One Nation leader Pauline Hanson has dismissed reports the government presented legislation cutting big banks out of corporate tax cuts to win her support for the package.
According to reports, Treasurer Scott Morrison drafted legislation to carve out the banks to gain the crucial backing of Senator Hanson and her colleague Peter Georgiou.
That’s despite Finance Minister Mathias Cormann’s argument the move would create a two-tiered tax system.
“In a parting comment by minister Cormann, he suggested carving out the banks to secure One Nation votes, to which I said my decision was firm,” Senator Hanson said in a statement.
“No draft legislation was ever received and I can confirm Senator Georgiou did not receive this alleged document either.”
The big business tax cuts are expected to be voted down in the Senate on Tuesday after months of debate.
Labor and the Greens remain opposed and the government is about four crossbench votes short.
However a 25 per cent tax rate for small and medium businesses could be fast-tracked as an alternative.
Parliament has already agreed to deliver tax relief to companies with an annual turnover of up to $50 million, but the 25 per cent rate will be brought in gradually.
Labor estimates bringing forward tax cuts for businesses turning over under $50 million could cost the budget $1.8 billion over the next four years, and $6.5 billion in the medium term.
“It’s a great outcome for SMBs if the [fast tracking] happens. This is a great idea. This legislation has been passed- so changing the time lines should be reasonably easily,” said Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Kate Carnell.