Legislative Council: Tuesday, June 14, 2022


Supply Bill 2022

Second Reading

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Attorney-General, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Minister for Industrial Relations and Public Sector) (11:11): I move:

That this bill be now read a second time.

I will be very short to allow others to have an opportunity to speak on the Supply Bill. The Supply Bill is necessary until the budget has passed through the parliamentary stages and the Appropriation Bill receives assent. In the absence of special arrangements in the form of the Supply Act there would be no parliamentary authority for expenditure between the commencement of the new financial year and the date on which assent is given to the Appropriation Bill. The amount being sought under this bill is $6.628 million.

Explanation of Clauses

1—Short title

This clause is formal.


This clause provides a definition of agency. An agency is a Minister, an administrative unit, or part of an administrative unit, of the Public Service of the State or any other instrumentality or agency of the Crown.


This clause provides for the appropriation of up to $6.628 million from the Consolidated Account for the Public Service of the State for the financial year ending on 30 June 2023.

The Hon. H.M. GIROLAMO (11:12): I rise to speak on the Supply Bill and indicate that the Liberal Party will be supporting it. The Supply Bill is introduced into parliament each year and it provides for the government to have access to an amount of money to keep the Public Service moving until the Appropriation Bill is passed.

It is essentially a means to an end until the Appropriation Bill passes through both houses of parliament. It does not go to fund new projects that have not already been approved through the budget process. It makes sure that the public sector employees are paid and the public sector does not just shut down while the Appropriation Bill is debated. It is important that the wheels of the public sector keep moving while the estimates process and interrogation of the Appropriation Bill occurs.

I would like to take the opportunity to reiterate some of the important things I have spoken on before in this place. Since the budget was released last week, we now have a clearer understanding of how the Labor Party does not consider cost-of-living prices for everyday South Australians to be an issue. For example, following the jump in interest rates last month, and following last fortnight's 0.5 per cent increase in the cash rate, the impact to be felt by South Australians with an average mortgage of $420,000 is an extra $136 mortgage payment per month.

We know that the everyday cost of living, our daily household expenses, are only going to get higher in the coming weeks and months as the reality of interest rate rises and the increase in the cash rate sets in. The Malinauskas government is yet to provide that reassurance to everyday South Australians that their future will be supported when it gets more and more expensive to cover bills and put food on the table.

We also know that under the Liberal government we achieved a AA+ long-term credit rating based on a stable economic outlook and the expectation of sustained operating surpluses. This achievement was only possible due to the brilliant economic management of the Marshall Liberal government, and we can only hope that the reckless spending that comes with a Labor government does not jeopardise this into the future.

When you talk to South Australians, they want to make sure that their home state is the best place to live, work and raise a family. We need to keep the momentum going with job creation, a great economy, a booming trade industry and affordable housing. We cannot allow Labor to overcommit and overspend to the detriment of the economy and our people in South Australia.

The Hon. R.A. SIMMS (11:15): I rise to speak to the Supply Bill 2022. The Greens support this bill. We recognise, as has the Hon. Ms Girolamo, that this bill is essential to allow the Public Service to function and the state to continue to function, so we support it in that regard.

I will take this opportunity to make a few preliminary comments on the government's first budget. We commend the government on delivering on their election promises, and the Greens welcome the increased investment in health that has been long overdue. However, the Labor government was elected on the promise that they would solve ramping and hospital overcrowding, add new beds and employ more healthcare workers. The budget does ensure there are more beds available, but getting the healthcare workers is critically important and the challenges the government will face in that regard are well known.

We know there is a significant retention crisis that the government will face in terms of health care as well as a recruitment crisis, and in that regard I have noticed that the governments of Victoria and New South Wales have recently announced a $3,000 'thank you payment' for their healthcare workers; $3,000 to recognise the work they have done in terms of carrying the brunt of the first two years of this pandemic but also in anticipation of the significant work and pressures they are going to face over this winter period.

We know there has been a lot of COVID circulating in the community, as well as nasty flus and viruses that have been doing the rounds, so it is really appropriate that these workers are thanked for their contribution. I do wonder why, when Victoria and New South Wales have offered a payment such as this, the new Malinauskas government has failed to offer a similar payment for our healthcare workers in South Australia. That is something the Greens will continue to push in the days ahead.

We also recognise that South Australia is in the middle of a housing crisis. Adelaide is the second least affordable city in Australia when it comes to rental affordability, and there is a vacancy rate of just 0.2 per cent. The budget does not really tackle this. It does provide for just 400 new homes, but 400 new homes when you have 16,000 people on the waiting list is really missing the mark. That is really inadequate.

We commend the significant investment in homelessness services, but not enough work is being done to support people to get a home. I have spoken about this many times in this chamber, and will continue to do so in the hope that the government will finally take some action. Despite the government doubling the Cost of Living Concession, it is disappointing that renters will be receiving $224.60 while home owners will be receiving $449. This was a missed opportunity for the government to provide more support.

Just a few weeks ago in this place we saw the declaration of a climate emergency. While many of us thought this was an indication from the government that they intended to roll up their sleeves and get on with the work of dealing with a climate crisis, their budget tells another story. We have the investment in green hydrogen—which of course we welcome—but on the other hand the Home Battery Scheme and the Switch for Solar scheme have been scrapped.

Mr Koutsantonis has referred to the schemes on ABC 891 as being 'immoral'. I consider that language to be really quite inflammatory and over-the-top for a sensible scheme that was designed to help thousands of South Australians make greener choices. Surely, that is the sort of thing we should be doing during this period of climate emergency. To demonise a scheme such as this seems to be really petty politics. Similarly, we have seen the government cut jobs from the environment department, while investing $70 million over four years in car racing, bringing back gas guzzlers to the Adelaide Parklands and across our state.

COVID, as well, has been devastating for the university sector. Yet, rather than providing a support package to the university sector that has been doing it tough during this pandemic, instead the government is allocating $1 million to a commission to investigate mergers—more hot air on top of car racing, more hot air. This time it is a commission that we know is not needed, because if you talk to anybody in the university sector they will tell you that we do not need to see mergers. What we need is increased investment.

I am hoping, now that we have a federal Labor government and a Labor government here in South Australia, that the state government will advocate very strongly for the Anthony Albanese government to step up and invest in our university sector. With the Labor Party in government here in South Australia and at a federal level, the buck will well and truly stop with them.

There is also significant investment in this budget for public transport infrastructure. The Greens do support that, but more work is needed to be done in terms of expanding the rollout of public transport into the Adelaide Hills. I look forward to some of the information that will come before the parliamentary inquiry that I initiated that was opposed by the government. I look forward to hearing what some of those ideas are for improving public transport. Of course, we welcome the investment in a commission to investigate the end of train and tram privatisations. Members will be aware of my private member's bill to try to put further safeguards in place against privatisations in the future.

As I stated at the outset, the Greens support this bill and we look forward to continuing to work with the government to ensure that, through future budgets, they address the many challenges that we face here in this state. With that, I conclude my remarks.

The Hon. E.S. BOURKE (11:22): I obviously rise in support of the government's first Supply Bill.

The Hon. R.A. Simms: What?

The Hon. E.S. BOURKE: I know—shock, right? It is also a very proud moment to be able to stand up and support this bill because it is a bill that delivers on every one of Labor's commitments that we took to the election, and it is a very Labor budget. It is focused on giving dignity to everyone who needs dignity the most. It is an equaliser for those in our community.

It clearly demonstrates that, unlike those on the other side of the chamber, we on this side of the chamber have the right priorities. Unlike those on the other side of the chamber, we are not out of touch with what South Australians were calling for. The budget and the Supply Bill are not just for the current but the next generation of South Australians. We are addressing people's current concerns but, unlike those opposite, when entrusted by the people of South Australia to represent them and to govern for them, we are also thinking about their futures. We are planning for the future of South Australians today, and our plans are for a very bold future.

In health, we listened to South Australians, and it was clear that there was no more significant immediate concern than having a reliable health system. It was an election based on the needs of our health. So we are reversing the $400 million of the Marshall Liberal government's cuts to health. We have rejected the former Marshall Liberal government's $662 million basketball stadium and we are investing that money into South Australia's health system. Quite importantly, $100 million of that will be going into our regional health system as well.

We are funding 350 more paramedics and ambulance officers, new and upgraded ambulance stations, 101 more doctors, 300 more nurses and hundreds more hospital beds. We are committing $1.5 billion over the next four years to the new Women's and Children's Hospital. We are investing $294 million to provide better treatment for mental health patients, and we are providing more hospital beds, better expert care and support for the families of those suffering mental ill health. We are investing in regional health, as I said, particularly in communities like Port Pirie, Kangaroo Island, Port Augusta, Mount Gambier and the Keith hospital.

Something that is close to my heart is something that was called for quite often by an organisation called HeartKids. My little niece has congenital heart disease and at age six months was flown to Melbourne for heart surgery. HeartKids has been a great support for our family, so I am very pleased that, unlike the Marshall Liberal government, who rejected the HeartKids' pleas for help, Labor will step in and deliver $1 million over four years to invest in this very worthy cause.

Obviously, we need to invest in our kids' future, and we can only do that if we invest in education, because it is the greatest equaliser across our community. The Malinauskas Labor government's education commitments are founded on its belief that every child should have the opportunity to reach their potential and every generation should be able to enjoy the same standards of living as the one before it, if not better.

We recognise that we operate in a global labour market, which means that the quality of education we deliver here is vitally important to making this belief a reality. We are investing in preschools for children from three years of age and we are establishing new technical colleges, five across our state. We are investing in speech pathologists, occupational therapists and psychologists in our schools, to support children and young people with learning difficulties. We are appointing an autism lead teacher in every public primary school in South Australia, something that is warmly welcomed by many families across the state.

Because we recognise the unprecedented challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic created in South Australia, we are investing in local communities, infrastructure and local economies. We are easing cost-of-living pressures and we are boosting our funding to the Fringe Festival and providing a live music industry support package.

We are investing in local communities by delivering on local projects like the YMCA project in Walkerville. That was a community that was calling out for help. When we knocked on doors in that community, people were quick to raise as an issue that this amazing community organisation was going to be shut down because they did not have funding.

I have to say, it was incredibly surprising that the member then was not aware of that local issue, or decided not to support that local community group. It was quite unusual for the Labor Party or a Labor candidate to get any traction in Walkerville, as we have seen previously, but we had an 11 per cent swing in Walkerville because there was a local issue, a local concern, that was going unheard by the former sitting member.

Now there is a commitment to reopen and also expand that centre and bring back a community hub to Walkerville, one that people are calling for, and not just the people who used to use the YMCA but also the surrounding businesses. When you see a community group or organisation like the YMCA, where 6,000 people would go through the front door every month, when you see a facility like that close down in a community, it has a really big impact on the businesses that are across the road.

The local barber, for example, was really upset when those doors closed because they saw a 10 per cent reduction in the number of customers coming through their doors. As we know—a lot of us in this chamber are parents—when you have five minutes to yourself, you do try to utilise it as much as you can. People were dropping the kids off at gymnastics and going across the road, having a coffee, squeezing in their weekly shopping or getting a haircut. We were told that again and again, that once those doors closed those local businesses were impacted.

What was also surprising was that a large amount of money was put in to the footy club across the road by the former government. What was surprising was that what the local football club and netball club were calling for was an expansion of sporting facilities, but what they got was a clubroom. That was not what they were calling for. They were calling for extended sporting facilities. So I am really pleased that the footy club, the netball club and all the groups in that community have now worked together and are going to get a really great outcome with the investment in the YMCA site.

Going back to our bold environment policies, I can appreciate the Hon. Rob Simms' feedback in the chamber today, but it is also important that we deliver on bold policies that will change our state and set our state up for a very strong future, and the investment in our green hydrogen industry will do that. It will unlock billions of dollars in a new industry, one that our state needs to diversify. We have seen that Labor governments do invest in renewable energy. We have seen that with the world's biggest battery in Jamestown. It is a policy and an agenda that this government will be growing.

There are also quite a number of commitments in education, which I touched on before, but none greater than the royal commission into early childhood education. As I said before, it is really important that we are investing in this space. Many in this chamber are parents and we know that when we invest in those early years we will be better off as a state. We will not only see our children thrive but our state thrive as well.

As mentioned, we have made a lot of investments in the arts and in bringing people back into that community. Another community investment is the Adelaide Aquatic Centre. Again, it goes back to the thought of the YMCA and about where we are investing in local community hubs. The Adelaide Aquatic Centre is just another community hub that we will be investing in.

Something that came up again and again on the doors was the need to protect the character and heritage of our streets. I am really proud that this government has taken a bold policy. We took it in as a policy in the lead-up to the election and it is something that we are now delivering on—that is, the review of the Planning and Development Act and also the design code. This is a really important step to be undertaking. As the Hon. Rob Simms would know, he would hear on the streets very regularly that it is not working.

It is very important that we look into this and that there is a review into both the act and the code because people want to be able to feel comfortable in the streets that they call home, even looking at the design of the size of the garage. I am sure that many people in this chamber, if you have knocked on a door, will have heard that cars are not stored in garages, they are stored on the street because not many family cars can fit in the garage any more, so they are stored on the street instead. These are simple things but they need to be looked at because they will have a big impact on those communities.

Another thing I would like to mention is that we are creating chances for the cost of living by investing in free transport for seniors. This is another very important investment because we obviously made a commitment that we would not be privatising our public transport system, unlike those opposite. That was another very out of touch campaign that they put forward—that they would privatise our trams and trains.

On this side of the chamber we quickly realised that people need to have an affordable way to get to work in the morning. If there are just six people on a train in the morning, those six people need to get to work. If you take that resource away from them or their accessibility to it, or think that as a private organisation you might just cut that service because there are only six people on the train, how do those six people get to work? Public transport is there for that reason. It is an equaliser, as I said at the beginning. That is why this is such a great Labor budget.

This is a budget that believes in building stronger communities for our state. On this side of the chamber we believe in investing in our communities not only for today but for the future. I am very proud of the work that has been put into this budget, not only by the Premier and his team but all the staff who have been supporting him through the process as well.

The Hon. R.B. MARTIN (11:34): I congratulate the Hon. Ms Emily Bourke on her speech. It was a fantastic speech and very thorough. I, too, rise to speak in support of the Supply Bill being debated in this council today and would like to talk a little bit about the budget that was released by the Labor government just last week. It is a budget that confirms and puts funding into all of the election commitments, and there were many—well over 200 election commitments—from the Labor Party. I would like to go back a little bit and talk about how those commitments came to be.

In March 2020, the world changed, Australia changed, South Australia changed, due to COVID and the lockdowns. I will do something unusual. I would like to give some thanks and pay my respects to Steven Marshall (the then Premier), Professor Nicola Spurrier and police commissioner Grant Stevens, who played a fantastic role in setting South Australia up at the beginning to manage COVID. I think Steven Marshall's decision to put Professor Spurrier and Commissioner Grant Stevens in charge of the response and listen to the health advice served South Australians well.

What does not get a lot of credit was the opposition leader, Peter Malinauskas, at the time doing something quite unique in Australian politics, and that was to support the government, to listen to the health advice, to give suggestions where they were needed, and on occasion the government did take up those suggestions. But it was unique.

What we saw in other states and territories around Australia was oppositions opposing just for opposition's sake. What we saw roll out in elections in that period in Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia was that those oppositions who opposed for opposition's sake remained in opposition, and the governments were able to stay in because they were showing some strength and leadership in managing the COVID crisis. So Peter Malinauskas's decision to support the government was entirely the right thing to do, to allow the government to do what it needed to do to provide as safe an environment as they possibly could for South Australians.

What we saw in the almost exactly two years between the first COVID lockdowns and the state election was that South Australians, by and large, did the right thing and complied with the restrictions, and they did it not for their own safety but for the safety of all South Australians. I think that was a fantastic thing to see. I should not say I was surprised, but it was good to see because not everyone likes to follow the rules, but most people did in this scenario.

In that intervening period with COVID, we saw a government become very popular because it was able to keep the COVID case numbers down, but over time people wanted more. They wanted to have more things taken into account than just the daily case numbers, and they saw that the government of the time was making decisions that were probably out of step with what they thought, particularly around the priorities of the government.

We saw this, within the Labor opposition, as an opportunity to support the health advice but to put in place some policies that we thought were the right priorities for the future of South Australia. This was difficult. Being in opposition, it was very difficult to get the airtime to break through and to get the public's attention, but we knew that we could do that with good, well thought through policy that touched on what the public wanted. It was not a matter of doing what the focus groups told us to do, it was not a matter of just doing what the public wanted to do, it was a matter of doing the right thing for South Australians.

The Hon. E.S. Bourke: The state was the focus group, wasn't it?

The Hon. R.B. MARTIN: It was at the end of that two-year period. It was a matter of doing the right thing for South Australians through our policy development. Clearly, with what we have been seeing with COVID around the world, right at the centre of what were the right priorities for South Australia and what the public wanted was someone to take bold leadership when it came to the health system, and that is why last week in our budget a very significant proportion of our budget commitments were based on the health system.

Another big one was hydrogen, on which I had the opportunity to speak and about which I am quite passionate, but today one of the things I would like to talk about is the health system and specifically frontline workers, those paramedics and ambulance officers who do an amazing job in what is a very difficult role. I always find it amazing with first responders that, when something bad happens, the natural instinct of people is to run away from it, but those heroes, those frontline health workers, those police, SES, run to the problem, and I have always found that an amazing thing and something which I admire greatly.

The ambos did it pretty tough in that period. COVID made their life more difficult in managing the fleet and keeping the ambulances clean. More cases and frustration from the public about dramatic increases in ramping made their jobs very difficult. Labor listened to the concerns of the paramedics, the ambulance union, and started developing a suite of policies that we took to the election and that I personally think had a big impact on the result.

At the heart of our commitments is a huge investment in our health system, and particularly to our ambos. The budget crystallises our election commitments and we will, over the next four years, recruit 350 extra ambulance officers, and we will build a brand-new state-of-the-art emergency operations centre, which will also house a CBD ambulance station and state health control centre. This emergency operations centre is long overdue; it will be the new hub for the ambos to respond.

The current place, as we heard in the Budget and Finance Committee, is past its use-by date. It cannot properly fit everybody in there anymore, and it is in dire need of an update. We are very proud that this Labor government will be building a new emergency operations centre. The budget will also boost ambulance infrastructure by building five new ambulance stations, purchasing 36 new ambulance vehicles, completely rebuilding four ambulance stations and upgrading a further 10 ambulance stations.

It will ensure greater coverage across metropolitan Adelaide by deploying an additional 128 ambulance officers, resulting in eight new 24/7 ambulance crews. We will also support our ambos with an expanded senior leadership program, three more 24/7 emergency support crews and 15 more 000 dispatches, and all that will go a long way to improving the service that those paramedics deliver to the South Australian public.

This investment is not just in metro South Australia, it is also about investing in the health of rural and regional South Australians by recruiting 24 more ambulance officers across the Limestone Coast, deploying an additional 30 ambulance officers across the Upper Spencer Gulf, ensuring 24/7 ambulance coverage across Yorke Peninsula, recruiting 30 additional ambulance officers for the Adelaide Hills, recruiting 18 ambulance officers in the Gawler area and recruiting 24 paramedics across the Fleurieu Peninsula.

In the Budget and Finance Committee meeting that we had last week the head of the SA Ambulance Service was able to tell the committee—and I am happy to tell people today—their plans for increasing the number of paramedics and where they will be placed in regional South Australia. They have put plans in place for more ambos in Whyalla, Port August and Mount Gambier, with a proposed new regional medical transfer crew for Peterborough, and that crew will undertake interhospital transfers and patient movements to relieve the strain on the local volunteer crews. Another great thing about South Australians is that they will volunteer their time to those in great need, and that is a fantastic thing.

This huge investment in our health system and our commitment to ambos means that anyone who calls 000 should feel confident that an ambulance is on the way, regardless of where they live. We hope and expect that these measures that we are putting in place in this budget over the next four years will have an impact, will reduce the wait times for ambulances and will help to fix the ramping crisis of the previous government.

While talking about the ambulance system in general, I would like to take the opportunity to put on the record my personal thanks to two experienced and exceptional paramedics: Ash and Raj. Ash and Raj have been paramedics for a number of years. They were courageous enough to publicly put their heads above the parapet and put on the record their fears for the health system over the past four years. They copped a lot of personal criticism for that, but they, like others in our health system, are heroes who should be thanked and recognised for all the work that they do. They do an amazing job in the toughest of circumstances. As I said earlier, I have nothing but admiration for the work that they do.

Those ambulance officers, those paramedics, those 000 dispatchers, all do a fantastic job and will all play a vital role in fixing the ramping crisis. But it is not just about the ambos; it is also about the greater health system and the number of available beds—the issue of bed block. I am proud that this Labor government is increasing the number of hospital beds right across the network in both metro and regional South Australia, building a new Mount Barker hospital and making the biggest investment in over 10 years in mental health, which I think is so very important, with 98 more mental health beds across the state. All of these measures will go towards working in parallel with the additional resources for the paramedics to fix that ramping crisis.

Also on the topic of mental health, this government is committed to funding 100 specialists in mental health to form a pool that can be drawn on by both primary and secondary schools to assist students who are facing mental health issues, and I think that is a fantastic initiative. There was a lot in this budget for South Australians, but the most important thing and what people should be assured of is that Labor will deliver on what it promised at the election. There were well over 200 election commitments and every one of them is funded in this state budget.

The Hon. N.J. CENTOFANTI (Leader of the Opposition) (11:47): I rise to speak on the Supply Bill. The opposition will be supporting this bill, but I would just like to take this opportunity to make a few comments about one particular area of government funding. It will come as no surprise that this area relates to primary industries.

The Department of Primary Industries and Regions, known more commonly as PIRSA, is an incredibly valuable resource. It is important that we ensure this remains so. PIRSA is responsible for the prosperity of the state's primary industries and regions. Despite its key role and importance to our state, the Malinauskas Labor government took an axe to PIRSA in this year's state budget.

The Hon. Mr Martin spoke about the government's priorities in his comments on the Supply Bill, but it is clear that primary industries and the regions are not a priority for the Malinauskas Labor government. This is a shameful disregard for the importance of PIRSA and the importance of our regions, and it demonstrates that Labor is once again ignoring our regions.

PIRSA lost $15.3 million in funding in the state budget compared with the 2020-21 state budget, on top of a $15.9 million cut over the forward estimates as operating efficiencies. The government has abandoned the agriculture sector, and shamefully it has abandoned the sector at a time when our primary producers need our support more than ever.

Last week, the Leader of the Opposition and member for Black travelled to my home territory of the Riverland. His time was very well spent, as I joined him and the member for Chaffey, Tim Whetstone, for meetings with local businesses, local councils and community members. The key theme of those meetings was the importance of our region maintaining its pest-free area status. The continuing battle for fruit fly eradication was discussed at length.

The Riverland's Pest Free Area is internationally recognised by our key export markets, including the United States, Thailand, Japan and New Zealand, and we must prioritise the protection of this $1.3 billion horticultural industry. We must prioritise keeping South Australia fruit fly free, and we must ensure PIRSA will be well resourced to achieve this end.

The Malinauskas Labor government's 2022-23 state budget allocated $13 million for fruit fly eradication response in 2022-23. This is down from $33 million last year and there is nothing across the forward estimates. This is at a time when Riverland growers last week lost access to Adelaide markets as fruit fly outbreaks continue. I do hope that Minister Scriven is true to her word that additional fruit fly outbreaks will be funded, given we saw yet another fruit fly outbreak announced late last week in Renmark. It is critical that the state remains committed to eradicating the current outbreaks to ensure South Australia can return to its pest-free area status.

At a time when fruit fly still is ongoing, Japanese encephalitis has been detected and there is a foot-and-mouth outbreak in Indonesia, which has our livestock sector on high alert. It does beggar belief that the Labor government would reduce spending on biosecurity. I encourage the government to look to the example of New South Wales, which last week announced $164 million in funding to address the growing biosecurity concerns.

I will continue to stand up for our regions and our primary producers, and I call on the minister to do the same.

The Hon. T.T. NGO (11:51): I rise to speak in support of the Supply Bill 2022. I take this opportunity to discuss certain community health initiatives that the government has progressed since I last spoke on them in my response to the address delivered by our Governor when she opened the current session of parliament.

As honourable members will be aware, our election result put this Labor government back in power because the people of South Australia wanted a government that cares about the important things. Health was a critical area of focus of this government. While pursuing economic opportunities and continuing to communicate what our spending priorities are, we are a government delivering on our commitment to improve health services. Providing better health outcomes for South Australians and easier access to services in both our cities and regions is a top priority. The 2022-23 budget includes $2.4 billion over five years to:

ensure hospitals are upgraded across the state;

more doctors, nurses, paramedics and ambulance officers are employed;

a new ambulance headquarters is built in the CBD;

four new priority ambulance stations will be built in Norwood, Woodville, Golden Grove and Edwardstown;

four existing stations will be completely rebuilt and expanded in Campbelltown, Mount Barker, Gawler and Victor Harbor; and

a further 10 stations will be upgraded.

Health was the mandate that this Malinauskas government campaigned on and it is no surprise that spending in this area is a priority in this Supply Bill: $837 million will improve our hospital capacity across the state in our cities and in our regional areas.

During the past two years of COVID, media reports have highlighted an increase in people suffering with mental health issues. Mental health is essential to a person's wellbeing, family and personal relationships, and the ability to contribute to society. This government knows how important it is to build better mental health systems so that people with, or at risk of, mental illness can be supported when they need it. The Supply Bill will inject $3.1 million over four years to increase mental health community teams. This will give more funding to our overstretched people on the ground, who are working hard to deliver the mental health services needed by South Australians.

I am pleased to be a member of a government that is not losing sight of the importance of our community health services. Community health services provide access to general services as well as those targeted services for the most vulnerable groups in our community. These services encourage good health through advising and helping vulnerable individuals with how to improve ill-health.

Through community health services people can get help to manage their existing health conditions and avoid hospitalisation. Community services also enable people to recover from hospital treatment in the comfort of their own home. Our community health professionals also address the high risk of disease in specific communities and help individuals gain access to important resources such as social services, health services and food banks.

This Malinauskas Labor government cares about supporting community health and values all the professionals working in the sector. Over four years, the Supply Bill will deliver $13.9 million for medic nurses in custodial facilities; $5.2 million for Nganampa Health Services for Gayle's Law; $2.4 million for Motor Neurone Disease SA funding; $1.8 million in pharmacist packages; $1 million for support for HeartKids; $900,000 over three years for 24-hour pharmacies; $800,000 for an independent voice for patients; $400,000 for Asbestos Disease SA funding; and $400,000 for the Cancer Council's anti-tobacco strategy.

Living with COVID has shone a light on our community health professionals and the services they provide. COVID has also put an increasing demand on pharmacies and pharmacists to provide services to our local communities. Community pharmacists are the health professionals we interact with the most, whether it is renewing scripts, addressing a cold, or seeking advice on improving our wellbeing. This government knows community pharmacies and pharmacists can do more and want to do more.

A Malinauskas Labor government will invest $1.75 million over four years to support South Australians and their pharmacies through:

allowing pharmacists to conduct medication reviews for people with complex health needs and multiple medications. This will reduce the numbers that end up in emergency departments;

providing mental health first aid training for pharmacists across South Australia, equipping them to better help people with mental ill health warning signs;

improving access to palliative care medication after hours for carers and patients; and

supporting pharmacies to improve patient access to help with respiratory illnesses.

For many South Australians, a pharmacy is the first point of access to health care. This means that pharmacists are in a unique position to identify early warning signs of poor mental health that might otherwise go unnoticed and undiagnosed. Labor will invest in mental health training for pharmacists, allowing them to identify and respond to early warning signs of mental ill health. The program will target training for at least 1,000 pharmacists and pharmacy staff, at a cost of $350,000 over four years.

Labor will support pharmacies to conduct medication reviews for people who often end up in hospital EDs due to medication issues. This will apply to patients who have been prescribed a large number of medications or a high-risk medication or who have a history of re-entering hospital due to medication issues. Labor will roll out medication reviews for patient discharge from the Royal Adelaide Hospital and Flinders Medical Centre, with over 1,000 reviews to be conducted annually through the program, at a cost of $1 million over four years.

Labor will work with pharmacists and doctors to trial how community pharmacies can help improve patient access to testing and antiviral treatments for respiratory illnesses, such as the flu, and ultimately reduce the pressure on emergency departments. This government will invest a further $150,000 to fund the cost of a trial to explore better ways that pharmacies can help to keep people healthy and out of hospital, working together with general practice and other health providers.

Labor will expand the availability of palliative care medications in pharmacies, ensuring that the clinicians caring for South Australians who are approaching the end of life can access the treatments they need. More than one in four pharmacies do not stock palliative care medications due to the relatively fast expiration of these medications, and regional pharmacies often buy and then bin the stock before it can be used. A network of at least 30 pharmacies will be supported to provide medication and support palliative care patients, at a cost of $250,000 over four years.

The Malinauskas Labor government will also provide an additional $900,000 to support three 24-hour pharmacies across Adelaide. This will enable these pharmacies to provide medication and care when South Australian families most need it and will help reduce pressure on hospitals. The 24-hour pharmacies will provide peace of mind for families and reduce pressure on hospital emergency departments, which are often a last resort for people seeking urgent medication and parents trying to manage their children's high fever.

I use this opportunity to thank the Pharmacy Guild of Australia South Australia Branch for their support in providing these great initiatives over the years, and Labor was happy to adopt most of their policies. I would like to thank especially the branch president, Mr Nick Panayiaris, and the two vice-presidents, Greg Scarlett and Mark Apolloni, with whom I have worked very closely over the last few years in terms of supporting the industry and coming up with these great initiatives.

Getting back to the three pharmacies that will be open for 24 hours, they will be chosen from across the northern suburbs, the southern suburbs and central Adelaide, with funding to support them to stay open after hours. The three pharmacies will be appointed through an open tender process, with geographical location being one of the key priorities. I know many pharmacies are looking forward to entering this process when it is opened.

The government is meeting its election commitments and will continue with getting on with the job of governing this great state. I commend the Supply Bill to the council.

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Attorney-General, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Minister for Industrial Relations and Public Sector) (12:05): I would like to thank honourable members for their contributions on the Supply Bill this morning. I note the many reflections on the massive increases we have seen to the health system. A number of members particularly reflected on the increases to the Ambulance Service. I note that members talked about being in regional South Australia and the importance of members of parliament visiting the regions.

I would like to agree with those sentiments and inform the chamber that I was very pleased that more than a dozen ministers of the South Australian government attended the first country cabinet in more than four years in Mount Gambier just last week, which was a huge demonstration of the Labor government's commitment to regional South Australia, as opposed to the former government, which scrapped country cabinet. Whilst it is good that two or three members of the Liberal opposition visited a regional area last week, nothing quite substitutes for an entire cabinet or, as was the case in the last four years, an entire Labor shadow cabinet visiting a regional area to hear firsthand from people in regional South Australia.

Bill read a second time.

Committee Stage

Bill taken through committee without amendment.

Third Reading

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Attorney-General, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Minister for Industrial Relations and Public Sector) (12:08): I move:

That this bill be now read a third time.

Bill read a third time and passed.

Sitting suspended from 12:09 to 14:15.