Senate crossbenchers face pressure to pass welfare reforms and corporate tax cuts this week.

March 20, 2018

Crossbenchers are under pressure from the government to pass welfare reforms and corporate tax cuts through the Senate this week.

The controversial company tax cuts, which will reduce the rate to 25 per cent for all-sized businesses, are due to be debated in the upper house on Wednesday and are supported by Australian Conservatives’ leader and South Australian Senator Cory Bernardi.

SBS reports, Senator Cory Bernardi's fellow crossbencher David Leyonhjelm is also backing the cuts.

The Nick Xenophon Team says it will vote against the tax cuts insisting the coalition should take them to an election.

New independent senator Steve Martin is still negotiating on both the tax cuts and the welfare reforms, and has not revealed which way he will vote.

The proposed changes include a major overhaul of compliance measures, including a demerit-point system for people who persistently dodge job-seeking obligations.

The coalition also wants to remove "intent to claim provisions", which protect people who are entitled to welfare but cannot lodge a claim due to personal circumstances.

The legislation also seeks to tighten exemptions for drug and alcohol dependence, increase wait times for unemployment payments, and axe the wife pension and bereavement allowance.

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