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Big for-profits face the Senate Inquiry into tax avoidance in aged care

Categories: Aged Care News, General News

The Senate inquiry into the financial and tax practices of for-profit aged care providers commenced yesterday. Here’s some of the key snapshots from yesterday’s proceedings:

  • ANMF Federal Secretary Annie Butler presented on the need for transparency of tax dollars amidst stories from members around upcoding, poor care and cost-cutting in these aged care facilities.

Then we hear from some of the large for-profit providers who collectively amassed more than $1.3 billion in tax dollars last year:

  • Opal telephoned through to the inquiry to:
    • relay how they spent our $527 million in tax dollars last year;
    • confirm they paid 0% tax and still had enough money to pay dividends of $15 million to its Singapore parent company and;
    • confirm they are not presently compliant with the Board of Taxation’s Voluntary Tax Transparency Code.
  • Japara appeared next, asking Senators to fix the problem with the lack of Government funding – they received $362 million in tax dollars and remunerated their CEO more than $1 million.
  • BUPA, Australia’s largest aged care provider, was a no-show. They received $468 million in public funds last year and are currently under investigation by the ATO
  • Estia, who received $388 million in tax dollars last year, agrees with two of the recommendations in the ANMF report and said they would go further.

The Senate Economics References Committee Inquiry adjourned at 4pm yesterday after a presentation from the ATO. The Committee’s report into the inquiry is due by 20 September 2018.

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