April 12, 2019 Angela Scicluna

Regional Capitals Australia Federal Election Announcement Tracker

RCA FEDERAL ELECTION ANNOUNCEMENT TRACKER

The following outlines the commitments in the 2019 Federal Election as advocated by Regional Capitals Australia.

Cities 

Regional Deals – Partnership between Federal, State and local government and the community with a focus on long-term city growth.

Coalition:

  • Fraser Coast (Hervey Bay) – $172.9 million;
  • Albury-Wodonga – $3.1 million for strategic planning with the communities.

Australian Labor Party:

  • City Partnerships –Will be created to replace the City/Regional Deals concept and will include the re-establishment of the Major Cities Unit to recommend and assess City Partnerships.
  • City/Regional Deals – The ALP has committed to honouring all signed Deals

Cities Benefitting:

  • Fraser Coast Regional Council
  • Albury City Council
  • City of Wodonga.

 

 

Migration

Migration – Use migration to attract more skilled workers to regional capital cities

Coalition:

  • Reducing migration cap from 190,000 to 160,000 places
  • Introduction of 2 new visas for skilled workers to live in regional areas

Australian Labor Party:

  • Reform the Community Sponsored Refugee Program to enable State and local governments the ability to sponsor humanitarian entrants into Australia
  • State and local governments allowed to financially support the settlement and integration of families into the community.

Cities Benefitting:

  • All Members (Coalition and Australian Labor Party funding)

 

 

Roads

Roads of Strategic Importance – Support upgrades to key road and freight corridors in regional Australia to increase network reliability and connectivity, enable inter-regional city employment opportunities

Coalition:

  • WA section of the Newman to Katherine Corridor ($70 million)
  • WA section of the Alice Springs to Halls Creek Corridor ($75 million)
  • Karratha to Tom Price Corridor ($248 million)
  • Wheatbelt Secondary Freight Network ($70 million)
  • WA section of the Port Augusta to Perth ($50 million)
  • Pinjarra Heavy Haulage Deviation – Stage 1 ($22 million)
  • Development of business cases and corridor preservation for the Westport project ($10 million commitment)

 

Australian Labor Party:

  • Queensland inland road network with a dedicated heavy vehicle road to the Port of Gladstone.
  • $1.5 billion for the Bruce Highway upgrade and extension to Cairns
  • Funding the Mackay and Rockhampton Ring Road projects.

Cities Benefitting:

  • City of Ballarat
  • Warrnambool City Council
  • City of Karratha
  • City of Greater Geraldton
  • Alice Springs Town Council.

 

Major Projects

Coalition:

  • Pacific Highway upgrades with an additional $1 billion for bypasses, duplications and lane widening in Victoria, NSW and SA;
  • An additional $400 million for safety upgrades along Newell Highway.

Australian Labor Party:

  • Upgrades for up to 3000kms of Queensland’s inland road network

 

Road Safety

Coalition:

  • $2.2 billion over the next 4 years to fix traffic black spots, road maintenance and bridges. Establishment of an Office of Road Safety.

Australian Labor Party:

  • Upgrades to the Bass Murchison Highways
  • Extend Bruce Highway to Cairns
  • Fund Mackay and Rockhampton Ring Road projects. 

Cities Benefitting:

  • All members (Coalition and Australian Labor Party funding)

 

Roads to Recovery– Road maintenance

Coalition:

  • $500 million over four years (in addition to the $2 billion previously committed for 2019 -2024).

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

 

Bridges Renewal Program

Coalition:

  • An additional $100 million (over four years) to upgrade and repair bridges for freight activity.

Australian Labor Party:

  • Deliver up to 300 bridges in regional Queensland

Cities Benefitting:

  • Queensland Members

 

 

 

Infrastructure – Liveability and Jobs

Regional Growth Fund

Coalition:

  • No new money in 2019/20 budget

Australian Labor Party:

  • $15 million to honour upgrade commitment for Norco’s Lismore Ice Cream Business Unit

Cities Benefitting

  • Lismore City Council

 

Stronger Communities Fund

Coalition:

  • $22.7 million for round five.

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

 

Building Better Regions Fund

Coalition:

  • $200 million (over four years) for round four;
  • $22.7 million (over four years) for the stronger regions fund.

Australian Labor Party:

  • Commitment of $6 million to Lismore stage 2 of Lismore Regional Sports Hub’s Oakes and Crozier Ovals

Cities Benefitting:

  • All Members (Coalition funding)

 

Decentralisation

Decentralisation of Government Departments

Coalition:

  • Murray Darling Basin Authority: 76 jobs across Griffith, Mildura, Murray Bridge and Goondiwindi;
  • Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities: 25 jobs will move to Orange;
  • Indigenous Business Australia: 10 jobs to their regional offices in Western Australia, Queensland and New South Wales;
  • Prime Minister and Cabinet’s Indigenous Affairs Group: 35 jobs to Broome, Coffs Harbour and Alice Springs; and
  • Aboriginal Hostels Limited: 40 new jobs in Brisbane, Rockhampton, Mackay, Townsville, Cairns, Thursday Island, Mount Isa, Darwin, Katherine, Alice Springs, Tennant Creek, Perth, Kalgoorlie, South Hedland, Broome and Derby.

Cities Benefiting:

  • Rockhampton Regional Council
  • Alice Springs Town Council
  • Shire of Broome
  • Griffith City Council,
  • Orange City Council
  • Coffs Harbour City Council
  • Mackay Regional Council
  • City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder.

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

 

Rail

Regional Rail

Coalition:

  • $2.1 billion for Geelong to Melbourne fast rail.
  • Plan to better connect regional centres with fast rail.

Cities Benefitting:

  • City of Greater Geelong

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

Faster Rail Plan

Coalition:

  • A National Faster Rail Agency to develop a 20-year plan for a fast rail network with business cases. Examples could be:
    • Melbourne to Ballarat
    • Sydney to Wollongong
    • Melbourne to Bendigo
    • Sydney to Parkes
    • Melbourne to Traralgon
    • Brisbane to Gold Coast

Australian Labor Party:

  • Buy the land corridor and build fast rail from Melbourne to Brisbane.

Greens:

  • High-speed rail authority
  • High-speed rail down East Coast (recommendations from Dept. of Infrastructure during Gillard Government) through Melbourne, Shepparton, Albury, Wagga, Canberra, Sydney, Newcastle, Karee, Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour.

 Cities Benefitting: 

  • City of Ballarat
  • City of Greater Bendigo
  • City of Greater Shepparton
  • Albury City Council
  • Wagga Wagga City Council
  • Coffs Harbour City Council
  • Orange City Council.
    • Note: Coalition and Greens

 

 

Airports

Regional Airports – $170 million for funding for upgrades and maintenance for sustainability of Regional Airports over 10 years

Coalition:

  • $100 million (over four years) in funding announced to upgrade runways and taxiways, maintain existing airport infrastructure and upgrade airport infrastructure to enable passenger planes to land at more regional airports.

Australian Labor Party:

  • $1 million to develop a business case for upgrading Rockhampton Airport to a regional international gateway.

Cities Benefitting:

  • All Members (Coalition funding)

 

 

Mobile Black Spots

Mobile Black Sports Program

Coalition:

  • $160 million for rounds five and six of the program, which aims to improve mobile phone coverage.

Australian Labor Party:

  • $2 million funding to fix mobile black spots along Summerland Way
  • $2 million funding to fix mobile black spots:
    • Wandandian to Bewong
    • Moruya to Batemans Bay
    • Broulee Road.

Cities Benefitting:

  • All Members (Coalition funding)

 

 

Regional Digital Connectivity

Regional Digital Connectivity Program

Coalition:

  • $52.6 million investment where there are gaps in the Sky Muster satellite (targeting the agriculture sector)
  • $7.4 million digital tech hub to improve digital literacy and trial new alternative voice technologies.
  • $2 million for a feasibility study to assess ways of improving digital connectivity in the WA Wheatbelt region.

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

Cities Benefitting:

  • City of Greater Geraldton

 

Regional Business

Regional and Small Publishers Innovation Fund

Coalition:

  • Continuation of existing funding

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

 

Liveability

Festivals Australia Regional Arts Program

Coalition:

  • $1.2 million for Festival Australia for projects that support partnerships, collaboration and participation in festivals in regional and remote Australia

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

Regional Arts Fund

Coalition:

  • $3.5 million to Regional Arts Australia to deliver grants and community grants to support arts programs in regional Australia

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

Cities Benefitting:

  • All Members (Coalition funding)

 

 

Education

Higher Education – Demand-driven university places, scholarships for regional students, funding for Regional Study Hubs and Regional Higher Education Expect Advisory committee

Coalition:

  • Destination Australia Program – 4700 student scholarships of $15,000 each for students studying in regional universities ($70 million)
  • Support 1200 domestic and international students each year with the costs of studying at a higher education or VET campus in regional Australia

Australian Labor Party:

  • $1 billion funding for TAFE and Apprentices
  • $200 million to rebuild and upgrade TAFE campuses across the country
  • University places will be uncapped, with regional campuses able to grow in line with student demand

Cities Benefitting:

  • All Members

 

Regional Study Hubs

Australian Labor Party:

  • 22 new community-owned Regional Study Hubs.

 

Schools and Pre-Schools:

Australian Labor Party:

  • $14 billion to fund public schools and universal access to kindergarten for every three and four-year-old in Australia.

Cities Benefitting:

  • All Members

 

Health

Fighting Cancer

Coalition:

  • $45.5 million in funding for new regional cancer treatment centres

Australian Labor Party:

  • $2.3 billion cancer plan, including $660 million for six million cancer scans; $433 million to cover specialist consultations over 4 years.
  • New MRI machines to be provided to communities, with cancer scans conducted with MRI machines that meet national standards to be covered by Medicare
  • Affordable drug guarantee – every drug recommended by the independent expert to be listed on the PBS
  • $20 million for the Right to Trial program, which would make it easier for blood cancer patients to access drug trials.

Cities Benefitting:

  • All Members

 

Regional Doctors

Coalition:

  • $62 million in funding for a National Rural Generalist Pathway for trainee doctors

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

Rural Health Commissioner

Coalition:

Continuation of service

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

 

New Hospitals

Coalition:

  • $50 million for a women’s and children’s hospital in Geelong, for which the State Government has pledged another $110 million.
  • The hospital will be built on the site of the former Geelong Private Hospital.

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

 

Insurance and Medicare

Australian Labor Party:

  • Cap rises in private health insurance premiums to 2% at most per year for the next two years

Greens:

  • $5.8 billion for Medicare-funded dental care for young people, aged pensioners, full benefit recipients and concession card holders.

Cities Benefitting:

  • All Members (Australian Labor Party and Greens funding)

 

Mental Health

Coalition:

  • $15 million for mental health and specialist clinics at Wodonga Hospital.
  • Funding for Red Dust to expand services in Alice Springs and surrounding remote communities
  • Headspace funding for 20 new centres

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

Cities Benefitting:

  • Alice Springs Town Council
  • Albury City Council
  • City of Wodonga

 

 

Infrastructure

Coalition:

  • $24.6 million towards health-related infrastructure, including Albury-Wodonga Cardiac Catheterisation Laboratory.
  • $25.7 million for Ambulatory Care Centre at Alice Springs Hospital.
  • $7 million for new Fraser Coast Hospice as part of Hinkler Regional Deal.

Australian Labor Party:

  • $1.8 billion to fund public hospitals.
  • National Disability Insurance Agency raising the cap on staff numbers.

Cities benefitting:

  • All Members (Coalition and Australian Labor Party funding)

 

Rehabilitation

Coalition:

  • $6.6 million over five years to support alcohol and drug rehabilitation centres, including a two-year pilot of psychosocial treatment model in Rockhampton.

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

Cities Benefitting:

  • Rockhampton Regional Council

 

Training and Research

Coalition:

  • $18 million for Charles Sturt and Western Sydney universities to establish a Medical School in Orange.

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

Cities Benefitting:

  • Orange City Council

 

 

Tourism

Tourism Western Australia

Australian Labor Party:

  • $1 billion funding tourism projects in Western Australia, Queensland and the Northern Territory.

Cities Benefitting:

  • Western Australia Members
  • Northern Territory Members
  • Queensland Members

 

 

Other

National Disasters

Coalition:

  • $130.5 million for disaster planning and capability through a National Disasters Resilience Fund

Australian Labor Party

  • $13 million to the ABC to support regional news and emergency broadcasting, in areas affected by natural disasters.

Cities Benefitting:

  • All Members

 

Events

Coalition:

  • $3.9 million to support the 2021 Beef Australia Expo in Rockhampton

Australian Labor Party:

  • No full program committed

Cities Benefitting:

  • Rockhampton Regional Council
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