APPROPRIATION BILL 2021

I rise to speak on the Appropriation Bill 2021. Our budget for a stronger South Australia is delivering better services, creating jobs and building what matters. Right across South Australia and in my electorate of Adelaide it is delivering savings directly to families, reducing costs and creating jobs for businesses that need it. There is so much to talk about in this year's budget because we are delivering so much for South Australians, such as an enormous infrastructure pipeline, worth a record $17.9 billion over the next four years. 

In the Adelaide electorate, we have the Adelaide Festival Centre, with $3.1 million for internal refurbishment works, including the provision of new seating and the refurbishment of dressing rooms. We also have $300,000 for a business case for a new acoustic hall, and we have CBD activation grants, building on the very successful $300,000 in 2021. 

A further $500,000 in 2021-22 will be provided to support the activation of the City of Adelaide precinct to deliver programs that will encourage people to return to the city to shop and work. This funding has been provided to the City of Adelaide to support the extension of the council's Event Infrastructure Incentives Scheme, which supports local industry to stage events, and to expand existing grant programs for small business owners in the city to encourage them to enhance and activate their outdoor areas. This will have a critical flow-on effect in supporting local businesses and jobs, including retail, food and beverage. 

The $200 million Aboriginal Art and Cultures Centre will have a further $200,000 per annum for an assistant director to provide content development and creative planning, programming and design input for the centre, which is expected to open in 2025. 

The $662 million Riverbank arena that was announced will have $78.9 million invested over the forward estimates to finalise the plans for the construction of a new multipurpose arena within Adelaide's Riverbank Precinct. The new arena will provide the capacity and flexibility to attract larger conferences and exhibitions of strategic importance to South Australia. The business case identifies 2,059 jobs that will be created during construction and 345 jobs per annum once operational. 

As to the Lot Fourteen capability centres, the government is investing in existing buildings on Lot Fourteen and this will be further boosted to enable the expansion of space, digital, high-tech and cyber companies in a collaborative setting; $20.8 million will be provided to Renewal SA focusing on the next stage of development which is providing suitable accommodation in the Eleanor Harrald and Hanson buildings as part of a satellite development. 

Our Leisure Events Bid Fund of $90 million over four years will see the government continue looking at opportunities to secure new events. Recently secured events include the Adelaide International tennis, Illuminate Adelaide, the 2023 Australian Masters Games and the 2023 NRL Ampol State of Origin. 

A landmark $163.5 million mental health package over the next four years has been announced. This will provide a suite of critical new services outside the emergency department settings to further support South Australians seeking mental health care. This includes additional ongoing community support services, construction of a new 16-bed crisis stabilisation centre in the northern suburbs and the expansion of the Adelaide Adult Mental Health Centre to operate 24 hours a day with an extra $4.5 million per annum. 

We will deliver a new $1.95 billion landmark Women's and Children's Hospital that will provide world-class health care for children and women in South Australia for decades to come. The new state-of-the-art hospital will provide more bed capacity, more operating theatres and a bigger emergency department. It will be built next to the Royal Adelaide Hospital on Port Road and will include 500 treatment spaces, 170 outpatient consultation rooms, multilevel parking and two bridges linking the hospital facilities. The hospital will also improve the transition of care to adult services for adolescents, enhance mental healthcare facilities and will further education, training and research capabilities being located within the Adelaide Biomed City. 

Railway stations across the city will receive much-needed makeovers as part of the $99 million Station Refresh package in the 2021-22 state budget. Amongst the first lot to be upgraded are 15 stations along the Gawler line including the Adelaide station receiving $6.4 million, Ovingham receiving $10 million, as well as Dudley Park and North Adelaide stations in my electorate. The upgrades will include new shelters, seating and bins, lighting, painting and landscaping, with works to begin this year. 

Gawler rail electrification and the Ovingham level crossing projects are creating more than 350 jobs. The electrification of the Gawler line will deliver faster, cleaner and more reliable services and support increased passenger transport capacity. This budget provides an additional $100 million to complete the works on the Gawler line electrification project, bringing the total project to $715 million. 

We have committed $25 million to bust congestion at the notorious intersections along Nottage Terrace, with $19 million major works already underway to upgrade the intersection at Scotty's Corner and now the next intersection will be fixed to increase capacity, ease congestion and keep traffic flowing smoothly, saving valuable time for commuters. We have announced $6 million in this budget that will increase the capacity at the Nottage Terrace and North East Road intersection to keep traffic flowing. 

Heritage is so important to South Australia, and in particular in the Adelaide electorate, and that is why we are investing in preserving and activating our much-loved historical sites, boosting the economy and creating jobs. Ayers House will receive a $6.6 million upgrade to restore and revitalise one of South Australia's best-known heritage buildings. This includes kitchen upgrades, removal of asbestos, installation of a new lift and new air-conditioning infrastructure. In addition, there will be a $1.5 million extension of the successful Heritage Grants Program. 

Our children and young people deserve world-class facilities for their schooling. That is why the Marshall Liberal government is investing heavily in education. Nailsworth Primary School is a big winner and will see $5 million injected into the school to provide additional capacity for growing enrolments. I also note the $23 million state government contribution towards a redevelopment of Adelaide High School to accommodate more students and year 7 going into high school in 2022. 

The Marshall Liberal government has an ambitious transition to net 100 per cent renewables in the 2030s. The SA-New South Wales interconnector will start construction this year and when delivered will provide savings of a further $100 per annum on power bills. The $13.4 million investment in a statewide electric vehicle fast charging network will jump-start electric vehicle uptake and support the policy to transition the state fleet to electric vehicles. 

Funding of $150,000 has also been provided in this budget to provide telephony equipment and resourcing to implement telephone voting for the blind or vision impaired voters and for those located overseas. Good health care is crucial for South Australians and is a top priority for the Marshall Liberal government. Fixing hospital ramping is a major concern and priority for this government. 

We are investing $7.4 billion to fix ramping by easing pressure on emergency departments and boosting resources across the health system, by increasing emergency department capacity with $110 million to add over 140 new treatment spaces at nine emergency departments across the state, increasing capacity at those hospitals by 65 per cent. We are also easing demand for emergency services by creating appropriate alternative service delivery options and by tackling bed block and improving capacity in hospitals by creating more appropriate accommodation options. 

Our multimillion dollar investment in education will provide a huge jobs boost and builds on our ongoing commitment to improve education infrastructure across the state. As part of our investment in education, we are providing $50.1 million for an early learning strategy. This funding will include an initiative of $35.1 million to expand the reach, frequency and number of child development checks, with $150.5 million in extra funding and hundreds of extra teachers coming into our public schools next year. 

Our state's recycling industry will receive its biggest ever investment, with more than $16 million of state government funding that will unlock eight new projects worth $111 million that will help our environment. These projects include a $12 million wastepaper and recycling plant in the north, a $24 million material recovery plant in the south and a $19 million glass processing plant just outside of Gawler. Hundreds of jobs are expected to be created through this investment, which will further strengthen South Australia's recycling sector and build our nation-leading circular economy. 

Between 2021 and 2025, around $660 million will be invested in residential housing, including the government's affordable housing initiative, which will see over 1,000 affordable homes built over the life of the project, as well as public housing capital maintenance and renewal. In child protection, I am very excited with this year's budget. My department will be providing better services. The Marshall Liberal government remains committed to getting better outcomes for our most vulnerable children and young people in care. 

In this year's state budget, we have provided additional funding of $42.1 million over four years to meet the costs of children and young people requiring a child protection statutory response, to keep them safe from abuse and neglect. We are committed to our ongoing strategy of growing the number of placements in family-based care and investing in additional early intervention programs to help vulnerable families before there is a need to enter the child protection system. 

The Marshall Liberal government is providing better services through the implementation of a number of new initiatives to support our most vulnerable children and young people and their families. These include expanding family group conferencing and funding a new trial program to support young people post care. Due to the success of our program, the government has committed $3.7 million over four years to establish family group conferencing as an ongoing program. 

The pilot, which was delivered by Relationships Australia SA, has been very successful and ensured that 90 per cent of the families they have worked with have been able to remain together safely. We have expanded the program to include two further trials, one for unborn child concerns with Relationships Australia from 1 April and an Aboriginal-specific program with AFSS, with referrals to begin very soon. 

Given the success of our carer payments for young people in care to the age of 21, we are expanding this program to young people in non-family based care placements. The stability post-care program is being funded for $2.7 million as a 3½ year pilot to commence in early 2022. The pilot program will support young people with complex needs up to the age of 21 who are leaving care and who are at risk of homelessness and housing instability. 

The Marshall Liberal government will provide $18.2 million over seven years to establish the new Newpin South Australian family reunification program through a social impact bond. Newpin is an intensive therapeutic centre-based family reunification program and will be delivered through Uniting Communities. It is expected to support more than 200 families, with children aged six years and under in temporary care on a temporary order where reunification has been identified as an appropriate goal. 

The government accepted all the recommendations handed down in the Rice review and is implementing additional safeguarding measures, including the establishment of a significant incident reporting unit. There is also $1.2 billion over two years to establish the unit within the Department for Child Protection, including four FTEs. I am always striving with my department to improve practices to safeguard children from further harm and to help vulnerable children in their healing. That is why last year we announced $600,000 to roll out the Sanctuary model of residential therapeutic care. 

The Marshall Liberal government continues to work hard to deliver better services. I am delighted to announce that we will now be providing $3.8 million over 2½ years to fund the Treatment Foster Care Oregon pilot program. This is an exciting program that will provide specialist foster care that has an international track record of success. It is a proven program that supports children and young people with complex behaviours aged between 12 and 17. 

Through the Department of Human Services, many other programs have been announced in the budget to support and enhance outcomes for children in care. The Marshall Liberal government is providing investment in other areas that have direct impact on child protection systems and is focused on continuing support for our most vulnerable families. This includes $111.3 million over six years to establish the Resilient Families program, an intensive home-based family support intervention program that will be delivered by the Benevolent Society through a social impact bond. This program is aimed at intervening early and keeping families together if it is safe to do so. Initially in the southern suburbs of Adelaide, this will further expand to Murray Bridge and then on to Mount Barker. This is expected to support up to 300 children over the next five years. 

For children with a disability who are unable to live with their family in their family home and require out-of-home care arrangements and mainstream support, $4.6 million has been allocated over the next four years to ensure these children continue to receive out-of-home support for those funded through the NDIS. Through Youth Justice, there is a child diversion program, where $1.3 million over two years has been allocated to help divert children who are at risk of being remanded in custody due to a lack of accommodation and support services by connecting them with appropriate supports. 

Recognising that some young people are at greater risk of re-entering the youth justice system if they are incarcerated, we will be trialling a new child diversion program for 10 to 13 year olds. In this budget, we are funding the Youth Court a further $0.339 million to provide for an additional magistrate at a 0.5 FTE to support staff of the Youth Court to ensure the court's capacity to meet the demands for child protection matters, to comply with the Children and Young People (Safety) Act and to help protect our most vulnerable children in South Australia. 

I am proud to be part of a government that has a blueprint for a stronger South Australia and a positive plan to create even more jobs, build what matters and deliver better services to make South Australia and my electorate of Adelaide the best place in the world to live, work and raise a family.