The Crest of the Commonwealth of Australia Treasury Portfolio Ministers
Picture of Bill Shorten

Bill Shorten

Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Financial Services & Superannuation

14 September 2010 - 14 December 2011

Media Release of 20/04/2011

NO.062

Joint Media Release
with
Mark Dreyfus
Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change
And Energy Efficiency

Government Extends Consultations for
Tax Breaks for Green Buildings

The Government today announced it will conduct further consultations around the Tax Breaks for Green Buildings program to deliver the best outcomes for industry.

The program is being developed to support businesses that invest in eligible assets or capital works to improve the energy efficiency of an existing building.

Assistant Treasurer Bill Shorten said the Government has agreed to extend the time for consultation to consider stakeholder proposals on the most effective way to implement the program.

In order to facilitate the further consultations with industry, the programme will now come into effect on 1 July 2012.

The Government will continue to consult widely to ensure the scheme provides the right incentives for building owners to implement energy efficient retrofits.

"Further input from industry stakeholders will help make the Tax Breaks for Green Buildings program a viable and successful initiative that delivers real returns for our environment," Mr Shorten said.

"We understand that during initial consultations, some sectors of the industry were concerned about how the scheme would operate.

"That's why we will shortly establish a high level roundtable, chaired by an independent industry expert, to discuss key design elements of the scheme.

"This will support ongoing discussions with industry leaders to consider how we can maximise the benefits of the program, within the current funding envelope," Mr Shorten said.

The Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency Mark Dreyfus said that "While consultation on the scheme will be extended by one year, it will still provide $1 billion in support to the property industry over 8 years to improve the energy efficiency of older, less-efficient buildings around the country."

Issues raised include whether the benefit should be provided as a bonus deduction (as proposed) or as a refundable tax credit, whether the program should support re-fits for buildings that are already rated above 2 stars on the NABERS rating system, and whether the program should provide more tailored support for the refit of hotels.

Exposure draft legislation will be released later in the year. The Government will seek to introduce the legislative package towards the end of the year, so that businesses have time to prepare.

"The Government is committed to getting the design of this $1 billion scheme right and we take the views of industry very seriously," Mr Dreyfus said.

For more information, please refer to the Tax Breaks for Green Buildings information page on the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency website: www.climatechange.gov.au.

CANBERRA
20 April 2011