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Federal Budget 2014: Winners and Losers



Treasurer Joe Hockey has handed down one of the harshest Budgets in decades in an attempt to erase the growing deficit.

"Our future depends on what we as a nation do today," the Treasurer said as he delivered what had been dubbed the 'bad news Budget'. "The Government's solemn duty is to build a stronger Australia."

An unprecedented $80 billion cut to health and education spending over the next decade is among a slew of tough savings measures affecting pensioners, seniors concession card holders, family  payments and people on the disability support pension.

Related: Tony Abbott attacked by furious woman on live TV

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The Abbott Government's first budget had few surprises and very little promising news. Even the sweeteners – like a new $20 billion medical research  fund – came with a catch. The fund would come from a $5 contribution by patients when visiting the doctor. Each visit will cost $7, with the other $2 going to the doctor.

"Our Economic Action Strategy is not about weakening government; it is about redefining the role of government in people's lives," Mr Hockey said in his budget speech.

"My view is you fix the roof while the sun is shining and if we do not contribute now then the pain associated with budget repair is going to be far greater in the future," Mr Hockey said.

So yes, it's a tough Budget. But just how tough is it? Check out our list of who is affected, and to what extent.

 

Families


Parents receiving government assistance towards the cost of raising their kids have won a small reprieve before budget pain begins for some from next year. Read more: Families to feel budget pain

  • Payment rates for Family Tax Benefit will remain at current levels until July 2016

  • Tax Benefit A income threshold to be set at $94,316

  • Only families with four or more children will receive the supplement, saving $377.7 million over four years

  • From 2015, families will cease to receive Tax Benefit B when their youngest turns six, saving $1.9 billion over five years

  • Tax Benefit B income test will be lowered to $100,000 from $150,000, savings $1.2 billion over four years

  • Labor's school kids bonus, worth $410 a year for primary school pupils and $820 a year for high school students, to be scrapped

Health


The introduction of a $7 Medicare co-payment for doctor visits spells the end of free GP care for most Australians. Concession card holders and children will escape the payment – but only after their tenth visit, with their annual co-pay capped at $70. $5 of the $7 payment will go into the Medical Research Future Fund. Those who aren't bulk-billed will also pay more, with $5 coming out of their Medicare refund.

Read more: Australians slugged for doctor visits

Motorists


The Government will look to raise an extra $2.2 billion at the petrol pumps, as the freeze on the fuel excise ends. The changes will cause the price of a litre of fuel to rise by the rate of inflation every six months. Read more: Petrol prices to go up

Youth


Unemployed people under thirty will now face a six-month wait for benefits, which have also been slashed. University students also face higher, deregulated fees: the Government will bank $1.1 billion from cutting an average 20 per cent from student payments. Read more: Uni students hit with double whammy

Public servants

Some 16,500 government employees will lose their jobs, with 4,700 jobs to go from the ATO.  Read more: Thousands to face sack in public service

Pensioners

The pension age will rise to 70 by 2035. Payments are set to grow more slowly, and a range of entitlements will either be eliminated or reduced. Read more: Entitlements for older Australians slashed

Infrastructure


The major budget sweetener is a $50 billion infrastructure package, which will be invested in roads, rail, ports and airports over the next seven years. The bulk of the projects in the budget papers were either planned or begun under the previous Labor government. Read more: States, drivers pump money into roads

Medical research

The other big sweetener is the introduction of a $20 billion Medical Research Future Fund, which the government is touting as the largest of its kind worldwide. It will bankroll research to develop treatments for diseases such as cancer, diabetes and multiple sclerosis – but it will be partially funded by the GP co-payment. Read more: World's best research fund, but we'll pay

Working mothers

The "symbolically" trimmed Paid Parental Leave scheme will pay new mothers up to $50,000.

Business

Promised tax cuts and big spending on infrastructure will benefit the top end of town, while smaller businesses receive rewards for hiring older workers. Companies will also receive financial assistance to access export markets, manufacturers moving into new growth industries will be eligible for grants, while the energy and resources sector will be encouraged to explore for new mineral deposits. Read more: Corporate Australia is a budget winner

Defence


The coalition remained committed to growing government spending on defence to two per cent of gross domestic product a year within a decade, but it will also lose more than 2,000 staff by 2017-18. Read more: Defence gets funds, loses jobs