PUTTING PEOPLE FIRST IN ST ALBANS
When the Andrews Labor Government was elected, we promised to put people first. As our state begins its recovery from the global pandemic, people will continue to be our priority.
The Victorian Budget 2020/21 delivers on the investments that will see our community recover – and come back even stronger.
As kids get back into the classroom, this Budget delivers the single biggest investment ever in our schools – making sure students have the classrooms, libraries and learning spaces they deserve. This includes a $6.93 million upgrade for Monmia Primary School, with students to benefit from an upgrade including the creation of a brand-new STEM space.
A further $10 million will benefit students at Jackson School, with an upgrade including new additional permanent buildings. The kids at Furlong Park School for Deaf Children are also set to benefit, with $9.43 million to deliver the next stage of the school’s master plan.
The Government’s investment will also support local jobs, with our school infrastructure build expected to create more than 6,400 jobs across the state.
A further $1.6 billion will transform support for students with disability, doubling the number of students receiving extra support to 55,000, and creating up to 1,730 jobs across the state by 2025.
This Budget also invests in the expansion of the Sunshine Law Courts, making the justice system more accessible and efficient for those who need it, while creating local construction jobs.
This year we’ve come to appreciate our local parks and playgrounds more than ever. As Victorians spend more time outdoors with the people they love, this Budget invests in our community spaces including Brimbank Park. This investment will deliver upgraded facilities and improvements to make the park more accessible and inclusive.
This Budget will ensure Victorians have the mental health support they need as we get on with fixing a broken system. Close to $870 million will be invested in mental health, including implementing the Royal Commission into Mental Health’s interim report findings and recommendations. This includes 52 new acute mental health beds for Sunshine Hospital – delivering vital care for local families.
We’re also getting on with delivering the Airport Rail Link, a vital project for the West, which will connect travelers and commuters to their destinations with far greater efficiency. Sunshine station will transform into a super-hub, forming the home of the Airport Rail Link, and creating 8,000 jobs with works to begin this year. The Link will see 10-minute turn-up-and-go services, running from the Melbourne Airport through the heart of the city. This $5 billion investment will see Sunshine become a gateway to Victoria, and the world.
To help get more Victorians back into work, the Labor Government is setting itself an ambitious target – creating 400,000 new jobs by 2025, half of them by 2022.
Our new Jobs for Victoria initiative will help locals find a new job – and with it, security, stability and certainty. This includes $250 million to partner with employers to cover the wages of at least 10,000 new workers. These positions will be for Victorians hardest hit by this pandemic, including women, young people, retrenched workers and people who have been long-term unemployed.
This investment will also deliver targeted and tailored support for those who need it – such as mentoring, career counselling or more intensive support.
And because we know too many Victorians are having to choose between going to work sick and losing wages, the Labor Government will invest $5 million to develop a new Secure Work Pilot Scheme. Once in place, the two-year pilot will provide up to five days of sick and carer’s pay at the national minimum wage for casual or insecure workers in priority industries.
This year’s Budget will help nearly one million families save hundreds on their power bill. Concession card holders, such as Victorians receiving JobSeeker payments, will be eligible for a one-off $250 payment to help cover the cost of their energy bills.
An extra 250,000 low-income households will benefit from new more efficient heating and cooling, while heating, cooling or hot water systems will be upgraded across an extra 35,000 social housing homes – reducing bills for tenants and making winter and summer more comfortable.
The Labor Government’s Solar Homes will also be expanded to an extra 42,000 rooftop solar rebates plus 14,500 solar batteries, cutting power bills for local families. And for the very first time, small businesses will also be eligible.
We’re also delivering the biggest investment in public and community housing in Australia, ever. This investment will build more than 12,000 new homes – making sure thousands of Victorians have a place to call home, and thousands more Victorians have a job. The City of Brimbank is a priority area for investment, with procurement starting straight away to build new homes.
Even with kids back at school, the balancing act that many families know all too well isn’t easy. That’s why this Budget will make kinder free in 2021 and deliver outside school hours care at up to 400 extra schools, saving parents money and giving them greater flexibility when it comes to work and care.
We’re also investing more than $1 billion for children and families at risk, including targeted support to help families stay together.
A further $235 million will build our Recovery Workforce, creating 500 new jobs across mental health, family violence, health and child protection with hundreds more new training opportunities, so Victorians have the support they need as we recover from this pandemic.
We’ll also strengthen and expand virtual care technology, making it easier for busy families to access support.
This is a Budget to repair, recover and make us stronger than before. This is a Budget, and a Government, that puts people first.
Quotes attributable to Member for St Albans Natalie Suleyman
“This Budget will help locals reskill and find new opportunity, giving them security and certainty about their future.”
“Upgrades at Monmia Primary School, Jackson School and Furlong Park School for Deaf Children will ensure our kids have great local schools, while also creating new local jobs.”