- 2021-22 State Budget provides regional WA with a record $9.1 billion infrastructure investment over the next four years
- McGowan Government delivering on election commitments in the Plan for Albany
- Albany to benefit from major $1.9 billion boost to health and mental health funding
- More than $4.2 billion delivered in the Royalties for Regions program
The McGowan Labor Government is delivering on its plan to keep Albany strong, with the State Budget investing billions to create quality local jobs, fund a pipeline of infrastructure works and deliver key services such as health and education.
The 2021-22 State Budget delivers a strong surplus which enables the McGowan Government to deliver major investments for all Western Australians - including infrastructure, hospital and mental health services, social housing and climate action initiatives.
The Budget includes a record $9.1 billion investment in regional infrastructure and $4.2 billion through Royalties for Regions, including $627 million in regional election commitments and other new regional initiatives.
It includes ongoing support for vital services across regional WA, including $463 million for regional school bus services, and $2 billion to subsidise regional electricity and water costs to keep charges in line with what metropolitan users pay.
Regional WA will benefit from a share of the $374 million State-wide investment in Aboriginal well-being.
Delivering the Plan for Albany, the McGowan Government has allocated further support for jobs, TAFE, health, schools, regional roads, tourism and community facilities.
The 2021-22 State Budget will continue efforts to revitalise WA's TAFE and training sector, with a $198 million investment per annum in regional WA over the next four years, including:
- Delivering the $17 million upgrade to South Regional TAFE's Albany campus for new trade workshops;
- Continuing the Lower fees, local skills program, which has seen an increase of 19 per cent in enrolments in the Great Southern in 2021;
- $25 million to WA TAFEs for new state-of-the-art equipment;
- $29.8 million to provide 8,000 additional VET places in schools across WA, on top of an additional 1350 VET places introduced in 2021;
- $19.2 million VET career taster program for Year 9 students; and
- $37 million towards the Employer Incentive Scheme in regional WA.
The McGowan Government will continue to focus on delivering high-quality healthcare for all Western Australians, regardless of where they live, including:
- $1.9 billion investment in health and mental health to improve services throughout WA, including more doctors and nurses in regional WA;
- $19.7 million for the Patient Assisted Travel Scheme (PATS), increasing the accommodation subsidy to $100 per night, and increasing escort eligibility for people from vulnerable and disadvantaged groups, including women travelling to give birth;
- Albany's Acute Psychiatric Unit will receive a share of $1.7 million for upgrades;
- $10.9 million for the Royal Flying Doctor Service to upgrade aircraft engines; and
- $9.2 million for Strong Spirit Strong Mind.
The McGowan Government will continue its strong investment in job creating projects to drive economic development and tourism, including:
- $3.3 million for tourism infrastructure at The Gap, Torndirrup National Park, to meet demand, including a larger car park, new toilets, trails in nearby sites, kiosk for commercial outlet opportunity and creation of an entrance portal;
- $3.2 million for walking, hiking and mountain bike trails in the Mount Adelaide and Mount Clarence tourism precincts;
- $19.8 million across the State to make air travel for regional residents more affordable;
- $200 million to improve agricultural supply chains by upgrading the State's freight transport network;
- $100 million Investment Attraction and New Industries Fund;
- $120 million for more than 150 frontline officers to speed up project approvals;
- $12.1 million to implement the regional component of the Jina: Western Australian Aboriginal Tourism Action Plan 2021-25;
- $45 million to expand the Aboriginal Rangers Program;
- Continuing the successful $40 million Regional Economic Development grants program, which since 2018 has invested over $2.4 million in 28 projects in the Great Southern, helping to create over 390 local jobs;
- $12.9 million boost to regional arts programs;
- $15 million for the Agriculture Climate Resilience Fund;
- $15.1 million to strengthen WA's biosecurity capabilities; and
- $3 million towards the Wine Industry Export Growth Partnership.
The State Budget also includes important investment in quality education for young people in the regions, including:
- $1.5 billion will be spent each year to provide regional students with a quality education, in addition to $427.5 million over the next four years for refurbishments, upgrades and new builds for regional primary and secondary schools;
- $7.5 million to upgrade the administration block and build new English and Maths blocks at Albany Senior High School;
- $1 million for a repurposed STEM classroom at Albany Senior High School;
- $1.5 million for a new STEM classroom at North Albany Senior High School; and
- $85,000 for a repurposed STEM classroom and equipment for students at Mount Lockyer Primary School, while delivering the $16.6 million rebuild.
After delivering record investment in regional roads over the past four years, the McGowan Government will oversee another significant investment into regional roads, including:
- $4.5 billion for major road projects and programs throughout regional WA:
- $175 million for the Albany Ring Road, already under construction;
- $196,000 to improve the Drummond Street/Lambert Street intersection in Lockyer, constructing a pedestrian crossing to improve safety. This includes relocation of parking bays at Parklands Primary School, install kerbing, signs, pedestrian path and ramps;
- $65,000 to install embayed parking bays on Barnesby Drive in Yakamia, and improve safety around the Yakamia Primary School;
- $74,000 to formalise intersection boundaries at Baxter Road/Windsor Road, Wellstead, with kerbing, street lighting, and defined entry and exit to service station; and
- Over $28 million for the Regional Road Safety Program to invest in repairing, rebuilding and road safety treatments on more than 320 kilometres of roads in the Great Southern.
Albany will share in a $17.8 million investment for the placement of 36 additional career firefighters in Geraldton, Albany and Kalgoorlie-Boulder.
Social and public housing in the Albany suburb of Spencer Park will receive a $4 million upgrade.
The 2021-22 State Budget also includes significant investment to help keep regional Western Australians active, healthy and connected with their communities, including a $1.6 million renovation of the Albany Surf Lifesaving Club.
For more information, visit https://www.ourstatebudget.wa.gov.au
Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan:
"My Government's responsible financial management is enabling us to invest in the regions and keep Albany strong - creating local jobs, building a pipeline of infrastructure works and supporting vital services like health and education.
"We're funding our Plan for Albany to keep the regional economy growing, while delivering on our election commitments for the local community.
"Our WA Jobs Plan preferences Western Australians for local jobs first, as we work to diversify the regional economy in Albany, attract investment and build a skilled workforce for the future.
"The 2021-22 State Budget is working to deliver a strong and vibrant region, with quality local services that give people every reason to live, work and raise a family in Albany."
Comments attributed to Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan:
"Our Government is continuing to build strong and resilient regional communities, working to diversify our regional economies and create local jobs.
"We are delivering on our election commitments, and helping our regions to embrace future opportunities and 21st century industries."
Premier's office - 6552 5000
Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6200