ANOTHER healthy regional spend propped up this year's state budget, though with many headline items already underway, onlookers might assume government has a few tricks up its sleeve for the 2019 election.
The Government will create the Snowy Hydro Legacy Fund with $4.15 billion won from the Federal Government's buy-out of NSW’s share of Snowy Hydro. The Government has promised the money will be spent in regional NSW. Deputy Premier John Barilaro has already indicated the money will be an "inter-generational spend".
The Government is funding 880 new teachers, 1000 more nurses and midwives, and 300 more doctors. After the success of the Active Kids $100 subsidy, the Government has announced a $100 Creative Kids subsidy for after school cultural programs.
Regional small businesses will win with the payroll tax threshhold being lifted to $1million from $750,000, benefitting 5000 businesses.
Spending on roads and health continues to grow with a Rural Health Infrastructure Program helping with upgrades to Tenterfied, Dungog. Scone and Gloucester hospitals. Griffith has won $35m to upgrade its base hospital, but this appears to fall short of a promise of a $200 million spend. Wagga continues to grow as a health base with another $20m for its major hospital redevelopment.
There will be $135 million to deliver stronger community infrastructure in regional NSW.
The Government has already announced it will seal the Silver City Highway and the Cobb Highway upgrades with $40m.
There will be an increase of 50 additional highway patrol officers in the regions.
Spending in main regional areas includes:
Central West and Orana
- $20m for overtaking lanes along the Newell Highway
- $59.2m for stage 3 and 4 of the Dubbo Hospital redvelopment ($150m total cost)
- $25m to continue construction of Mudgee hospital
- $7m to help implement the native vegetation regime
- $5.2m to continue Broken Hill Hospital and Dental Facility Reconfiguration
- $26.7m in the next year for the ongoing sealing of Silver City and Cobb Highways
- $667,000 for the BRoken Hill Core Library Upgrade
New England-North West
- $45.9m for continued redevelopment works at Lismore Hospital
- $21m for continued works at Inverell Hospital
- $26.7m for heavy duty pavement upgrade between Mungle Back Creek and Boggabilla
- $20m for New England Highway Upgrade at Bolivia Hill
- $18.1m upgrade for Keepit Dam
- $50.9m to continue Tweed hospital upgrade
- $16.8m for Grafton Ambulatory Care Centre redevelopment
- $15.5m for Coffs Harbour Hospital redevelopment
- $62m for continued work on additional bridge over Clarence River at Grafton
- $18.3m for replacement of Brunxner Highway Bridge at Tabulum
Hunter and Manning Valley
- $38m for Scone bypass
- $48m for heavy vehicle safety and flood alleviation works on the Golden Highway
- $10.7m for continued upgrade of Taree Police Station
- $9.1m for Manning Base Hospital redevelopment
- $23.5m for Maitland Hospital
- $12.7m to complete Bulli Aged Care centre of Excellence
- $101m to start Berry to Bombaderry upgrade
- $15.3m to continue planning for a new Nowra Bridge
- $30m for Goulburn Hospital Redevelopment
- $30m for Batemans Bay Bridge replacement
- $23.5m to complete Eden breakwater Wharf Extension
- $6m for Griffith Hospital Redevelopment this year
- $20m to continue wagga Wagga Base Hospital redevelopment
- $19.5m for Gocup Road upgrade
- $16m for Cobb Highway bridge between Echuca and Moama
- $31m for Nimmie Carira System Enhanced Enviro Water delivery project