Budget 2018: Good for Canberra, Good for the Nation

The ACT is a big winner in tonight’s budget, with record investment from the Coalition Government in our hospitals and schools, a huge boost for our roads, as well as tax relief for ACT families.

“Under the Coalition Government’s economic plan record jobs are being created, investment is rising and the budget is strengthening.  This means that we can guarantee the essential services Australians rely on and the story in the ACT is no different,” Senator the Hon Zed Seselja said.

This budget will reward working Canberrans with lower, fairer and simpler taxes, starting with low and middle income earners;

  • The Government’s income tax relief will benefit 10 million Australians next year alone, with 4.4 million Australians receiving the maximum relief of $530 per year. Over 190,000 working Australians living in the ACT stand to benefit from this tax relief next year.

We are backing businesses to invest and create more jobs, building on our legislated tax cuts for small and medium enterprise, supporting businesses to compete globally, delivering infrastructure that industry and workers rely on; and targeting incentives to promote research, development and new technology;

  • Our plan for a stronger economy will support more jobs for families in the ACT and their children, and set the ACT up for the future. Already in the ACT, there are 17,300 more people in work since the Coalition was elected.

Our rolling $75 billion transport infrastructure plan will connect our nation, reduce congestion, help get goods to market, and keep our roads safe. The Coalition Government is delivering infrastructure and capital projects across the ACT, including:

  • $100 million to improve safety and reduce congestion on the Monaro Highway, building on the Government’s previous $1 million commitment for planning the upgrades;
  • $100 million as part of the Roads of Strategic Importance initiative to further upgrade the Barton Highway corridor, benefitting NSW and the ACT. This builds on the Government’s existing commitment of $50 million towards the Barton Highway;
  • $130 million in 2017-18 on ICT Capability upgrades for the Department of Home Affairs and the Bureau of Meteorology;
  • $41.1 million for Road Blackspots, the Roads to Recovery and Bridges Renewal Programs;
  • $16.6 million for capital maintenance of the National Gallery of Australia; and
  • $17.1 million to increase the essential maintenance of the National Capital estate by the National Capital Authority.

We are guaranteeing the essential services that Australians rely on including providing record funding for hospitals and schools, a comprehensive approach to aged care so older Australians can live healthier, more independent and safer lives, and guaranteed funding for disability services;

  • Under the fully funded hospitals agreement, ACT public hospitals will receive $2.6 billion over the five years to 2024-25, delivering an additional $636 million in funding compared to the previous five years and nearly double what the Labor Party promised in their last year of Government.
  • In 2016-17 in the ACT, there were almost 297,000 more bulk billed GP attendances compared to 2012-13.
  • The Turnbull Government’s support for students and families means that in the ACT we will deliver record levels of support including $3.6 billion in funding for our schools over the next ten years; and a new, simplified Childcare Subsidy on 2 July 2018, with over 17,500 families in the ACT who stand to benefit from these changes.
  • Australians with a disability will be supported through a fully-funded National Disability Insurance Scheme. Once fully implemented in 2020, over 7,600 participants in the ACT will benefit from the certainty and flexibility of support it provides.

“The Public Service is also thriving with an additional 912 ASL positions expected to be created in the next 12 months across Government agencies, many of which will be in Canberra,” Senator the Hon Zed Seselja said.

“Our plan for a stronger economy benefits all Australians including those here in the ACT. After record jobs growth, the proportion of working age Australians now dependent on welfare has fallen to 15.1 per cent – the lowest level in over twenty five years,”

“Improved compliance and better targeting is helping to get welfare spending under control and we will continue to make sure that everyone, including multinationals pay their fair share of tax.

“Our record of responsible budget management means that under our plan, Australians can plan for their future with confidence.”