Federal Budget 2018: What it means for North Queensland
MACKAY middle and lower income earners will receive up to $530 in tax relief under new measures in the 2018 Federal Budget.
And they're really the big winners. The tax break starts at $200 for individuals earning up to $37,000 per year, increasing incrementally to $530 for those earning between $38,000 and $90,000.
Treasurer Scott Morrison said the budget deficit has been forecast to drop to $14.5 billion in 2018-19.
He said the budget was projected to hit a "modest" surplus of $2.2 billion in 2019-20, before increasing to $11 billion in 2020-21.
Here's 12 things you need to know:
1/ While there's money for roads, rail, schools and seniors around the country in tonight's Budget, let's face it - we're most interested in what we'll get back in our pockets via tax cuts. Here's the breakdown of what you'll get.
2/ The budget also includes a $3.3 billion upgrade for the Bruce Highway, however not all of this money will be spent in North Queensland, and there were no region specific projects detailed, including the urgent work required at Goorganga Plains north of Mackay.
3/ The government has allocated $37.6 million over five years to help improve affordability, reliability and sustainability in the energy sector.
4/ Small businesses with a turnover of up to $50 million will continue to receive incremental tax cuts over the next ten years from 30 per cent to 25 per cent.
5/ In education, $53.9 million has been allocated over four years to improve regional students' access to Youth Allowance by changing the threshold and assessment year for parental income.
6/ Regional students stand a better chance at graduating from university and using new skills near their home town under a $96 million cash splash. In a move that will help close the gap between regional and metropolitan graduation rates, the Federal Government will fund more regional university places and relax youth allowance rules for regional students.
7/ There will also be $247 million over four years in new funding for school chaplains, with a focus on anti-bullying, an issue of huge importance to Mackay parents.
8/ The Government is promising power bills will fall by $400 on average for every Australian household once the national energy guarantee kicks in from 2020.
9/ In health, more than $240 million will be spent on clinical trials for treatments for rare cancers and diseases.
10/ The budget includes $22 million over five years to fight abuse of the elderly.
11/ The nation's biosecurity system will also be enhanced over four years, with $101.6 million to trial new detection technology at the border and strengthen pest and disease response, among other agricultural investments.
STATE OF THE ECONOMY
Mr Morrison said the Government was making real progress after the global financial crisis and end of the mining boom ripped out $80 billion from the economy.
"What have you achieved. What are you going to do now. What does it mean for me," Mr Morrison said, at the start of his Budget speech.
"These are the questions Australians want answered tonight. So let me get to it.
"A stronger economy. More jobs. Guaranteeing essential services. The Government living within its means. That's what this Budget is about.
"The Australian economy is now pulling out of one of the toughest periods we have faced in generations."
Businesses were responding to the improved conditions by investing again, and confidence was up with more new enterprises starting up.
"We've backed small and medium sized businesses with legislated tax cuts and investment incentives," he said.
"We have invested at record levels to build the roads, railways, airports and energy infrastructure Australia needs for the future."
The Government predicts the Budget will return to surplus in 2020-21, of $11 billion and increase to $16.6 billion in 2021-22.