Finance Minister Mathias Cormann and Treasurer Josh Frydenberg look over the 2020 federal budget (Image: AAP/Mike Bowers)

The most hotly-anticipated budget day in decades is finally here.

And as we mentioned yesterday, the government has been keen to ruin the surprise a little, making numerous early announcements about some of the shiny measures Treasurer Josh Frydenberg will unveil tonight.

And since yesterday, there’s been even more.

Even more tax cuts

The Coalition has announced further tinkering to its accelerated tax cut plan, which it says will deliver an extra $2000 to average earners, and $5000 to families.

As part of the tax plan revamp, the government is hoping to quickly get the parts of the package that benefit low and middle-income earners through the Senate, while leaving cuts for high income earners on hold until 2024. 

Even more wage subsidies

Another drop to The Australian revealed the government would announce a back-to-work wage subsidy for businesses employing people under 35.

It’s part of the government’s plan to ease off the existing JobKeeper subsidy, which will wind up next March. 

Infrastructure boost

Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Minister Alan Tudge yesterday announced a $7.5 million national infrastructure package to build more roads around the country.

There’s already been a bit of State of Origin to the funding carve up — NSW will get $2.7 billion, more than double the $1.1 billion allocated to Victoria,  despite the state being whacked hardest by the pandemic.

Queensland, meanwhile, will get $1.3 billion, which The Courier-Mail optimistically says will create 4000 direct and indirect jobs. 

NSW takes a hit

But it’s not all rosy for NSW. Analysis in The Sydney Morning Herald suggests a $7.6 billion fall in national GST revenue will translate to a $2.3 billion shortfall for NSW, with some economists suggesting the actual numbers tonight will be even worse for the state. 

Peter Fray

Help us keep up the fight

Get Crikey for just $1 a week and support our journalists’ important work of uncovering the hypocrisies that infest our corridors of power.

If you haven’t joined us yet, subscribe today and get your first 12 weeks for $12.

Cancel anytime.

Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey