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State of the Service & Environment Sacrifice

By Georges - 27 January 2010 44

Thanks to the generosity of federal government conditions of service,  many permanent Canberra employees are currently entitled to salary sacrifice provisions by maximising the entitlement in the form of  acquiring their own motor vehicle.

Now here’s the environmental rub.  An incentive exists for those entitled to this condition of service to reside a long way from their place of work.  By taking full advantage of owning, maintaining and running a vehicle for thousands of kilometres per year, this is at direct and great cost to our environment.   In any case the incentive is not fincancially successful for owners unless thousands and thousands of kilometres are completed on our roads.

For goodness sake of our environment and ever diminishing energy availability, this condition of service caper should be thwarted henceforth.

What to the the Australian Greens have to say about this please?

What’s Your opinion?


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44 Responses to
State of the Service & Environment Sacrifice
Blingerific 8:58 pm 27 Jan 10

Clown Killer
In most cases the FBT arrangements will require the leased vehicle to cover in excess of 15,000km a year – hardly an excessive amount of travel.

It is a massive waste if 5 of those 15,000km was not necessary, and there are greater tax breaks for the more km’s you do (for my car it is about 200g per km of CO2 produced, it adds up pretty quickly). Most people I know do long trips they would never have contemplated before every year in order to get themselves into a favourable tax break. It’s idiotic and counter intuitive.

But of course, all this is irrelevant to the deniers and out right munters that are addicted to their cars…

LlamaFrog 8:55 pm 27 Jan 10

Georges, yes it does make it okay. why shouldn’t a federal public servant have the same rights to salary package a car as any other employee?

Your argument against having to accumulate certain km per year to gain concessional tax breaks on the cars is valid, it does encourage excessive driving and that does have a negative impact on the environment. But that still doesn’t explain why you single out federal government employees?

Blingerific 8:49 pm 27 Jan 10

The scheme actually makes it more attractive to do a higher number of km’s to get a better tax break. This is the same scheme that does not allow you to salary sacrifice public transport or bicycles.

Yet more proof of just how absolutely hopeless the Federal Govt is at anything environmental. Well, that and the fact the Environment Minister appears to be more interested in performing on stage…

Georges 8:41 pm 27 Jan 10

‘Not sure of the full point of the post, but the fact that FBT works backwards is somewhat odd.’ harley

‘Hopefully this sort of unsustainable and environmentally irresponsible salary packaging will be addressed in the Henry review of taxation.’ 54-11

enlightenment for LlaFrog

Georges 8:28 pm 27 Jan 10

‘this is available in every medium to large company I have ever worked for? have you only just crawled out from under a rock?’

wow wee, so that makes it okay then LlamaFrogshite?

Grail 8:28 pm 27 Jan 10

LOL… “radon” not “radium”… twit.

Clown Killer 8:25 pm 27 Jan 10

Yawn. It’s pretty straight forward leasing and FBT arrangements that apply uniformly across both the private and pulic sectors. In most cases the FBT arrangements will require the leased vehicle to cover in excess of 15,000km a year – hardly an excessive amount of travel.

I have no idea on what planet such arrangements might constitute “…direct and great cost to our environment.” The majority of these cars would be under three years of age and well maintained so their environmental foot print would be inconsequential compated to the vintage sh!tboxes that most ecomentalists get around in.

bd84 8:00 pm 27 Jan 10

OMG! We’re all gonna die!

geez, pretty much every full-time permanent employee in the country is eligble to salary sacrifice a motor vehicle, this is both public and private sectors. Yes we all know cars are bad and pollute, but occasionally people like to leave their place of abode, or are required to leave their abode to travel to work. With a lack of adequate public transport and other means of transport not meeting the needs of the vast populations people will get in their vehicles to travel to work.

Alternatively, you could view salary sacrificing a motor vehicle as a good thing for the environment. The vehicles are normally leased vehicles on a lease of 2-4 years, at the end of each lease the car will be replaced. In those years, vehicles are generally more fuel efficient than the older models, which reduces greenhouse gases!

Or even more common sense, what would happen if the vehicle was not salary sacrificed? They would go out and purchase the vehicle. Net result = ZERO.

Grail 7:32 pm 27 Jan 10

Nemo said :

Which energy source in particular is diminishing? Should I be stocking up?

Petrol. We’ve reached “peak oil”, and predictions based on growth of consumption peg the “drop dead date” at somewhere around 2070, assuming we manage to magically find twice as much oil as we knew existed in 1972. Ask Google about “The Limits of Growth”.

Of course, in the meantime there’s the fact that consumption is overtaking production, so oil will become prohibitively expensive with the price exponentially increasing somewhere in the vicinity of 2040.

In the meantime we have companies actively exploring electric vehicles (eg: Tesla Roadster).

Then there’s the nuclear lobby trying to convince us that unlimited power is worth the price of a wine-bottle sized amount of toxic and extremely radioactive waste for every man woman and child on the planet, each year.

So stock up on Uranium too, we only have about 30 years supply of that if current demand only grows at 2%.

Oh, and Thorium. The nuclear lobby will be big on Thorium reactors over the next few years, because Thorium fission has less dangerous waste (because Radium is so much easier to contain and handle than, say, helium).

So there you have it. Just stock up on coal, oil, uranium and thorium, and you’ll be set up for a comfortable (if mutated) retirement in 2080.

Nemo 7:01 pm 27 Jan 10

Which energy source in particular is diminishing? Should I be stocking up?

54-11 6:51 pm 27 Jan 10

Hopefully this sort of unsustainable and environmentally irresponsible salary packaging will be addressed in the Henry review of taxation.

annoyedcan 5:56 pm 27 Jan 10

Any person can do this even if you run a small company. You can even do it outside your company through many different lease companies.

So people who do the Km’s per year cause they live outside of town, how do they get to work?? catch a bus, thats right buses run to all the small towns running let alone a regulary service.

On my 2nd car and I will not be happy if it gets taken away in the tax review.

harley 5:29 pm 27 Jan 10

Not sure of the full point of the post, but the fact that FBT works backwards is somewhat odd.

The tax rates for FBT go down as more miles are travelled, therefore we have the situation here where pubes take their cars on long trips just to click the mileage over the next hurdle.

I’m sure it happens in private industry, too, but our government (all over the last 20 odd years) should know better.

I think OP is suggesting changing the availability of salary sacrifice on motor vehicles for pubes. Better solution is to reward the lower use of said MVs not punish them for all strayans.

LlamaFrog 4:09 pm 27 Jan 10

this is available in every medium to large company I have ever worked for? have you only just crawled out from under a rock?

maybe you should look into salary packaging provisions in most workplaces before you attack the federal government for offering the same benefits that the private sector gets.

steveu 4:04 pm 27 Jan 10

This is not something that is native to Canberra, nor prublic servants.
Private enterprise around the country has enjoyed leasing cars like this for decades now. FBT was brought about to try and get some tax back from this scheme.

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