Dine out - the bill is on Gladys

Only if I was living with my family in Sydney! I will have at least a couple of ‘dining out’ – exits out of my locked down lifestyle when I would not need to have my wallet on me. Gladys will be sending me dine out and go out vouchers. It cannot get any better than that in this doom and gloom shrouded COVID-19 way of life.

Reality is I live in Victoria and we have had no such offer of Óut and About’ programs budgeted by the state government here like the one announced by the NSW Treasurer, Dominic Perrottet on Tuesday, November 17 delivering the COVID-19 lined state budget with some real heavy spending and deficit.

Governments all over the world are devising ways and means to kick start the dormant economies enjoying their deep slumber due to lockdowns and restrictions.

Anthe the government in New South Wales has announced as one of those measures that it will be giving $100 in vouchers to each and every individual to spend on dining and entertainment.

From late January 2021 all NSW residents aged 18 and over will be eligible to receive 4x$25 digital vouchers through the Service NSW mobile app .

2 vouchers can be used for dining out and the other 2 can be “used for activities such as visiting cultural institutions, performing arts, cinemas and amusement parks”.

The amount of $25 is measly although not too small, which should get people to fork out a bit from their pockets to really help the economy. And the timing of it – late January – will make it more meaningful as people and families will have finished with their partying schedules of the year end. It is perfectly timed to come at a time when the family focus shifts to school books and uniforms, school bags and shoes and the money allocated to dine out is well and truly exhausted.

Overall – smart move which should work say the experts who have welcomed the announcement for its targeted focus on industries hit hardest by the pandemic.

This dine out and go out program will require two givens:

  1. No COVID-19 virus wave in the state and only restrictions being basic precautions of wearing face masks and observing social distancing rules.
  2. The tracing mechanism is absolutely up to the mark giving authorities utmost confidence to let people free to go back to their normal style of living life.

The NSW Treasurer announced $107 billion in infrastructure spending spread over four years, along with the announcement to construct 1300 new social housing units. The NSW government has also announced a reduction in the payroll tax rate from 5.45 per cent to 4.86 per cent. The premier and the treasurer say the budget is all about jobs.

In another lead, perhaps taken from the Victorian governments’ planned initiatives (as the Andrews government is considering this), the treasurer also announced stamp duty relief options for the first-home buyers. They will be able to opt out of paying stamp duty in favour of an annual land tax.

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