War of words erupts over ‘car tax’

War of words erupts over ‘car tax’

Andrew Hastie has launched a bumper sticker campaign which says “no to Labor’s big car tax’.

The Coalition has been riding the bumper of the federal government’s Vehicle Efficiency Standard, labelling it a “family car and ute tax”.

The loose idea of a Vehicle Efficiency Standard is that suppliers who sell more fuel efficient, and low or zero-emission cars will be rewarded, while suppliers who continue to sell ‘gas guzzlers’ will be penalised.

The Albanese government has just completed consultation on the design and implementation of Australia’s new Vehicle Efficiency Standard.

But there has been sustained criticism from the opposition which says the scheme will make it harder for struggling families to afford their new car of choice.

Member for Canning Andrew Hastie has launched a bumper sticker attacking the Albanese Government’s proposal as “arrogant” and “out-of-touch”.

“We all need to work together to ensure Australians aren’t burdened with this unfair and unnecessary tax,” Mr Hastie said.

It comes after Mr Hastie launched a petition against the so-called ‘tax’ which has garnered nearly 3000 signatures, including almost 800 from the local community.

“I hosted a mobile office earlier this week, and it’s clear our community is very concerned about the ramifications this tax could have on our local businesses and everyday Australians,” Mr Hastie said.

“At the heart of this issue are the families who rely on their SUVs, utes and 4WDs for daily life – whether it’s for the school run, for tradies and farmers, or for towing caravans and trailers.

“Why is Anthony Albanese and Labor fixated on imposing a massive new tax that will strain family budgets already grappling with a cost-of-living crisis?”

But Member for Burt Matt Keogh has said the Vehicle Efficiency Standard will “give our community more choice of cars that are cleaner and cheaper to run”.

“Transport and fuel costs are a massive proportion of the average household budget, especially in outer suburban communities like ours, many families are paying upwards of $5000 a year on fuel,” he said.

“Eighty-five percent of the global car market has a Standard – Australia and Russia are among the only developed countries that don’t… I never expected to see Andrew backing a Russian policy on a bumper sticker.”

Mr Keogh challenged the merits of the opposition’s campaign.

“This is just a Coalition scare campaign. The hypocrisy of it – this is against the Coalition’s own policy from just a couple of years ago,” he said.

“The myth that EVs are only for the leafy western suburbs has been busted, with research confirming the fastest market for EVs is the outer suburbs – in fact Canning Vale and Armadale top the list of EV orders in Perth.

“Andrew’s focused on the cost of stickers, while we’re focused on the cost of living.”