A Shorten Labor Government will deliver the single biggest federal investment in a public transport project in history, with a $15 billion, 15 year investment in Melbourne’s Suburban Rail Loop.

This election will be a choice between a united Shorten Labor Government which will build the essential transport infrastructure Melbourne needs, or more of the Liberals’ cuts and chaos.

We need real change, because more of the same isn’t good enough.

Premier Daniel Andrews announced the Suburban Rail Loop project last year. It will be a 90 kilometre rail ring around Melbourne’s suburbs, with 12 new underground stations connecting the city’s major train lines.

Suburban Rail Loop will be a game changer for Australia’s fastest-growing city. It means faster travel times and more jobs for Victorians.

It will allow passengers to move between Melbourne’s suburbs without the need to go via the central business district, making public transport much quicker and more convenient.

Planners expect the new network will attract 400,000 passengers a day and take 200,000 cars off Melbourne’s roads.

This investment will be delivered over 15 years. It includes the previously announced $5 billion investment in the Melbourne Airport Rail Link and is in addition to $300 million already allocated by Labor to support the development of the business case and progress planning work for the Suburban Rail Loop.

The new investment means that when construction is ready to go in 2022, a
Federal Labor Government will have the funds in the budget to help get it started.

Melbournians expect their Federal Government to support the Suburban Rail Loop. If you don’t back the Suburban Rail Loop, then you’re not backing Melbourne.

Only Labor will build Suburban Rail Loop – a Victorian Labor Government and a Federal Labor Government.

Federal Labor’s commitment to work with the Andrews Labor Government on the Suburban Rail Loop is part of our plan to increase investment in public transport around the nation.

This investment means the Andrews Government will have a real partner in Canberra, so they can get on with delivering the pipeline of transport infrastructure that Victoria needs.

Despite Victoria being home to one in four Australians, the Liberals and Nationals in Canberra have slashed the state’s share of the federal infrastructure budget to as low as seven per cent.

As Treasurer, Scott Morrison cut Victoria’s schools and hospitals, and as
Prime Minister he’s refusing to give Victorians their fair share of infrastructure funding.

Scott Morrison and the Liberals in Canberra are anti-public transport and

End the chaos. Vote for change. Vote for Labor.

Labor can pay for this commitment to the Suburban Rail Loop because we are closing unfair loopholes for multinationals and the top end of town.

Federal Labor’s investment in the Suburban Rail Loop is part of our infrastructure plan for Melbourne, which also includes:

  • $2 billion to help deliver the Metro Tunnel.
  • Building Victoria’s first fully separated high-speed busway from Doncaster Road to Hoddle Street as part of a $2 billion commitment to the North East Link project.
  • More than $1.5 billion to upgrade key roads across Melbourne’s northern and south eastern suburbs.
  • $475 million for public transport solutions to serve the needs of
    Monash University and employment precinct.
  • $225 million to fast-track the Frankston to Baxter Rail Upgrade.
  • Funding for Park and Ride commuter parking upgrades for railway stations across the Melbourne network.

Funding for this commitment has been included in Labor’s Fair Go Budget Plan, available at


Only Labor will be in a position to improve aged care and adequately respond to the recommendations from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety.

By contrast, the Liberals have still not answered what other programs and services they will cut to deliver their promise of at least $77 billion in tax cuts for very high income earners, and that’s before they make further cuts that would be needed to pay for any new aged care spending commitments.

We know the Liberals called the Royal Commission because they failed to drive reform across the aged care sector over the past six years:

  • There are 128,000 older Australians waiting for their approved level of home care package.
  • The Liberals cut almost $2 billion from residential aged care.
  • The Liberals sat on dozens of reports, reviews and inquiries about how to improve aged care but instead called a Royal Commission.

A Shorten Labor Government will work with the sector, including all unions, to improve aged care and respond to the Royal Commission’s recommendations once they are handed down.

To further improve the quality of care and support a future aged care workforce, an elected Shorten Labor Government will:

  • Immediately investigate interventions to ensure older Australians most at need are prioritised for home care.
  • Provide opportunities through TAFE so that up to 20,000 aged care workers can obtain or improve their qualifications.
  • Immediately speed up implementation of the Matter of Care workforce strategy to address inadequate staffing in aged care.
  • Ensure that for residential aged care facilities there is a registered nurse present, on site, 24 hours a day.
  • Publish the skill mix of the workforce employed at every residential aged care facility to ensure the appropriate skills mix of properly trained staff is present at all times.
  • Look at how best to improve access to home care packages and increasing staffing levels and skills.
  • Further address the number of GPs working in aged care to provide proper incentives for GPs to do home visits and provide services in residential aged care.

Consistent with Labor’s commitment to support Australians with dementia and their families and carers, a Shorten Labor Government will:

  • Make improving the care of Australians with dementia a national priority.
  • Remove the complexity of multiple interactions between the Department of Health and Ageing, Centrelink, aged care providers, and the broader health care system for Australians with dementia and their families.
  • Improve the training of aged care staff to improve the workforce’s understanding of dementia, including scholarships for nurses and carers to undertake specialist dementia care training.

Labor also recognises the unique requirements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, culturally and linguistically diverse communities, and LGBTIQ communities, and will prioritise establishing programs that focus on improved support for these groups.


A Shorten Labor Government will invest $30 million towards the redevelopment of the WACA – Western Australia’s oldest and most iconic cricket ground.

This election will be a choice between a united Shorten Labor Government which will build the sporting infrastructure our community needs, or more of the Liberals’ cuts and chaos.

We need real change, because more of the same isn’t good enough.

Following the opening of Optus Stadium, the WACA Ground Improvement Project will allow for the ground to be reshaped as a 10,000 spectator capacity boutique stadium and a community-focussed sport and entertainment hub.

Federal Labor is making this commitment to both the Perth, and wider WA community, because we want to make sure that the WACA is future-proofed, fit-for-purpose, and able to be used by all levels of cricket, in addition to hosting broader sporting, entertainment and hospitality events.

The project includes a 10-lane indoor cricket facility, high performance and administration facilities, a community fitness facility, a new museum honouring the history of the ground and a piazza-style space that can be enjoyed by the community year-round.

Importantly, the project will deliver equitable facilities to accommodate the surging popularity of women’s cricket in Western Australia.

The state-of-the-art training facilities will be accessed by both grassroots community cricketers and professional players from the Western Warriors, Western Fury and Perth Scorchers.

“I want to ensure the future of the WACA for all Western Australians,” said Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten.

“My united Federal Labor team and I want real change for Western Australians at the election – and we want to make sure Perth and WA aren’t left behind by Canberra and Liberals,” said Mr Shorten.

Shadow Minister for Sport, Senator Don Farrell, said the redevelopment reinforces Labor’s commitment to sport in Western Australia.

“The WACA has been the scene of some great moments in Australian sporting history but the elite training facilities are outdated.

“Labor’s investment help ensure the WACA’s rich cricket history is preserved and that the iconic ground can serve the needs of cricket into the future, both as a dedicated first-class venue and a modern, year-round elite training facility,” Senator Farrell said.

Shadow Minister Anthony Albanese said the WACA was an Australian cricketing institution and was well-loved by generations of fans.

“This investment will ensure the WACA continues to be a part of Australian cricket along with the new multi-purpose stadium,” said Mr Albanese.

“The WACA holds a very special place in Western Australia’s heart and now has an exciting future as a community hub in East Perth, helping to activate the area, thanks to Federal Labor,” Patrick Gorman, Member for Perth, said.

Across Western Australia, the WACA drives participation to a community footprint of over 200,000 participants, 55 junior and senior cricket association, 447 junior and senior cricket clubs and over 4,000 volunteers across the state – all from its headquarters at the WACA Ground.

Labor is committed to supporting improved sporting facilities to give all Australians a fair go at sport, whether they dream of playing for Australian or just want to enjoy the health and social benefits of grassroots sport.

Our investments in projects like the WACA redevelopment help build capacity in our communities to meet the welcome growth in female sport participation, provide facilities for player development pathways and support more Australians to live active, healthy lifestyles.

Labor can invest in a fair go for all Australians because we’ve made the tough budget decisions to make multinationals pay their fair share of tax and we won’t give the big banks a tax cut.

If you want a fair go for all Australians – vote Labor.

Funding for this commitment has been included in Labor’s Fair Go Budget Plan, available at


This election is a choice between a stable and united Labor team, focused on delivering a fair go for the Central Coast, or more of the same Liberal chaos and Liberal cuts.

We need real change, because more of the same isn’t good enough.

Labor’s Fair Go Plan for the Central Coast is about helping families with the pressure of their household budgets, getting workers’ wages up, making sure every child gets a great education and ensuring the best possible health care.

Labor’s plan includes:


  • Two years of preschool for every child: Labor will fund and extend the national preschool program for so it covers three and four year olds, which will benefit 8,000 three and four year olds on the Central Coast
  • Schools funding: Central Coast public schools will have an extra $40 million under Labor in the first three years from 2020
  • University places: Labor will end the Liberals’ cap on Commonwealth supported universities places, benefiting over 2,200 students on the Central Coast
  • Better universities: Labor’s $300 million University Future Fund will deliver important upgrades for the University of Newcastle, including $28 million for a new Gosford campus
  • TAFE: TAFE is the backbone of our vocational education system, but the Liberals have cut more than $3 billion from TAFE, and closed campuses. On the Central Coast Labor will
    • Invest $10 million at Gosford TAFE for student accommodation for at-risk young people
    • Invest $2 million at Wyong TAFE for health and community services equipment upgrades.


The Liberals have cut almost $10 million from hospitals on the Central Coast. Labor will reverse the cuts and invest in Central Coast hospitals, including:

  • Palliative care: $20 million for a new standalone public palliative care facility on the Central Coast
  • MRI licences: a Medicare-funded MRI licence to Wyong hospital for better access to life saving scans
  • Medicare Cancer Plan: $2.3 billion plan to dramatically slash out of pocket costs for cancer patients
  • A new metastatic cancer nurse on the Central Coast: specially trained to help cancer patients and their families through their often complex cancer journeys
  • Labor’s pensioner dental plan: 48,000 eligible older people on the Central Coast will be able to access $1,000 worth of dental services every two years


In their first budget, the Liberals cut grants to local government on the Central Coast. After six years of cuts and chaos, Labor will invest in:

  • Central Coast Roads Rescue Package: $60 million to target the maintenance backlog affecting Central Coast roads.
  • Duplication of the Pacific Highway: Labor will finish the task of improving safety and efficiency through this project.
  • Commuter parking: expand parking facilities, including at Woy Woy and Gosford.
  • Central Coast shared pathways: $15 million to improve access for cyclists and pedestrians on the Tuggerawong Pathway, Mannering Park Foreshore and Avoca Kincumber Loop.
  • High speed rail planning and corridor protection: $1 billion investment to begin securing the corridor required to build a High Speed Rail Link from Brisbane to Melbourne via Sydney and Canberra.

Labor is investing in new and growing industries to support jobs on the Central Coast, including:

  • Supporting small and medium manufacturing businesses through our $1 billion Advanced Manufacturing Fund.
  • Labor’s Australian Investment Guarantee.
  • Lowering energy prices for manufacturers through transforming Australia’s energy systems.


Labor will invest over $7 million in community projects on the Central Coast, including:

  • $900,000 towards a dementia inclusive park.
  • $500,000 to upgrade the Bateau Bay PCYC.
  • $2.5 million to upgrade Ettalong Foreshore.
  • $1.4 million to upgrade Lemon Grove Park to improve facilities for Woy Woy netball.
  • $1 million to improve facilities for the Terrigal Wamberal JRLFC.
  • $171,000 on a new drone rescue services for Surf Life Saving Clubs.
  • $100,000 towards the Copacabana Men’s Shed.

After six years of cuts and chaos from the Liberals, our united Labor team is ready to deliver a fair go for the Central Coast.

End the chaos. Vote for change. Vote for Labor.

Funding for these commitments have been included in Labor’s Fair Go Budget Plan, available at

Police sought help to locate Robert Sims – Lake Macquarie

Officers from Lake Macquarie Police District resumed their search this morning for a man missing in the Lake Macquarie area.

About 3pm yesterday (Monday 13 May 2019), Robert Sims, aged 76, left his home on Frith Street, Kahibah, for a walk.

He failed to return home and the alarm was raised. Officers commenced a search for the man who is known to suffer a number of health concerns including epilepsy and diabetes that require regular medication.

Today’s search resumed around 7am, with assistance from State Emergency Services, local volunteers and police.

Police have received new information that Mr Sims may have attempted to catch a public bus towards the Newcastle CBD about 2.30pm yesterday.

Officers have also been told his ATM card was used at Marketown Shopping Centre, Newcastle West about 6pm yesterday.

The man reported missing from his Kahibah home overnight has been located.

The man, aged 76, was last seen on Monday 13 May 2019, at his Frith Street home.

Officers from Lake Macquarie Police District were notified and commenced an extensive search.

He was located safe and well at Newcastle West about 11am this morning.

Police would like to thank the public and media for their assistance.


Federal Member for Newcastle Sharon Claydon has welcomed Federal Labor’s announcement of a $62 million Beaches and Coastlines Climate Adaptation Plan, arguing the coastal community of Stockton would be well positioned to take advantage of the commitment.

Ms Claydon visited Stockton today to discuss the plan with residents and representatives of the Stockton Community Liaison Group, highlighting the potential for this funding to support the work of state and local government to address erosion issues.

“Communities like Stockton are already seeing the dire impacts of climate change and coastal erosion. We can’t leave them stranded,” Ms Claydon said.

“While state and local government bear primary responsibility for addressing coastal erosion, Federal Labor acknowledges the extent of problem and has developed a $50 million Coastal Rehabilitation Fund which communities like Stockton can benefit from.”

Ms Claydon said the Coastal Rehabilitation Fund would work with communities, local government and the Australian Coastal Councils Association to directly support coastal rehabilitation projects that restore beaches and improve their resilience.

“I’m respectful that council is already working with the local community and state government to develop a long-term plan to address the issues, as is prescribed under state legislation.

“Once the preferred solution has been identified, council will be able to apply for co-funding from this federal program, should Labor be privileged to win government.”

Ms Claydon said the Liberals had betrayed coastal communities.

“Under the Liberals, all climate adaptation work that was in place under the former Labor government has been completely defunded. Not only that, but climate adaptation was totally excluded from their 2017 Review of Climate Change Policies,” Ms Claydon said.

“The only way to get strong action on climate change and coastal erosion at this election is to vote Labor.”

This election is a choice between strong action on climate change and support for local communities to address coastal erosion or more tax loopholes for the top end of town.

Only Labor will provide urgent action and overdue leadership to step up the fight to protect Australia’s environment and hand on a better environment to the next generation.

City leads with purchase of electric cars

City of Newcastle has begun replacing its fleet of petrol-powered cars by purchasing two electric models engineered for better performance, efficiency and sustainability.

The Renault Kangoo (pictured below) and Hyundai Ioniq will replace existing fleet cars that were up for renewal and will be joined by similar makes and models in the next financial year.

EVMediainside.jpgLord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes and Program Coordinator – City Innovation and Sustainability, Adam Clarke 

City of Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said the emerging fleet of new vehicles was just another example of the City’s increasing uptake of new, Smart City technology that will provide improved environmental outcomes.

“City of Newcastle recognises the great benefits of adopting new and emerging technology as we continue to make decisions to reduce our carbon footprint”, the Lord Mayor said.

“By announcing our intention to transition from petrol-powered vehicles to electric models, we are hoping other organisations and individuals will follow our lead. With large fleet purchases, Governments can play a key role in developing the second hand electric vehicle (EV) market and making EVs more affordable.

“The introduction of these and future vehicles into the City’s fleet, a new solar-farm at Summerhill, the existing solar already powering City-owned facilities and the imminent trial of our driverless vehicle, will help us reach our target to generate 30 per cent of electricity from renewable sources.”

Hyundaiinside.jpgThe Hyundai Ioniq

Last year the City of Newcastle, in partnership with the NRMA, rolled out an Electric Vehicle Fast Charger Network station at Wallsend.

The Wallsend fast-charger enables electric vehicle journeys between Sydney and the Hunter region and is a vital step to unlocking Northern NSW for drivers of EVs..

The City of Newcastle is currently rolling out eight public charging stations at four sites across the CBD, and will install charge points for its own fleet at the City’s new administration office at 12 Stewart Avenue.

Helping Australians Buy Their First Home

First home buyers are set for a significant leg up with a new initiative from the Morrison Government to slash the size of a home loan deposit.

It can take nine to 10 years for an average household to save a deposit. We want to help Australians realise the goal of buying their first home by cutting years off the time it takes to save up.

Our plan for a stronger economy means we can help secure the future of tens of thousands of first home buyers.

Under our government, more than 110,000 Australians bought their first home in 2018 – the highest level in nine years, and the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme will offer even more support with up to $500 million in the form of equity through the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation to focus on improving housing affordability.

Getting into the housing market is a point of pride for Australians and a rite of passage. It requires hard work and even harder saving, but we want to make it that bit easier.

Complementing our First Home Super Saver Scheme, the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme will mean first home buyers won’t need to save for a full 20 per cent deposit, so Australians can get a loan and into the market faster. The Scheme will also help first home buyers save around $10,000 by not having to pay Lenders Mortgage Insurance.

The First Home Loan Deposit Scheme will be available to first home buyers who have been able to save for a deposit of at least 5 per cent.

While our First Home Super Saver Scheme has been about helping boost the savings of first home buyers and making buying a house more affordable, the new First Home Loan Deposit Scheme will help people achieve their goals years earlier.

We want to help make the dreams of first home buyers a reality.

The First Home Loan Deposit Scheme, which will start on 1 January next year, will be targeted towards first home buyers earning up to $125,000 annually or $200,000 for couples. The value of homes that can be purchased under the Scheme will be determined on a regional basis, reflecting the different property markets across Australia.

The National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation will partner with private lenders to deliver the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme, prioritising smaller lenders to boost competition.

We will also invest $25 million in the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation to establish the Scheme and develop the expertise to conduct comprehensive research into housing demand, supply and affordability in Australia. The outcome of that research will be key to ensuring owning your own home stays within the reach of most Australians.

As well as the new First Home Loan Deposit Scheme and First Home Super Saver Scheme, our government is taking a comprehensive approach to housing affordability by:

  • Investing $1 billion in local infrastructure to unlock new housing supply in partnership with local councils through the National Housing Infrastructure Facility.
  • Setting up the first affordable housing bond aggregator to drive efficiencies and cost savings in the provision of affordable housing by community housing providers.
  • Releasing suitable Commonwealth land, including defence land, for housing development.
  • Making it easier to get from home to school and work and back with our $100 billion investment in congestion-busting transport infrastructure putting more affordable housing options within reach for first home buyers.
  • Reducing barriers for older Australians to downsize to free up larger homes for families, which commenced on 1 July 2018.
  • Stopping foreign investors from getting a free ride on the Australian housing market, and making sure they are paying the tax they owe.
  • Investing over $7 billion in housing funding and homelessness services, with the National Housing and Homelessness Agreement (NHHA) commencing on 1 July 2018 in partnership with the States and Territories.
  • Providing $4.5 billion in Commonwealth rent assistance annually.

Our plan to back first home buyers stands in stark contrast to Bill Shorten and the Labor Party who want to abolish the First Home Super Saver Scheme and jack up rents with their Housing Tax, making it more difficult for first home buyers to get into the market. If elected, Labor will pit first home buyers against their neighbours, friends and family who already own a home.

Labor’s devastating Housing Tax is a $32 billion tax grab that will hit all Australians. If you own your own home it will be worth less and if you rent you will pay more. Experts have estimated that Labor’s Housing tax would result in house prices falling by as much as 16 per cent and rents going up as much as 22 per cent.

The Morrison Government’s plan for a strong economy and records job growth will protect the value of your home and help first home buyers get into the market.


A Shorten Labor Government will make further upgrades to Cairns Hospital so it can provide more life-saving endoscopies and better services to patients about to undergo surgery.

Labor will invest $2.3 million to build a third procedure room in the hospital’s endoscopy unit to keep up with rising demand for these important services.

Without this investment, waiting lists will continue to grow and people will be denied the timely care they need.

Labor will also invest $1.9 million to build a new Multidisciplinary Pre-admission Clinic – so that patients about to undergo elective surgery have all the services they need in one location.

Pre-admission services are currently provided from multiple interim locations around the hospital, resulting in a disjointed and inefficient service for patients during what is a stressful time.

These investments build upon Labor’s $60 million commitment to build a dedicated training facility at Cairns Hospital, and our $15 million plan to redevelop the emergency department.

Cairns residents will also benefit from improved cancer care under Labor, with new metastatic and lung cancer nurses to be based in the city as part of our $2.3 billion Medicare Cancer Plan.

As treasurer, Scott Morrison cut from health and hospitals in every budget he delivered, including $7.2 million cut from the Cairns Hospital. Last month as Prime Minister he locked in those cuts.

Labor knows that you don’t improve our hospitals by cutting them. We need real change – because more of the same isn’t good enough.

If you want better hospitals not more cuts – vote Labor.

If you want a fair go for all Australians – vote Labor.


A Shorten Labor Government will invest $85 million to boost Australia’s creative industries – supporting more jobs and more investment across our growing creative economy.

This election will be a choice between a united Shorten Labor Government which will grow jobs in our creative industries, or more of the Liberals’ cuts and chaos.

Australia’s creative industries are world-class – but more investment is needed to ensure that local industries get the investment they need to compete on the rapidly changing world stage.

The creative economy includes services across music and performing arts; web and software design; gaming; film and broadcasting; publishing and visual arts; architecture and design.

Creative skills are the backbone of many fast-growing industries, and creative employment includes employment in the creative industries, as well as creative jobs embedded outside the creative industries in the wider economy.

As the trend to automation continues, the demand for creative skills is expected to increase, so understanding the role and influence of the creative industries will be critical to positioning Australia to benefit fully from new technologies and sources of growth.

That is why Labor will invest $85 million in Australia’s Creative Economy to support start-ups, small and medium sized businesses and attract international investment to create the skilled jobs of the future in Australia’s creative industries.

Labor’s investment will include new investments of:

  • $60 million into the ABC and SBS for Australian screen content.
  • $25 million to reinstate the Australian Interactive Games Fund.

After six years of Liberal cuts and policy inertia, only a Labor Government will advance Australia’s Creative Economy.

Our creative industries have huge potential to deliver significant economic, employment, creative, cultural and other benefits for Australia and the world.

But there are worrying signs that our local sectors are missing out on the global expansion in the creative industries, which are projected to grow exponentially.

The Liberals have undermined and stalled Australia’s progress as a Creative Economy at every turn.

Under the Liberals, we have a copper broadband network that costs more and does less, our policy and regulatory frameworks have fallen out of date and key programs and services have been cut, including the ABC, SBS, Screen Australia and the Australian Interactive Games Fund.

Labor is proud that Australia has one of the most sophisticated creative sectors in the world, but we can’t afford to rest on our laurels as investment stalls, exports fall, our talent moves offshore and our neighbours outpace us.

Australia is well placed to benefit from the development of this job-generating sector, and Labor is taking a strategic and hands-on approach to ensure we do.

Labor will:

  • Convene a Creative Economy Summit to gather the best ideas to boost and accelerate Australia’s creative economy.
  • Formulate a Creative Economy Strategy 2030 to harness and facilitate the cultural and industrial benefits of Australia’s creative skills.
  • Reform the policy and regulatory framework for media and communications.
  • Convene a Taskforce to modernise Australia’s screen content settings.
  • Invest $60 million into the ABC and SBS for Australian screen content.
  • Invest $25 million to reinstate the Australian Interactive Games Fund.
  • Progress First Nations Media 9 Calls for Action in partnership with the sector.

This builds upon and complements related Labor commitments, including:

  • $10 million to build a STEAM Innovations Centre.
  • $3 million to help establish a National Centre of AI Excellence.
  • $3 million for Augmented and Virtual Reality Equipment for Curtin University.

Over a decade ago, 1,000 Australians converged on Parliament House in Canberra to discuss ‘Towards a Creative Australia’ as part of Labor’s Australia 2020 Summit.

Now it’s time for Australia to look to 2030 and beyond and harness the transformations occurring in communications and the growth opportunities across our creative economy and the globe.

Only Labor has a Plan for Australia’s Creative Economy because we will make multinationals pay their fair share and close tax loopholes used by the top end of town.

End the cuts and chaos.  Vote for change.  Vote for Labor.

Funding for this commitment has been included in Labor’s Fair Go Budget Plan, available at