Topics:  katter's australian party, queensland election 2012, tax free, tourism

Tax-free tourism?

The number of international visitors to Mackay and the Whitsundays is down.
The number of international visitors to Mackay and the Whitsundays is down. Lee Constable

CLAIM your annual holiday as a tax deduction? Wouldn't that be nice?

That's the revolutionary plan put forward by Katter's Australian Party (KAP) candidate for Whitsunday Amanda Camm.

The draft concept would allow accommodation and tours up to the value of $2000 to be tax deductible when holidaying domestically.

Ms Camm said with fewer Australians holidaying at home, the concept could be the boost the tourism industry needed.

"The tourism sector is made up of small family businesses employing more than 600,000 taxpayers," she said.

"Local operators in Whitsunday have been feeling the hit of the high Aussie dollar."

"I want to see families holidaying in the Whitsundays but how do they compare our prices to Bali or Fiji?"

The concept would be similar to the Education Tax Refund, which supports families with school expenses, she said.

"Tourism, like manufacturing, is in decline. It needs a re-think on behalf of government as to how it can be stimulated."

Ms Camm said the concept would be offset by GST, company tax, payroll and PAYG returns.

This would result in increased confidence in investment within the tourism industry and infrastructure as demand increased.

"This concept needs to be explored more and developed and Katter's Australian Party commits to doing this," she said.

"Taxation is a Federal issue and I commit to lobbying this to ensure it becomes a Federal priority."



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