Regional Australia is critical to our national economy and this year’s budget delivers significant new investment across all areas of government that will create jobs and promote economic prosperity in Farrer.

Federal Member for Farrer, Sussan Ley said this week’s 2016–17 Federal Budget boosts connectivity, builds critical infrastructure, supports innovation and fosters local leadership to support communities across the region.

“Building on the Coalition Government’s achievements over the last three years, the 2016-17 Budget will support stronger, more livable regional communities with better infrastructure, more support for our rural health workforce and better access to health care.

“The 2016–17 Regional Ministerial Statement released with tonight’s budget, Investing in Regional Growth, outlines almost 400 measures that support regional Australia across health, education, employment, defence, infrastructure, telecommunications, agriculture and water resources and other portfolios which will benefit families and communities in Farrer.

Ms Ley said this year’s budget delivers key initiatives in Regional Development, Regional Communications and Rural Health:
• We are getting on with the job of building the Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail and have committed $594 million to acquire the land for the rail corridor and to continue pre-construction activities.
• The listing of The Retinal Photography of non-Mydriatic Cameras measure on the Medicare Benefits Schedule to cover the testing of diabetic retinopathy disease with a non-mydriatic camera.
• Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine- Independent Pathway to Fellowship will enable general practice registrars training on the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine Independent Pathway to claim Medicare benefits for the services they provide in rural and regional areas whilst training.
• Rural General Practice Grants Program will improve rural health services by redesigning Rural and Regional Teaching Infrastructure Grants Program, in order to create a more streamlined Program.
• Providing $73.6 million over four years for the network of 55 Regional Development Australia Committees (RDAs), to foster and strengthen local leadership across regional communities.

In 2016–17, the Australian Government is providing $1,791,425 for Road Black Spot projects across our region.

Ms Ley said the Government is also continuing its commitment to improve the liveability of local communities and enhance economic growth in Australia’s regions.

“The Coalition Government is funding priority projects through a range of initiatives, including Investment and Road and Rail Programme funding of $300,000,000 and 27 local projects under the Roads to Recovery Programme worth $22,338,642.

The 2016-17 Budget builds on the record investment the Coalition Government has already made since coming to office to create stronger and more prosperous regions including:

• An unprecedented $50 billion investment upgrading and building safe and reliable land transport infrastructure across the country
• The $4 billion Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper
• The $2.4 billion for regional roads through the Roads to Recovery programme
• The $1 billion National Stronger Regions Fund
• Investing $5.2 billion to connect regional households and businesses to the National Broadband Network
• More than $710 million in drought assistance and support to farmers and rural communities experiencing hardship
• An additional $298.2 million over four years to support the National Ice Action Strategy, which came after the Australian Crime Commission identified ice dealers were targeting rural and regional Australia
• $160 million to fix thousands of mobile black spots under the Mobile Black Spots Programme all of which goes to rural and regional areas

Further information on the Infrastructure Investment Programme allocations nationwide can be found online at