Residents in the Sydney suburb of Mosman paid the most income tax in 2011-12, according to data released by the Australian Tax Office today.
The wealthy suburb topped the ATO’s list of postcodes that paid the highest level of income tax, with a tax bill of close to $874 million. According to the data, 15,300 people in Mosman and Spit Junction paid tax in 2011-12, with a mean taxable income of $164,484.
Other suburbs to record high tax bills include Mackay in north Queensland’s, where residents paid $757 million in 2011-2012, and the affluent Melbourne suburb of Brighton, where locals paid taxes worth $569 million.
At the other end of the scale, the 90 taxpayers in the Gippsland towns of Baw Baw and Icy Creek recorded a tax bill of just $485,495.
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According to the data, the Queensland town of Bundaberg is home to the most number of welfare recipients, with locals receiving $15 million in Centrelink payments during the period, while Toowoomba is home to the largest number of pension recipients.
Professor Chris Evans from the Australian School of Business at the University of New South Wales told SmartCompany the results are “not at all surprising”.
“These suburbs record the highest level of tax because they generate the highest levels of income, and disproportionately so,” said Evans, who said these locations also have high levels of capital.
Evans said that income inequality has been steadily increasing in Australia, with the rich getting richer. The same suburbs and cities have been topping these lists for a long time and the income tax system “is not as progressive as it once was”, he said.
“There has been no spreading of wealth in Australia and, in fact, there has been a concentration,” he said.