The McGowan Government has unveiled a $46 million package for the Goldfields-Esperance region, as part of the WA Recovery Plan to drive economic and social recovery and create a pipeline of local jobs.
The Goldfields-Esperance Recovery Plan is focused on getting locals back to work and includes a significant investment in sectors including construction, manufacturing, tourism and hospitality, renewable energy, education and training, and agriculture.
It will deliver a pipeline of short and long term jobs supporting and strengthening our existing industries, as well as laying the foundation for jobs of the future.
As part of the McGowan Government’s $229 million TAFE package, the plan includes upgrades to TAFE infrastructure in the region, including:
- $10 million to Central Regional TAFE’s Kalgoorlie campus for a new Heavy Plant and Engineering Trades Workshop to expand training for mechanic and engineering trades, tailored to support resource sector needs;
- $25 million for free TAFE short courses to upskill thousands of Western Australians, with a variety of free courses available at Central Regional TAFE’s Kalgoorlie campus; and
- $32 million to expand the Lower Fees, Local Skills program and significantly reduce TAFE fees across 39 high priority courses.
The plan also includes $500,000 for major refurbishments to the Performing Arts Centre at Kalgoorlie-Boulder Community High School as part of the Major School Upgrade package.
The Goldfields-Esperance Recovery Plan includes investment in infrastructure and industry to create opportunities for local businesses and jobs for local workers.
The McGowan Government’s revamped Buy Local policy will ensure local businesses are in the box seat to carry out this work. The plan includes:
- $16.6 million towards the delivery of a new power station for Esperance;
- $5 million through the Regional Road Safety Program to upgrade 275 kilometres of Goldfields-Esperance roads with shoulder sealing and installation of audible lines, creating around 25 local jobs;
- $700,000 for upgrades to visitor facilities in national parks across the Goldfields-Esperance region including buildings, trails, camp sites and roads;
- $150,000 to upgrade the access road to Dunn Rocks beach/camp ground in Cape Le Grand National Park near Esperance;
- $400,000 to upgrade visitor facilities at Credo Station, Rowles Lagoon, Goongarrie National Park, Stokes National Park, Cape Le Grand National Park, Cape Arid National Park and Esperance Lakes Nature Reserves;
- $7 million to expand the capacity of the Joe Lord Core Library in Kalgoorlie that stores core samples that contain valuable geoscientific information for exploration companies and others seeking mineral discoveries;
- An additional $5 million to the Exploration Incentive Scheme in 2020-21 to help accelerate exploration investment in the Goldfields; and
- $10.2 million towards projects at Esperance Port to help expand the port and increase safety.
As well as supporting existing industries, the Goldfields-Esperance Recovery Plan includes a focus on driving investment in renewable energy and new technologies, to create sustainable jobs. It includes:
- $4 million of funding to transform 10 WA schools into virtual power plants, including Kalgoorlie-Boulder Community High School;
- $600,000 to install a Battery Energy System in Menzies to allow more customers to install rooftop solar systems and reduce their power bills; and
- $9.92 million for Horizon Power to deploy standalone power systems that use solar and battery technology to generate and store electricity, making power safer and more reliable for regional customers – including approximately 39 systems across the Goldfields-Esperance region.
Strengthening Western Australia’s health and community services is a vital component of the WA Recovery Plan. In the Goldfields-Esperance region, the McGowan Government will invest $18.8 million for regional renal hostels including a new hostel in Kalgoorlie.
The full list of projects can be viewed at https://inthistogether.wa.gov.au
As stated by Premier Mark McGowan:
“I thank each and every member of the Goldfields-Esperance community for their efforts and sacrifices during the pandemic.
“We must remain vigilant, but our work to reduce the spread of COVID-19 means we are in a strong position to continue the process of recovery.
“The Goldfields-Esperance Recovery Plan will drive economic and social recovery in the region to ensure it can recover stronger than ever.
“It will create a pipeline of short and long term jobs for locals and deliver huge improvements to local infrastructure and services.”