The Federal Government has released a $10.4 billion Economic Security Strategy to strengthen the Australian economy. The package contains the following key measures:
- Ã‚Â· $4.8 billion in new support for pensioners and carers, including a lump sum payment of $1400 to single pensioners and $2100 to pensioner couples. People who are receiving carer allowance will also receive $1000 for each eligible person in their care. These payments will be made from Monday 8 December and are intended to provide additional support in the nine months between now and when long-term reforms are introduced from the beginning of the next financial year.
- Ã‚Â·Self-funded retirees who are eligible for a Seniors Concession Allowance or hold a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card will also receive a payment of $1400 for singles or $2100 for couples.
- Ã‚Â· $3.9 billion in support payments for low and middle income earners through a one-off payment of $1000 for each eligible child in their care. These payments will be made from Monday 8 December.
- Ã‚Â· $1.5 billion for first home buyers under a newly announced First Home Owners Boost with effect from Tuesday 14 October – all contracts entered into by 30 June 2009 will be eligible for this new additional assistance:
- first home buyers who purchase established homes will receive the grant, which they are currently entitled to doubled from $7000 to $14,000
- first home buyers who purchase a newly-constructed home will receive an extra $14,000 to take their total grant to $21,000
The government claims that this $10.4 billion strategy will be entirely funded from the budget.Ã‚Â Treasury advises that the Budget will be in surplus after these measures.