Written by   |   Jun 9 2018   |   Read 1747 times

The unveiling of the federal budget can often be a stressful and confusing time for business owners. Not only is there a lot of information to take in, it is often confusing and so detailed that it would take several weeks to wade through all the information to understand what is actually relevant to your business in a positive or negative way.

We have outlined the highlights for SMEs below to help you get a handle on the overload of information.

$20,000 Immediate asset deduction for small businesses extend

This is a great opportunity for businesses who were thinking of investing back into their business to purchase the assets or capital they need to grow their business. Small or medium-sized businesses (to be eligible, your aggregate yearly turnover must be less than $10 million) can claim an instant tax deduction on newly acquired depreciating assets costing up to $20,000. This opportunity already existed but was due to expire on 30 June 2018, the Australian government has extended this to June 2019.

Reductions in personal income tax

A plan for reduction in the personal income tax rate for middle and low-income earners. This includes immediate tax relief for low and middle-income earners equivalent to around $540 per year, an increase of the low-income tax offset to taxpayers earning up to $87,000. A longer term plan to abolish the 37% tax bracket over a phased 7-year plan. This would bring the vast majority of Australian taxpayers to a rate of 32.5% or less.

Training and support for employees

An additional $250 million will be added to the Skilling Australians Fund, which supports vocational education and training to upskill Australian workers. They have also targeted the ageing workforce with packages to encourage older Australians to stay in the workforce longer, plus up-skilling packages to help employers ensure their workforce stays up to date with changes. Health in the workplace has also been addressed, with new initiatives to support workplace diversity.

Infrastructure spending on transport

$24.5 billion investment in new “nationally significant” transport projects, in addition to previously committed funds to the Melbourne to Brisbane inland rail link and Western Sydney Airport. Better transport infrastructure will reduce stress on small and medium-sized businesses, especially when it comes to mobilising a sales team or delivering goods to consumers.

These highlights seem to surpass the lowlights for SMEs with 2018 federal budget announcements, the negatives seemed to centred around scare-tactics such as a crackdown on the cash economy, payroll with new legislated reporting change requires employers to report salaries and wages, PAYG withholding and super information electronically through the ATO every pay run, not just once a year.

Michael Bryant

Michael Bryant is the Founder and CEO of Act Today. Michael’s vision for starting Act Today was born from his realisation of the importance of businesses to have a deep and strong relationship with their customers. 

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