THE draft legislation to enable the flow of $5 billion into projects in Northern Australia has been released and this is a welcome step in developing jobs and opportunities for the north. This exposure draft legislation for the $5 billion Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) paves the way for the flow of funding into the development of infrastructure, so that this region and other parts of Northern Australia can reach the potential we know is there. Northern Australia holds the country’s rich reserves of energy and resources, it has many thousands of hectares of arable land if we get the right water infrastructure, like Urannah Dam, in place, and we have world-class tourist attractions.
CONGRATULATIONS must go to Border Force officials on the successful apprehension of dodgy labour hire contractors in Bowen, some who were sourcing illegal workers and sending sizeable sums of money offshore. Some of the ringleaders of a labour hire racket were seized last week; it appears there were four dodgy contractors and two illegal workers apprehended and they are now in immigration detention.
GRANTS of between $10,000 and $500,000 are now available for existing and new business incubators across the region to help local start-ups access advice, capital and gain valuable connections. The $23 million Incubator Support initiative will provide matching grants of between $10,000 and $500,000 for the creation of new incubators in regions or business sectors with strong links to international trade, and for existing, high-performing incubators to expand their services. This initiative is focused on bringing local businesses together, through an incubator, to increase collaboration and local knowledge.
Residents of Mackay who are living with a disability have access to new modern respite services following the completion of a purpose-built five-bedroom house which was officially opened today. The ‘David and Irie Dalrymple Home’ will make life easier by providing respite services for carers and families, enabling individuals to reside in assisted living for up to three months at a time. There is an unmet demand for respite services in Mackay, and these five extra beds are vitally needed. This new house is purpose-built with accessible bathrooms and kitchen, and will bring comfort to residents with special needs.
In just over nine months, 10,000 young people across Australia who were previously reliant on taxpayer-funded welfare are now in gainful employment thanks to the Youth Jobs PaTH program. This great result has been achieved through the Youth Bonus Wage subsidy component of the Youth Jobs PaTH program. And we’ve seen real results under the program in the electorate of Dawson, with 154 young people transitioning from welfare to work since the beginning of the year. We believe that the best form of welfare is a job.