The McGowan Government is delivering its plan for the Wheatbelt 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 Wheatbelt region, including:
- $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);
- $275 million for the Bindoon Bypass along Great Northern Highway;
- $18 million to upgrade Great Eastern Highway from Walgoolan to Southern Cross;
- $87.5 million for the Wheatbelt Secondary Freight Route;
- $2 million to establish a national park in the Helena and Aurora Ranges as part of Plan for Our Parks;
- $12 million State-wide injection to Tourism Western Australia to expand promotion of WA overseas;
- $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 Wheatbelt region. The Budget includes:
- $42.5 million in additional State-wide funding for the Methamphetamine Action Plan;
- $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;
- $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;
- $8.1 million for the Suicide Prevention Strategy;
- $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 Wheatbelt and progressing its election commitments. Initiatives that are already underway in the Wheatbelt include:
- $17.2 million towards road safety treatments to the Great Eastern Highway;
- $22.3 million on upgrades to Indian Ocean Drive;
- $10 million of funding allocated to AgLime transport networks to support the safe and efficient travel of freight vehicles;
- $3.7 million to support educational programs at Muresk Institute of Agriculture;
- $4.8 million investment into the Narrogin and Northam Cancer Centres to strengthen cancer services in regional WA;
- $16.7 million for the redevelopment and upgrade of Merredin District Hospital in the Eastern Wheatbelt District and the Narrogin District Health Campus in the Upper Great Southern District;
- $1.7 million for a renal dialysis program;
- $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 Wheatbelt, to create jobs and provide local families with the services they need.
“The Budget includes significant funding for the Wheatbelt, that will deliver strong outcomes for the agricultural sector and $42.5 million in additional funding for the Methamphetamine Action Plan.
“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 Wheatbelt, 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 Wheatbelt needs.
“Our investment in agriculture will help to rebuild capability at the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, ensuring government can continue to deliver critical services and support to our farming industries.”