THE HON WARREN SNOWDON MP
Member for Lingiari
Minister for Indigenous Health, Rural and Regional Health and Regional Services Delivery
11 May 2010
The Rudd Government will get the budget back in the black three years ahead of schedule and ahead of every major advanced economy.
Member for Lingiari, Warren Snowdon, said he was thrilled to be part of a government that had worked so hard to keep the economy in a position of strength.
“I am proud at the way that our community in Lingiari pulled together to keep people in jobs and to help Australia avoid recession when the rest of the world was tumbling off a cliff.”
“This budget builds on that strength to deliver for the people in my community in Lingiari while getting the budget back to surplus three years early – which is an extraordinary achievement.”
Mr Snowdon said the Budget’s highlight is the way it has converted Australia’s successes during the global recession into even lower unemployment for working families in Lingiari.
“The strong position of the nation’s economy means that the people of Lingiari will be better positioned than anywhere else in the world to take advantage of the opportunities ahead.”
Mr Snowdon said that the 2010-11 Budget would fully fund over the forward estimates the recently announced historic health and hospitals reform.
The Budget included an additional $2.2 billion investment in the health system that takes the Government’s new investment in health reform to $7.3 billion over five years, and $23 billion over the rest of the decade.
The Budget’s new health announcements include investments that will improve access to General Practitioners (GPs) and primary health care, including better after hours services, 23 new GP Super Clinics, and upgrades to around 425 GP and primary health care clinics across the nation.
The Government also announced $523 million additional support and training for our nurses (including aged care nurses) – the backbone of our health system.
Also included in the Budget is a $467 million investment to modernise our health and hospital system through a new eHealth initiative.
The introduction of personally controlled electronic health records for every Australian who wants one will mean less paperwork and better services no matter where you move to through your life.
The Government is taking responsibility for the majority share of hospital costs and full policy and funding responsibility of GP and primary care services and aged care services.
This will provide an increasing benefit to states over time, starting with a guaranteed minimum of $15.6 billion in additional growth costs absorbed by the Commonwealth from 2014-15 to 2019-20.
“I want to see the people of Lingiari live in a community where they feel confident about the health care their loved ones will get when they really need it.”
“This enormous commitment to health and hospital investment will go a long way to bringing that to the people of Lingiari.”
Mr Snowdon said that huge injection into superannuation and small business tax relief released as part of the government’s tax reform package was also a key component of the Budget.
“I am immensely proud to be part of a government that values to highly the importance of a dignified and secure retirement income”
“And it is great to see small business recognised as the engine room of the economy with a big tax boost after the crucial heavy lifting they did during the global recession that kept so many people Lingiari in work.”
“It’s great to see small businesses in Lingiari get tax relief and simplification through instant write-off of assets worth up to $5,000, so they can spend more time with their customers and less time managing their bookkeeping.”
In further tax reform announced in the Budget, from 1 July 2012 the Government will make it easier to fill out tax returns by offering a standard deduction.
Mr Snowdon said that the new optional standard deduction will mean you could get $500 instead of having to claim work-related expense each tax season, with this increasing to $1,000 from 1 July 2013.
“Very soon you can soon forget about the hassle of shoeboxes full of receipts and the costs getting your tax done at the end of each year.”
Mr Snowdon said that the Budget would also contain a new $652 million fund to support renewable energy and energy efficiency that will help households save on power bills.
“The government is committed to reducing our carbon pollution and tackling climate change.”
“This investment will help the people of Lingiari do their bit in reducing their carbon emissions and keeping their energy bills.”
Mr Snowdon said that the Government’s significant investment in skills and infrastructure would help to build critical capacity in the economy to create a platform for sustainable growth into the future.
“Because we worked together to come through the global recession so well, we now start from a position of strength to invest for future prosperity.”
Mr Snowdon reminded the people of Lingiari that they also have another round of income tax cuts on the way on 1 July – the third in as many years.
From 1 July this year, individuals will be able to earn up to $16,000 and not have to pay income tax (up from $11,000 in 2007-08) due to the Government’s increases to the Low Income Tax Offset.
“If you are someone on 40 or 45 grand a year, you would have received $1800 in income tax cuts since we came to office.”
“This is welcome relief to the people of Lingiari in trying to make ends meet.”
Media Contact: Alice Plate 0400 045 999