, the superannuation was set to increase to 12 per cent by 2019 (as of 1 July 2014, it is at 9.5 per cent).(Read more about superannuation in Australia here.) However, this bill will push that rise up until 1 July 2025.

Yes Yes Passed by a small majority

24th Jun 2014, 10:07 PM – Representatives Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) Bill 2014 and related bill - Third Reading - Read a third time

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The majority voted in favour of a motion to read these bills a third time.(Read more about the stages that a bill must pass through to become law here. ) This means that the majority agree with the bills and want to pass them in the House of Representatives. The bills will now be sent to the Senate for their consideration.

Background to the bills

The Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) Bill 2014 and the Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 2) Bill 2014 were introduced to implement a number of budget measures. These measures include pausing indexation on certain government payments, ceasing certain payments and changing the requirements for certain payments.(Read about these changes in more detail in the explanatory memorandum for the former bill (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) here and latter bill (2014 Budget Measures No. 2) here. )

Although several of these welfare measure were to become effective from 1 July 2014, Social Services Minister Kevin Andrews has said that it is unlikely that they will pass through Parliament by then.(See ABC News for more information.) In the meantime, the government payments will continue unchanged.

Yes Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

24th Jun 2014, 10:03 PM – Representatives Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) Bill 2014 and related bill - Consideration in Detail - Agree to the bills

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The majority voted in favour of a motion to agree to the bills.(Read more about the stages that a bill must pass through to become law here. ) This means that the majority agree with the bills as they stand during the consideration in detail stage and will now decide whether to read them for a third time and therefore pass them in the House of Representatives.

Background to the bills

The Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) Bill 2014 and the Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 2) Bill 2014 were introduced to implement a number of budget measures. These measures include pausing indexation on certain government payments, ceasing certain payments and changing the requirements for certain payments.(Read about these changes in more detail in the explanatory memorandum for the former bill (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) here and latter bill (2014 Budget Measures No. 2) here. )

Although several of these welfare measure were to become effective from 1 July 2014, Social Services Minister Kevin Andrews has said that it is unlikely that they will pass through Parliament by then.(See ABC News for more information.) In the meantime, the government payments will continue unchanged.

Yes Yes Passed by a small majority

24th Jun 2014, 9:56 PM – Representatives Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) Bill 2014 and related bill - Consideration in Detail - Remove certain measures

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The majority voted against amendments introduced by Labor MP Jenny Macklin.

Ms Macklin explained during the second reading debate that these amendment would "remove the following from the legislation:

  • cuts to pensions through the indexation changes;
  • increasing the pension age to 70;
  • abolishing the seniors supplement;
  • the resetting of the social security and veterans' entitlements income deeming thresholds, effectively another cut;
  • cessation of the pensioner education supplement;
  • the removal of the three-month backdating of the disability pension under the Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986; and
  • the pause to indexation in the income-free test areas for all pensioners."

(Read Ms Macklin's speech during the second reading debate here.)

Because the majority voted against these amendments, they were unsuccessful.

Background to the bills

The Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) Bill 2014 and the Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 2) Bill 2014 were introduced to implement a number of budget measures. These measures include pausing indexation on certain government payments, ceasing certain payments and changing the requirements for certain payments.(Read about these changes in more detail in the explanatory memorandum for the former bill (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) here and latter bill (2014 Budget Measures No. 2) here. )

Although several of these welfare measure were to become effective from 1 July 2014, Social Services Minister Kevin Andrews has said that it is unlikely that they will pass through Parliament by then.(See ABC News for more information.) In the meantime, the government payments will continue unchanged.

No No Not passed by a small majority

24th Jun 2014, 9:13 PM – Representatives Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) Bill 2014 and related bill - Second Reading - Read a second time

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The majority voted in favour of a motion to read these bills a second time.(Read more about the stages that a bill must pass through to become law here. ) This means that the majority agree with the main idea of the bills and that the House will not discuss them in more detail.

Background to the bills

The Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) Bill 2014 and the Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (2014 Budget Measures No. 2) Bill 2014 were introduced to implement a number of budget measures. These measures include pausing indexation on certain government payments, ceasing certain payments and changing the requirements for certain payments.(Read about these changes in more detail in the explanatory memorandum for the former bill (2014 Budget Measures No. 1) here and latter bill (2014 Budget Measures No. 2) here. )

Although several of these welfare measure were to become effective from 1 July 2014, Social Services Minister Kevin Andrews has said that it is unlikely that they will pass through Parliament by then.(See ABC News for more information.) In the meantime, the government payments will continue unchanged.

Yes Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

18th Jun 2014, 11:53 AM – Representatives Family Assistance Legislation Amendment (Child Care Measures) Bill 2014 - Second Reading - Read a second time

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The majority voted in favour of a motion to read the bill for a second time.(Read more about the stages that a bill must pass through to become law here. ) This means that the majority agree with the main idea of the bill and that they can now consider it in more detail.

Background to the bill

The bill was introduced primarily to amend the A New Tax System (Family Assistance) Act 1999 in order to:

  • maintain the indexation pause on the Child Care Rebate (CCR) limit at $7500 for three years from 1 July 2014; and
  • maintain the Child Care Benefit (CCB) income thresholds at the amounts applicable as at 30 June 2014 for three years from 1 July 2014.

Normally, the CCR limit and CCB income test thresholds are indexed on an annual basis to the Consumer Price Index (CPI). These measures constitute a freeze on the annual indexation of these amounts.(Read more about these measure in the bills digest. )

The Government announced this freeze on the indexation of the CCB income test threshold in the 2014–15 Budget. It is part of a broader measure that affects the indexation of income test thresholds for major welfare payments.(Read more about the background to the bill in the bills digest.)

Yes Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

18th Jun 2014, 11:44 AM – Representatives Family Assistance Legislation Amendment (Child Care Measures) Bill 2014 - Second Reading - Decline to read a second time

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The majority voted against an amendment to the original motion that the bill be read a second time, which was:

That all words after "That" be omitted with a view to substituting the following words:

"the House declines to give the Bill a second reading as:

(1) the Government has failed to provide sufficient information about the impact on families of the changes to the Child Care Benefit;

(2) the Government has not completed an assessment of impacts on workforce participation of the changes to the Child Care Benefit;

(3) the changes to the Child Care Benefit should not be legislated just weeks before the Productivity Commission inquiry into Childcare and Early Childhood Learning provides its interim report;

(4) families have not had a chance to have their say on these changes; and

(5) for these reasons, calls on the Government to remove the changes to the Child Care Benefit, set out in Item 2 of Schedule 1, from this Bill, to allow separate and fully informed consideration by the Parliament of the changes to the Child Care Rebate and the Child Care Benefit."

Because the majority voted against this amendment, it was rejected.

Background to the bill

The bill was introduced primarily to amend the A New Tax System (Family Assistance) Act 1999 in order to:

  • maintain the indexation pause on the Child Care Rebate (CCR) limit at $7500 for three years from 1 July 2014; and
  • maintain the Child Care Benefit (CCB) income thresholds at the amounts applicable as at 30 June 2014 for three years from 1 July 2014.

Normally, the CCR limit and CCB income test thresholds are indexed on an annual basis to the Consumer Price Index (CPI). These measures constitute a freeze on the annual indexation of these amounts.(Read more about these measure in the bills digest. )

The Government announced this freeze on the indexation of the CCB income test threshold in the 2014–15 Budget. It is part of a broader measure that affects the indexation of income test thresholds for major welfare payments.(Read more about the background to the bill in the bills digest.)

No No Not passed by a small majority

How "voted very strongly for" is worked out

The MP's votes count towards a weighted average where the most important votes get 50 points, less important votes get 10 points, and less important votes for which the MP was absent get 2 points. In important votes the MP gets awarded the full 50 points for voting the same as the policy, 0 points for voting against the policy, and 25 points for not voting. In less important votes, the MP gets 10 points for voting with the policy, 0 points for voting against, and 1 (out of 2) if absent.

Then, the number gets converted to a simple english language phrase based on the range of values it's within.

No of votes Points Out of
Most important votes (50 points)      
MP voted with policy 8 400 400
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
MP absent 0 0 0
Less important votes (10 points)      
MP voted with policy 12 120 120
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
Less important absentees (2 points)      
MP absent* 0 0 0
Total: 520 520

*Pressure of other work means MPs or Senators are not always available to vote – it does not always indicate they have abstained. Therefore, being absent on a less important vote makes a disproportionatly small difference.

Agreement score = MP's points / total points = 520 / 520 = 100%.

And then