Budget to bring new taxes and freeze on politician wages
A FREEZE on politician wages, new taxes, higher medical costs and welfare cuts are in the mix for Tuesday's budget.
Already struggling to defend its plans to break an election promise not to introduce new taxes, the Federal Government faced a barrage of criticism on the weekend amid claims the budget would also bring a hike in the petrol tax and medical expenses.
A controversial GP tax would see families forking out more for doctor visits - a concept which health experts fear will lead to parents prioritising their children's needs before their own, leaving illnesses untreated and eventually placing more pressure on hospital waiting rooms.
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten told the ABC increased medical costs would send Australia down a "sick and sorry path" towards the kind of two-class health system seen in the US.
He said families should have the right to access health care with their Medicare card, not their credit card and feared the changes would encourage a system where "how much money you have determines how much care you get".
During rounds of weekend morning shows Treasurer Joe Hockey refused to concede the government had broken key election promises and maintained the nation was better off than it would have been
Describing a proposed pay freeze -which would see MP's miss out on a 2.4% increase from July - as the government's "contribution" to the budget, Mr Hockey said voters shouldn't "just assume" there was only bad news store.
He told veteran Channel Nine political reporter Laurie Oakes that "if" the government was to raise the tax on petrol, much of the twice yearly indexation of petrol excise would help fund an $80 billion injection into the nation's road network.
"Over the next six years we are going to spend in excess of $40 billion on roads and that will be matched by the states and the private sector with an additional $42 billion," Mr Hockey said
"So it is a massive amount of money."
The budget will be handed down in Canberra on Tuesday evening.