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Building opportunity

Building our State as we rebuild our economy.

Worker on construction site

Since 2014, the Victorian Government has made an unprecedented investment in Victoria’s infrastructure.

Announced infrastructure investment since November 2014 has supported or will continue to support over 165,000 jobs.

From schools to hospitals, road and rail – we have strengthened our economy by strengthening our State.

That includes delivering projects: Metro Tunnel, removing 75 level crossings, the Joan Kirner Women’s and Children’s Hospital for families in Melbourne’s west, and delivering 21 new schools with a further 48 new schools soon to open.

As we recover from this pandemic, a ‘two-for-one’ approach will continue to be how we deliver for Victorians.

By investing in regional and suburban rail – we’re supporting more local jobs, and getting people home sooner.

By upgrading local schools – we’re employing thousands more Victorians, and making sure our kids get the education they deserve.

And by delivering the biggest housing investment our State has ever seen – we’re supporting more Victorians back into work and affording more people the security of a home.

The Jobs Plan continues our record investment.

Delivering the Suburban Rail Loop

The Suburban Rail Loop will transform Victoria’s public transport system and connect Melbourne’s middle suburbs.

The 90-kilometre Suburban Rail Loop will link every major rail line from the Frankston line to the Werribee line, via the airport.

And with three transport super hubs at Clayton, Broadmeadows and Sunshine – regional passengers will also benefit, no longer having to travel through the CBD to get to work, our world-class hospitals or universities in the suburbs.

This is a project that will transform the way we travel, connecting Victorians to jobs, education, healthcare – and most importantly, to each other.

This Budget invests $2.2 billion to kick-off initial and early works on Stage One running between Cheltenham and Box Hill – laying the groundwork for tunnelling, including preparation of our tunnel boring machine launch sites and geotechnical investigation.

In addition to kick-starting this city and state-shaping project, this investment will support initially up to 800 jobs – with a further 20,000 jobs over the construction period.

Geelong Fast Rail

As our second biggest city continues to grow, making sure locals have a fast, reliable rail connection between Geelong and Melbourne matters more than ever.

This Budget delivers $2 billion towards Geelong Fast Rail, reducing travel times and supporting more passengers on our State’s busiest regional rail line – matching the Commonwealth’s contribution to the project.

As an investment, it will mean fewer stops, faster trips and less crowded trains for locals. It’ll also reduce reliance on the Princes Freeway corridor.

Most importantly, it’ll mean less time commuting – and more time spent with the people you love.

This funding builds on funding provided in last year’s budget to deliver detailed planning and design works.

The project will support over 2,800 jobs at the peak of construction and will continue supporting jobs once complete, with improved connections between the two cities.

Victoria’s Big Housing Build

Record investment in social and affordable housing

This year has shown us just how much home matters.

It’s also brought into sharp relief: far too many Victorians are still missing out on the safety and security that a home affords. It’s why this Budget delivers our State’s biggest ever investment in social housing.

Victoria’s Big Housing Build package will invest $6 billion to expand and diversify social and affordable housing across the state, improving the lives of thousands of Victorian families.

This includes $5.3 billion to deliver more than 12,000 new dwellings across our State, and make housing more accessible and affordable for Victorians, supporting around 10,000 jobs on average per year over the next four years – with around a quarter of the total investment taking place in regional communities.

The new dwellings under Victoria’s Big Housing Build include 9,300 new social housing dwellings replacing 1,100 old housing units, and 2,900 new mainly affordable and low cost homes.

The Big Housing Build gets a fast start this financial year with more than 1,000 commencements ready to happen – immediately supporting around 2,000 jobs.

The package also provides funding to accelerate the public housing capital upgrade program, including the enhanced gas heater servicing and replacement programs. These works will make home more comfortable for public housing tenants, while also supporting jobs.

This package builds on the $498 million provided through the Building Works package for improvements such as increased security, maintenance and capital upgrades across public and community housing.

Making housing more affordable

Saving up for your first home is hard enough – let alone during a pandemic.

That’s why the Government is offering stamp duty waivers on residential properties worth up to $1 million bought before 30 June 2021.

This includes a 50% stamp duty saving – worth up to $27,500 – for new builds and a 25% stamp duty saving – worth up to $13,750 – for existing residential properties.

Not only will this make it easier for Victorians to buy their home – it will give much needed support to the construction sector, a key driver in Victoria’s economic growth.

For some Victorians, this year has made it even harder to save a 20% deposit to buy their home.

To support these Victorians, the Government is launching the Victorian Homebuyer Fund with $500 million to help Victorians into a home by contributing to the purchase price.

Under the program, the Government will provide equity to Victorians looking to buy a home. This will reduce the size of the deposit required and will help Victorians buy homes sooner.

For other Victorians, buying a home isn’t a goal. Renting is a common part of housing markets worldwide. Investment in the build-to-rent sector will provide greater choice and diversity of housing options for renters. That’s why from 2022, the Government will provide a 50% land tax discount until 2040 to attract new investment in build-to-rent developments, increasing housing supply by an estimated 5,000 dwellings.

To unlock construction activity, Victoria’s Big Housing Build includes $52 million in funding to implement the Commissioner for Better Regulation’s planning reforms to improve the planning system’s performance and clarity, and to grow housing supply across the state through the Victorian Planning Authority programs Affordable by Supply and Streamlining for Growth.

In addition, $59 million in funding is provided for targeted planning system reforms. The reforms will have a critical role in unlocking private sector investment and supporting Government initiatives, including the delivery of infrastructure, jobs and housing.

Cheaper, cleaner energy to power recovery

A key element of the Jobs Plan is a transformational $1.6 billion investment to improve energy efficiency in Victorian homes and accelerate clean energy investment, while supporting thousands of new Victorian jobs.

The Government will develop Victoria’s Renewable Energy Zones to bolster system strength and unlock new renewable energy investment, supporting economic growth and jobs.

This includes funding to begin planning for at least 600 megawatts of new, clean energy through a second Victorian Renewable Energy Target auction. This will help to ensure the Government meets its legislated target of 50% of electricity generation from renewable sources, which has been estimated to create around 24,000 jobs by 2030 and generate up to $5.8 billion in additional economic activity.

Funding will also be provided for energy efficiency upgrades to 250,000 low income households and 35,000 social housing properties, providing cheaper energy bills for families, more comfortable living for residents and jobs for Victorians.

The package also includes:

  • $682 million for clean energy initiatives across our State, including supporting new renewable energy zones through grid investment, delivery of the Victorian Big Battery, upgrades to transmission networks and new clean energy generation projects facilitated. Funding will also attract and fast-track investment in innovative energy projects that will deliver transformational benefits to Victoria, with consumers able to benefit from these projects from 2025.
  • $191 million to provide solar panel system and battery storage rebates to more homes and small businesses.
  • $50 million to deliver low-emission, low-cost energy services in Victoria including:
    • Establishment of community power hubs to develop and deliver local renewable energy projects in regional Victoria and metropolitan Melbourne.
    • Legislative amendments and policy development to mandate timely utility connections, expanding the Victorian Energy Upgrades program energy standards in rental properties, and work towards net zero carbon new homes.
    • Development of a gas roadmap to support more efficient use of gas, the competitiveness and long-term viability of industrial customers that currently use natural gas as a feedstock, development of renewable gas sources and strategic substitution opportunities through increased electrification and alternative fuels, including hydrogen and biogas.
  • $31 million for co-investment with large energy users to support energy efficiency projects, reducing their energy costs and fast-tracking the local adoption of innovative energy efficiency technologies.
  • $25 million to accelerate adoption of zero emission vehicles, including rolling out a fast-charging network for motorists across major highways and key tourist destinations and introducing electric vehicle ready provisions in new buildings from 2022 to prepare for mainstream uptake.

Solar Homes

The Government’s 10-year Solar Homes program is putting a power station on hundreds of thousands of Victorian homes – driving down power bills and supporting jobs across the state.

This Budget will invest $152 million to make sure even more Victorians can benefit from the program, including an extra 42,000 rebates for home owners.

The Solar Homes battery program will also be expanded, with 17,500 rebates made available over the next three years. ‘Postcode eligibility’ will also be removed, meaning Victorians in every corner of the state can now apply for a battery.

Funding will also continue to be provided for training, safety and quality audits.

In last year’s Budget, the scheme was expanded to include renters – ensuring every Victorian has access to cheaper, more reliable power whether they own or rent their home.

Now, we’ll expand Solar Homes even further, with a $38 million investment extending the eligibility for small businesses. This will deliver up to 15,000 rebates – saving small business owners thousands of dollars on their power bill.

Strengthening our schools

Investing in great classrooms means investing in our kids.

It’s why this Budget dedicates $1.9 billion to building and upgrading schools.

Not only will this investment help strengthen our school communities, it will help support over 6,400 jobs during construction. The investment includes:

  • $895 million to upgrade 123 schools
  • $389 million for upgrades at 39 special schools
  • $239 million for one new school and four additional stages at recently built schools
  • $86 million for upgrades at existing schools to expand capacity to meet enrolment growth
  • $70 million for maintenance
  • $50 million for small scale priority building projects through the Minor Capital Works Fund

This investment builds on the $1.18 billion Education Building Works Stimulus announced in May 2020, combining to make a record $3.1 billion investment in government school infrastructure announced this year.

A further $100 million has been provided to continue the renewal of Victoria’s TAFE system, funding the redevelopment of Chisholm Institute’s Frankston Campus and the redevelopment of Melbourne Polytechnic’s Collingwood Campus.

Investing in our hospitals

The health of those we love matters more than ever. The Victorian Government is making sure more Victorians can get the care they need close to home, with new investment in our hospital and healthcare system.

This Budget includes:

  • $492 million to increase acute mental health beds at the McKellar Centre (Barwon Health), Northern Hospital, Royal Melbourne Hospital and Sunshine Hospital
  • $384 million to redevelop Warrnambool Base Hospital
  • $200 million for the Metropolitan Health Infrastructure Fund, for minor capital upgrades at metropolitan hospitals and health services
  • $135 million for the Kingston Public Residential Aged Care Project
  • $120 million to increase the Regional Health Infrastructure Fund, for minor upgrades at hospitals and health services across the regions
  • $75 million to purchase land and undertake detailed planning and early works for a new hospital in Melton
  • $66 million to acquire land in Cranbourne, Pakenham, Torquay, City of Whittlesea, Eltham, inner south and Point Cook for new community hospitals
  • $7.6 million to expand maternity accommodation and upgrade critical infrastructure in Wangaratta
  • $10 million to plan the redevelopment of the Royal Melbourne Hospital

These investments will support over 4,100 jobs at the peak of construction.

Backing community sport and recreation recovery

The Budget provides funding to support jobs and support strong local communities.

The $110 million Community Sports Infrastructure Stimulus Program works with local government and sporting clubs to fast-track shovel-ready projects.

From netball courts to new sporting hubs, this investment will increase community participation in sport and recreation, while also creating new employment opportunities for Victorians. This investment is expected to support more than 500 jobs for local workers.

Melbourne Arts Precinct transformation

This Budget will further cement our reputation as Australia’s cultural capital.

A new $1.4 billion investment will transform our city’s Arts Precinct – attracting visitors from interstate and overseas, supporting thousands of local jobs and giving everyone a new public place to enjoy and explore.

This funding will create NGV Contemporary – the country’s largest gallery dedicated to contemporary art and design.

Located at 77 Southbank Boulevard – behind NGV’s St Kilda Road gallery – NGV Contemporary will be a new stand-alone gallery focused on contemporary art and design.

The project will support over 5,000 jobs during construction, and is expected to attract an extra three million visitors each year, supporting more than 200 new ongoing jobs.

Funding will also see Arts Centre Melbourne’s Theatres Building, one of Melbourne’s most recognised landmarks, renewed with critical maintenance to the ageing building and its theatres and public spaces.

The project will transform the area around the NGV and Arts Centre, creating 18,000 square metres of new and renewed open public space, for everyone to enjoy.

Reviewed 23 November 2020

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