Jobs and tax cuts are on the cards for low and middle income earners, following Tuesday night’s federal budget.
70,000 new apprenticeships are at the heart of the $87 billion cash splash, to boost Australia’s economy as the coronavirus pandemic continues.
The aged-care sector is also set to receive more than $17 billion over the next five years, in a bid to address serious concerns raised over about the care of older Australian’s through the recent Royal Commission into the sector and during the pandemic.
The Government’s committed to extending the JobTrainer program for another 12 months, in a bid to drive the unemployment rate back to pre-pandemic levels.
Other winners in this budget include Small Business, with incentive to innovate and grow, people with poor mental health with spending to focus on new types of support services and Women with moves to improve better safety and respect in the workplace.
Locally, the Federal Government has committed more than $167 million in funding for major road works and the stage 2A of Light Rail.
Canberra’s cultural institutions are also in line for a $70 million cash injection, to help them recover amid the pandemic.
ACT Liberal Senator, Zed Seselja said the Government budget is an economic recovery plan for the country, that’s also delivering for Canberra.
“We’re also seeing 5,500 more public service jobs, we’re seeing more jobs in the private sector, tax cuts or low and middle income earners which could mean around $2,160 more in the pockets of families.”
All of that will of course come at a cost, with a deficit of more than $106 billion predicted in this budget.
There’s some good news in that figure through, with current estimates coming in more $50 billion better off than originally expected back in December.
Despite the bid spend there are some losers this time around.
The recreation and culture sector as well as national parks will see a 19% drop in funding over the next four years.
Worse again for the sports sector, with a 42% drop in the same time period.
The ACT Government has overall welcomed the spending here in the Territory.
However, Chief Minister, Andrew Barr said while the budget appears big on announcements, he’ll wait to see if the Government actually comes through.
“This is an election Budget.”
“I have been heartened over the past few months that the Commonwealth has begun to recognise how important Canberra is for our region – we are the major health, education and economic hub for the ACT and southern NSW, as well as the focal point of our nation.”
Last night’s budget is delivered based on the assumptions made by Treasury.
It’s been designed on the idea that all Australian adults who wish to have a covid vaccine will have done so by the end of the year, meaning there shouldn’t be any big outbreaks of the virus.
It’s also assumed that Australia won’t see the gradual return of international travel until at least the middle of 2022.
Labor Member for Fenner and Shadow Assistant Treasurer, Andrew Leigh thinks this budget is a good marketing exercise, delivering on hype and headlines.
“The Government’s being very coy about the timeline for the vaccine rollout, refusing to commit and refusing to put in place the certainty that Canberra needs to open international tourism and to help hire education.”
However, Leigh has welcomed the decision around the staffing cap in the public service.
The opposition will deliver its budget reply later this week.