“The 2013 Budget? Why should I care?”

Sooo you’ve probably seen some of the hype about this ‘2013 Budget’ thing on the news, and if you’re a student, you might think it doesn’t apply to you. Think again!

Every year, the Australian Government announces its annual budget (read: how much they’re going to spend on what, and also what they’re proposing to cut back on). Even though you might think you don’t give a crap, some of the proposals could be relevant to your situation – like university, HELP, Centrelink benefits and more.

So – how could this year’s budget affect you? Some of the key initiatives of the announcement are:

  • Increase to school funding
  • Increase  to DisabilityCare
  • Long-term path to returning the budget to surplus (i.e. reducing the government’s debt)
  • Investing in health services like cancer and General Practitioners in remote communities
  • Increasing the Superannuation Guarantee (the minimum amount your employer is legally required to contribute to your super) from 9% to 12% to boost retirement savings

Hate to break it to you guys, but there are also some negative initiatives in the way of cuts to higher education funding:

  • The 10% discount for paying uni fees up front will be canned
  • Student start-up scholarships will be converted to loans
  • You won’t be able to deduct as much tax on your self-education course

Of course, there are heaps more winners and losers in the 2013 Budget, so have a look at the ABC’s breakdown here, or head straight to the Australian Government website. Oh and just so you know, the proposals may change as the legislation passes through parliament – the above isn’t well and truly set in stone!

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