Property council calls for urgent rate reform

The Property Council of Australia has called for urgent reform to the nation’s property tax laws, following the release of data by the Australian Bureau of Statistics showing that state and local governments pocketed over $30 billion in the 2017-18 financial year.

PCA Chief Executive Ken Morrison said that the data, which showed an increase in $5 billion in rates and taxes over the last five years, presents a threat to the financial stability of governments.

“Property taxes are a sugar hit for state and local government when markets are booming but they can also eat into budget bottom lines when the markets cool, as we’re now seeing in Melbourne and Sydney,” Mr Morrison said.

Mr Morrison said that local government relies exclusively on property taxes, while state governments draw around 14% of their tax revenues from property.

“We need a roadmap for reform in the medium term that focuses on taxes which are productive, competitive and sustainable,” Mr Morrison concluded.

The ABS tax data is available here.

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