These two stories I wrote on the same day.
A bit difficult to read, so some excerpts:
Car dealers back Libs’ FBT stance
Federal Opposition leader John Howard addressed more than 400 people who attended the fringe benefits tax protest rally at Denlo Motors, Parramatta, last week.
Plainclothes security guards mingled with the crowd before Mr Howard, who attended the rally 30 minutes late and arrived with a police escort.
Mr Howard said Treasurer Paul Keating had said the Hawke Government brought in the FBT to eliminate rorts and stop the “haemorraghing of revenue”.
“FBT was introduced clumsily and has done enormous damage to the industry, sending it into a deep recession.”
He emphasised the Liberal Party’s proposed abolition of the fringe benefits tax to a cheering audience and attacked Labor Party criticisms of his proposed reduction of $1.5 billion in payments to the States.
CAR DEALERS FACING CRISIS
Parramatta car dealers are facing their worst crisis in 28 years, local dealers claimed at the fringe benefits tax protest rally in Parramatta last week.
Federal Opposition leader John Howard addressed the rally at Denlo Motors.
Mr Howard said, “FBT was introduced clumsily and has done enormous damage to the industry, sending it into a deep recession. The consequences and loss of sales and profitability has been immense.”
Parramatta dealer John Trivett, of Trivett Classic, said, “This is the worst crisis since the Menzies era of the 1960s when people stopped buying cars because of credit restrictions.”
He said Parramatta was the busiest and largest car sales strip in Australia.
He said the smaller dealers on Parramatta Rd were most threatened by the FBT (which was introduced in July 1986) and increased sales tax, but the larger dealers, which were mostly based in Church St, would continue to operate.
“The small dealers are hurt because they don’t have a lot of financial clout. The effect of these taxes will change the face of Parramatta Rd.”
Local dealers claimed they would go out of business if the fringe benefits and current sales taxes continued.
At the rally, a message was read out from Paul Betar, formerly of Betar and Coorey, Parramatta Rd, which closed on May 26 last year, leaving 14 staff unemployed.
Mr Betar had attended the rally last year, and his message said: “The FBT put the boot in when we were down. The bid spending, big taxing Government has destroyed the will to have a go.”