Technical Series

The Technical series contained enhanced technical information that was intended to provide readers with a greater understanding of the social security system and the wider area of social policy.

1. Social Security Payments and the Taxation System

DSS Technical Paper No. 1 / Josh Polette, revised by Kate Chan, June 1994

Social Policy Division
Department of Social Security

This paper is designed to give the reader an understanding of the effects that certain policy changes can have on existing clients and client numbers.

The paper is mostly written for the September 1994 to June 1995 social security and tax environments. It covers partner Allowance and Home Child Care Allowance but not payments introduced in the White Paper on Employment Opportunities (Working Nation), such as Parenting Allowance. The rates used for calculations in the attachments are projected September 1994 pension and rebate rates. The 1993-94 composite tax scale was also used.

This paper was originally written by Josh Polette but has been revised and updated for publication by Kate Chan. Most of the revisions reflect the introduction of Home Child Care Allowance in September 1994. Attachment E draws heavily on a short unpublished paper by Phil Gallagher.

2. The Contribution of DSS Payments to Regional Income

DSS Technical Paper No 2 / Rob Bray and William Mudd (July 1998)

  • This paper seeks to examine the extent to which transfer payments contribute to local economies in Australia.
    While 25% of the population live in locations where Department of Social Security (DSS) payments represent less than 11.6% of personal disposable income, a further 25% live in locations where it accounts for more than 21.1%.
  • This variation is reflected in a number of very marked ways, the most significant of these is a much higher reliance upon DSS transfer payments in non-Capital City locations. While 14.0% of personal disposable income in Australia's Capital Cities is derived from DSS transfer payments, this increases to 19.3% in the balance of locations.
  • Most States showed a similar pattern to that seen at the national level with regard to higher levels of reliance in non-Capital City locations, this was particularly marked in New South Wales where reliance upon DSS payments was 21.1% in the balance of the state, compared to only 12.8% in Sydney. While Western Australia did not display this type of difference when only DSS payments are considered it is possible that full accounting of Community Development Employment Projects and other transfers may explain this.
  • This paper represents the first phase of a project being undertaken by the DSS in the context of developing a better understanding of the spatial impact of social policies, and the degree to which policy needs to respond to spatial characteristics, including concentrations of DSS customers

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