McGowan Government delivering strong future for the Kimberley

The McGowan Government is delivering for the Kimberley, providing cost of living support for Kimberley residents while investing significantly in health, housing, and Western Australia's transition to cleaner, stronger, reliable, and affordable energy.
  • State Budget delivers cost of living relief for regional Western Australians
  • Major investments into regional health, housing, jobs and training
  • New funding for justice, youth and police initiatives to build safer, stronger communities
  • More than $4 billion delivered through Royalties for Regions program

The McGowan Government is delivering for the Kimberley, providing cost of living support for Kimberley residents while investing significantly in health, housing, and Western Australia's transition to cleaner, stronger, reliable, and affordable energy.

The 2023-24 Budget features a massive $11.2 billion investment in regional infrastructure as well as billions more in regional service delivery.

The State Budget includes $4 billion in Royalties for Regions expenditure over the next four years towards initiatives that strengthen regional communities and ensure services remain close to where people live.

Regional Western Australians will benefit from the McGowan Government's $715 million commitment to deliver further cost of living relief, including providing every WA household with a $400 electricity credit and additional targeted support totalling $826 for households who need it most.

As part of its commitment to keeping power and water affordable for all Western Australians, the McGowan Government will spend $2.7 billion over the next four years to subsidise the costs of providing water and electricity to regional residents.

To continue to ease cost of living pressures in the regions, the McGowan Government will deliver a $20.7 million boost to meet increased demand for the highly-successful Regional Airfare Zone Cap, providing affordable airfares for regional residents.

The McGowan Government is delivering a record $2.7 billion additional investment into WA's health system, with the 2023-24 State Budget featuring a significant investment into regional health and mental health, including:

  • more than $2.2 billion per annum on regional health and mental health services;
  • $28.5 million for initiatives to attract and retain key health and mental health professionals, primarily to work in regional WA, with priority given to hard-to-staff sites;
  • $24.4 million to extend the Mental Health Emergency Telehealth Service, providing 24/7 mental health support and allowing country doctors to make referrals whenever needed;
  • $5.4 million to continue the delivery of important psychiatric services in the East Kimberley;
  • $8.2 million to upgrade WA Country Health Service staff housing, including safety and security upgrades in the Kimberley;
  • $6.3 million to extend regional cancer services; and
  • an additional $6.7 million towards Regional Renal Support Teams.

The 2023-24 State Budget strengthens the McGowan Government's record investment into housing, including:

  • boosting the commitment to refurbish and deliver Government Regional Officer Housing by $61.6 million;
  • $49 million to partner with community housing providers to provide 100 social homes across regional WA in a supported landlord model for rough sleepers;
  • $450 million into the Social Housing Investment Fund to deliver more social housing across the State;  
  • $12 million over four years to deliver more development ready land throughout regional WA, through the Regional Development Assistance Program; and
  • an additional $1.3 million through the North-West Aboriginal Health Fund to deliver more affordable accommodation for medical service employees in Halls Creek.

The McGowan Government's 2023-24 State Budget continues to deliver on the WA Jobs Plan, diversifying regional economies, creating new jobs for the future and developing a pipeline of skills in the regions. Key Kimberley initiatives include:

  • $6.5 million to implement the Western Australian Aquaculture Development Plan;
  • $2 million from the New Industries Fund to support regional entrepreneurs in the innovation sector;
  • $2.5 million to increase the travel accommodation allowance for regional TAFE students;
  • $2.9 million to provide a weekly allowance for regional students studying a Diploma of Nursing;
  • $3.1 million to expand the Heavy Vehicle Driver Training Program to the Kimberley and Pilbara;
  • $8.7 million to facilitate further agricultural development in the Ord River Irrigation Area through managing environmental obligations; and
  • $3 million to extend the Affordable Airfares program for a further twelve months, subsidising more than 34,000 airfares from Perth to Broome and Kununurra to stimulate visitation.

The McGowan Government continues its record investment into regional roads and transport projects, including:

  • a further $407 million on regional road projects and initiatives being invested in this Budget, bringing the total investment over the next four years to $5.3 billion;
  • a $175 million boost to the jointly Commonwealth-State funded Regional Road Safety Program, to continue to deliver life-saving works on regional roads;
  • $15 million for upgrades at the Port of Broome, including a new concrete deck;
  • $1.8 million for electrical upgrades at the ports of Wyndham and Derby;
  • $800,000 to lock in a permanent third weekly return air service between Kununurra, Halls Creek and Balgo, following a successful two-year trial; and
  • $2.3 million to seal Warmun airstrip to facilitate more reliable health clinical flights into the community.

The 2023-24 State Budget will help to build safe, strong and fair regional communities, with initiatives in the Kimberley including:

  • $11.7 million to extend Operation Regional Shield, continuing to deliver police into regional communities experiencing youth crime issues;
  • $11.8 million towards the Kimberley Juvenile Justice Strategy, including continuing successful night patrols and structured activities for young people;
  • $11.7 million to continue the Target 120 rollout across the regions, including in the Kimberley;
  • $16.3 million to establish a one-stop family and domestic violence hub in Broome, delivering on a key election commitment for the Kimberley;
  • $1.1 million to continue the Respectful Relationships Teaching Support Program and the provision of culturally appropriate services for victims of family and domestic violence in regional areas;
  • $10.4 million to enhance the Banned Drinkers Register, including across Kimberley towns;
  • $9.5 million to consolidate accommodation for WA Police and the departments of Communities and Justice in Kununurra;
  • $5.8 million to extend the successful Driving Access and Equity program to deliver driver training to disadvantaged young people;
  • $4.9 million to continue the Regional Athlete Support Program to help regionally-based talented athletes meet their full potential;
  • an additional $42.6 million for upgrades to water and wastewater systems in remote communities; and
  • $700,000 to continue the Rural, Regional and Remote Network program to support regional women.

The 2023-24 State Budget is a major investment into WA's future, tackling climate change through a $3 billion package as well as investing in protecting the environment. Kimberley initiatives include:

  • $31.3 million for an Industry Support and Transition Package and to support management of the Buccaneer Archipelago Marine Parks;
  • $2.2 million to deliver an Electric Vehicle Smart Charger and Vehicle-to-Grid trial through Horizon Power; and
  • $10.4 million to boost WA's emergency animal disease preparedness following overseas outbreaks of Foot and Mouth Disease and Lumpy Skin Disease.

Following the destructive flooding caused by ex-Tropical Cyclone Ellie, $13.4 million will fund a taskforce to manage and support recovery - building on the multi-million-dollar support packages secured under joint Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements, including funding temporary residential accommodation and a freight assistance scheme to support Kimberley businesses.

The McGowan Government will also invest $77 million to manage and protect Aboriginal cultural heritage in WA, including support for new Local Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Services.

This year's Budget builds on the diverse range of projects and programs already underway in the Kimberley, including:

  • $36.3 million towards a new boating facility in Broome, planning currently underway;
  • $4.4 million for canteen upgrades and a new STEM classroom at Broome Senior High School;
  • $10 million for a new classroom block and upgrades at Halls Creek District High School;
  • $51 million to upgrade Duncan Road and Gordon Downs Road in the Browns Range, currently under construction;
  • $113 million for the Ord River North, Great Northern Highway upgrades, with stages 1 and 2 complete and planning for stage 3 underway;
  • $110 million over the next four years for upgrades to Tanami Road, near Sturt Creek, with planning underway;
  • $15 million to deliver the Marlamanu on-country diversionary program;
  • $6 million towards the redevelopment of the Kununurra Aquatic and Leisure Centre; and
  • $2.3 million for upgrades to the Warmun Community sporting facility.

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Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan:

"This Budget continues our record of delivering for the Kimberley - helping to ease cost of living pressures and investing in the region's future.

"My Government is investing a record amount into regional infrastructure, and delivering a significant boost for health and housing in the regions.

"We are committed to keeping the community safe in the Kimberley, with our Budget including important investments into regional policing and programs targeting at-risk young people.

"WA's responsible financial management provides the opportunity to make significant investments in what matters to Western Australians, while keeping the Budget in a strong position for future generations.

"Our WA Jobs Plan is working, creating long-term jobs across the State, while diversifying WA's economy, driving new job opportunities in high tech manufacturing, clean energy, agriculture, tourism and defence industries."

Comments attributed to Regional Development Minister Don Punch:

"The Kimberley is an asset to all of Western Australia, with a diverse community who are immensely proud of their region.

"Through the 2023-24 McGowan Government Budget, we're investing in economic, social and cultural initiatives across the Kimberley, as well as providing further support for those affected by ex-Tropical Cyclone Ellie.

"This Government remains focused on creating more long-term jobs in the Kimberley, delivering on our election commitments in the region, and improving the vital local infrastructure that makes everyday lives easier for the community.

"Our significant regional investment continues in the 2023-24 State Budget, with $11.2 billion committed to the regions to deliver important projects and improve lives across the State."

Comments attributed to Kimberley MLA Divina D'Anna:

"This Budget builds on the significant support our Government is providing to the Kimberley and delivers major investment in initiatives to build a safer, stronger community.

"We're also supporting families with cost of living relief, and delivering record investment to regional health, housing and transport projects.

"We are working hard for the Kimberley and will continue to work with the local community to help make a positive difference to lives of people that live here."

Premier's office - 6552 5000

Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6900