In June I presented my first state budget as NSW Treasurer. It is a budget that builds for the next generation, provides for the present and positions us for the future.
As a Government we have worked extremely hard over the past six years to kick-start our state and are now able to reap the rewards from our reforms and plough them back into local communities. This budget sows the seeds of success so our children will one day reap the rewards of a better NSW.
With a massive injection of spending, NSW is now firmly in the driver’s seat as the nation’s economic powerhouse. With no net debt or deficit and a surplus of $4.5 billion, the Government can continue its record transport infrastructure spend whilst investing record amounts in the social infrastructure of schools and hospitals to improve the lives of people in our state.
Every parent wants the best for their children. That’s why we are investing a record $4.2 billion in education infrastructure over the next four years to build new 90 new schools, an additional 15,000 classrooms, and 32,000 student places. Hawkesbury schools will receive $6.2 million to address back-log maintenance issues as well as providing new and refurbished classrooms, learning areas and playgrounds.
This is also a government that stands for world-class healthcare for the people of NSW. In 2015, we committed to bringing on an extra 3,500 nurses, doctors and medical professionals across NSW. With this budget, we hit that target one year early and add another 1,000 staff on top. Our record $21.7 billion health spend is funding the biggest program of hospital building this state has even seen, and we are also investing $100 million for palliative care over the next four years.
Local sporting clubs are the soul of our communities, which is why we announced the Active Kids Rebate. We want to help parents, but more importantly, we want to help kids. To do this we are using our strong financial position to invest where it counts. We are giving parents a helping hand of $100 per child to help cover registration and membership fees for organisations registered with the Office of Sport.
We are the only state with strong surpluses, no debt, low unemployment and record investments in services and infrastructure. This is a great budget result for the Hawkesbury and I will continue to advocate for the needs of the electorate in my role as your state representative and NSW Treasurer.
We have come a long way in just six years, but the best is yet to come.