Legislative Council: Tuesday, September 06, 2022


Appropriation Bill 2022

Second Reading

Adjourned debate on second reading.

(Continued from 7 July 2022.)

The Hon. E.S. BOURKE (16:13): I am sure it will not surprise the chamber that I will be rising in support of the Appropriation Bill. The Appropriation Bill allows for government expenditure as set out in the state budget. It allows the Malinauskas Labor government to deliver on its election commitments for current and future generations of South Australians.

I have said it before in this chamber, and I will say it again: the 2022-23 state budget shows that we on this side of the chamber have the right priorities for South Australia. The Malinauskas Labor government's election and what we have delivered in our first 100 days of government show we are in touch with South Australians. We are delivering the bold plans for the future of this state that South Australians want and that South Australians voted for and have been calling for for far too long.

In health we are making a once-in-a-generation investment, and we are starting in our ambulance services. We are delivering:

brand-new ambulance stations at Mount Barker, Adelaide CBD, Norwood, Woodville, Golden Grove and Edwardstown;

complete rebuilds of the ambulance stations at Victor Harbor, Gawler and Campbelltown; and

upgraded infrastructure and the expansion of 10 other ambulance stations across both regional and metropolitan Adelaide, including Marion, Elizabeth, Whyalla, Mount Gambier, Keith, Peterborough, Mallala, Gawler, Wallaroo and Aldinga.

We are employing 350 additional ambos, including:

24 additional paramedics for the Fleurieu Peninsula, which will provide another 24/7 emergency ambulance crew at Victor Harbor, and for the first time a 24/7 emergency ambulance crew in Goolwa;

30 additional ambos for the Adelaide Hills, including a 24/7 emergency ambulance crew and a regional transfer crew at Mount Barker, and for the first time a 24/7 emergency ambulance crew in Strathalbyn;

32 additional paramedics in the Adelaide CBD, which will deliver two 24/7 emergency ambulance crews;

18 additional ambos for Whyalla, including a 24/7 emergency ambulance crew and a regional transfer crew;

30 additional ambos for Upper Spencer Gulf and Yorke Peninsula;

24 additional ambos for the Limestone Coast;

36 new ambulances and replacements of current ambulances reaching the end of their life—the biggest fleet order in South Australia's history; and

a brand-new headquarters for SA Ambulance Service in the Adelaide CBD.

The Marshall Liberal government did not fund a single new ambulance station during their four years of government—not a single one. They were happy to sit back and cut the ribbon on the new station funded by the former Labor government, but they refused to listen to our dedicated ambos who were crying for out for more resources, or to South Australians who were concerned about the state of our health system. Now, having failed to provide for and listen to the people of South Australia, they have found themselves on the other side of the chamber.

We are also investing in our hospitals. In hospitals we are delivering for current and future generations, and for metropolitan and regional South Australians:

a brand-new Mount Barker hospital, which will triple the size of the current hospital, from 34 to 102 beds, to accommodate population increases and plan for the future;

upgrades to Kangaroo Island, Port Pirie, Port Augusta, Mount Gambier and Naracoorte hospitals to include mental health and drug rehabilitation facilities;

an upgrade to the Modbury Hospital, including a new cancer centre and doubling of mental health beds; and

a brand-new Women's and Children's Hospital, with 50 additional overnight beds, including dedicated paediatric mental health and cancer beds, 48 more doctors and 12 more specialist nurses.

Those on the other side of the chamber took to the election a plan for the new Women's and Children's Hospital, which included one less paediatric and adolescent overnight bed. They were promising a new hospital funded by South Australians with fewer beds than the existing hospital. It is little wonder they find themselves on that side of the chamber. In mental health we are delivering:

98 additional mental health beds in hospitals;

72 new mental health rehabilitation beds in hospitals, so that patients suffering from mental ill health are not stuck in hospital emergency departments and can receive appropriate care in an appropriate setting;

a 12-bed mental health unit in the new Mount Barker hospital, which will introduce inpatient mental health services to the hospital for the first time; and

boosting funding for the Lived Experience Leadership and Advocacy Network, as well as a community mental health team so that they can hire specialist medical and support staff.

By contrast, the Marshall Liberal government cut mental health services, it closed 30 mental health beds in hospitals and stripped funding from community health services, aimed at helping people outside hospital settings.

In education we are delivering in our early childhood learning a royal commission into early childhood education and care to consider:

the extent of support provided to families in the first 1,000 days of a child's life;

delivery of affordable, accessible quality preschool for three and four year olds; and

improving access to affordable out-of-hours care.

In our schools we are increasing the number of permanent teachers in public schools by at least 10 per cent and making loading for teachers in country schools ongoing so that we keep them there. We are creating financial literacy resources, in consultation with financial experts, for use in schools.

In trades and skills we are building five new technical colleges across metropolitan and regional South Australia to be run in conjunction with local high schools. These technical colleges will allow year 10 to year 12 students to get trade qualifications while they complete their SACE, and they will then connect them with local businesses so that they can have the opportunity to enter the workplace as apprentices or trainees. In universities we are establishing a university merger commission, which will include the leadership of three universities to determine the best path forward for the university education sector in South Australia.

On this side of the chamber, we value our public education system. We value teachers and we appreciate the enormous contribution they make to educating and supporting our current and future generations. All our education policies are based on the Malinauskas Labor government's belief that every child and young person deserves access to a high-quality education and that it is the job of the government to ensure that education is high quality, accessible and affordable.

That is why we are investing in systems and reforms to make teaching in South Australia more attractive and to ensure that the education teachers are providing is effective and of a high standard to help our state to reach its potential as leaders in education and training, from the preschool sector to the tertiary sector.

On climate change, the environment is a focus for us. That includes creating a green hydrogen industry by building a South Australian-owned hydrogen power plant that uses solar and wind power and a hydrogen storage facility. It also includes axing the former Marshall Liberal government's electric vehicle tax and encouraging, rather than deterring, South Australians to use electric vehicles.

We are creating the Aldinga Washpool conservation park, and we are acting on every recommendation of the Murray-Darling Royal Commission 2019 and appointing a commissioner for the River Murray in South Australia and a South Australian to the Murray-Darling Basin Authority Board. We are employing 15 additional Aboriginal park rangers and increasing protections of Aboriginal heritage. We are updating the Animal Welfare Act to increase protections of animals, and we are increasing funding to the RSPCA.

In arts and tourism we are delivering a funding boost to the iconic Adelaide Fringe Festival, a support package for live music in South Australia, the return of the Adelaide 500, investments into making South Australia a tourist destination and funding for the Tourism Industry Council of South Australia.

Housing and planning is an important focus for us as well. We are delivering a government-backed, low-deposit home loan specifically tailored for first-home buyers who are purchasing a newly constructed house, and a secondary loan entitlement for some first-home buyers, with no repayments or interest required for five years. These commitments will help first-home buyers enter the housing market and provide a welcome boost to the construction industry.

We are delivering boosted funding for social housing and homelessness services and organisations. There will be 400 new public homes, comprised of 250 in metropolitan Adelaide and 500 in regional towns, including Mount Barker, Murray Bridge, Strathalbyn, Whyalla and Port Augusta, and including groups of residents with integrated health services. There will be significant renovations on 350 existing public homes and maintenance on over 3,000 others.

We are undertaking a review of the Planning, Development and Infrastructure Act, the Planning and Design Code and tree regulations, with a view to increasing open green space; tree canopies; heritage protection; minimising the negative impacts of urban infill; providing certainty to businesses, industries and communities; and improving e-planning. I know that initiative was very well received within the community when it was announced.

Transport and infrastructure are always important. We need to be able to connect our community with their work and with their family and friends. Reversing the privatisation of trains and trams and returning the skilled workforce to the public sector was an important priority for us that we took to the election. We are providing free travel for seniors on public transport to help ease cost-of-living pressures and ensure that older generations of South Australians can still get out and about.

We are upgrading Main South Road to provide for the full duplication of Main South Road between Seaford and Sellicks Beach, and we are building a new Adelaide Aquatic Centre to ensure it is a fit-for-purpose facility for the one million people, including families, schools, sporting clubs and recreational swimmers, who visit the centre each year.

Something I am very passionate about is the new announcement of my role. A strong focus that we took to the election is our focus on autism, particularly on the autistic community. This is an exciting opportunity and one that we should all be very proud of in South Australia. Not only is my role a first in South Australia or the country, it is a first, potentially, in the world, and that is something we should all be very proud of. This commitment that we took to the election includes:

investing $28.8 million to appoint an autism inclusion teacher in every South Australian public primary school;

work to increase the number of autism-qualified staff in preschools by making qualifications in this area a preferred employment criteria;

exploring the possibility of working with service providers to offer early intervention services in children's centres;

developing a State Autism Strategy that operates with the State Disability Inclusion Plan and requires all government agencies to sign up to the Autism Friendly Charter; and

investing $50 million to fund 100 additional allied health professionals, including speech pathologists, occupational therapists, psychologists and counsellors, across South Australian public schools.

All of these commitments were founded in consultation and in care, in asking our communities what really matters to them and in listening to their answers. On this side of the chamber, our policies are aimed at creating a better, fairer society, a society where South Australians can access essential medical care and public services when they need them, find gainful employment, run a successful small business, drive on safe and well-maintained roads, have a stable and secure roof over their head and access high-quality education.

Unlike those on the other side of the chamber, we are not just providing for the current generation of South Australians. We are providing for the future generations, for our children and our grandchildren and our grandchildren's children. We are tackling climate change and we are taking on not just a nation-leading position in doing so, we are also taking on a world-leading initiative like our autism policies to create real inclusion in our schools and in our communities.

Our government's forward-thinking, progressive, people-focused agenda is something that all South Australians should be proud of. It is allowing industry not just to recover from the pandemic but to thrive. I attended an event recently where the owner of a large South Australian company told me that this Labor government has done more for them in four months than the previous Liberal government did for them in four years. Honestly, I was not surprised and it was not the first time I had heard it. I am very proud of the first budget that we have handed down as a government and I look forward to working with all members to make this achievable.

The Hon. T.T. NGO (16:28): I rise today to provide my full support for the Appropriation Bill 2022. The complexities and dynamics that this budget addresses show that the Labor government is dealing with the hardship and adversity brought about by COVID with a budget that improves life for all of us in some way. South Australians can be reassured that this Treasurer has tackled the important issues affecting people of all ages and from all walks of life.

Importantly, this budget offers critical and major reforms for our health services, many of which have been acknowledged in this place since the Labor Malinauskas government won the March election. In fact, as the Treasurer himself stated, it is the largest allocation of health funding of any budget in the state's history. This budget will improve services and efficiencies for our children, reinvesting in our entire education system and improving access to support for our most disadvantaged and vulnerable children and families.

I take this opportunity to congratulate the Hon. Emily Bourke on her appointment as Assistant Minister for Autism, a role that will ensure our autism community is represented. It came as a surprise to learn that this is the first time Australia has had a government member to focus on autism. I know for a fact that the Hon. Emily Bourke will work tirelessly and collaboratively and will certainly make a difference to the lives of children diagnosed with autism.

Only last weekend, she attended street corner meetings in my neck of the woods, the Parks area, discussing this new role with many residents and local council members. The importance of early intervention cannot be underestimated, and this budget provides the opportunity to identify and implement necessary reform in this area, including $28.8 million over four years for public schools to appoint an autism inclusion teacher.

This budget provides improvements and support to a host of essential services and infrastructure, while returning the state's economy to a more stable position. It is also a budget that has increased support for our homeless, our multicultural communities and our artists and creative industries in a time of great need.

I have just said that this budget is a budget that aims to improve the lives of us all in some way. Today, I want to focus on how this budget will better support our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians. I am proud to be a member of a political party that has firm progressive Aboriginal affairs policies and is committed to a state-based implementation of the Uluru Statement from the Heart.

South Australia's Fifty-Fifth Parliament will be the parliament that fulfils the promise of a meaningful treaty with the First Australians and guide the establishment of an Aboriginal Voice to Parliament. The Uluru Statement is an important invitation from Aboriginal people to work towards meaningful reconciliation, and Labor wants to this to happen.

In South Australia, we have taken the first step to achieving this by appointing Mr Dale Agius as our state's first Commissioner for First Nations Voice. Mr Agius is already leading our consultation with Aboriginal communities to deliver a Voice to Parliament. He is holding consultation sessions right across South Australia, including the South-East, the Iron Triangle, the Murraylands, the Riverland, the Far West Coast, the APY lands and northern South Australia.

Labor wants to give South Australians the option to open their arms to our Indigenous communities, providing opportunities for the development of deeper understanding about Australia's Aboriginal culture and people. This budget provides the opportunity for us to welcome a future in which we can be more collaborative and better informed about creating a unified Australia.

We want our Aboriginal peoples' native culture to be a part of our national culture and not viewed as a separate culture. Voice, Treaty and Truth will work to deal with the ongoing discrimination and disadvantage faced by Aboriginal communities by empowering them on issues that affect them. This budget includes $500,000 indexed per year over the forward estimates to undertake this work.

As many will be aware, I am the Presiding Member of the Aboriginal Lands Standing Committee in this parliament, which has authority to highlight issues affecting South Australia's Aboriginal communities. Having travelled to the APY lands and other Aboriginal communities, I have seen firsthand some of the issues that Aboriginal communities face.

The budget shows Labor's commitment to improving the lives of our Indigenous Australians because it will deliver the money needed to address longstanding issues by funding the following projects:

$180,000 to provide urgently needed upgrades to fridge/freezer storage for fruit and vegetables at the Mai Wiru Regional Store at Pukatja;

$175,000 to renovate and extend the Oak Valley Store, providing significant improvements to the facility;

$60,000 to remove the Pukatja footbridge, which has become a significant safety hazard due to its age; and

$102,000 to resurface the Kaltjiti Football Oval and install new fencing.

On August 4 this year, we celebrated National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children's Day. On August 4 each year, Australians have the opportunity to show support towards Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. It is a day when we can learn more about the impact culture, family and community play in the lives of these children.

I believe it is fair to say that, in the main, Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children are thriving in their cultures and getting support from their families and communities. However, we do know that in the early years they are 2.5 times more likely to be developmentally vulnerable than non-Indigenous children and only half as likely to access childcare services.

This year, on National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children's Day, a picture book for the Pitjantjatjara language was launched. Research has demonstrated that in order to engage children in language it needs to be relevant and meaningful to the child A local APY lands SACE student, Kellis Dare Lawrie, drew the illustrations featured throughout this picture book. It features each sound in the Pitjantjatjara language, which is represented by a picture of a bird, bug or animal drawn by Kellis.

Australian Indigenous people have always had a strong connection with language. They traditionally pass on their sacred history by word of mouth from older to younger generations. Keeping our Aboriginal languages alive will ensure they are passed on to future generations. Picture books like this will help us to do that.

Another Labor government initiative in this budget that will keep the Aboriginal oral tradition of sharing stories alive is an interactive app for hikers which provides a record of Ramindjeri and Ngarrindjeri language and stories. While walking on the Heysen Trail between Cape Jervis and Victor Harbor, hikers can learn more about the history and achievements of Aboriginal people who have played a significant role in managing our landscapes for thousands of years.

We all know of the devastating consequences of having to place children in out-of-home care. At all points, from notifications, investigations, placements on protection orders and removal into out-of-home care, First Nations children continue to be over-represented in the child protection system. South Australia's Reconciliation chief executive, Shona Reid, became the state's newest Guardian for Children and Young People in July this year. The importance of culturally safe and responsive systems is crucial. I know Shona will bring great insight to this important role for children and young people in care.

As well as becoming the guardian, Shona will also take on the roles of Child and Young Person's Visitor, Training Centre Visitor and Youth Treatment Order Visitor. It was this Labor government that reinstated the Child and Young Person Visitor function to the Office of the Guardian for Children and Young People. In this budget, the Treasurer allocated funding of $1.87 million over the next four years.

Labor knows that the specific interests, especially the cultural interests of our First Nations children in care or detention, must not only be heard but also understood and met. The sad reality is that Aboriginal people still remain significantly over-represented in the criminal justice system. This has a significant impact on their cultures, families and communities.

Before the election, the Malinauskas government made a commitment to appoint a commission to identify ways to reduce this over-representation. This budget delivers $500,000 this year for the establishment of this commission. As our Attorney-General has indicated, work is underway in his department to establish the commission and set it up for work on this important task.

I have summarised how this budget will make a difference to the lives of Aboriginal Australians. I will say that, although South Australia has many statues and monuments dedicated to colonial figures, our Aboriginal leaders are not adequately recognised in this way. This budget will rectify this. The work of consulting with Aboriginal South Australians about who should be represented in this way has already begun.

Monuments reflect the importance of social and cultural identity in our public spaces, and it is exciting to know that this budget provides $1 million over two years for the design and delivery of monuments to mark the contribution of six Aboriginal leaders. These monuments will create a sense of permanency and heritage in our city's public spaces. They will help us to connect with Australia's cultural roots and traditions. We can now look forward to the design and delivery of these works, which will also serve to remind our future and emerging Aboriginal leaders of the legacy of past Aboriginal leaders who paved the way.

I want to thank the Labor Malinauskas government for this budget, a budget that will improve outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. Both state and federal Labor governments have pushed Indigenous issues to the front of the agenda. Labor is committed to working toward reconciliation. In fact, this is one of our top priorities. On that euphoric election night in March, reconciliation was one of the first things our Premier mentioned in his victory speech, a demonstration of his passion to unite Australia.

Australia's new Prime Minister has already set the goal of holding a referendum, possibly as early as next year. These are exciting times. I will quote our Prime Minister, when he announced the referendum and spoke of the privilege to live alongside the world's oldest continuing civilisation, that of Australia's Aboriginals:

We should cherish it. We should be proud of it. We should celebrate it. And we should recognise it in our national birth certificate… We will walk on that journey. And together, we will get this done.

We can look forward to working in partnership, knowing the Albanese government are on the same page as us, prioritising improving life outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

The Hon. R.P. WORTLEY (16:44): The Appropriation Bill before us is essential in allowing this new state government to deliver much-needed development and reform required to ensure South Australia's future. South Australia has a proven track record of identifying ahead of time the state's needs, whether they are in the domains of health, education, infrastructure, security, environment or economic growth, and we deliver.

It was Labor that undertook the massive role of upgrading South Road to create what we now know as the north-south corridor. It was Labor that opted to build a new world-class Royal Adelaide Hospital and it was Labor that gave the Adelaide CBD a well-overdue upgrade that turned the potential it always had into being a vibrant city centre. These of course are just the projects and initiatives that can be seen on a drive through the metropolitan area.

Labor has also invested heavily in health, education, trade, security, industry innovation and skills so that the people of South Australia have access to world-class standards. Labor is pumping an additional $2.4 billion into the health sector over the next five years and getting some real things done that are well overdue. We can all remember when the hospital at the western end of North Terrace was a controversial topic and one that, according to the Liberals, was not needed. 'Stay at the old RAH,' they said, 'and just give it a coat of paint.' The Liberals were dragged kicking and screaming against that development. Well, the new Royal Adelaide Hospital is a world-class facility and our aim is to bring all other health facilities up to their highest standard.

The new Women's and Children's Hospital is now a major priority. While there are massive improvements in store for many of our hospitals, we are putting $30 million towards keeping the Women's and Children's Hospital effective while we await the arrival of a brand-new hospital. We are going to oversee the massive upgrade of the Flinders Medical Centre, we are going to build a completely new hospital at Mount Barker and establish a cancer centre at Modbury.

Labor has budgeted for 350 more paramedics and ambulance officers and is creating a new ambulance headquarters in the CBD. We will also be able to see the arrival of 100 more doctors and 300 more nurses in the state, as well as funding an initial 326 beds. Importantly, we are putting a further 72 health beds at suburban locations, at The Queen Elizabeth, Modbury and Noarlunga hospitals.

A lot is said about the importance of dealing with mental health but recent information brought to me indicates that there is far too much lip service and not enough action. We need to change our attitudes and get better educated on mental health from top down. At least 72 beds and a further 20 mental health community beds in regional areas are a good start. To that end, Labor is committed to improving access to mental health assistance wherever the person lives. We are boosting funding so that mental health teams can reach more people in crisis. These are the people often suffering in silence, feeling isolated and unsure as to where they can turn. Mental health crises are caused by more issues than any of us without the right training would know.

We do know that drug and alcohol abuse are among the factors that exacerbate mental health issues, and Labor is committed to addressing the issues. We will be funding new drug and alcohol rehabilitation beds in various regional areas, so that those people who often go unrecognised can get the help they need.

Whereas the Liberals are happy to overlook the Labor heartlands when budgeting for improvements, we are not doing that. Labor has budgeted to upgrade hospitals at Mount Gambier, Naracoorte, Kingscote, Port Pirie, Keith and Port Augusta. We are also supporting the Yadu Aboriginal health clinic at Ceduna and the Nganampa health services on Pitjantjatjara lands in the far north of the state.

Labor is investing $630 million in education over the next five years. Investment is the right term because it is shoring up our future. The fact that we are supporting the construction of five new technical colleges, including two in the regional areas, shows our broader approach to education. The future of the state relies as much on the development of the trades as it does on other professions, and these technical colleges will provide huge opportunities for young people with practical aptitudes.

Labor is not being selective or elitist about education. Funding increases are being afforded to schools—private and public—technical colleges, TAFEs and universities. All areas and vocations will be supported, from the humanities to sciences and trades. It is about supporting people with the education and skills that will be best for them going forward, which in turn is what is also best for the state.

We will also be supporting those people who have often fallen through the cracks in the past and will provide almost $30 million to ensure that every government primary school has an autism lead teacher. We are committing over five years to the Preschool Reform Agreement, guaranteeing every child, not just the ones from families who can afford it, a minimum of 15 hours of preschool a week in the year before they start primary school.

To that end, we are also supporting the royal commission into early childhood education and care so that no child is left behind. Labor is committed to doing the right thing by our children, whether they are in traditional home situations or, through no fault of their own, when living at home is not an option. We are increasing funding to the Department for Child Protection by a further $70 million. We are also upgrading 19 school sites across the metropolitan and regional areas and will monitor where new upgrades are needed.

Labor is pumping hundreds of millions of dollars into regional South Australia. Whether or not the people in those areas voted for us does not matter. Our job is to improve the state, not just our heartland. Commitments include the Healthy Coorong, Healthy Basin Program, greening projects at Port Pirie, a new visitor centre precinct at Cape Willoughby and creating two new police posts at Indulkana near Marla in the north and Pipalyatjara in the remote north-west corner of the state. We will also ensure that another 15 Aboriginal park rangers are employed by 2025.

All in all, Labor has committed almost $1.5 billion towards new regional initiatives. These range from the building or refurbishment of 250 houses across regional South Australia, improving fire safety through a range of initiatives and upgrading regional transport. While we are discussing regional Australia, the hydrogen plan will be a major boon for the Eyre and western regions, with the establishment of new hydrogen generation and storage facilities in the Whyalla district. The Labor government is pumping almost $600 million into the hydrogen plan over the next four years because it represents our energy future on so many levels.

The development of electrolysers, storage facilities and turbines is essential to generating, storing and using hydrogen as a power source. Why hydrogen? It is renewable, clean, non-toxic, does not contribute to pollution and is plentiful. It can be produced from a variety of resources, with the potential to create near enough to zero greenhouse emissions. It has the ability to power both the stationary and transportation energy sectors.

Beyond the obvious environmental benefits of using hydrogen as a power source, it will also create thousands of jobs for years to come. Up to 300 people will be employed in the construction process alone, then a further 900 in developing the export industry and at least 10,000 jobs will flow on indirectly. The budget provides for a raft of environmental measures that deal with land care, science and biodiversity, wastewater management, River Murray management and pastoral care.

Continuing on the great work Labor and only Labor has done over the past 20 years, the government is pumping almost $8 billion over the next four years into our rapidly improving road system. The north-south corridor is a gift that keeps giving for the Labor Party. Labor watched in opposition and dismay while the Liberal governments of the late 1990s went about creating the world's longest one-way reversible freeway. Why they did that we will probably never know.

It was Labor, though, that started to put plans in motion once we regained government in the early 2000s, and the north-south corridor has never looked better. Of course, we fixed that one-way shemozzle, but we also oversaw the development of the north-south corridor that runs from the Northern Expressway to the Northern Connector, South Road Superway and Darlington upgrade. The work is not finished, and just as well Labor has been re-elected to ensure it is done right.

We do not have to worry about being the laughing-stock of the nation any longer, as we commit to finishing the project so that traffic runs smoothly and uninterrupted from Gawler to Noarlunga. We can joke about the mess the South Road project was in the early days, but the important thing is that we get our road system working at its most effective. We are investing $400 million in completing the section between Anzac Highway and Cross Road, and once the work is done the best north-south traffic system in the country will be all but complete.

Of course, there is a lot more to South Australian roads than just the major north-south project. Labor is investing $100 million in upgrading roads on Lefevre Peninsula, where the population is growing rapidly. We are also investing in the safety of the Adelaide Hills roads, putting $75 million of much-needed upgrades into the South Eastern Freeway. We have identified and are addressing flood-prone outback roads, and we are investing in rural road upgrades.

As good as the road system is becoming and as good as it will ever get, a well run public transport system can only improve the way we get around our city and state. Labor has a raft of public transport initiatives earmarked. We are making good on the election promise to revive plans for a one-kilometre rail spur running from the Outer Harbour line so we can connect Port Adelaide to the CBD.

The Liberal government's attitude towards the Port rail spur has a familiar feel about it. It feels a lot like the one-way expressway, where a government looks at short-term finances instead of long-term growth and sustainability. Getting this project finally completed would be a major win for the western suburbs.

Among Labor's other public transport commitments, we are determined to create an express fleet service to Mount Barker and upgrade the automatic train protection signalling system on the Seaford line for safety and so there are less delays and road traffic congestion.

Labor is providing additional public housing for those in need. We are committed to adding a further 250 houses in the metropolitan area and another 150 in regional South Australia while upgrading thousands of homes that are already occupied. On top of that, we are introducing a low deposit loan scheme to help more South Australians get their own homes and get out of the rent cycle.

We do not have a strong and fair standard of living unless everyone has it. That is why Labor is pumping more than $10 million into homelessness support services over the next four years. Just as secure housing is vital to all people, so is community safety through law and order and the maintenance and upgrading of our emergency services. To that end, Labor is providing additional support for a raft of police and justice measures, ranging from improved police safety to getting serious about organised crime.

An important part of our ongoing safety is ensuring that we have the best emergency services available and ensuring that people who put themselves out there every day, keeping us safe in times of emergency, are given the best opportunity to do their job. Labor is providing more funds for emergency and firefighting equipment so that staff and volunteers can respond when the situation arises.

As we come out of the major setbacks brought on by COVID-19 and the necessary restrictions it caused, we are pumping more money into tourism to bring the industry back to the healthy state it was in just three or four years ago. Labor is investing $88 million into tourism to help promote the state as a genuine destination location for interstate and overseas visitors. Tourism has fought on bravely, but it has also suffered under COVID, and it is now time to bring people back.

Under many Labor initiatives during the years of the Rann and Weatherill governments, South Australia went from a well hidden secret to a destination for those wanting to experience world-class wines and dining or travel to renowned locations like the Flinders Ranges, Kangaroo Island, the West Coast, the South-East, the Barossa and McLaren Vale wine regions, or simply enjoy a short stay in the breathtaking Adelaide Hills, the only hills in mainland Australia that are within earshot of the city centre.

These destinations need no introduction to South Australians, who have been enjoying short stays there for years, but this injection of funding to promote the state will bring visitors back. We need to spend money to get the message out that South Australia is open for tourists again and to encourage them to come to the restaurant precinct; Adelaide Oval; the wineries, including the remarkable Cube down at McLaren Vale; the beaches—the list is endless.

While on tourism, this government is investing $18 million to ensure the Adelaide 500, the car race that got a little bit too difficult for the former government, will resume its rightful place as a major South Australian event. Let us be fair: the previous government did its best under trying conditions when COVID hit, but the pressure apparently got to be too much and it dropped the ball on this one. Why would they even consider cancelling the race? It is one of the more curious decisions since the previous Liberal government oversaw the selling or basically giving away of the South Australian TAB for less than a year's profit. It did not make sense then, and it does not make sense now.

The TAB cash cow is never coming back, but we have been able to do something about reversing another bad Liberal government decision: the Adelaide 500. This will resume in December, not next year or the year after but this December. It is not hard; it just requires a lack of panic when a few things do not go perfectly and some basic understanding of economics.

On top of the reintroduction of a major event that should never have been abandoned, Labor is putting $40 million over four years into a major events fund to explore other opportunities. This means existing events will be supported so they get the chance to reach their full potential. We are also looking at which new events can be brought to a state increasingly renowned for its arts, sporting, tourism and cultural significance. Instead of putting possibilities into the too hard basket, Labor is committed to backing the events that deserve a chance.

South Australian success stories, like the Fringe, Adelaide Film Festival and the Royal Show, will receive funding boosts to ensure their ongoing success. We are pumping a further $8 million into the Fringe so we can attract major local and international acts and increase its already strong interstate and overseas support.

Sport has also been well supported. It is an intrinsic part of the South Australian ethos, from our teams playing sports like the AFL, cricket, soccer, basketball and netball at a national and international level, to the hundreds of thousands of competitors and supporters who make up community sport. While it is essential to do all the really vital urgent things to make this state run better, Labor is investing more than $150 million so that we can enjoy our sport. Of course, the more we get involved in sport the healthier we are and the stronger our community ties.

From the $82 million Aquatic Centre rebuild to the community sports grants, and the well overdue build of female sporting facilities, we are taking our sportspeople’s health and happiness very seriously so that they do not have to. None of these initiatives are possible without a strong, growing economy. Our forward estimate indicates a 2¼ per cent growth in each of the next four years. Employment is set to grow steadily. On top of that, the $100 million Economic Recovery Fund will continue to investigate opportunities for growth and development over the next four years of this government.

In the end, it comes down to spending money to make money, but more than that our spending is also creating a better state, where we have world-class health and education, a world-class road system and a standard of living that holds up anywhere in the world. The bottom line is that the investment in these infrastructure projects and vital services is not just making us a better place to live, it is guaranteeing our economic future. I commend the bill to the chamber.

The Hon. N.J. CENTOFANTI (Leader of the Opposition) (17:02): I rise today as the opposition's lead spokesperson on the Appropriation Bill 2020. I do so on behalf of and in the absence of the Hon. Heidi Girolamo, who is shadow finance minister and cannot be here today. Since the budget was released on 2 July 2022, we have raised a long list of questions and concerns about Labor's spending. We all know that the election in March was won based on Labor's commitment to 'saving our healthcare system'. Hundreds of millions of dollars were committed: more paramedics, more staff, new hospitals, not to mention the decision to syphon all funds from big-scale economic opportunities for our state and pour it all straight into the healthcare system.

What was the main promise that the now Premier and his party made to all South Australians? No surprises here: it was to put an end to the ramping crisis. Interestingly, we did find out a few weeks ago that South Australia's Electoral Commission determined that the statement that ramping is worse than ever was inaccurate and misleading during that campaign.

The question that still stands to this date is: what about everything else? This budget sees $700 million worth of cuts to government services. This means that South Australian residents are losing out on services that they are entitled to receive. From the Hon. Heidi Girolamo's own perspective as shadow minister for trade and investment and from my perspective as shadow minister for our regions, we are extremely concerned that this budget has not included a single commitment to our trade and exporting industries. These industries have been doing it tough since COVID-19, but somehow they have managed to continue to beat the odds and achieve great results with the leadership and support of the former Liberal government.

It has been brought to our attention by a number of stakeholders whom we have met with in recent months that the trade and export industries do not appear to be a priority for the Malinauskas Labor government. They seem to be happier to ride on the coat-tails of the successes that they have inherited from the Marshall Liberal government's hard work than to come up with their own policies and ideas.

In the current state of play, we have not yet witnessed the miracle fix to ramping. The government has broken its promise to offer free preschool for three year olds. The north-south corridor project has been hugely delayed. The new Women's and Children's Hospital completion date has been delayed by more than a year. Just one month after being announced, the Flinders Medical Centre upgrade has already been delayed by one year.

The Labor government is yet to come up with an idea as to how it will create jobs for unemployed South Australians. What is worse is the increasing pressure in cost of living that is burdening South Australians. It is remarkable that, when we were in government, we reduced the average residential water bill by around $200 and the average business water bill by around $1,350. This followed the damning results of an independent inquiry into SA Water in 2019, which found the former Labor government deliberately drove up household and business water bills to support their bottom line.

We also introduced a payroll tax to help small business owners to keep on moving while they faced challenges throughout the COVID-19 pandemic that they will probably never face again in their lifetime—hopefully never face again in their lifetime. It is a scary thought that the hard work we put in to reduce the cost-of-living pressures faced by everyday South Australians has so quickly been turned on its head, only six months into Labor's rule and reign. Unfortunately, independent regulator ESCOSA recently revealed that South Australian families are now paying $218 more for their electricity bills under the Malinauskas Labor government.

A question we have asked ourselves about the $300 billion that Labor budgeted for its never-ending list of election commitments is: did it just run out before they thought about what the impacts would be on the people of South Australia? Was there no more money in Labor's bank to help the people we represent in parliament to afford their groceries, bills and rent payments?

To add salt into the wound, interest rates jumped in June this year, and the cash rate increased too. The impact of this on South Australian families means an additional $278 needs to be found in their budgets each month when you take into consideration the aforementioned increase in electricity as well as the current price in petrol. As I alluded to before, this budget sees $700 million cut from government services. Of all the things that people voted Labor in to deliver, I do not think we have seen much delivered besides yet another review and delays to original time lines.

I also spoke earlier about trade and export industry stakeholders who feel like they have been left in the dark following Labor's complete lack of election commitment or dollars in the budget to help them in pushing forward. An example of this—one we always feel so passionate about as South Australians—is our wine industry. This industry forms part of our brand, and South Australia is known across the world for its amazing selection of wines.

Unfortunately, there has been little talk from the Premier and his cabinet ministers about what assistance they will provide to this critically important industry, which has been vocal in the struggles it has faced and the struggles it continues to face. There are endless opportunities here that could benefit South Australians in so many ways: trade, investment, jobs, benefit for our regions, and tourism. I could go on. Where is the help for our grapegrowers and winemakers?

When in government, the Liberal Marshall government managed our state through the COVID-19 pandemic. Against all odds, South Australia's economy performed better and came back faster than most other jurisdictions, let alone the world. We faced huge challenges, unprecedented challenges, and again Labor is given the red carpet treatment to roll in behind us and pick up where we left off.

If we had been less determined, less forward thinking and less level-headed, things could have been vastly different. Despite Labor's election campaign focusing heavily on how 'poorly' the South Australian economy was performing under the Liberal government, it seems they do not have any complaints about the additional revenues they have been able to spend since.

One of the main initiatives the Labor Party focused on during its budget announcements was that they would lower the cost of materials for school students in South Australia. I could not let pass this opportunity to remind those opposite that this was a Liberal Party commitment that the Labor Party copied and matched. To us, this is a glaringly obvious sign of this government's inability to understand how to come up with good policies that will actually benefit everyday South Australians.

A nice glossy budget with pictures on the front to pull at your heartstrings is one thing, but delivering what Labor has committed to is another. Besides the health system and the hydrogen plant, what have we got? We have no plans for new jobs, less support for apprentices and trainees, less public services, and what in return?

In closing, I would like to say that it is one thing for the Labor Party to make all these promises to South Australians to fix all of these supposed problems, but it is actually another to deliver. I hope that South Australians are not left in the lurch, struggling to pay their bills and struggling to put food on the table for their family.

Debate adjourned on motion of Hon. I.K. Hunter.

At 17:12 the council adjourned until Wednesday 7 September 2022 at 14:15.