Page 1897 - Week 07 - Tuesday, 2 June 2015

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And fundamentally they need jobs: our support for the economy and investment in new infrastructure will deliver jobs for Canberra.

And through the record funding for municipal services in this budget, we ensure the look of our city will continue to match the pride we feel in it: well-maintained roads and footpaths, and well-kept parks, playgrounds and open spaces.

Budgets are also about values. This budget is a clear statement of the values my government holds. We make a stand against domestic violence, so Canberrans can feel safe in their homes.

We stand up for Canberra against the Commonwealth’s savage cuts, and we will continue to use the budget to safeguard jobs for Canberra and grow our economy.

We are continuing to build new infrastructure, and plan for the Canberra of tomorrow through major long-term projects.

This budget delivers for Canberra.

It delivers a strong economy and growing businesses, quality services and infrastructure, and a welcoming appearance to match the pride we feel in our city.

Economic outlook in the ACT

There is no doubt that the election of the Abbott Government has resulted in a testing period for Canberra and our economy.

Losing about 5,400 Commonwealth public service jobs over the past year and a half from the Territory is a bigger proportion of our economy than the loss of BlueScope Steel from the Illawarra, or Ford from Geelong, or Holden from Adelaide.

Canberrans are Australians too, but while these other regions got a helping hand and tens of millions of dollars from the Commonwealth, there was nothing for Canberra in the recent federal budget.

We have seen unemployment rise from 3.7 per cent in April of 2014, to reach 5 per cent by October. State Final Demand fell by 0.9 per cent in the December quarter 2014 and consumer and business confidence slumped.

The ACT Government had to act decisively to counter this. We did. And it has worked.

We are now more resilient than before.

The last time a Federal Liberal government attacked our economy, unemployment peaked at 8.5 per cent.

This time, unemployment peaked at 5 per cent, and has fallen to 4.3 per cent today—the lowest rate in the country.

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