MP Greg Piper reports the government has delivered on funding promises for Lake Macquarie in State Budget

GALLERY FUNDS: Greg Piper, centre, with Arts Minister Don Harwin and mayor Kay Fraser with artwork by Jonathan Jones titled '68 Fletcher, Bondi, 20:20, 8.6.03'.

GALLERY FUNDS: Greg Piper, centre, with Arts Minister Don Harwin and mayor Kay Fraser with artwork by Jonathan Jones titled '68 Fletcher, Bondi, 20:20, 8.6.03'.

LAKE Macquarie MP Greg Piper said the state government had delivered its promised millions of dollars in funding for a range of projects in Lake Macquarie.

Funding for those local projects was confirmed by State Treasurer Dominic Perrottet in Tuesday’s State Budget, Mr Piper said.

There is funding for the Service NSW office coming to Toronto, and funding to begin the planning works for the installation of lifts at Wyee railway station.

The budget also included funds for significant upgrades at Wangi Wangi and Speers Point public schools, and $1.5m for the next stage of work on the Wyee sewer connection scheme.

Funding has also been provided to a number of projects promised by the government in recent months, including money for the rejuvenation of Rathmines Hall, money for the Speers Point Multi Arts hub and the expansion of Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery, Mr Piper said.

Funding is also confirmed for new jetties at Wangi Wangi and Speers Point, a pontoon at Rathmines and new pathways linking Glendale TAFE with Cockle Creek Station.

There was no significant funding for the planned Lake Macquarie Transport Interchange, at Glendale, but the government has provided $360,000 to finalise the project’s business plan, Mr Piper said.

It was a positive Budget overall with a significant shift away from capital works and towards social investments.

- MP Greg Piper

Social housing in the area will also be improved with a $1.7m commitment, while a further $13.7m has been allocated towards planning of the Fassifern-Hexham freight rail corridor.

Mr Piper said the Budget had many positive points but funding was still needed for major projects such as the transport interchange and Hillsborough Road improvements.

“It was a positive Budget overall with a significant shift away from capital works and towards social investments,” Mr Piper said.

“The NSW Generations Fund is a particularly noteworthy inclusion.

“NSW is in a very positive financial state and that has to be acknowledged, but the government must start investing more in major regional projects instead of pouring billions into Sydney road and stadium projects.

“However, no one can deny that the government’s investment in TAFE and apprenticeships is a good thing. So is the ‘Creative Kids’ bonus payment which comes in addition to the four-year ‘Active Kids’ scheme which started earlier this year.

“These things are highly valued by families in Lake Macquarie.

“The government has delivered a large Budget surplus and I’m pleased that a lot of that money will be invested in a future fund, although it will be interesting to see how those dividends are distributed because I know a lot of young people who prefer to see the government provide a bigger focus on environmental projects.”

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