Tim PALLAS (Werribee – Treasurer, Minister for Industrial Relations, Minister for Economic Growth) (14:15): I am really pleased to update the house on the positive feedback on last week’s state budget. Parents Victoria welcome the school saving bonus, saying it was very welcome to families struggling with cost-of-living increases. Jesuit Social Services said that the budget contains positive investments in early intervention for at-risk groups and demonstrates that we are assisting those with complex needs. Infrastructure Partnerships Australia – that is the good IPA, not the bad one – said that the government has commendably made the tough, albeit necessary, decisions to deliver a smoother and more sustainable infrastructure pipeline. The Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry said that they were pleased that there were no new taxes on business while three taxes and charges that stifle business growth will be reduced from 1 July 2024. The Early Learning and Care Council of Australia said they commend the Victorian government on their ongoing, nation-leading reform in early learning and care.


Last week’s budget delivered for Victorians. In this time of nationwide cost-of-living pressures, our budget was sensible and it was disciplined and it delivered for families and for vulnerable Victorians when they needed it. It took the sensible steps required to factor in the workforce pressures that we are facing across the state, and it sees net debt to gross state product fall for the first time since 2017. Unlike those opposite, we are here not to grandstand or to fan the flames of conspiracy and hyperbole; we are delivering for Victorians.