Carbon tax funeral impact unknown

THE Australian funeral industry still does not know what costs, if any, will rise because of the carbon tax.

Commenting on media reports on Monday that a Victorian funeral and crematorium tried to blame a $55 cost rise in burial charges on the tax, Australian Funeral Directors New South Wales president Warwick Hansen said the industry still did not know the full impact of the tax.

Like many other industries not on the list of firms forced to pay the tax directly, Mr Hansen said the costs to the funeral industry were more likely to come from increased power and gas bills.

But he said the industry around the country would not know the full cost impact until the next quarter's utility bills started coming in.

"It's hard to assess how this firm actually worked it out, because it's still a relative unknown.

"The first charge for our industry will really be a charge on emission, but that's non-existent on burials and crematoriums mostly do not reach the emissions thresholds.

"So I think the costs are really going to be from the gas and power used to run crematoria more than anything else."

Assistant Treasurer David Bradbury said that after media reports about the Victorian case, the company in question then made public statements that the carbon tax should not increases its prices.

Mr Bradbury said it was a timely reminder to businesses that any claims made must be correct, or companies could face fines of up to $1.1 million.



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