The McGowan Government is delivering its plan for the Great Southern region, with funding in the State Budget to create local jobs and support the local economy, while delivering important community infrastructure and services.
The 2019-20 State Budget includes $4.2 billion in Royalties for Regions funding across regional Western Australia.
More than $5.6 billion will be invested in regional infrastructure over the next four years.
WA’s first budget surplus in five years, delivered two years ahead of schedule, has allowed the McGowan Government to deliver the lowest increase to household fees and charges in 13 years.
The Budget includes funding for important, job-creating infrastructure and programs in the Great Southern region, including:
- $175 million for the Albany Ring Road;
- $2.5 million for development of visitor facilities in the Greens Pool-Elephant Rocks precinct;
- $12 million State-wide injection to Tourism Western Australia to expand promotion of WA overseas;
- $131.5 million of additional State-wide expenditure to support agriculture in WA, grow export markets and create long-term jobs including $39.6 million for the Boosting Biosecurity Defences, Asian Market Success and Grains Research and Development support programs (in addition to $45 million for Grains Research and Development in the 2018-19 Budget);
- $182.4 million of State-wide funding for a new Employer Incentive Scheme and training delivery, including $45 million for regional WA. The scheme will help WA employers with the costs of employing apprentices and trainees; and
- $24.1 million in ongoing State-wide funding for the ‘WA Open for Business’ program to promote export opportunities for regional businesses.
The McGowan Government is committed to delivering community services to people across regional WA, including in the Great Southern region. The Budget includes:
- $13.1 million to construct a facility as part of establishing radiotherapy services at Albany Health Campus;
- $42.5 million in additional State-wide funding for the Methamphetamine Action Plan, including $1.1 million for the establishment of a Great Southern Needle and Syringe Exchange Program;
- $11.3 million to support and expand sustainable service delivery of PCYCs across the State to reduce juvenile offending and improve community safety;
- $2.3 million package to combat elder abuse, including continued funding for the WA Elder Abuse Helpline;
- $8.1 million for the Suicide Prevention Strategy;
- $34.6 million for the roll-out of personal issue mobile smart tablets for police officers across the State;
- $15.4 million towards the roll-out of personal issue multi-threat body armour to frontline police officers across the State;
- $4.8 million for enhanced driver training and education for regional and remote communities;
- Investing an additional $713,000 to maintain regional bus services;
- $19.9 million for the Regional Arts and Cultural Investment program; and
- The introduction of the new Regional Taxi Transition Fund.
The McGowan Government is delivering its Plan for the Great Southern and progressing its election commitments. Initiatives that are already underway in the region include:
- $9.8 million for upgrades to the Albany Secondary Education Support Centre and North Albany Senior High School;
- $500,000 per year from 2019-20 for the continued operation of the Albany Entertainment Centre;
- $500,000 to develop a business case for the Albany Artificial Surf Reef;
- $250,000 to plan for the upgrade of Bremer Bay Boat Harbour;
- $30 million for the upgrade of South Coast Highway;
- $3.6 million towards preliminary works at the Middleton Beach Activity Centre;
- $3 million upgrade to Mount Lockyer Primary School;
- $2.5 million to replace transportable classrooms at Flinders Park Primary School;
- $1 million to continue work on the Albany Oyster Reef Restoration Project;
- $3.9 million to complete the Centennial Park Sporting and Event Precinct;
- $65 million across regional WA to continue to support Community Resource Centres; and
- $170.5 million across regional WA to continue the Country Age Pension Fuel Card and $5.1 million for the Volunteer Fuel Card.
For more 2019-20 State Budget information, visit https://www.ourstatebudget.wa.gov.au
As stated by Premier Mark McGowan:
“The McGowan Government is continuing its strong investment in the Great Southern region to create jobs and provide local families with the services they need.
“The Budget includes significant funding for the region that will see $42.5 million in additional funding for the Methamphetamine Action Plan, including $1.1 million for the establishment of a Great Southern Needle and Syringe Exchange Program.
“Since coming to Government in 2017, we have worked hard to bring the Budget back under control while delivering important improvements to vital services like health and education across regional WA.
“We will continue to implement our plans for the Great Southern region to support job creation, grow the local economy and support families in the region.”
As stated by Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan:
“Our Government is committed to driving economic diversification and local job opportunities in the regions, and this Budget helps to deliver the important projects and services the Great Southern needs.
“Additional funding for tourism and the Regional Arts and Cultural Investment program will be a real boon for the Great Southern, which is fast becoming one of WA’s premier cultural and tourism regions.”