On Tuesday night Treasurer Scott Morrison delivered the 2018-2019 Federal Budget to the Australian Parliament. It’s good news for small businesses. The government proposes to extend the $20,000 instant asset write-off scheme from 1 July this year to June 30 2019. The scheme allows small businesses to immediately write off assets costing less than $20,000, rather than making deductions over several years.
Other initiatives were welcomed by the small business community, including tax relief for low and middle income earners. This is likely to be of significant benefit to the nearly 40% of small businesses that are unincorporated.
The government has also promised to provide over $92million for the Digital Transformation Agency to create the GovPass Program. This will give businesses easier access to digital services, for example, the creation of a digital identity, and completion of Tax File Number applications online. The government has also allocated $700,000 to investigate how blockchain technology could assist the GovPass Program.
The government has also committed to skilling Australians in this latest budget. Levies collected from the Skilling Australians Fund will be applied in priority to apprenticeships and traineeships. The government will also provide $189m over 5 years to support mature age workers registered with a JobActive provider. And over $19m will be applied over 3 years to help workers aged between 45 and 70 to transition into new roles.
The Federal Budget was otherwise labelled as “boring” by small business commentators. The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Kate Carnell said “In my experience, boring means good”. The consensus appears to be that this budget has done nothing to hinder Australian small businesses. So – business as usual!