Tuesday, 29 March 2022

Budget to help drive economic growth in Hinkler

Targeted cost of living relief, support to train more apprentices, as well as investments in infrastructure announced in the 2022-23 Budget will help drive economic growth in Hinkler. 

Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt welcomed tonight’s Budget which will help create more jobs, get more people in their own home, guarantees the essential services and keeps Australian’s safe. 

“I know people have been doing it tough with fuel prices hitting $2 a litre and transport and supply issues impacting people’s grocery bills,” Mr Pitt said. 

“That’s why we are cutting the fuel excise by 50 percent for six months to help ease that pressure and a one-off payment of $250 for pensioners, carers, veterans, job seekers, eligible self-funded retirees and concession card holders will be paid automatically in April. 

“A one-off cost-of-living $420 tax offset will also benefit more than 10 million people across the country from 1 July when they lodge their tax return.  

“Combined with the low and middle income tax offset (LMITO), eligible low- and middle-income earners will receive up to $1,500 for a single income household, or up to $3,000 for a dual income household.” 

Mr Pitt said the Coalition Government is delivering the projects and infrastructure needed to create local jobs and new economic opportunities in the electorate. 

“An investment of $7.7 million to construct new common-user infrastructure at the Port of Bundaberg as part of the Hinkler Regional Deal, builds on the Government’s existing $10 million commitment to this project.  

“This project is one of the missing pieces to the infrastructure puzzle at the Port of Bundaberg, which has been underutilised for many years. 

“As announced in February, up to $600 million has been committed to restore Paradise Dam and fix up the State Labor Government’s mess, and give water security back to local growers. 

“An additional $500 million is being invested in the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure (LRCI) Program – this program has already delivered the Changing Places facility in Hervey Bay and the Urangan Community Centre upgrade is almost complete. 

“A further $22.7 million has been committed for an additional round of the Stronger Communities Programme (SCP), delivering more funding for small capital projects. This program has delivered  BBQ trailers for fundraising, outside broadcast equipment for community radio, little libraries, and upgrades which local not-for-profit organisations would have to sell a lot of sausages to raise funds on their own.” 

As well as record levels of funding for health, aged care, education, and disability support, Mr Pitt said the Coalition Government was ensuring more families can access paid parental leave (PPL). 

“Eligible working parents will be able to share up to 20 weeks of fully flexible leave to suit their circumstances and single parents will also be able to access the full 20 weeks of leave. 

“The Government is also broadening the PPL income test to include a household income threshold of $350,000 per year which will particularly support women who are the primary earner and do not currently have access to employer‑funded parental leave.” 

Mr Pitt said the Government would continue to support people buy their first home with the expansion of the successful Home Guarantee Scheme with 35,000 guarantees each year, up from 10,000. 

“I know the housing situation locally has been difficult recently, however this expanded program will support people to buy a home with a deposit as low as five percent and help single parent families with a deposit as low as two percent.  

“A new Regional Home Guarantee will support 10,000 places each year – starting on 1 October 2022 – for non-first home buyers and permanent residents to purchase or construct a new home in regional areas, subject to the passage of legislation.”  

Mr Pitt said the Budget was also backing local businesses to give them the confidence to take on new trainees and apprentices with a new incentive scheme. 

“A trade can take you anywhere and we have record numbers of trade apprentices in Australia right now. The new incentive scheme which starts on 1 July 2022 will provide wage subsidies to employers but also a $5,000 payment to new apprentices and trainees. 

Tonight we’ve also announced a 20 percent bonus deduction for small businesses which upskill their employees and funding for up to 800,000 additional training places for Australians. 

“This Budget provides the foundation to grow the economy to create more jobs, provide opportunities for people to upskill or take on a trade, support the community and guarantee the essential services that Australians rely on.” 

To check what cost-of-living relief you might be eligible for visit: https://budget.gov.au/2022-23/content/cost-of-living-tool.htm

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