My response to the NSW State Budget
Contrary to the recent Federal Government, the NSW Government has tried to think of everyone whilst framing its budget.
Whilst most new initiatives are in Sydney, we will all benefit from the increased spending on disability services. These are in addition to the NDIS which continues to have the full support of the NSW Government.
We also welcome the additional funding for child protection services as this is an area which requires much more attention.
The extra $30 million to provide supported accommodation for people leaving the Stockton centre is welcome news. The controversy about the Stockton centre has dogged the NDIS in our region but really the closure of Stockton was part of government planning well before the NDIS came into being.
We are also very appreciative of the additional $9 million per annum for homeless children under the age of 16. Samaritans youth refuges have been playing a key role in this area for several years and it’s important that this group are not overlooked as we transition to the new Going Home Staying Home homelessness program in NSW. This new initiative will go a long way to help create a better future for children who are homeless in the future.
One disappointment in the budget is any lack of real incentives for private investors to put their resources into affordable housing. With the recent closure by the Federal Government of the National Rental Affordability Scheme, affordable housing is a real policy gap in our region.