When the Andrews Government was elected, we promised to put people first. As our state begins its recovery from the global pandemic, people will continue to be our priority.

The Victorian Budget 2020/21 delivers on the investments that will see our community recover – and come back even stronger.

As kids get back into the classroom, this Budget delivers the single biggest investment ever in our schools – making sure students have the classrooms, libraries and learning spaces they deserve. This includes $25.29 million for Footscray High School, with students at the Kinnear Campus to benefit from an upgrade to the main block of the school, giving our kids modern learning spaces.

Following the $2.25 million announced through the Infrastructure Planning and Acceleration Fund, Footscray Primary School will also receive at least $18.22 million to create space for an extra 200 student enrolments for the 2023 school year.

In more good news for our local community, Sunshine Primary School will receive $11.16 million in funding to upgrade their school, including Block A.

As we recover, we want our state to come back stronger than ever, delivering the biggest investment in inclusive education in our state’s history. That includes a $10 million upgrade for Rosamond Special School, supporting students with bigger and better classrooms.

Sunshine Special Developmental School will also benefit from the Budget with a $10 million upgrade, supporting students and our broader community.

The Government’s investment will also support local jobs, with our school infrastructure build expected to create more than 6,400 jobs across the state.

A further $1.6 billion will transform support for students with disability, doubling the number of students receiving extra support to 55,000, and creating up to 1,730 jobs across the state by 2025.

We’re also delivering the biggest investment in public and community housing in Australia, ever. This investment will build more than 12,000 new homes – making sure thousands of Victorians have a place to call home, and thousands more Victorians have a job. The City of Maribyrnong is a priority area for investment, with procurement starting straightaway to build new homes.

In a win for the West, $36.6 million in funding will go towards transforming Whitten Oval, supporting the women’s and men’s teams, while also backing the Bulldogs’ Community Foundation programs, including the highly successful Sons and Daughters of the West, which tackles emerging physical and mental health issues in the local community.

A new Skills and Jobs Centre will be established at the new Footscray Hospital build, providing onsite advice for Victorians who want to be a part of the project. The Centre will connect Victorians with available opportunities, while also providing advice on training and apprenticeship opportunities.

This year’s Budget will also expand Sunshine Law Courts as part of a $26.87 million redevelopment, making the justice system more accessible and efficient for those who need it, while creating local construction jobs.

To help get more Victorians back into work, the Andrews Government is setting itself an ambitious target – creating 400,000 new jobs by 2025, half of them by 2022.

Our new Jobs for Victoria initiative will help locals find a new job – and with it, security, stability and certainty. This includes $250 million to partner with employers to cover the wages of at least 10,000 new workers. These positions will be for Victorians hardest hit by this pandemic, including women, young people, retrenched workers and people who have been long-term unemployed.

And because we know too many Victorians are having to choose between going to work sick and losing wages, the Andrews Government will invest $5 million to develop a new Secure Work Pilot Scheme. Once in place, the two-year pilot will provide up to five days of sick and carer’s pay at the national minimum wage for casual or insecure workers in priority industries.

This year’s Budget will help nearly one million families save hundreds on their power bill. Concession card holders, such as Victorians receiving JobSeeker payments, will be eligible for a one-off $250 payment to help cover the cost of their energy bills.

Even with kids back at school, the balancing act that many families know all too well isn’t easy. That’s why this Budget will make kinder free in 2021 and deliver outside school hours care at up to 400 extra schools, saving parents money and giving them greater flexibility when it comes to work and care.

And because Victorians have well and truly earned a holiday, the Andrews Government is offering up to 120,000 $200 vouchers to encourage families to take a break in regional Victoria. The scheme is expected to be up and running by December, supporting local economies and local jobs into summer and beyond.

This is a Budget to repair, recover and make us stronger than before. This is a Budget, and a Government, that puts people first.

Quotes attributable to Member for Footscray Katie Hall

“Our kids have been learning from the kitchen table this year. As they get back into the classroom, we want to make sure they have the great learning spaces they deserve.”

“We promised to put people first. And as we recover from this pandemic, the people of Footscray will continue to be my priority.”