Budget Breakdown: The Plumbing Edition

20 May 2014

The Abbott government has laid out its path to reach a budget surplus near the end of the decade in the face of continued below-trend growth.

We’ve cut through the noise and the jargon to bring you our summary of the bits of the 2014-15 Federal budget that are most likely to impact on you, your business and the wider industry.

 

Small/Medium Business

  • A small business and family enterprise ombudsman will be established, providing a point of contact for information on services and programs.
  • To improve business opportunities, company tax will be cut by 1.5% for around 800,000 businesses.

Infrastructure & Industry

  • An $11.6 billion Infrastructure Growth Package forms the basis of the government's commitment to a range of projects, building on its overall investment in infrastructure of $50 million over the next four years.
  • The Government expects to raise $2.2 billion (included in the $11.6 billion) from over the next four years by indexing the petrol fuel excise, the revenue from which will be channelled into roads funding.
  • Funding for its commitment to road infrastructure comes in part from the decision to reintroduce the indexation of fuel excise.
  • Various state and territory infrastructure projects will be direct winners from a commitment to invest A$50 billion through to 2019-20.
  • The Infrastructure Growth Package will include investments in roads including the East West Link (stage 2) in Melbourne, WestConnex in Sydney, the Perth Freight Link, the Toowoomba second range crossing in Queensland, the North-South Road Corridor in Adelaide and Northern Territory road upgrades.
  • Part of this funding takes the form of a $5 billion Asset Recycling scheme, where the Federal Government would contribute up to 15 per cent of the value of any State assets that are invested in new infrastructure projects.
  • The Asset Recycling Initiative hopes to provide incentives to State and Territory Governments that sell assets and reinvest the funds in infrastructure projects with a clear economic benefit over the longer term.
  • Some of the infrastructure funding will come from unallocated funding for the Building Australia Fund.

Apprenticeships

  • From July 1st this year the Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Programs or ‘Tools for your Trade’ will be replaced by a new program to support apprentices based on a higher education loan-style model.
  • Where the 'Tools for your Trade' program gave cash to apprentices to buy equipment needed for their work, the new Concessional Trade Support Loans Program will give apprentices a loan of up to $20,000 over a four-year apprenticeship.
  • The loans will be provided at concessional interest rates and will be staggered across the four-year period, with up to $8,000 available in the first year of an apprenticeship, $6,000 in the second, $4,000 in the third and $2,000 in the fourth.

 

To read the full budget papers visit http://www.budget.gov.au/2014-15

 

Meanwhile in Victoria…

The Victorian 2014-15 budget was handed down on Tuesday 6 May and it seems it’s good news for those in the plumbing industry. With a $27 billion chunk of the surplus dedicated to new infrastructure and building projects, we can expect a number of opportunities for plumbers across all lines cropping up. Here’s our breakdown of the budget’s allocations with the biggest potential for the plumbing industry:

  • A $73 million upgrade to Latrobe Regional Hospital and a further $28 million allocated to upgrading Barwon Health’s North Geelong Hospital.
  • A package of $500 million to build 12 new schools and upgrade a further 70 across the state.
  • $33 million to be spent on building new police stations.
  • An upgrade to the Melbourne Park facilities and a $366 million refurbishment of Rod Laver Arena.
  • 7.5km tunnel will be built between South Yarra and Southern Cross stations estimated to cost between $8-11 billion
  • $100 million to be spent on the East West Link tunnel.

While some of these projects won’t be initiated until after this year’s election, it's promising to see a flurry of construction activity is on the horizon for Victorian plumbers.

 

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