South Australian 2013 – 14 [Generation X] Budget

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Honourable Jay Weatherill MP, Premier and Treasurer released the South Australian 2013 – 14 budget on 6.6.13 matching decisions with priorities in the recent Economic Statement including:

  • Creating a vibrant city
  • Realising the benefits of the mining boom for all
  • Growing advanced manufacturing
  • Premium food and wine

This is balanced with social priorities of an affordable place to live; safe communities, healthy neighbourhoods; and every chance for every child.

With Jay as Premier and Treasurer, I think he has designed a Generation X style budget, with broader definitions of policy frameworks, an entrepreneurial mindset, focus on community participation and a work life balance theme.

So from a workforce planning and development perspective where are the opportunities?

Skills for All gets $27 million over two years – An increased investment will support the huge uptake of Skills for All courses to meet industry training needs and support the State’s economic priorities.  On track to meet target early (demand has sky rocketed).

$600,000 over two years – For targeted attraction of skilled and high net worth migrants to work in South Australia.

State government employees will be reduced from current numbers of 81 436 – 76 554 in 2017 and I wonder how the local market will take that influx of ex-public servants looking for work.

Infrastructure investment to support civil construction, rail and building sectors:

  • the next stage of the South Road upgrade from Torrens Road to the River Torrens ($530-896 million)
  • the APY Lands access roads ($56.1 million)
  • electrification of the Gawler rail line to Dry Creek ($152.4 million), and
  • the Tonsley Park Public Transport Project ($63 million).

Additional infrastructure projects include a new courts precinct, Mt Gambier Prison expansion ($25.4 million), Arts and Cultural Institutions, Adelaide Railway Station, Adelaide Festival Centre, the Old RAH and the Road Safety Fund for upgrades and improvements.

Existing projects that are continuing include the $407.5 million Southern Expressway Duplication Project, the New Royal Adelaide Hospital, other hospital and school improvements.  Drop off from intensive infrastructure investment.

Manufacturing

$150,000 over two years – Manufacturing students will get hands-on experience in South Australian businesses, as recommended by Thinker in Residence, Professor Göran Roos.

$3 million over three years – Small and medium enterprises will be encouraged to support the State’s manufacturers to develop capacity to consistently implement high value innovations and products.

Mining – $6 Million Mining and Petroleum Services Centre of Excellence.  $588,000 over two yearsTo help landowners, primarily in agriculture, to connect with opportunities in local exploration and mining together with SACOME.  Maintenance Technique, at Roseworthy, has expanded and is training skilled workers for the mining industry.

Food and Wine – Premium Food and Wine Clusters $2.6 million over four years – To set up two regional ‘clusters’ in the Riverland/ Murraylands and Limestone Coast regions to build on our reputation for producing premium food and wine in a clean and green environment

$2.5 million over three yearsTo drive an increase in exports of South Australia’s premium food and wine to emerging markets in China.

Small business support includes $21.6 million over two years

A concessional payroll tax rate of 2.5 per cent will apply to annual taxable payrolls of $600,000 to $1 million, effectively halving the payroll tax rate for these businesses

The concessional rate phases out to the tax rate of 4.95 per cent for payrolls between $1 million and $1.2 million

The concessional rate will be applied to eligible employers, providing relief of up to $9,800 to more than 2,200 businesses, or about 25 per cent of all grouped payroll tax payers.

$300,000 over two years – The Industry Participation Advocate will help government agencies simplify their procurement processes and make it easier for businesses to bid for Government work

$140,000 over two years – The Industry Participation Advocate will also be funded to connect with business through a series of information sessions to enable small businesses to better position themselves to respond to government tenders.

Community sector

The State Government is providing more than $490 million over nine years to the community sector to provide a pay rise to workers in areas such as disability, homelessness, mental health and child protection.

In this Budget the Government will provide an additional $97.4 million over the next four years to support people with a disability and their carers in preparation for the full commencement of DisabilityCare Australia.

The Government is also providing $490 million over nine years, including $131 million over the forward estimates, for a pay-rise for community sector workers to better reward them for their important work.

$2.8 million over three years – The Australian Centre for Social Innovation will expand its Family by Family program into the northern and outer southern suburbs to work with children and parents at risk to keep families together.

Something a bit different – HUB Adelaide (in Peel Street) has been established to retain and develop young South Australians (young entrepreneurs and creative) and another one co-sponsored by the private sector in the West End with $1.4 million over five years.

Jay Weatherill, who I spotted in Peel Street, Adelaide this week at lunch time, was standing under an umbrella in the rain, amongst Fork on the Road food trucks and Splash Adelaide activities.  He looked very sharp in a cool blue checked suit and as I outlined at the start of this blog, I think he’s chosen to support things that are a Generation Xers [with kids] view on [mostly metropolitan] South Australia.

Written by Wendy Perry, Head Workforce Planner, Workforce BluePrint, June 2013.

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