Mr DULUK (Davenport) (16:59): I would also like to make a contribution to the supply grieve. I hope that the state budget coming up at the end of June is as good for South Australia as the federal budget handed down last night was good for South Australia and Australia. We saw massive investment from the federal government in those things that are important to so many Australians. Most importantly, there was an investment to guarantee the funding for the NDIS, which is a very important scheme and one that receives bipartisan support, but up until last night it was not fully funded. With the announcements from Treasurer Morrison, we are going to see the NDIS fully funded, which is wonderful for South Australians and all Australians who live with a disability or their carers, so there was some good news in the federal budget last night.
It was also good to see the federal government commit to its infrastructure spending. Projects in my community such as the Darlington project are receiving 80 per cent funding from the federal government, which is of such benefit to residents in my community. Also, as the member for Fisher touched on, the train link to Flinders University, and the extension of the Tonsley line to Flinders University, and the investment in public transport that that will create for our community are so important. Congratulations to Treasurer Morrison on his budget.
I hope that the budget to be handed down by Treasurer Koutsantonis is as successful but I am not going to keep my hopes up, and I know that so many of us on this side of the house are not. How do we know that it probably will not be a good budget? Because the best indicator of future behaviour is to look at past performance, and on past performance we have seen year on year neglect by the Labor government to properly invest in South Australia, to properly deliver programs that will deal with the big unemployment issues that face our state, and we have failed to see time and time again any decent investment from this Labor government in my community.
The financial mismanagement of this state is one of the reasons why the government has not been able to invest in my community. We have seen huge budget pressures year on year from this government and that is a result of bad policy decisions. That is a result of years of squandering GST revenue under premier Rann and treasurer Foley, and we have seen that continue with Premier Weatherill and Treasurer Koutsantonis. We have seen the disgraceful Transforming Health proposal, which we all know is designed to save the government money but has done anything but that.
We have seen repeated failures by this government to care for our most vulnerable and disadvantaged, including the absolute disgrace that was the Families SA royal commission, and at the moment with Oakden we are seeing the disgraceful care provided to South Australians. That all comes at a cost. Not only does it come at a moral cost, a cost of care and a cost to those who are negatively impacted by bad government policy, but there is the financial cost of the cover-up, there is the financial cost that goes with holding a royal commission, and there is that whole financial cost. We have seen department after department squander and waste money on the implementation of terrible public policy by this government and that leads to the inability to be able to invest properly in infrastructure.
At the same time that this has been happening, the government has been flogging assets left, right and centre. In 2015, we saw the sale of the Motor Accident Commission. Before that, we saw the sale of ForestrySA, the Lotteries Commission, Glenside acreage, the Hampstead hospital, and we have the government's stubborn commitment to sell the Repat. It is funny that, with all the asset sales at the moment, so much of those asset sales have to do with health, and so much community infrastructure is being destroyed by this Labor government through the sale of key community assets, especially key community health assets.
The sale and closure of the Repat is an absolute disgrace as so many of this side of the house know. I believe that many on the other side of the house know as well. It was a bad policy when it was announced, and it is an even worse policy today in the light of what is happening with Oakden. We know that Oakden is going to be closed, but we also think the Oakden facility could be moved to the Repat site which is ready to go. Of course, it has a wonderful standard of care, a wonderful reputation in its care, and it is a site that is begging to be used as a public health asset. However, this government is forging ahead in its stubbornness to close the Repat and to close the Oakden facility as well.
On this side of the house, we have a policy to commit to renewing the Repat and retaining its specialist dementia ward (Ward 18). We should use that ward for the residents of Oakden as a home for those needing care into the future. As I have said, this government has an opportunity to stop the sale of public assets, especially public healthcare assets, and has the ability to deal with this crisis at Oakden at the same time as keeping the Repat open, which is an important issue. The government has that opportunity in the budget that will come before us in June this year.
We have seen a philosophy from this government, essentially to rob Peter to pay Paul; we have seen that time and time again. We have seen the debt burden increase, we have seen fees and charges increase time after time, as have motor vehicle renewals, driver's licence fees and speeding fines. We have seen a blowout in the debt. In last year's budget, we were sitting at a trend debt of about $14 billion, and of course we are seeing the interest on that being paid every day.
As I always say in this house, when you look at the opportunity cost of the total amount of debt that we have, we can ask where will the money come from to service this debt and where will the money come from to provide South Australians the decent public services that we need? There is the option of going to the federal government for help, although the Premier does not seem to be keen on working in a collaborative manner with his federal counterparts, or we can invest in South Australia.
We have been waiting for these grand investment announcements in key infrastructure and economic producing assets from this government, but we have not seen them. We might see something in the coming budget. We might see the government invest in Globe Link which is the Liberal Party's plan for economic growth and investing in productive infrastructure. We actually might see the government invest in our youth and unemployed.
As we know, we have the highest unemployment rate in the nation. It has been like that for too long now, so we might finally see some investment in programs and skills-based training that might help the unemployed of South Australia, but I do not think we should hope for too much. Last year's budget predicted jobs growth in South Australia of only 0.75 per cent, and this was reaffirmed in the Mid-Year Budget Review. This is less than half the national growth rate of 1.8 per cent.
In the time I have left I would like to talk about some road infrastructure in my electorate. As I said before, there has been a lack of investment for many years in road infrastructure in my electorate. Investing in that main road corridor through Blackwood and Belair and down through Fullarton is one of the biggest issues for my community. That road corridor needs to be upgraded, the Blackwood roundabout needs to be upgraded and the Blythewood roundabout and the through road to Fullarton Road need to be upgraded.
The Liberal Party in government will commit to funding the first $20 million of the road management plan through Blackwood and the Mitcham Hills. This will be of great benefit to my constituents and those beyond in Flagstaff Hill, Aberfoyle Park, Happy Valley and those who use that road corridor on a daily basis. They will be great beneficiaries of the investment in infrastructure within the Mitcham Hills.
There is the road infrastructure, but there is also the public transport infrastructure that needs to be invested in. Time and time again we talk about park-and-ride facilities. There are so many opportunities for investment for this government to make South Australia a better place. What we would like to see is that actually happen, as opposed to what we normally get which is the blame game from the government about the inadequacies of the system and supposed failures of the federal Liberal government.