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Budget beneficiaries

Saving Medicare, funding the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and reforms to help families, schools and small business are all featured in the newly released Federal Budget welcomed by the members for Hasluck and Pearce.

Federal member for Pearce Christian Porter said the budget provided greater opportunities for the nearly 13,500 small businesses in Pearce by incentivising the state to cut red tape.

Mr Porter said the budget also protected jobs by abolishing 457 visas, introducing a foreign worker levy and creating the Skilling Australians Fund.

Federal member for Hasluck Ken Wyatt has welcomed $6.1 million to help roll out digital radio into regional areas and he said the budget delivered tax relief by extending the instant asset write-off, which benefitted 13,980 small businesses in his electorate.

He said tax cuts would help over 3 million small and medium businesses including 14,522 in Hasluck.

Working parents will also get more support from July next year with a $263m investment over four years to expand the Parents Next pre-employment program.

Mr Wyatt said the expansion would help more parents, who may be at risk of long-term welfare dependency, to plan and prepare for employment by the time their children went at school.

Mr Wyatt said the needs-based funding model for schools would give significant increases in funding for schools.

He said the total increase in Federal Government funding for schools in Hasluck over the next ten years was $348m.

“This is great news for our 65 primary and secondary schools and their 23,564 students,” he said.

“From 2017 to 2027 average funding per student in the government education system is estimated to rise from $2158 per student to $4202 and from $7608 to $11,610 per student in the independent education system.

“Funding will also continue to grow in the Catholic education system, with the on average, per student growth rising from its current $9856 per student to $14,461 per student in 2027.”

Mr Wyatt has also welcomed securing the future of Medicare as a record number of residents in his electorate accessed the services.

“Last financial year there were 642,588 GP services in Hasluck bulk-billed.”

The budget has allocated $1.2 billion for more drugs to be put on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, and fully funding the NDIS was also a commitment.

Mr Wyatt said the budget included a 0.5 per cent increase in the Medicare levy from July 1, 2019 to guarantee the NDIS was sustainable into the future.

He said once fully rolled out, the NDIS would directly help about 3622 people in his electorate.

The budget included $80m to continue community mental health services for people who did not qualify for the NDIS.

Mr Wyatt said all past and current service personnel, who have undertaken at least one-day full time service, would also benefit from easier access to free mental health support and services.

“This includes the 916 veterans and their families living in Hasluck.”

The budget also includes measures to make more land available, including a crackdown on foreign investors and easing the costs for those looking to buy their first home.

A new National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation will be established by July next year to provide long-term low-cost finance to the community housing sector.

Mr Wyatt said childcare was incredibly important for families in his electorate and currently 4950 families in Hasluck used government supported childcare.

He said children could now access 15-hours of preschool per week under a new agreement for early childhood education

“More than 2127 children in Hasluck are set to reap the benefits of the additional $2.6 million in funding.”

Mr Wyatt said a review into retail electricity prices and a one-off Energy Assistance Payment for those on a pension, and a range of veteran’s payments, would help more than 19,700 people in his electorate.

For more details about the budget go to http://tinyurl.com/mlm

About Rashelle Predovnik

Rashelle has been the senior journalist at Echo News since June 2011. She was a finalist in the WA Media Awards in 2015 and 2013. In 2014 Rashelle took out the whole print category in the Deborah Kirwan Media Awards for a series of stories she wrote that has positively influenced community attitudes towards seniors. In 2013, Rashelle was a finalist in the Consumer Protection Media Awards. Before joining Echo News, Rashelle worked at WA Business News, Media Monitors, she was a freelance journalist and taught journalism units at Murdoch University.

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