Promises made in Victoria’s election

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Major parties have gone on a spending spree in the battle for the hearts and minds of Victorians in this election.

According to the Parliamentary Budget Office, Labor is pledging $12 billion and the coalition $28 billion in health, transport, energy and education policies ahead of the November 26 ballot.

KEY VICTORIAN ELECTORAL PROMISES OF MAJOR PARTIES:

HEALTH

Work:

* Build or upgrade at least seven hospitals, including up to $1.05 billion for a new hospital in Maroondah, up to $855 million to upgrade the north, up to $675 million for a new hospital in West Gippsland, up to $560 million to upgrade Monash Medical Center

* Fully reimburse the diplomas of more than 10,000 nursing and midwifery students who enroll in 2023 and 2024 and work in the public health system for two years

* $5,000 enrollment bonus for newly graduated nurses and midwives who work two years in the public system

* Up to $170 million to redevelop three regional public retirement homes

* $71 million to improve women’s health and provide support for issues ranging from period pain to menopause

Coalition:

* Build or upgrade more than 25 hospitals, including $900 million for a new Werribee Royal Children’s Hospital, $750 million for a new Mildura Hospital, $550 million to rebuild Caulfield Hospital and $400 million for a new hospital for infectious diseases

* Free public transport on all metropolitan public transport services and V/Line for more than 260,000 health workers

* A $325 million staffing plan to recruit and develop 40,000 health workers over the next four years

* An additional $125 million for Victoria’s triple zero call answering and dispatch service

* Halve the public waiting list for elective surgeries in the first quarter

ROADS AND TRANSPORT

Work:

* $203 million to cap V/Line train fares in line with metropolitan services

* $600 million for 23 new VLocity trains

* $207 million for 200 additional services on major regional lines each weekend

* Remove 25 more level crossings by 2030, bringing the total to 110 since 2015

* $650 million to improve rail services to Melbourne’s west

Coalition:

* Set aside Labour’s $35 billion commuter rail loop and redirect funding to the healthcare system

* Daily fares capped at $2 on the metropolitan public transit system

* Half-price V/Line train fares and free replacement buses

* Start planning for a second metro tunnel in Melbourne

* $23 million to test capped round-trip airfares from Mildura to Melbourne for locals

* Lower the age of the probationary driving license to 17 years old

EDUCATION

Work:

* Nearly $1.6 billion to build and upgrade Victoria’s public schools and kindergartens

* $717 million package for low-cost Catholic and independent schools

* $584 million to create 50 new government-owned and operated early childhood education centers

* $207 million special schools package

* $170 million to build new TAFE campuses and improve existing ones statewide

* Free TAFE courses for all Victorians

Coalition:

* Over $1 billion for new and modernized public schools

* $700 million over four years to the non-governmental school sector for capital support

* $220 million for a school literacy plan

* $300 million for free lunches in Victorian public schools as part of a two-year pilot program

* Simplify and streamline the Victorian curriculum

* Support free TAFE system for labor shortage areas

ENERGY/CLIMATE CHANGE

Work:

* Bring back the National Electricity Commission to a public majority, by enshrining it in the constitution

* $1 billion on renewable energy projects that will be overseen and managed by the SEC

* Increase renewable energy targets from 50% to 65% by 2030, 95% by 2035

* Achieve net zero emissions by 2045 instead of 2050

* Legislate renewable energy storage targets for 2030 and 2035

* $42 million for 100 community batteries

Coalition:

* Quarantine any new gas discovered in Victoria for state-only use

* Legislate Victoria’s 50% emissions reduction target for 2030

* A Billion Dollar Clean Hydrogen Strategy

* Improve transmission infrastructure in western Victoria

* Discounts for solar panels and home batteries

PARLIAMENTARY AND LEGISLATIVE REFORM

Work:

* Apology to people who were taken into state care between 1928 and 1990 for historical abuse and neglect

* Workshop replacing the Lord’s Prayer in Parliament

Coalition:

* A royal commission into Victoria’s COVID-19 pandemic response, scraps Victoria’s pandemic laws and ensures there will be no more lockdowns

* Amend the Victorian Equal Opportunity Act to give denominational schools protection to hire people based on their values

* Additional funding for integrity agencies and expanding the powers of the corruption watchdog to conduct public hearings

* Leading the reform of Victoria’s upper house group voting system

TAXES/COST OF LIVING

Work:

* A new round of $250 energy saving bonus next year

* $9.7 million to make vehicle registration free for eligible trades

* Introduce a Victorian Veteran’s Card, including a $100 vehicle registration discount

Coalition:

* Waive electricity supply fees to reduce household electricity bills by up to $235

* Freeze water service charges for five years, saving average Victorian households up to $100 a year

* Legislate the debt ceiling and remove seven taxes

* Suspension of the tax on electric vehicles until 2027

* Raise payroll tax threshold from $700,000 to $1.6 million

LODGING

Work:

* $2.08 million for Magie Nest Housing, a partnership between the Salvation Army, Melbourne Project 614 and the Collingwood Football Club Foundation that provides accommodation for 130 people with a history of or at risk of homelessness

* $141 million to install air conditioners in over 40 social housing towers in Victoria

Coalition:

* Legislate planning reforms to cut red tape without the Labor Party social housing tax on developers

* Extend stamp duty exemption for first-time buyers to purchases up to $1 million for one year starting Jan. 1

* Unlock an additional 150,000 lots in Melbourne and Greater Victoria over the next two years

SPORT/TOURISM/ARTS

Work:

* $34 million live music support package

* $30 million package for brewers, winemakers and distillers

* New planning overlay laws to protect prominent live music venues

Coalition:

* $150 million Local Events Fund to help plan, attract and revive local festivals, concerts and events

* Move the 2026 Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony from the MCG to Geelong and include Shepparton as a hub

* Establish Tourism and Events Victoria as an independent statutory body

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