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General tax policy

Tax Reform Details: An Example for Comprehensive Reform
Citizens for Tax Justice (October 2013).  A previous report from Citizens for Tax Justice explains that tax reform should do more than simplify the US tax system. It should also raise revenue, make the tax system more progressive, and reduce opportunities for corporations to shift profits and jobs offshore. This report provides a concrete example of a comprehensive reform plan that would meet these goals.

Two Australias
St Vincent de Paul Society (October 2013).  The St Vincent de Paul Society proposes that the government introduce reforms to decrease revenue forgone through tax exemptions in the areas of superannuation, Capital Gains Tax, trusts, negative gearing and calls for increased tax rates on very high incomes and luxury goods.

In Infrastructure Funding Nothing is Certain Save Debt and Taxes
Dr Richard Denniss, The Australia Institute (October 2013). 

Supporting Investment in Knowledge Capital, Growth and Innovation
OECD (October 2013).  Investment and growth in OECD economies is increasingly driven by investment in intangible assets, also known as knowledge-based capital (KBC). In many OECD countries, firms now invest as much or more in KBC as they do in physical capital such as machinery, equipment and buildings. This shift reflects a variety of long-term economic and institutional transformations in OECD economies. The rise of KBC creates new challenges for policymakers, for business and for the ways in which economic activity is measured. Many policy frameworks and institutions are still best suited to a world in which physical capital drove growth. New thinking is needed to update a range of policy frameworks from tax and competition policies to corporate reporting and intellectual property rights.

How to Achieve Growth- and Equity-friendly Fiscal Consolidation? A Proposed Methodology for Instrument Choice with an Illustrative Application to OECD Countries
Boris Cournede, Antoine Goujard, Alvaro Pina, OECD (October 2013).  Despite sustained efforts made in recent years to rein in budget deficits, a majority of OECD countries still face substantial fiscal consolidation needs. The choices made about which spending areas to curtail and which taxes to hike will have implications for near-term activity and long-term growth as well as for equity and the current account. This paper proposes a method for choosing the instruments of consolidation so that they contribute to -- or minimise trade-offs with -- the goals of promoting near-term activity, longterm growth, equity, and global rebalancing. The proposed method is illustrated with detailed simulations for 31 OECD countries which are accompanied by an extensive range of alternative scenarios to confirm the robustness of the findings. The simulations highlight that half of OECD countries can reduce excess debt mainly through moderate adjustments to instruments (such as subsidies, pensions or property taxes) that have at most limited side-effects on other policy objectives. They also show that a smaller number of countries face more difficult choices, having to either make bigger adjustments in areas where spending cuts or tax hikes are least harmful or to rely significantly on consolidation instruments with substantial adverse side-effects. These trade-offs can to a large extent be alleviated through structural reforms in the delivery of public services and in taxation.

Tax Reform Goals: Raise Revenue, Enhance Fairness, End Offshore Shelters
Citizens for Tax Justice (September 2013).  This paper argues that if the US Congress is going to spend time on a comprehensive overhaul of America’s tax system, this overhaul should raise revenue, make the tax system more progressive, and end the breaks that encourage large corporations to shift their profits and even jobs offshore.

Prospect Theory and Tax Evasion: A Reconsideration of the Yitzhaki Puzzle
Institute for Fiscal Studies (August 2013).  The standard expected utility model of tax evasion predicts that evasion is decreasing in the marginal tax rate (the Yitzhaki Puzzle). The existing literature disagrees on whether prospect theory overturns the puzzle. The Institute for Fiscal Studies disentangle four distinct elements of prospect theory and find loss aversion and probability weighting to be redundant in endogenous specification of the reference level. These classes include, as special cases, the most common specifications in the literature. New specifications of the reference level are needed.

NATSEM Household Budget Report: Cost of living and standard of living indexes for Australia June 2013
Ben Phillips, National Centre for Social and Economic Modelling (August 2013).  In this report the NATSEM provides a detailed investigation of the cost of living in Australia, an issue that dominates political and social debate. It is often claimed that the cost of living in Australia is out of control and that household incomes are falling behind that cost of living. In this report we consider both the cost of living and incomes for a variety of Australian household types such as high and low income, pensioners, renters, mortgagors and different type of families to determine their overall financial standard of living.

Tax Reform: Purpose, Principles and Process
ACOSS (August 2013).  This paper outlines ACOSS' ideas for tax reform - its purpose, and the principles and process involved.

Corporate-Backed Tax Lobby Groups Proliferating
Citizens for Tax Justice (August 2013).  In recent years, the corporate tax reform debate in the nation's capital has been invaded by an army of acronyms such as T.I.E., A.C.T. and R.A.T.E., representing different businesses and corporate interest groups. These groups seek to rebrand and build momentum for a corporate tax reform that benefits corporate rather than public interests.

Pre-Election Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2013
Australian Government Treasury (August 2013). 

Economic Statement
The Honourable Chris Bowen MP and Senator the Honourable Penny Wong, Australian Government Treasury (August 2013).  The Government has released the August 2013 Economic Statement (ES) to provide an update of its economic forecasts and key fiscal aggregates. The document contains: - Part 1 Overview - summary information on the budget situation. - Part 2 Investing in Australia's future - an overview of the key elements of the Government's reform agenda, including key achievements. - Part 3 Economic Outlook - an update on the international and domestic economy. - Part 4 Fiscal Outlook - an update of the budget outlook.

Action Plan for Eduring Prosperity
Business Council of Australia (July 2013).  The plan proposes 93 actions over 10 years in policy areas Australia necessary to a strong economic future. The plan includes key ideas for tackling Australia's long-term challenges, including: - a comprehensive audit of public spending to ensure it is being spent wisely and efficiently - actions to ensure skilled and educated people are a competitive advantage for Australia through teacher quality and reward for teacher performance, better matching the VET and skills programs to the needs of the workforce, and free up universities from red tape - introduction of new productivity payments for the states to encourage and reward them to undertake structural reforms - the states should produce 15-year infrastructure plans and Infrastructure Australia should concentrate on national networks in roads, rail, water, gas and electricity, and broadening our approaches to infrastructure funding and financing.

Reforming Individual Income Tax Expenditures
Citizens for Tax Justice (July 2013).  This report evaluates the ten largest tax expenditures for individuals based on progressivity and effectiveness in achieving non-tax policy goals - which include subsidizing home ownership and encouraging charitable giving, increasing investment, encouraging work, and many other stated goals.

Pathways to Tax Reform Revisited
Leonard E. Burman, Urban Institute and Brookings Institution Tax Policy Center (July 2013).  There is widespread agreement that the income tax needs reform, although little agreement about how to do it. A common thread in most reform proposals is to slash most tax expenditures. A 1973 book by Stanley Surrey made the case that cuts in tax expenditures was the "pathway to tax reform." This paper revisits Surrey's pathway, examining various proposals to eliminate, reduce, or reformulate tax expenditures as part of tax reform, including limitations on tax expenditures, converting most tax expenditures to credits, and more radical reforms that would vastly reduce the number of return filers.

An Economic Policy Platform for the Next Term of Government
Charted Accountants Australia (July 2013).  In this paper the Institute of Chartered Accountants argues that Australia's political leaders need to improve financial literacy through schools, lower the company tax rate, roll out tolls on infrastructure and boost the productivity commissioner's powers in order to tackle the coming economic challenges.

Standing Up For What Matters
Australian Greens (July 2013).  The Greens' policy proposal advocates a levy on the big banks, its mining tax restructure, ending tax breaks to "big miners", abolishing funding for so-called clean coal technology and increasing the marginal tax rate on incomes above $1 million. The Greens say they would use the money to inject more cash into the school funding reforms and boost funding for Newstart, overseas aid, regional arts and the homeless.

Living Standards, Poverty and Inequality in the UK: 2013
Jonathan Cribb, Andrew Hood, Robert Joyce and David Phillips, Institute for Fiscal Studies (June 2013).  The official statistics on the distribution of income and the extent of poverty in the UK in 2011-12 were released on Thursday 13 June 2013. Using the data underlying these statistics, this report analyses: - the changes in average incomes in the most recent year of data and the period since the start of the 'Great Recession'; - how the gap between rich and poor has changed and how this differs when looking at pre-tax-and-benefit income rather than net income; - the recent changes in both relative and absolute income poverty for the whole population and among different parts of the population; - the striking long-term changes in incomes and poverty rates for different parts of the population and different age groups; - the prospects for average incomes, inequality and poverty in the years ahead.

Tax Policy and the Size of Government
Donald Marron and Eric Toder, Urban Institute and Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center (June 2013).  Measuring the size of government is not simple. Standard measures omit important aspects of government action such as the many deductions, credits, and other tax preferences used to influence resource allocation. The authors argue that many tax preferences are effectively spending. Traditional measures of government size thus understate both spending and revenues. Reductions in spending-like tax preferences are tax increases in traditional budget accounting but are effectively spending reductions; increasing marginal tax rates raises both taxes and spending in our expanded measure. Some tax increases thus reduce government, while others expand it.

Conservative Austerity Can Worsen Debt Malaise
Richard Denniss, The Australia Institute (June 2013).  While Australia ''struggles'' along with gross domestic product growth of just below three per cent and unemployment rate of 5.7 per cent, economic activity in the eurozone declined by 0.2 per cent in the first three months of 2013. In fact, Europe has been in recession for the past six quarters with nearly 20 million people now looking for work.

Call For Tax Reform Amid Minimum Wage Hike (Video)
Justice Iain Ross, Fair Work Commission President, Fairfax Media (June 2013).  The Fair Work Commission calls on the government to alleviate the tax burden for low income earners.

Reforming Social Security Benefits - House Ways and Means Committee Subcommittee on Social Security
Eugene Steuerle, Tax Policy Center (May 2013).  Reform of the Social Security benefit structure should proceed on the basis of principles and goals related to adequacy, protections in old age, encouragement of work to protect the tax base on which programs like this depend, and equal justice under the law for those equally situated. Many features of current law violate basic principles of public finance without promoting other worthy goals in an effective or well-targeted manner. In his testimony before the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Social Security, Gene Steuerle lays out how to go beyond the types of options put forward by many proposals under consideration to achieve such reform.

The Top 1 Percent in International and Historical Perspective
National Bureau of Economic Research (May 2013).  The top 1 percent income share has more than doubled in the United States over the last thirty years, drawing much public attention in recent years. While other English speaking countries have also experienced sharp increases in the top 1 percent income share, many high-income countries such as Japan, France, or Germany have seen much less increase in top income shares. Hence, the explanation cannot rely solely on forces common to advanced countries, such as the impact of new technologies and globalization on the supply and demand for skills. Moreover, the explanations have to accommodate the falls in top income shares earlier in the twentieth century experienced in virtually all high-income countries. We highlight four main factors. The first is the impact of tax policy, which has varied over time and differs across countries. Top tax rates have moved in the opposite direction from top income shares. The effects of top rate cuts can operate in conjunction with other mechanisms. The second factor is indeed a richer view of the labor market, where we contrast the standard supply-side model with one where pay is determined by bargaining and the reactions to top rate cuts may lead simply to a redistribution of surplus. Indeed, top rate cuts may lead managerial energies to be diverted to increasing their remuneration at the expense of enterprise growth and employment. The third factor is capital income. Overall, private wealth (relative to income) has followed a U-shaped path over time, particularly in Europe, where inherited wealth is, in Europe if not in the United States, making a return. The fourth, little investigated, element is the correlation between earned income and capital income, which has substantially increased in recent decades in the United States.

National Economies Cannot be Compared to Household Budgets
Richard Denniss, The Australia Institute (May 2013).  Contrary to the speeches made by many politicians, national economies are not like households. Indeed, the household management analogies that politicians often use to explain their approach to budgetary policy are rarely useful or appropriate. The way the Coalition is using the analogy is simply bizarre; they seem to have confused micro-economics and macro-economics.

More Tax to Come? (video)
Ross Gittins (May 2013).  Ross Gittins explains why he thinks health care spending will mean higher taxes in coming years.

The Finance Curse: how oversized financial centres attack democracy and corrupt economies
Nicholas Shaxson and John Christensen (May 2013).  The Finance Curse is a story about "Country Capture" - where an oversized financial sector comes to control the politics of a finance dependent country and to dominate and hollow out its economy.

Tax Cuts that Broke the Budget
Australia Institute (May 2013).  The government would have had an additional $38 billion for last year's federal government budget and would have collected an extra $169 billion over the past seven years had it not been for unsustainable income tax cuts that were made in the lead up to the GFC. Had the income tax cuts not been made, the current budget would not be in deficit and we would be having a very different discussion about funding priorities.

Budget Paper No. 1: Budget Strategy and Outlook 2013 - 14
Australian Government Treasury (May 2013). 

Budget Paper No. 2: Budget Measures 2013 - 14
Australian Government Treasury (May 2013). 

Budget Paper No. 3: Australia's Federal Relations 2013 -14
Australian Government Treasury (May 2013). 

Budget Paper No. 4: Agency Resourcing 2013 - 14
Australian Government Treasury (May 2013). 

Submission on Improving the Transparency of Australia's Business Tax System
Tax Justice Network Australia (April 2013). 

Capital Flight from Sub-Saharan African Countries: Updated Estimates, 1970 – 2010
James K. Boyce and Léonce Ndikumana, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts (October 2012).  The performance of Sub-Saharan African economies over the past decade has inspired optimism on the regions prospects. But the region still faces major development challenges, and it is now clear that the majority of its countries will not achieve key millennium development goals. A key constraint to SSAs growth and development is the shortage of financing. At the same time, the sub-region is a source of large-scale capital flight, which escalated during last decade even as the region experienced growth acceleration. The group of 33 SSA countries covered by this report has lost a total of $814 billion dollars from 1970 to 2010. Boyce and Ndikumana compare this to the level of development aid and foreign direct investment received by these countries. Assuming that flight capital could have earned the modest interest rate measured by the short-term U.S. Treasury Bill rate, they find that the accumulated stock of capital flight far exceeds the external liabilities of this group of countries, making the region a net creditor to the rest of the world.

Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes Progress Report to the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors: Global Forum Update on Effectiveness and Ongoing Monitoring
OECD (April 2013).  The report covers three strategic initiatives: 1. Progress reported by the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes including the upcoming ratings of jurisdictions' compliance with the Global Forum's standards on exchange of information on request; 2. Efforts by OECD to strengthen automatic exchange of information; 3. Latest developments to address tax base erosion and profit shifting, a practice that can give multinational corporations an unfair tax advantage over domestic companies and citizens.

Mythbusters: "A Competitive Tax System Is A Better Tax System"
Nichloas Shaxson and Ellie Mae O’Hagan (April 2013).  Governments often make out that raising taxes on big business would be a terrible mistake. International corporations would take their investments elsewhere - to countries with a so-called 'competitive' tax systems - and our position in the global market would crumble. This Mythbuster reveals just how unhealthy this emphasis on tax competition between countries is. It shows individual countries need not participate in what is essentially a global race to the bottom, and that tax 'competition' harms everyone but for a wealthy few.

Small Business, Innovation, and Tax Policy: A Review
Samuel Brown and William G. Gale (April 2013).  Small businesses occupy an iconic place in American public policy debates. This paper discusses interactions between the federal tax code, small business, and the economy. It summarises the characteristics of small businesses, identifies the tax provisions that most affect small businesses, and reviews evidence on the impact of tax and other policies on entrepreneurial activity. It also examines evidence suggesting that it is young firms, not small ones, where job growth and innovation tend to occur. Policies that aim to stimulate young and innovative firms are likely to prove different than policies that subsidise small businesses.

Living standards, poverty and inequality in the UK: 2012
Jonathan Cribb, Robert Joyce and David Phillips, The Institute for Fiscal Studies.  How have household incomes evolved since the onset of the financial crisis? What is the gap between rich and poor? Who was hit hardest by the recession? How many people are there in poverty? Which groups are most likely to face poverty? These questions are fundamental to understanding the living standards available to individuals across the UK.

Tax Activists and the Global Movement for Development through Transparency
Allison Christians (2012).  Activists around the world seek to expose a global system that fails to tax multinationals adequately and thus deprives governments of needed revenues, with profound effects for development in the world’s poorest nations. These tax activists have sparked a global movement, with groups all over the world seeking progress for development in poor countries by demanding greater transparency about how and how much multinational companies pay taxes.

Per Capita Tax Survey 2012: Public Attitudes Towards Taxation and Government Expenditure
David Hetherington, Per Capita (25 March 2013) .  Australians’ attitudes towards tax and public spending are getting tougher. Increasingly, we see ourselves as paying too much tax in a system that is less fair. Our support for public spending is falling. Objectively, this does not make sense. The tax take in Australia, measured by the tax-to-GDP ratio, has hit longterm lows in the last few years. Australia now has the fifth lowest tax burden of the 34 OECD countries, higher only than South Korea, Chile, the United States and Mexico. Recent public spending cuts, particularly in health and education, would normally be expected to lift support for greater spending. However, it is perception rather than fact that drives attitudes, and the prevailing perception is that Australians are overtaxed and poorly served by public spending. The single most important driver of this perception appears to be the Federal Opposition’s highly successful campaign against “big new taxes” and for “cutting the waste”. This is the third annual Per Capita Tax Survey. In October 2012, the Survey asked a representative sample of 1,422 Australians for their views on a range of tax and public spending issues.

Pocket Guide to the Australian Tax System
Australian Government Treasury (January 2013) .  Provides notes on the breakdown between Commonwealth Government, State and Local Government tax revenue, the tax breakdown, major tax expenditures, history of tax instruments, income tax rates, GST and excise rates.

Electronic Sales Suppression: A Threat To Tax Revenue
OECD (18 February 2013).  This report describes the functions of point of sales systems and the specific areas of risk to tax administrations. It sets out in detail the electronic sales suppression techniques that have been uncovered, in particular “Phantomware” and “Zappers”, and shows how such methods can be detected by tax auditors and investigators. The report also considers a number of strategies adopted in different countries to tackle electronic sales suppression and highlights best practices. In particular, it makes a number of recommendations to countries for addressing this important area of risk.

Labor Force Participation, Taxes, and the Nation's Social Welfare System
C. Eugene Steuerle, Committee on Oversight and Government Reform (February 2013).  Gene Steuerle testifies before the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on labor force participation, taxes, and the social welfare system. Although there is some disagreement over the extent to which the nation’s social welfare systems affect work efforts, there is almost no disagreement that they are designed in piecemeal fashion, leading to a variety of unfair, inefficient, and somewhat strange effects.

How marginal tax rates affect families at various levels of poverty
Elaine Maag, C. Eugene Steverle, et. al. (December 2012).  High marginal tax rates can make moving above poverty very difficult for low-income families. These high tax rates result from increasing direct taxes and decreasing transfer payments. This paper shows how sensitive marginal tax rates are to assumptions about state of residence, earning patterns, and program participation.

Fairer, simpler and more effective tax consessions for the not-for-profit sector - Discussion Paper
Not-For-Profit Sector Tax Concessions Working Group.  The Not-for-profit Sector Tax Concession Working Group (Working Group) has released a consultation paper on tax concessions for the not-for-profit (NFP) sector. The Working Group is seeking feedback on how tax concessions for the NFP sector could be made fairer, simpler and more effective.

Revenue Statistics 1965-2011
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.  This paper presents a unique set of detailed and internationally comparable tax data in a common format for all OECD countries from 1965 onwards.

Tax Reform for Growth, Equity and Revenue
Samuel Brown and William Gale, Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center .  This paper examines the fiscal outlook and tax reform options in the United States. The major conclusions include: the United States faces a substantial fiscal shortfall in the medium- and long-term; both spending cuts and tax increases should contribute to the solution; tax increases need not do significant harm to economic growth; and there are sensible ways to both reform tax structure and raise revenues, including tax expenditure reform, the creation of a value-added tax, the creation of a carbon tax, or an increase in the gasoline tax.

Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook
Australian Government.  The Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook for 2012-2013 is an annual report by the Australian Federal Government announcing further budgetary changes since the 2012 Federal Budget.

Tax Policy Center's Analysis of Governor Romney's Tax Proposals: A Follow-Up Discussion
Tax Policy Center Urban Institute and Brookings Institution.  Tax reform ideas played an important role in the recent Presidential election. Republican candidate Mitt Romney proposed large tax cuts and other changes that he said could be part of a revenue-neutral tax reform that also retained low rates on savings and investment and would not raise taxes on the middle class. In an earlier analysis, the Tax Policy Center showed that it was not possible to achieve all of Romney’s stated goals simultaneously. This paper reviews that analysis and critiques several responses.

Miracle workers? Explaining the late-90s US jobs boom
IPPR (Heather Green, Andrew Hall, Jennifer Pescod, Reg Javier, Kathy Fallon, Dennis Bothamley) .  In the late 1990s, the United States achieved a 'full employment economy' : everyone who wanted to work at the market wage could find a job. This was coupled with a period of low inflation, challenging economists' established ideas about these two crucial economic factors. In the context of a much more challenging jobs climate, this report revisits this remarkable period in detail.

After the Coalition: What's left?
Gavin Kelly and Nick Pearce.  Seeking to provoke serious debate on a credible social democratic agenda for the coming decade, Gavin Kelly and Nick Pearce set out the magnitude of the economic and fiscal challenges facing Britain in the next parliament and beyond, and offer ideas for rising to them.

2012 Indigenous Expenditure Report
Steering Committee for the Review of Government Service Provision, Australian Government Productivity Commission.  The Report is the second in a series and provides estimates of expenditure on services provided to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people by the Australian Government, and State and Territory governments.

Advisory Report on the Tax Laws Amendment (2012 Measures No. 4) Bill 2012
The Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia, House of Representatives Standing Committee on Economics, August 2012. 

Evaluating the Charitable Deduction and Proposed Reforms
Roger Colinvaux, Brian Galle, C. Eugene Steuerle .  Many recent proposals for budget and tax reform would change the value of the charitable contribution deduction. This report provides context for policymakers who may be considering one or more of these reforms, as well as for other interested observers. We first offer a basic overview of charitable giving and the legal rules for claiming the deduction. Next we discuss the various rationales that have been offered in its support and highlight critiques of the deduction. We then examine various proposed reforms, including caps, floors, credits, and grants, in light of those critiques.

On the Distributional Effects of Base-Broadening Income Tax Reform
Samuel Brown, William G. Gale, Adam Looney .  This paper examines the tradeoffs among three competing goals that are inherent in a revenue-neutral income tax reform maintaining tax revenues, ensuring a progressive tax system, and lowering marginal tax rates drawing on the example of the tax policies advanced in presidential candidate Mitt Romney's tax plan. Our major conclusion is that any revenue-neutral individual income tax change that incorporates the features Governor Romney has proposed would provide large tax cuts to high-income households, and increase the tax burdens on middle- and/or lower-income taxpayers.

Regulatory and Competition Reform Agenda: A high level assessment of the gains
COAG (August 2012).  The Productivity Commission was requested to conduct a 'preliminary high-level review' of sixteen areas of reform identified by the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) at its April 2012 meeting.

Game-changers: Supporting materials
John Daley (June 2012).  This publication accompanies the main report, Game-changers: Economic reform priorities for Australia that identifies priority reforms for Australian governments.

ACTU Economic Report
Australian Council of Trade Unions (2012). 

Progress Report to G20
Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes (Jun 2012).  This report, released by the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes, has launched a number of reviews to assess whether cross-border exchange of information is being implemented effectively.

6 Jun 2012 - Treasurer's Economic Note
Wayne Swan (Jun 2012).  This economic note discusses the new tax reform where the tax threshold will increase from $6,000 to $18,200 from July 1, 2012. It also discusses issues about unemployment rate and GDP in Australia.

Game-changers: Economic reform priorities for Australia
John Daley (Jun 2012).  This report aims to identify economic reforms that would produce the biggest returns and that would be supported by most policy specialists as both desirable and workable. It identifies areas where policy research should focus because there is potential for substantial economic reform, but not enough evidence to be sure. This report also aims to start a discussion about the importance of prioritising reform.

State Tax Systems Can Be Important Part of Safety Net
Elaine Maag, Tax Policy Center (2012).  Taxes and transfers at the state and federal level can have a large impact on the well-being of low-income families. How large a role states play varies, as demonstrated by the Urban Institute's recently released Net Income Change Calculator (http://nicc.urban.org). In twelve states, state taxes account for over 10 percent of total support and in others, state income taxes provide no support. This is an American paper.

The Fair Go Budget
Wayne Swan (May 2012).  Address to the ACOSS Post-Budget Luncheon about the implications of the 2012 budget on the community sector.

A Federal Budget surplus, but at what cost?
Robert Jeremenko (May 2012). 

Federal Budget 2012-13 Initial ACOSS Analysis
ACOSS (May 2012).  This initial ACOSS briefing on the 2012-13 Federal Budget outlines key measures announced in the Budget in the areas of interest to ACOSS members. This paper outlines the measures firstly by providing a general background on the Budget surplus, revenue and expenses. This is flowed by a table showing ten ACOSS proposals (or variations upon them) that was announced in this Budget – including new expenditure benefiting people on low incomes and action to reduce poorly targeted or wasted expenditures and tax breaks.

GST Distribution Review - Interim Report
The Australian Treasury (April 2012).  Detailed information and analysis of the distribution of GST and other national revenue between States.

Tax: the average tax burden on earnings in OECD countries continues to rise
Taxing Wages from OECD (April 2012).  This article shows comparative tax impacts on wages and other remuneration in OECD countries.

Barriers to Effective Climate Change Adaptation Draft Report
Australian Productivity Commission (April 2012).  Brief section of this report (from page 84 to page 86) refers to stamp duty and land tax reform.

Waste not, want not: making room in the Budget for essential services
ACROSS (April 2012).  Action can be taken in this Budget to meet the most pressing social needs while at the same time restoring the Budget to surplus. This report identifies $8 billion of poorly targeted expenditure programs and tax breaks that could be cut and redirected to other priorities. Waste not, want not.

Critiquing government regional development policies
John Daley, Australian Perspectives (April 2012).  In this chapter in the book, 'A Greater Australia: Population, Policies and Governance', Grattan CEO John Daley argues that while all Australians should receive equal services wherever they live, money for business development, job creation and universities in regional Australia may simply redistribute economic activity around the country, and impose a significant cost on taxpayers in the process.

Pouring fuel on the fire: the nature and extent of Federal Government subsidies to the mining industry
Matt Grudnoff, The Australia Institute (April 2012). 

Australia's Productivity Growth Slump: Signs of Crisis, Adjustment or Both?
Australian Productivity Commission (April 2012).  This paper examines the sources of the decline in Australia’s productivity growth since the record highs of the 1990s, focusing on the last two complete productivity cycles (ending in 2007-2008). It offers a different perspective by looking for a general or macro-economic explaination and then tracing the origins to specific industries. It identifies quite specific and comprehensive industry contributions to the aggregate productivity growth slump.

The Commissioner of Taxation - Annual Report 2010-2011
Australian Taxation Office (April 2012).  The chosen section covers interesting aspects of tax avoidance and evasion by companies and wealthy people.

Taxation Revenue, Australia, 2009-2010
Australian Bureau of Statistics (April 2012).  This publication contains statistics of taxation revenue collected by all levels of government in Australia for the periods 2000-01 to 2009-10. The taxation revenue statistics presented are for the general government sector and include taxes received from public corporations (i.e. government owned/controlled corporations).

How Large Are Tax Expenditures? A 2012 Update
Donald B. Marron (April 2012).  The chosen section covers interesting aspects of tax avoidance and evasion by companies and wealthy people.

Financial Transaction Tax: Myth-Busting
Christina Ashford (March 2012).  This is a paper written by the International Trade Union Confederation and other community sector organisations.

Per Capita Tax Survey 2011
David Hetherington (October 2011).  This survey undertaken by Per Capita captures public attitudes towards tax and government spending, shining a light on citizens' view of their own tax system.

OECD Tax Policy Studies No 21
OECD (19 October 2011).  This paper is an executive summary of the OECD Tax Policy Studies latest report 'Taxation and Employment'. The report looks at a number of targeted tax reforms to increase employment.

Preparing for a Better Future
Business Council of Australia (October 2011).  The Business Council of Australia puts forward its proposals for changes to the tax system, including changes to the personal and company tax systems.

Tax Forum offers opportunity to restore balance and fairness to the welfare system
National Welfare Rights Network (2 October 2011).  The National Welfare Rights Network puts forward and proposes solutions to the issues regarding the welfare system it would like addressed at the National Tax Forum.

Brotherhood of St. Laurence Statement of Reform Priorities
Brotherhood of St. Laurence (September 2011).  The Brotherhood of St. Laurence's statement of taxation reform priorities in prepartion to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

Fair Share: The Tax Edition
VCOSS (September 2011).  Outlines how tax can change the way disadvantage is caused and addressed, and what changes VCOSS hopes for in the National Tax Forum.

Rorts and Loopholes: Tax Evasion, Avoidance & Tax Breaks
ACTU (September 2011).  This paper looks at the tax loopholes that allows for tax evasion to occur.

A Race to the Bottom: Globalisation and Company Tax
ACTU (September 2011).  This paper looks at the case that despite globalisation, the case for taxing corporations remains strong.

A Fairer, More Efficient Tax and Social Security System
ACOSS (29 September 2011).  A paper prepared by the Australian Council of Social Service which frames the issues that effective tax reform through the National Tax Forum could address.

Tax Forum: The Fiscal Context
Senator the Honourable Penny Wong (26 September 2011).  A report by the Government placing into focus the fiscal context in which the National Tax Forum will be held. Outlines the Government’s fiscal aims and goals.

Australia’s Tax Reform Challenge
Saul Eslake (21 September 2011).  An Australian Parliamentary Library Lecture delivered by Saul Eslake. Describes the challenges facing a reform of the tax system.

Council of the Aging Statement of Reform Priorities
Ian Yates (September 2011).  Council of The Aging (COTA) statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

Catholic Social Services Australia Statement of Reform Priorities
Bishop Pat Power (September 2011).  Catholic Social Services Australia's statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

Associate Professor Miranda Stewart Statement of Reform Priorities
Miranda Stewart (September 2011).  Miranda Stewart's statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

Equal Rights Alliance Statement of Reform Priorities
Marie Coleman and Ruth Medd (September 2011).  Equality Rights Alliance's statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

Anglicare Australia Statement of Reform Priorities
Kasy Chambers (September 2011).  Anglicare Australia's statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

United Voice Statement of Reform Priorities
Louise Tarrant (September 2011).  United Voice's statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

Community and Public Sector Union Statement of Reform Priorities
Nadine Flood (September 2011).  Community and Public Sector Union's statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

Community Housing Federation of Australia
Adam Farrar (September 2011).  Australian Community Housing Federation of Australia's statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

National Shelter Statement of Reform Priorities
Adrian Pisarski (September 2011).  National Shelters' statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

Uniting Care Wesley Adelaide Statement of Reform Priorities
Simon Schrapel (September 2011).  Uniting Care Wesley Adelaide statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

Australian Council of Trade Unions Statement of Reform Priorities
Jeff Lawrence (September 2011).  Australian Council of Trade Unions' statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

Australian Council of Social Services Statement of Reform Priorities
Dr Cassandra Goldie and Peter Davidson (September 2011).  Australian Council of Social Services statement of taxation reform priorities in preparation to the Tax Forum 4-5 October 2011.

Per Capita Tax Survey for 2011: Public Attitudes towards Taxation and Government Expenditure
David Hetherington (September 2011).  The Per Capita Tax Survey for 2011 has asked 1,300 Australians for their views on personal tax contributions, overall taxation levels, public service spending and new tax proposals such as the Minerals Resource Rent Tax and the carbon tax.

Jurisdictions move towards full tax transparency
OECD’s Centre for Tax Policy (12 September 2011).  Furthering efforts to fight against international tax evasion and bank secrecy, members of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes have issued 12 new peer review reports.

In Sight (Vol 4.) Fair Share: The Tax Edition
Victorian Council of Social Services (September 2011).  This special national Insight edition on tax reform is being published in the leadup to the Federal Government’s National Tax Forum on October 4-5 2011. With contributions from many voices from the civil society sector focuses on inequity across the board, it offers a long term view of tax reform in Australia.

Myths and Realities: The Tax System & Attitudes to Taxation
ACTU (31 August 2011).  The ACTU has released new research that shows that Australians favour a progressive tax system, and wish to see government action to reduce inequality. This discussion paper shows that the new research is consistent with a range of findings in other studies of Australians attitudes to tax and social spending.

Australian Attitudes Towards Wealth Inequality and Progressive Taxation
David Neal, Cassandra Govan, Mike Norton & Dan Ariely (31 August 2011).  A national survey conducted by Empirica Research and the Harvard Business School of Australian knowledge, attitudes, and perceptions of wealth inequality and progressive taxation.

National Tax Forum discussion paper
Australian Government (28 July 2011).  Discussion paper released by the Australian Government in the leadup to the National Tax Forum in October 2011, particularly dealing with the six sessions to be included at the forum: Personal tax, transfer payments, business tax, state taxes, environmental and social taxes, and tax system governance.

Not-For-Profit Tax Reforms
Clubs Australia (Aug 2011).  Clubs Australia's submission on possible approaches to implement the Government's Budget announcement that it will reform the tax concessions provided to not-for-profit entities to ensure they are targeted only at those activities that directly further their altruistic purposes.

Taxation trends in the European Union
Eurostat (1 July 2011).  An overview of taxation in the European Union, by type of tax (consumption, labour income, company income and capital income), by level of government (federal, state, local), and by country.

GST Distribution Review Issues Paper
GST Distribution Review Panel, Treasury (1 July 2011).  The paper is intended to assist people in preparing a response to the review of issues relevant to the distribution of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and the current form of equalisation.

Tax Reform Trends in OECD Countries
OECD (30 June 2011).  An overview of tax reform trends prepared for the OECD’s conference, Challenges in Designing Competitive Tax Systems, held in Paris.

Government at a Glance
OECD (24 June 2011).  A comprehensive report on the Governments of OECD countries. Chapters 2 and 3 cover finance and include details of government revenue levels and structure.

Implications for Local Government from Henry Review of Australia's Future Tax System
Australian Centre of Excellence for Local Government (16 June 2011).  The paper makes suggestions for future action to be undertaken by local government and highlights opportunities for the sector to influence the debate about the future shape of the Australian taxation and tax transfer system. It suggests in the first instance, the opportunities related to the federal government Tax Forum planned for October 2011, and concludes that it would be unwise for local government to plan for nothing more than minimal change.

Reforming Taxes and Raising Revenue: Part of the Fiscal Solution
William Gale & Benjamin Harris, Tax Policy Centre (3 Jun 2011).  A US paper looking at common fiscal deficits, and the challenges and opportunities that the fiscal problem in the US creates for raising revenues and reforming taxation.

Restoring Public Finances
OECD (May 2011).  A summary of OECD country efforts in fiscal consolidation, including country by country analysis of changes to spending and taxes.

Key tax measures in the 2011-12 Commonwealth Budget
Prof Julian Disney (11 May 2011).  A special update edition on the 2011-2012 federal budget, which includes: an overview of the effects of the 2011-2012 federal budget on Australia's tax system, a series of Government links, and a selection of comment from other sources.

Out of the Maze: A Better Social Security System for People of Working Age
Australian Council of Social Service (Apr 2011).  This report proposes ‘root and branch’ reform of the system of social security payments for people of ‘working age’ (18 to 64 years), including Newstart Allowance, Disability Support Pension and Parenting Payment.

OECD Tax Agenda 2011 - tax reforms
OECD (12 Apr 2011).  An excerpt from the OECD's latest Tax Agenda brochure, outlining its current work in a variety of tax-related areas, including: Tax reforms for economic growth; and Tax Policy Analysis and Statistics.

OECD Tax Agenda 2011 - tax administration
OECD (12 Apr 2011).  An excerpt from the OECD's latest Tax Agenda brochure, outlining its current work in a variety of tax-related areas, including: Tax Administration.

Economic Policy Reforms: Going for Growth
OECD (7 Apr 2011).  The OECD's latest Going for Growth report, which finds that Governments must reform the underlying structure of their economies to boost economic growth and create jobs. Recommendations include tax reform, with a specific focus on labour and housing taxes. Specific priorities for Australia are identified on page 70.

Tax reform and ideal tax systems
Joe Hockey, Shadow Treasurer (6 Apr 2011).  An address by Shadow Treasurer Joe Hockey at the national tax conference of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia, on the process of tax reform, and what an ideal tax system should look like.

Summary of ACOSS proposals, Henry Review recommendations
Australian Council of Social Service (5 Apr 2011).  This is a brief summary of the Henry Review’s key tax reform proposals and compares them with those advanced by ACOSS, and the Government’s response.

Responses to Tax Incentives in a Complex and Uncertain Tax Law
Eric Toder, Tax Policy Center (30 Mar 2011).  Eric Toder's testimony before the Senate Finance Committee on how tax law complexity limits the effectiveness of tax incentives.

Address to the Institute of Chartered Accountants 2011 National Tax Conference (excerpt)
Assistant Treasurer, Bill Shorten (6 April 2011).  Excerpts from Bill Shorten's keynote address to the Institute of Chartered Accountants' Nation Tax Conference, covering: the mechanics of the tax system; macroeconomic context for reform; the tax burden; tax cuts; superannuation reform; and the consultation process.

What makes reform most likely: some lessons from history
Eugene Steuerle, Tax Policy Centre (Feb 2011).  Eugene Steuerle's testimony before the Senate Committee on the Budget on reforming the tax code. The The testimony starts with the comment that 'Reforms begin with a common consensus that something is broken and that, while we disagree on the perfect fix, a variety of fixes would be better than what we have'. It then goes onto look at the history of the current tax code, lessons from past reforms and concludes by outling the factors that will increase the probability of successful reform.

Cutting Tax Preferences Is Key to Tax Reform and Deficit Reduction
Donald Marron, Tax Policy Centre (Feb 2011).  Donald Marron's testimony before the Senate Committee on the Budget on reforming the tax code by cutting tax preferences. His testimony includes: how tax preferences pervade the US tax code, how the first step in any income tax reform should be to broaden the tax base by reducing or eliminating tax preferences and how policymakers can then use the resulting revenue to lower tax rates, reduce future deficits, or both.

ACOSS Budget Priority Statement 2011-12
Australian Council of Social Service (Jan 2011).  ACOSS recommendations for the Federal Budget: 2011-12

Designing a Tax System Advisory Board (Discussion Paper)
The Treasury, Commonwealth Government (Jan 2011).  A public discussion paper for consultation regarding the Government's election commitment to establish a Tax System Advisory Board. The outlines the different ways of establishing the Board that would form the basis of the Government's consultation with the Australian community. For details on the consultation and submissions, visit:

Major UK Report - Mirrlees Review
Institute for Fiscal Studies, UK (Nov 2010).  The Mirrlees Review sought to 1) identify the characteristics of a good tax system for any open developed economy in the 21st century, 2) assess the extent to which the UK tax system conforms to these ideals, and 3)recommend how it might realistically be reformed in that direction.

Anti-avoidance provisions in income tax law
The Treasury, Commonwealth Government (Nov 2010).  A discussion paper released by the Australian Government on consolidating, streamlining and improving the operation of the income tax law anti-avoidance provisions.

Australia as a Financial Centre: Building on our Strengths
Australian Financial Centre Forum (November 2009).  Report to the Government including recommendations on tax reform affecting financial services.

How Much Inequity Should We Allow?
Ken Henry, Secretary to the Commonwealth Treasury (3 April 2009).  Speech delivered to the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) National Conference.

Lessons from Tax Reform Past
Ken Henry, Secretary to the Commonwealth Treasury (15 October 2009).  Speech to the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA).

Progressive Tax Reform: Reform of the Personal Income Tax System
Australian Council of Social Service (November 2009).  This report advocates strengthening the personal income tax system in order to achieve progressive tax reform. It covers topics such as personal income tax rates, consumption taxes, company income taxes, taxation and saving, taxation and the transfer system.

Taxation Reform and Fiscal Federalism
Ken Henry, Secretary to the Commonwealth Treasury, (19 August 2009).  Speech to the Australian Economic Forum.

Tax: A Broader Mission
Ian McAuley, University of Canberra and Centre for Policy Development (7 May 2009).  Discusses the impact of higher social security expenditure on other needs for public investment and tax revenue.

The Ethical Basis of a Good Tax System
Eva Cox, Centre for Policy Development (7 May 2009).  Argues for more collective risk-sharing and shared public responsibilities, supported by increased tax revenues.

Taxation, Social Justice and Economic Development
Julian Disney, Director - Social Justice Project (3 April 2009).  Paper delievered at the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) National Conference. Includes workers, families, housing, transport, savings.

Taxes: What are they good for?
Katherine Gregory, Per Capita (October 2009).  Examines the various functions taxation serves, the public perception of taxation, and the link bewteen public perception and tax policy.