Childcare reform up in the air and before Parliament

20th March 2017 12:00 PM

PRESSURE is mounting on the Federal Government to split its omnibus bill, which bundled childcare changes with welfare and family cuts.

Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham said the Turnbull Government's bill to abolish the current $7,500 limit to support low income families and introduce a new rate cap were crucial.

Senator Birmingham said the new bill will put before Parliament to address the continued growth in childcare fees.

 

St James Lutheran College opening of new science and arts building. Federal Education Minister Simon Birmingham. Photo: Alistair Brightman / Fraser Coast Chronicle
Federal Minister for Education Simon Birmingham. Alistair Brightman

He said the bundling of childcare and welfare were necessary to cover the $1.6 billion in increased childcare investments.

"We have comprehensive solutions to fix the price pressures in childcare," Senator Birmingham said.

"All we need is the Labor Party and the Senate to come on board to get them through Parliament."

But the new bill has faced scrutiny.

Sky News reported One Nation leader Pauline Hanson will not support the bill in its entirety and crossbenchers Nick Xenophon and Derryn Hinch would likely also have problems with it.

The Federal Government wants to scrap current childcare subsidies from July 2018 to replace it with an activity-tested payment.

The current rebate covers 50% of out of pocket expenses for approved childcare up to an annual limit per child.

To pay for this it needs to slash a number of range of family benefits.