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Minister, officials face grilling over $60 billion JobKeeper accounting blunder

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann is set to face a grilling from a Senate committee hunting answers on bungled wage subsidy projections.

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann is set to face a grilling from a Senate committee hunting answers on bungled wage subsidy projections.

Treasury boss Steven Kennedy will face the music on Tuesday when the coronavirus inquiry turns its attention to the $60 billion JobKeeper accounting error.

The federal government predicted the $1500 fortnightly payments would cost $130 billion covering more than six million workers.

But it was later revealed three million fewer employees were part of the scheme, forcing the projection to be revised down to $70 billion.

What happens once JobKeeper payments stop

Tax commissioner Chris Jordan and other senior Australian Taxation Office staff will also front the committee.

The ATO and Treasury blamed the massive miscalculation partly on businesses making errors on JobKeeper application forms.

Childcare workers have become the first sector to be told wage subsidies will end earlier than the six-month life of the program.

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Prime Minister Scott Morrison last week guaranteed the program would continue for the full legislated period, but the government announced on Monday one sector to be cut off early.

Instead, childcare services will receive a transitional payment from July 20 that Education Minister Dan Tehan predicts will be a "tiny bit" less than JobKeeper.

Labor attacked the decision, accusing Mr Morrison of breaking a promise.

Under the changes, parents will have to pay childcare fees again from July 13 as demand grows for services.

Opposition early childhood spokeswoman Amanda Rishworth said the cost of care would still be too high even if parents who have now lost work were eligible for more hours.

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"What the government said is bad luck - bad luck, you are going to face the same fees that you did prior to this," she said.

- Reported with AAP

Source: 9News https://www.9news.com.au/national/jobkeeper-senate-inquiry-to-grill-finance-minister-over-accounting-error/0b5dc252-39ec-4679-bff5-f7d94f0aaeee

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