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NSW Budget produces record infrastructure pipeline

 

The NSW 2020-21 Budget will help deliver a $107.1 billion infrastructure pipeline for the state, which promises to create 145,000 jobs.

The state budget includes a Jobs and Infrastructure Acceleration fund valued at $3 billion, which aims to advance new and existing projects in New South Wales.

Key projects include commencement of the $385 million St George Hospital Integrated Ambulatory Care Precinct in Kogarah, $28 million to fast track stage 1 of the Mamre Road upgrade, and $90 million for the Spring Farm Parkway Stage 1 upgrade.

A total of 20,000 jobs will be supported by the fund, and includes more than 80 infrastructure and local community projects.

New South Wales’ infrastructure pipeline will also be undertaken across the next four years.

This includes Sydney Metro West project, which will double rail capacity located between Sydney and Paramatta.

In addition, $9.2 billion will be delivered in the next four years to the Sydney Metro to Western Sydney Airport project, which will enhance Greater Western Sydney’s transport, and includes 14,000 jobs during construction.

The Sydney Gateway project to provide a road between Sydney Airport and Port Botany to the WestConnex St Peter Interchange will also be given $2.2 billion.

Health infrastructure will also receive a $10.7 billion investment, with $7.7 billion allocated to education and skills infrastructure over the next four years.

Maintenance and shovel ready stimulus projects have also been given funding in the state budget, including $812 million for social and Aboriginal housing.

Cement Concrete & Aggregates Australia (CCAA) has welcomed the state budget which will continue to support cement, concrete, stone and sand demand.

“The NSW State Government plan to progressively replace stamp duty with property tax is welcome news for the construction industry, provided it achieves its purpose of stimulating demand for new home construction across both the short and long term,” CCAA chief executive officer Ken Slattery said.

Community Industry Group, an industry body for southern NSW, said there was a lack of focus on social housing in the Budget.

“The lack of investment in social and affordable housing is the greatest missed opportunity of the 2020-21 Budget,” Community Industry Group chief executive officer Nicky Sloan said.

“With over 50,000 applicants on the NSW social housing waiting list, the 780 new housing properties which have been announced over the next four years will do nothing to address the current housing crisis.

“While the budget does promise some Aboriginal housing in Bomaderry, there is really nothing that will address the 10-year waiting list for social housing in the region.

“When you compare this to the $5.3 billion for social housing which was recently committed to in the Victorian budget, it is a disappointment to say the least.”

The Australian Industry Group’s head of New South Wales Mark Goodsell welcomed the NSW budget.

“Through its investments in infrastructure, its support for job creation and skills development, and its commitment to making it easier and more attractive to do business here, the NSW Government’s 2020-21 budget pushes the right buttons to support the recovery in the state’s economy into next year and beyond,” he said.

“The additional infrastructure spending announced today is the cornerstone of the government’s contribution to the recovery of business and jobs in NSW.

“It will be supported by the reduction in the rate of payroll tax for this and the next year, the $1500 credit for smaller businesses to help meet government taxes and charges, and the increase in the payroll tax threshold to $1.2 million from July this year.

“These tax measures will boost cash flow for business and reduce the costs of employment.

“Ai Group also welcomes the far-sighted steps the government is taking to enhance public sector service delivery by embracing digital technologies, improving planning arrangements and to overhaul the taxation of property taxation in the state.”