Extra income support payments for 17,960 locals

More than $1.1 billion in extra income support payments will begin flowing to over one million Australians over the next few weeks after a key legislation passed Federal Parliament last week.

The Income Support Bonus will begin to be paid to eligible recipients after the 20 March and are tax-free and not means-tested.

“The Income Support Bonus will help people in our local community receiving income support to cope with unexpected cost of living expenses,” Mr Clare said.

“Payments will be $210 extra per year for eligible singles, and $350 to most couples where both partners are eligible.

“The new payment applies to 17,960 people in the local community who are on: Newstart Allowance, Parenting Payment, Sickness Allowance, Special Benefit, Youth Allowance and ABSTUDY Living Allowance.

“When people rely on income support benefits as their main source of income, every dollar helps.”

The bonus, part of the 2012–13 Budget, will be paid automatically by the Department of Human Services and those eligible will not have to apply to receive it.

The Income Support Bonus bill that passed the Senate last week includes amendments to the Social Security Act 1999, the Social Security (Administration) Act 1999, the Farm Household Support Act 1992, and the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997.