The bottom line for the 2022 Federal Budget is $100bn better than predicted twelve months ago and is the reason the Government has the flexibility to address the spike in the cost of living according to the Member fo Grey Rowan Ramsey.
“The Government is introducing a new temporary, targeted and responsible cost of living package to take the pressure off household budgets led by the immediate 50% reduction on fuel excise for the next 6 months,” he said.
“It will save consumers 22 cents a litre every time they fill up their car and help hold down transport costs. The savings for consumers in Grey are likely to be around $30m.
“The $250 cash payments for pensioners, carers and jobseekers will be welcomed, as will the $420 tax off-set for low and middle income earners who will also appreciate the legislated tax cuts which kick in on July 1st.
“In the more localised context, I am very happy with the commitment of a further $86m for the upgrading of major highways in Grey. It continues with the astonishing amount of work we have already doing or is in the pipeline, more than $1b across the electorate.
“There is barely a major road in electorate that has not seen significant work on it over the last five years.
“The decision to allow all regional MRI services to access Medicare payments is a huge breakthrough. I have fought to try and obtain extra licences in the country and seen private investment in machines deterred by the lack of a licence. I expect this to lead to more machines in Grey providing easier and cheaper access for our people.”
Mr Ramsey welcomed tax incentives for business.
“Small and medium businesses stand to gain with 20% tax incentives provided to invest in staff training and the digital economy and the payments of up to $15k for employers to employ an apprentice who will each receive a $5k to help them set up.,” he said.
“For families the Paid Parenting Scheme has been extended to 20 weeks and will be fully flexible so either partner can access it.
“A further 80 training positions for rurally based medical students are being created to help address regional doctor shortages.
“Local councils will be very happy the Local Roads and Infrastructure Program will have a two year extension. It has been a very significant program for them.
“And very pleasingly for those of us that continue to lobby for more mobile phone stations another $811m over five years for more mobile phone towers on our transport routes as part of a $1.3bn allocated to extend telecommunications.
“We have already had 49 new towers provided under the Mobile Blackspots program and I am looking forward to getting more.
“This is a good budget, reflecting great management of the economy, the economic benefits of sub 4% unemployment while also recognising the cost of living spike people are dealing with.”
Key allocations in Grey include:
- $10m Rural Roads Package – Safety Package
- $60m Targeted Investments to Improve National Supply Chain Resilience
- $16.2m Port Augusta to Perth – South Australia – Future PrioritiesThe additional $16.2m to complete works currently underway funding for the Port Augusta to Perth corridor which comprises the Eyre Highway.
The $10m Rural Roads Package is targeting critical areas of the regional and rural South Australian Road transport network to improve pavement conditions, install overtaking lanes, improve access, provide shoulder sealing and upgrade road junctions.
The additional funding will ensure that all priority works are completed.
The $60m National Supply Chain project will deliver a targeted package of work that will improve sections along each of the Stuart and Eyre Highways that are subject to flooding to improve the resilience of the network.
Work will include upgrades to sections of the Highways to improve drainage and ensure that these
national freight routes which are key to interstate supply chains to the North and West of Australia
remain open. Works will include improvements at Glendambo, Lake Windabout and Woocalla Creek along the Stuart Highway and a section 20km west of Kimba along the Eyre Highway.
Other key Budget measures include-
- One-off Cost of Living Tax Offset – From 1 July this year, more than 10 million individuals will receive a one-off $420 cost of living tax offset. As a result, eligible low- and middle-income earners will be up to $1,500 better off for a single income household, or $3,000 better off for dual income household.
- One-off Cost of Living Payment – To help Australians most in need the Government is providing a one-off, income-tax-exempt payment of $250 to 6 million eligible pensioners, welfare recipients, veterans and eligible concession card holders in April 2022.
- Another 40,000 aged care home care packages, 34,000 additional training places, 7,000 new personal care workers and 8,400 respite services will be rolled out this calendar year.
- $15.4 million to deliver a second round of the oversubscribed and in-demand Agricultural Show Development Grants Program.
- An additional $80m over 10 years to support the RFDS and ensure the very best healthcare reaches all Australians.
- Funding for 80 additional Commonwealth supported places will enable more country students to study medicine on rural campuses.
- $2.8 billion to support Australian apprenticeships, building on the $13.3 billion spent on apprenticeships and traineeships since 2013.
- $5,000 payments to new apprentices.
- Up to $15,000 in wage subsidies for employers who take apprentices on.
- An additional $500 million in the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure (LRCI) Program, a major boost to communities across the country.
- $1.3 billion telecommunications package to expand mobile coverage across 8,000km of regional transport routes.
- $880 million to better connect regional Australia with ports, airports and other transport hubs.
- A further $27.3 million to help deliver the government’s vision of a well-functioning voluntary biodiversity market with new income streams for farmers, based on lessons learnt during the Agriculture Biodiversity Stewardship Pilots.
Media Contact: Leonie Lloyd-Smith 08 8633 1744
30 March 2022