Not all bad news

BRIGHT SIDE: Member for Cowper Luke Hartsuyker insists the Coffs Coast will feel some positive impacts from the Federal Budget.
BRIGHT SIDE: Member for Cowper Luke Hartsuyker insists the Coffs Coast will feel some positive impacts from the Federal Budget. Rob Wright/Coffs Coast Advocate

COWPER MP Luke Hartsuyker insists there are pluses in the Federal Budget for Coffs Harbour, despite the region not rating a mention in the 2014-15 forward estimates.

Pre-committed Pacific Hwy funding aside, Tuesday's budget appeared to have little for low socio-economic regions in northern New South Wales but a spokesman for Mr Hartsuyker said while he could not give "specifics" there were "a number of measures which will impact the Coffs Coast".

Flagging university and TAFE reforms as a win, the spokesman said he understood Southern Cross University vice-chancellor Peter Lee had welcomed the announcement.

He was hopeful additional support for apprenticeships would "also be good for young job seekers", who will soon be required to prove they have actively sought work through a government job agency for at least six months before they will be eligible for the Newstart allowance.

While he accepted the Pacific Hwy funding was not a new announcement, the spokesman confirmed the Coalition was on track to completing the duplication by 2020.

He also welcomed support for the Roads to Recovery and Black Spot programs, which would "deliver millions in additional funding for local roads in the Cowper electorate over the forward estimates".

Asked whether the budget had brought Mr Hartsuyker any closer to fulfilling a post-election promise to open up more government agency jobs in the region, the spokesman said there was "no announcement but Luke is continuing to fight for a commitment".

Topics:  black budget cowper federal budget 2014 luke hartsuyker

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