Older people have welcomed the Queensland government’s commitment to maintaining concessions but are disappointed they were not indexed to the CPI, National Seniors Australia says.
The budget reaffirmed the government’s earlier commitment to guarantee full funding for pensioner concessions on electricity, water, gas and transport after the Federal Government withdrew funds.
“Seniors will be breathing a sigh of relief but they were hoping the concessions will be keeping pace with inflation, instead of being eroded by rising living costs,” said National Seniors’ Queensland policy advisory group chair Vera Somerwil.
“We were also hoping there may be some concessional stamp duty for seniors downsizing their homes and buying a property that may be more appropriate to their needs – but again we were disappointed.”
Ms Somerwil said there were some announcements in the budget that may deliver benefits for older people.
- $2 million over four years towards rebuilding the Office for Seniors and establishing a One Stop Shop and the Advisory Taskforce for Residential Transition for Ageing Queenslanders.
- $20 million over four years to community based organisations to provide long day social respite services to elderly people with dementia and other degenerative neurological disorders who are residing in the community.
- $5.5 million per year over four years to fund a Financial Resilience program to support Queenslanders to respond better to financial stresses, personal issues and cost of living pressures.
Review of elder abuse as part of the Domestic and Family Violence Taskforce Response Team - $5.5m of new and $26m for internal reallocation
- $240m over four years to reinstate Skilling Queenslanders for Work
“Seniors will be watching with interest to see how the government delivers on its commitments,” Ms Somerwil said.