Call to relax tax on Tweed businesses

By PETER CATON

THE Tweed should be given spe- cial status as a low tax zone for business to help it compete with Queensland, says one of the men working to attract industry to Murwillumbah. Real estate agent Stuart Cahill says too many companies looking to set up business in the Tweed are bypassing the area for Yatala on the north of the Gold Coast be- cause of low Queensland taxes. The solution, he says, is to make the Tweed a special zone where business would be exempt from payroll tax. And he has found support from Murwillumbah District Business chamber president Phil Young- blutt who fears major industry will continue to go to Yatala rath- er than the Tweed unless the NSW government "wakes up". "This is actually happening and will continue to happen with low- er taxes on the other side of the border," said Mr Youngblutt. "The Tweed would have one of the lowest average incomes in the state of NSW and probably Aust-

ralia. We have an ageing popula- tion and everything is against us. "But the NSW government keeps making things more diffi- cult with the pokies tax ... you name it." Mr Cahill has called the NSW government to do more to encour- age industrial development and business in general to overcome unemployment in the Tweed and Byron shires, especially among younger people. "They should look at Tweed and Byron as being payroll-tax-free zones," he said. "If we could have something like that it would really benefit the areas and unemployment." Traditional industries on the Tweed like sugar and timber, he said, no longer offered the jobs they once did because they em- ploy more machinery instead. Mr Cahill also wants Tweed Shire Council to consider relocat- ing its administrative offices and major works depot to the out- skirts of Murwillumbah to give the new industrial area a boost and free up space in the town CBD.



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