Last night, Treasurer Scott Morrison delivered the 2018 Budget.
Ken O’Dowd, the member for Flynn was in Parliament and he has provided an overview for Gladstone News this morning and we’re passing it on to you.
Follow us on Facebook for key areas of the budget and our interview with Ken O’Dowd from Canberra:
The key takeaways from the budget are best summarised as:
- Deliver tax relief to encourage and reward working Australians.
- Create more jobs, by backing small businesses, boosting exports, building vital road and rail infrastructure and making energy more affordable.
- Guarantee essential services like Medicare, hospitals, schools and care for older Australians.
- Keep Australians safe.
- Ensure the Government lives within its means.
Guaranteeing Medicare with record funding
- Medicare spending is guaranteed and increasing every year from $24 billion in 2017-18 to $28.8 billion in 2021-22 to support healthcare for every Australian.
- Absolute rock-solid commitment to Medicare with an additional $4.8 billion investment,
- Building on the Medicare Guarantee Fund established last year.
- For 2017-18, $34.4 billion has been credited to the Fund.
- Further credit of $35.3 billion will be made to meet the estimated Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) and Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) expenditure for 2018-19.
Protecting women’s safety and welfare
- Zero tolerance to violence against women
- Committing $54.4 million to services for women affected by violence and for online safety initiatives
- Additional $11.5 million for the national sexual assault, domestic and family violence counselling service 1800RESPECT over two years;
- $6.7 million to maintain funding for DV-alert to continue its domestic violence response training for community frontline workers;
- $14.2 billion over four years for the Office of the eSafety Commissioner to help make cyberspace safe for women; and
- $22 million over five years to address the abuse of older Australians, which affects up to 20 percent of elderly women.
Rural Health – Stronger Rural Health Strategy
- Government will invest $550 million in the Stronger Rural Health Strategy
- A comprehensive package, delivered over the next ten years, will fundamentally change the training and supply of rural and regional doctors
- Will transform medical training in the regions
- 3,000 additional doctors for rural Australia
- more than 3,000 additional nurses in rural general practice
- hundreds of additional allied health professionals in the regions over 10 years.
- Provide greater opportunities for Australian doctors through better teaching, training and retention
Aged Care – More Choices For a Longer Life package
- support older Australians to live longer and be better prepared, healthier, more independent and connected to their communities;
- An additional 14,000 high-level home care packages so older Australians can stay in their homes longer if they want to;
- Since the last Budget, the Turnbull Government has delivered an extra 20,000 high-level home care packages, to support people to live at home longer.
- Allowing pensioners to earn more without reducing their pension;
- Greater flexibility to use home equity to increase retirement incomes.
- We will provide 13,500 new residential aged care places and 775 short-term restorative places to be made available where they are most needed
- $60 million for capital investment.
- We will also invest $40 million to support aged care providers in regional, rural and remote Australia for urgent building and maintenance works.
Infrastructure – Roads
- Building Better Regions Fund – extended
- Successful First Round – delivered 26,000 jobs and 250 projects
- Additional $200 million now available through a third round,
- Stronger Communities Programme – EXTENDED
- Fourth round with additional $22.5 million
- Additional $3.3 billion toward the Bruce Highway – total investment now $10 billion
- Move freight more efficiently to our ports and markets
- Better connect our regions
Defence & Border Security
- Commitment to provide Defence
- Deployment of more than 140 additional AFP Counter Terrorist First Response officers at airports and a further 50 officers to provide tactical intelligence and other support.
- Upgrades to inbound air cargo and international mail screening technology.
- Improved training and accreditation of all screening staff at airports.
- $50.1 million in funding to support regional airports to upgrade security
- Ensuring safety and security at home and secure maritime borders
- Defence budget growing to two percent of GDP by 2020–21
- $36.4 billion in 2018–19 and $160.7 billion over the Forward Estimates
- Delivered $230 million package of sports and physical activity participation initiatives
- More Australians to be more active, more often
- Community sporting clubs with $29.7 million for the sports infrastructure grants program
- Community sporting clubs will share in infrastructure grants of up to $500,000 for small to medium scale projects or for improvements to existing or ageing facilities
- The Sporting Schools Program will be extended for the calendar year 2019 with a $41.7 million investment to deliver high-quality sporting activities for students and will encourage children to play sport and be active