UNCLASSIFIED

Prime Minister

THE HON SCOTT MORRISON MP
Prime Minister

THE HON MICHAEL MCCORMACK MP

Deputy Prime Minister

Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development  

THE HON JOSH FRYDENBERG MP

Treasurer

THE HON ALAN TUDGE MP

Minister for Cities, Urban Infrastructure and Population

SARAH HENDERSON MP
Federal Member for Corangamite

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

Friday, 22 March 2019

GEELONG TO MELBOURNE TRAVEL CUT IN HALF PART OF 20-YEAR FAST RAIL PLAN

The Morrison Government will deliver $2 billion to bring fast rail to life between Geelong and Melbourne, cutting the 80km journey in half to 32 minutes.

The congestion-busting rail will be the first of its kind in Australia – travelling at the fastest speeds of any train line in the nation at an average of 160 km/h.

As part of the Government’s Plan for Australia’s Future Population to take pressure off the big cities and support the growth of the regions, the Melbourne-Geelong fast rail would be the first of many the Liberal Nationals Government would build over the next twenty years between the big capitals and surrounding regional centres. 

The Government’s 20-year fast rail plan also invests $40m for detailed assessments of five additional corridors, complementing the three presently underway that the federal government has funded, and others that state governments are funding.

These detailed assessments will determine the next priorities for funding and construction.

The Morrison Government will create a National Fast Rail Agency to guide the work, determine priorities based on the assessments, work with state governments and communities and the private sector and provide innovative finance solutions.

It would also take enormous pressure off the Princes Freeway and West Gate Bridge. Over 54,000 vehicles take the Princes Freeway every day.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the congestion busting investment in infrastructure would give time back to commuters and enable more people to live in our regions and work in our cities.

“This is all part of our plan to manage population growth that I announced this week to take the pressure off our big cities like Melbourne and make our regional cities like Geelong even more attractive places to live and work,” the Prime Minister said.

“As our population grows, fast rail networks are crucial to easing the congestion pressures in our cities and shaping Australia’s future.

“As well as reducing our migration cap and introducing new visas and incentives to encourage more migrants out to the regional areas that need their skills, our record investment in congestion busting infrastructure is key to tackling Australia’s population challenges.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said faster rail services meant greater accessibility to regional Australia.

“Faster rail services not only help to ease road congestion, it also means more people can access regional centres such as Geelong and wider region with reliable transport connections, which helps to generate more growth opportunities, beyond the city limits,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.

“This is all part of the Australian Government’s plans to help Australians get home sooner and safer, and to share these benefits in regional Australia, by building strategic infrastructure projects that make a real difference to peoples’ lives, and enable the flow of people, trade and investment that is essential to having strong and successful economies in our regions.”

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said the Geelong fast rail was possible because of the Government’s plan for a stronger economy.

“As a proud and passionate Victorian, I am particularly pleased to see this important piece of infrastructure announced by the Coalition,” the Treasurer said.

“It will help in creating jobs, reducing congestion and unlocking the potential of our regions.

“Investments like these can only be made because our plan for a stronger economy is working.”

Minister for Cities, Urban Infrastructure and Population Alan Tudge said the fast rail plan was a critical part of the Government’s Population Plan.

“Fast rail from the big capitals to the regional cities eases the pressure off the big cities while supporting the growth of the regions,” Minister Tudge said.

“This works alongside other measures such as reducing the migration rate and encouraging more new migrants and students to settle in smaller cities and regions that need them.

“Geelong is a strong growing regional centre, but transport connectivity to Melbourne is constrained by existing infrastructure.

“During peak hour, trains are often full at key stations such as Wyndham Vale and Tarneit, with passenger numbers exceeding capacity on the line. Services on the Geelong Line also suffer frequent delays.

Federal Member for Corangamite, Sarah Henderson MP, said this is a long-term, visionary project that will strengthen and grow our region and dramatically cut travel times.

“This is a truly historic announcement,” Ms Henderson said.

“For years so many people have talked about fast rail. Today, I am so proud to be a member of the Morrison Government that will deliver. My job is to get things done – to deliver for my community.

“Fast trains mean so much more than fast travel times. This project means jobs. This project means more time with your family. This means economic growth.” 

The Liberal Nationals Government’s $2 billion commitment will the $5 billion commitment to the Melbourne Airport Rail Link which will increase capacity between Sunshine and the Melbourne CBD. 

The Morrison Government’s funding includes backing new business cases for fast rail between:

  • Brisbane to the Gold Coast
  • Melbourne to Albury-Wodonga
  • Melbourne to Traralgon
  • Sydney to Wollongong
  • Sydney to Parkes

Media contact: Rosa Stathis, 0417 669 223

The Hon. Scott Morrison MP, Sydney

______________________________________________________________________

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JOINT MEDIA RELEASE – THE HON PAUL FLETCHER MP: Minister for Families and Social Services | 
THE HON SARAH HENDERSON MP: Assistant Minister for Social Services, Housing and Disability Services – $17.6M TO SUPPORT A HIGH QUALITY NDIS MARKET

Paul             SARAH

Prime Minister

THE HON PAUL FLETCHER MP

Minister for Families and Social Services

THE HON SARAH HENDERSON MP

Assistant Minister for Social Services, Housing and Disability Services

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

19 March 2019

$17.6M TO SUPPORT A HIGH QUALITY NDIS MARKET

The Liberal National Government has today announced a $17.6 million grants program to support businesses and individuals to meet their regulatory requirements under the new National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Quality and Safeguarding Framework.

Minister for Families and Social Services, Paul Fletcher said the new four-year $17.6 million Support for NDIS Providers Program will help NDIS providers deliver safe and high quality services and supports to NDIS participants.

“The Support for NDIS Providers Program funding will help existing and prospective NDIS providers to enter and remain in the sector and deliver a positive impact on the lives of thousands of people with disability participating in the NDIS,” he said.

The Support for NDIS Providers Program is an annual program – with up to $4.323 million available nationally in 2018-19.

“We are making an open call to the market to deliver projects that will benefit all providers in meeting their new registration requirements,” Minister Fletcher said.

“We will also work directly with the New South Wales and South Australian Councils for Intellectual Disability to assist participants with intellectual disability to be aware of the new NDIS Code of Conduct and Practice Standards, as well as engage in new processes for auditing registered NDIS providers.

“We are aware that allied health professional make up the majority of individuals and small businesses registered with the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission.

“We will therefore work with Allied Health Professions Australia to develop specific tools to assist allied health professionals in engaging in the new quality and safety standards.

“The Government is pleased to support NDIS providers which have demonstrated commitment to promoting the rights, health and wellbeing of people with disability in the NDIS.”

Assistant Minister for Social Services, Housing and Disability Services, Sarah Henderson said the Program would fund grants demonstrating innovate approaches to developing tools and resources that are easy to access by all NDIS providers.

“The grants will support providers in meeting the costs of complying with new responsibilities designed to improve the quality and safety of NDIS supports and services and to uphold the rights of people with disability to be free from abuse, neglect, violence and exploitation,” Ms Henderson said.

“There will be a focus on supporting smaller providers, and those facing the challenges of operating in rural and remote Australia, or in areas where there are limited choices for NDIS participants.”

Applications for funding in the 2018-19 Support for NDIS Providers Program open nationally on 19 March 2019 and close on 29 April 2019.

The Support for NDIS Providers Program is administered by the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission – a new independent Commonwealth agency established to improve the quality and safety of NDIS supports and services.

The NDIS Commission is currently operating in New South Wales and South Australian and will roll-out nationally by July 2020.

For information on the Support for NDIS Providers Program eligibility criteria, grant guidelines and how to apply visit the NDIS Commission website www.ndiscommission.gov.au/grants

 Media contact:

Minister Fletcher: Brooke Leembruggen 0447 743 835 brooke.leembruggen@dss.gov.au

Assistant Minister Henderson: Bree Willsmore 0475 975 778 bree.willsmore@dss.gov.au

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Prime Minister

THE HON PAUL FLETCHER MP

Minister for Families and Social Services

 

THE HON SARAH HENDERSON MP

Assistant Minister for Social Services, Housing and Disability Services

 

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

19 March 2019

$6.5 million to improve advocacy for NDIS participants

The Liberal National Government today announced $6.5 million to boost funding forNational Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Appeals providers and to continue the National Disability Advocacy Program (NDAP) Decision Support Pilot.

“This increased funding for advocacy services will support people with disability and help deliver National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) decisions that are fair and robust,” Minister for Families and Social Services, Paul Fletcher said.

Minister Fletcher said the investment of $5.3 million for NDIS Appeals will boost the program to help ensure NDIS participants can access support when seeking a review of decisions in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT).

“We are now providing more than $10 million provided to over 40 NDIS Appeals advocacy agencies across all states and territories,” Mr Fletcher said.

“While the focus of NDIS Appeals is advocacy support, funding for legal services is available for cases with complex legal issues, or where the applicant does not have the capacity to self-represent.”

The $1.2 million for the NDAP Decision Support Pilot will continue decision-making support for people engaging with the NDIS who have limited decision-making capacity and no alternative decision-making support such as family, friends or a guardian.

“The Liberal National Government’s continued investment in the Decision Support Pilot means that another 300-400 people with disability will receive the support they need to help them access the NDIS,” Assistant Minister for Social Services, Housing and Disability Services, Sarah Henderson said.

“This funding extends the pilot to 30 June 2020, providing crucial decision-making support for people currently accessing state and territory disability services to transition to the NDIS.

“The pilot will also be available to people in the Northern Territory for the first time.”

Ms Henderson said the pilot also has important implications for advocacy policy.

“The Australian Government is investing in disability advocacy now and in the long-term,” Ms Henderson said.

“Information gathered through the pilot will inform future policy to ensure advocacy services and decision-making support reach those who need them most.”

More information on NDIS Appeals is on the Department of Social Services website.

ENDS

Media contact:

Minister Fletcher: Brooke Leembruggen 0447 743 835 brooke.leembruggen@dss.gov.au

Assistant Minister Henderson: Bree Willsmore 0475 975 778 bree.willsmore@dss.gov.au

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