New South Wales pledges $93 billion for infrastructure
The New South Wales Government has handed down its 2018-19 budget, pledging $93 billion in infrastructure across the state.
The record infrastructure spend sees more than half go toward road and rail, as the cash splash shows the total spend of $55.6 billion for road and transport projects taking the state's overall infrastructure investment to $93 billion.
Funding for major projects under way includes the WestConnex, Metro City and Southwest.
In what state treasurer Dominic Perrottet describes as a “state building budget”, the infrastructure spend will be delivered amid a lower-than-expected surplus of $802 million.
This figure is down from the $1.4 billion a year ago.
Stamp duty revenue has been written down by $10.6 billion since 2017 as state government predicts housing price growth over the next few years to be in line with inflation.
Western Sydney is a big winner in the budget, with plans for the Parramatta Light Rail to receive $561 million, and the Northern Road upgrade between Narellan and Penrith $404 million.
The budget will deliver a $1.8 billion drought relief package, which will be delivered to regions of the state that are still suffering the ongoing impacts of the drought.
It also includes a $143.3 million investment to support the Waste Less Recycle More initiative which is aimed at improving waste management and resource recovery.
In addition $79 million will also be given to the state’s councils to help them provide discounts on rates and charges to pensioners.
The state will also help coastal councils to protect against rising sea levels with a $54 million injection as part of the Coastal and Estuary Grants Program.
Northern NSW's Pacific Motorway will get a $1.5 billion upgrade, and $1.2 billion will be spent on the M1 Princess Highway.
Perrottet said that the budget will also launch an ‘Economic Blueprint’ to identify the jobs, industries and opportunities for the future.