Vic budget seeks to turn cash into jobs

A host of new development funds have been established in Victoria as Labor aims to deliver on its pledge to create 100,000 jobs within two years of being in office. The 2015-16 state budget creates a $500 million Regional Jobs and Infrastructure Fund similar to a program in place under the former coalition government. It will provide funding for improved infrastructure to support regional indust…

  • Philly cheesesteaks could go global AAP - 9 minutes ago

    The hoagie-making, coffee-brewing convenience and gas chain from the Philadelphia area is pushing hard into the Sunshine State, opening more than 60 stores since 2012 with another 25 planned by the end of the year. Albie Misci, sales director at cheesesteak chain Tony Luke's, knows the idea. "The cheesesteak has grown from a Philadelphia sandwich, a local food, to a national sandwich. Tony Luke's has 22 stores, seven more in development and plans to grow to 360 locations within a decade.

  • Vic budget supports the vulnerable AAP - 13 minutes ago

    Domestic violence victims, at-risk women and children and other vulnerable Victorians have not been forgotten in the state budget. The state government has set aside $81.3 million in its 2015-16 budget to support domestic violence victims, including $57.9 million to protect a growing number of at-risk women and children. A $16 million fund will deal with demand for services arising out of the Royal Commission into Family Violence, which is due to report in 2016. Prevention of Family Violence Minister Fiona Richardson says continued support is about giving women and children the confidence to seek help.

  • Vic budget winners and losers AAP - 14 minutes ago

    Eligible trade apprentices will have their vehicle registration costs halved. "We're making it easier for young apprentices to get the skills they need for the jobs they want," Training and Skills Minister Steve Herbert said. An LGBTI Taskforce, $5.9 million for mental health and wellbeing in the LGBTI community and $10 million for teacher training and resources to support LGBTI students in all government secondary schools are also included in the budget. "Sadly, homophobia still exists in our society, but we won't rest until everyone in our state feels free to be who they are," Equality Minister Martin Foley said.

  • Victorian budget saves 100 hospital beds AAP - 24 minutes ago

    There is $560 million of capital works funded over four years, including a new $200 million Western Women's and Children's Hospital and major expansions of the Casey ($106 million) and Werribee Mercy ($85 million) hospitals. Work can begin on building Australia's first specialist heart hospital thanks to a $15 million contribution, there's $3.8 million to put a helipad on the roof at Monash Childrens Hospital and $2 million to establish a national centre for Proton Beam therapy in the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre. "Dr Travis's interim report revealed the immense size of the challenge we face to fix Victoria's health system," Health Minister Jill Hennessy said.

  • Vic Labor's first budget boosts services AAP - 33 minutes ago

    Labor won the Victorian election putting people first and its inaugural budget does the same. Instead of looking to cut public sector spending growth like the previous state government, Treasurer Tim Pallas is saying Victorians can live with it. Politically, the budget doesn't contain too many surprises apart from a couple of undelivered promises. Should the state encounter another unexpected event - a bushfire, a flood, having to pay out for another axed road - the budget position is suddenly a lot tighter than it looked last year.

  • The Victorian state budget at a glance AAP - 33 minutes ago

    VICTORIA'S BUDGET AT A GLANCE * $2.4 billion to remove level crossings * $1.5 billion for Melbourne Metro Rail planning * $1 billion to create 100,000 jobs in two years * $350 million TAFE rescue fund ...

  • No casino conflicts of interest: Qld govt AAP - 47 minutes ago

    The Palaszczuk government has defended its handling of a failed casino licence application against claims it has acted unethically. Tower Holdings' proposed $600m eco-resort on Great Keppel Island, off Yeppoon, hit a roadblock on Friday when the government dismissed its casino licence application. Prior to being elected Keppel MP Brittany Lauga worked for CQG Consulting, which helped prepare the project's environmental impact statement. "I was never involved as a consultant in any way, shape or form in Tower's application for any casino licence," she said.

  • Partner loss usually means financial loss AAP - 1 hour 9 minutes ago

    When Catherine DeCarlo's husband, Anthony, died nine years ago at 46, there was enough life insurance to pay off her home mortgage, government benefits for her three young children and some retirement savings. Most had trouble adjusting to reduced income and cutting discretionary expenses, said co-president of the insurer's Insurance and Agency Group Chris Blunt. DeCarlo's decision to use the insurance money on home equity allowed her to qualify for more financial aid to help get the kids through college, she said, and she enjoys her work, so she doesn't feel constant money stress.

  • Iron ore, coal prices drive trade deficit AAP - 1 hour 34 minutes ago

    Australia recorded a bigger than expected trade deficit in March, largely due to sagging prices for iron ore and coal exports. In seasonally adjusted terms, the balance on goods and services was a deficit of $1.32 billion in March, following a revised deficit in February of $1.61 billion. CBA senior economist John Peters said falling commodity prices were behind the wider than forecast deficit. "While export volumes of coal and iron ore continue to increase, their price continued to fall over March and that was a key driver of the bigger deficit," Mr Peters told AAP.

  • Macquarie boss admits poor practices AAP - 1 hour 37 minutes ago
    Macquarie boss admits poor practices

    Macquarie Group chairman Kevin McCann has acknowledged the banking group he runs engaged in bad behaviour that saw investors lose millions. "There had been shortcomings in one of the divisions of Macquarie Private Wealth," he told an Australian Council of Superannuation Investors forum on Tuesday. Commonwealth Bank director Jane Hemstritch said corporate leaders needed to listen to what employees told them, adding values posters at work were often useless if a bad culture existed.

  • ANZ lifts share market higher AAP - 1 hour 45 minutes ago

    The share market is higher after bank stocks rallied on the back of ANZ's solid profit result. ANZ delivered a better-than-expect first half cash profit on Tuesday, a day after Westpac disappointed the market with a flat earnings result that triggered a sell-off among the bank stocks. Investors have clamoured back into financial stocks, reversing yesterday's losses, CommSec market analyst Steven Daghlian said. "It has a lot to do with ANZ's profit result.

  • $A slightly higher ahead of rates decision AAP - 1 hour 46 minutes ago

    The Australian dollar has drifted higher ahead of the much anticipated interest rate announcement by the Reserve Bank of Australia. Mr Shamu said the lack of movement by the Australian dollar suggests there is still a lot of uncertainty among traders about whether the RBA will cut or not.

  • MIDDAY UPDATE: Auckland house prices grind ever hi … BusinessDesk - 1 hour 55 minutes ago

    Auckland house prices climbed to a fresh record last month with the average sales price rising to $804,282 according to Barfoot & Thompson, the city's largest realtor.

  • Stocks to watch on Tuesday AAP - 2 hours 3 minutes ago

    Stocks to watch on the Australian stock exchange at noon on Tuesday: AAD - ARDENT LEISURE - up 21 cents, or 10.58 per cent, at $2.195 Ardent Leisure has lifted third quarter revenues by 17 per cent, with ...

  • Prepare for possible long-term care needs AAP - 2 hours 9 minutes ago

    Whether that means round-the-clock supervision or a caregiver dropping by your home to help you with personal care and other tasks, it pays to prepare financially well before you retire. "Not enough people have some plan in place," said Jamie Hopkins, associate director of the retirement income program at The American College.

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