Hawker Britton Occasional Papers and Media

Government rollout of the Economic Stimulus Plan

April 2009

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2009 -10 is a particularly important year to have a strong relationship with Government.  The Commonwealth Government is investing in its Economic Security Strategy and its Nation Building and Jobs Plan. Many of the programs will be administered by State and Local Governments and funding will be available through application or tender processes.  Hawker Britton can assist organisations to effectively engage with Government and to provide strategic advice on these initiatives.


The Commonwealth Government has announced two significant stimulus packages as part of its ongoing response to the global economic crisis.

The $10.4 billion Economic Security Strategy announced on 14 October 2008 which included:

The $42 billion Nation Building and Jobs Plan announced on 3 February 2009 which included:

Putting the plans into action

The Commonwealth Government has already begun investing in these programs. This paper presents an outline of the major programs; what they are about, how they are being administered and how funding is being made available. It will be updated as more information becomes available.  Further initiatives are expected when the Commonwealth Budget is announced on 12 May 2009, and when the State and Territory Budgets are finalised.

The Commonwealth Government programs fall under six broad categories:

Government Tendering

The Commonwealth, States and Territories each operate their own tendering websites.

Name Website Registration to receive updates
Federal AusTender https://www.tenders.gov.au/ Link
New South Wales NSW Government Agencies  eTendering website https://tenders.nsw.gov.au/nsw/ Link
Victoria Victorian Government Tenders http://www.tenders.vic.gov.au/ Link
Queensland QLD Government eTendering website https://www.tenders.qld.gov.au/queensland/ Link
Western Australia Tenders WA https://www.tenders.wa.gov.au/watenders/index.do Link
South Australia SA Tenders and Contracts website http://www.tenders.sa.gov.au/tenders/index.do Link
Australian Capital Territory ACT Procurement Solutions http://www.procurement.act.gov.au Link
Northern Territory NT Government Tenders http://www.nt.gov.au/dcis/tendering/ n/a
Tasmania Tasmanian Government Tenders http://www.tenders.tas.gov.au/ Link
Program: Energy Efficient Homes Package

Commonwealth Run Program

Program Scope $3.9 billion over three years from 2009-10 to 2011-12.
Program Aims The insulation component includes:

  • The Homeowner Insulation Program installs ceiling insulation (capped at $1,600) in the homes of eligible owner-occupiers.
  • The Low Emission Assistance Plan for Renters provides assistance of up to $1,000 to install insulation in private rental properties.

The Energy Efficient Homes Package will install ceiling insulation in up to 2.7 million Australian homes. will help millions of households reduce their energy use, cut their power bills by around $200 a year, and increase the comfort and value of their homes. The Package and will also support thousands of jobs in manufacturing, distribution and installation in the midst of an economic downturn.

Current Developments

The two insulation programs will start on 1 July 2009 and will run until December 2011. In the meantime, eligible householders can have their insulation installed now, keep their receipts and claim a reimbursement from the Australian Government.

Guidelines for this early installation process were released on 26 February 2009 and the Guidelines for the full insulation programs will be released before the 1 July start date.

The Funding Currently individuals can claim rebates from the Commonwealth Government (http://www.environment.gov.au/energyefficiency/insulation-homeowner.html). However this will change following 1 July 2009. The post 1 July 2009 arrangements are yet to be announced. 
Program: Energy Efficient Homes Package

Commonwealth Run Program

Program Scope A $1,600 rebate is available for people who replace an existing electric hot water system with a solar or heat pump hot water system between 3 February 2009 and 30 June 2012. This includes owner-occupiers, landlords or tenants. Tenants must obtain the permission of their landlord before installing the hot water system.
Program Aims Eligibility
An applicant must:

  • Be an owner-occupier, landlord or tenant
  • Be aged 18 or over
  • Be an Australian citizen or permanent resident
  • Be replacing an existing electric hot water system with a solar or heat pump system

Check guidelines for full eligibility details.
The system installed must be eligible for at least 20 renewable energy certificates and be installed by a suitably qualified person (e.g. an electrician or plumber). The home must be within Australia. The $1,600 solar hot water rebate is available as an alternative to the $1,600 offer through the Homeowner Insulation Program. People cannot access both $1,600 rebates for the same home.

Current Developments The Solar Hot Water Rebate was increased to $1,600 on 3 February 2009 and that offer runs until 30 June 2012. Guidelines for the Solar Hot Water Rebate were released on 26 February 2009. The Government has been processing rebates since 1 March 2009 and people should expect to receive their rebate within eight weeks of submitting a correct application form.
The Funding Individuals apply to the Commonwealth Government to receive the rebate (http://www.environment.gov.au/settlements/renewable/solarhotwater/index.html).
Community Infrastructure
Program: Community Infrastructure Program

Commonwealth funded, delivered through Local Government

Program Scope The Commonwealth Government has allocated $800 million to the program which will be delivered through local government.
Program Aims The Australian Government has allocated $800 million to the Community Infrastructure Program to fund local government to build and renew local infrastructure such as community, centres, town halls, park and playgrounds, pool and sports facilities.
Current Developments It is being delivered in two components: $250 million allocated between all councils and shires; and $550 million to be determined on a competitive basis (applications closed on March 6 2009) for larger-scale projects.

Funds are already flowing to councils for projects under the earlier $250 million allocation. These projects range from new playgrounds and sports facilities to renovations for halls and community centres. Priority is being given to “shovel ready” local community infrastructure projects that can commence immediately. The Australian Government is also conscious of the additional needs of local communities affected by the Victorian bushfires and the Queensland floods and is consulting with councils to determine options for assisting the rebuilding effort in their communities.
The Funding All Local councils and shires are allocated portions of the initial $250 million.  Under this first round all councils and shires were allocated funding and were asked to submit projects that are ready-to-go and meet the program’s guidelines. More than 3,600 projects have been submitted and the vast majority has now been assessed. To date, funds worth $78.4 million have already been provided to 178 councils.
Any local council or shire can apply for portions of the $550 million on a competitive basis for larger projects. Applications under this second round of the Community Infrastructure Program closed on 6 March 2009.  Funding from this second round is available for larger projects requiring a minimum $2 million Federal contribution. Applications received range from new playgrounds and sports facilities to renovations to halls and community centres. Priority is being given to local community infrastructure projects than can proceed quickly.
Local councils and shires will be responsible for tenders to construct and maintain these facilities. Contact your Hawker Britton consultant for more details.

Road and Rail – the Nation Building Program

The Federal Government is investing $26.4 billion on road and rail infrastructure through the Nation Building Program over the six year period from 2008-09 to 2013-14.

The Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government is delivering this investment through a range of road and rail programs and projects across the National Land Transport Network. The network is based on national and inter-regional land transport corridors that are of critical importance to national and regional growth.

There are several components under the Nation Building Program including:

National Projects Funding Allocations

Total funding allocation for the period 2004-05 to 2008-09 is $10.3 billion, comprising:

National Projects 2008-09 2004-05 to 2008-09
908.9 3,830.6
301.4 1,546.5
659.8 2,491.5
261.6 1,173.5
206.7 669.3
62.9 238.0
49.2 199.1
0.6 2.78
42.3 139.8
2,493.3 10,291.1
Program:  Regional and Local Community Infrastructure Program

Commonwealth funding to the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC).

Program Scope A $1.2 billion equity injection to the ARTC.
Program Aims The $1.2 billion Equity Injection will fund 17 Projects to improve efficiency on the nation’s railways (see the list of projects at Attachment A or here )

NB. We are confirming that ARTC uses AusTender.

Program: Boom Gates for Rail Crossings Program

Program Scope Under this program, the Australian Government is providing $150 million to States and the Northern Territory over 2008-09 and 2009-10 ($50 million in 2008-09 and a further $100 million in 2009-10).
Program Aims The Boom Gates for Rail Crossings program objective is to provide funding for the installation of boom gates and other safety measures at over 250 high risk rail crossings across Australia. There are over 11,900 level crossings across Australia. Around 25% of these have active protection measures such as boom gates, flashing lights and bells. The Boom Gates for Rail Crossings Program is part of the $26.4 billion Nation Building program.
Current Developments The projects allocated funding were identified by the each State and Territory Government using the Australian Level crossing assessment model (ALCAM) that takes into account factors such as road and rail traffic volumes, crash history, visibility for motorists and train drivers, the number of rail tracks at the crossing and other public risks. 
The Funding Details of the approved projects by States and Territory can be found on the links below.

Program: Nation Building Program
Program Scope $711 million in funding has been brought forward to accelerate 14 road projects under the Nation Building Program
Current Developments The list of road projects is available at Attachment B.
The Funding It is expected that State Governments will run tenders for the work. 
Program: Roads to Recovery Program

Commonwealth funding, State/Territory and Local Government administered program.

Program Scope Over five years from 1 July 2009, $1.75 billion will be available to local government authorities, and State and Territory governments responsible for unincorporated areas, for an extended Roads to Recovery program. 
Program Aims

Current Roads to Recovery Program

Over four years from 1 July 2005, funding of $1.23 billion has been available to local government authorities, and State and Territory governments responsible for unincorporated areas, for local roads maintenance and upgrading.

From 2005-06 to 2008-09 allocations for the Roads to Recovery program are:

  • $1.2 billion ($349.5 million in 2008-09) to be distributed to Australia's local councils.
  • $30 million ($6.0 million in 2008-09) for local roads in the unincorporated areas (where there are no councils) of the Northern Territory, South Australia, New South Wales, Victoria and the Indian Ocean Territories.

Actual allocations:

  • Vic Roads $64,000
  • Department for Transport, Energy and Infrastructure (SA) $10.785 million
  • Department of Planning and Infrastructure (NT) $16 million
  • Roads and Traffic Authority (NSW) $2,389,300
  • Lord Howe Island Board $125,700
  • Indian Ocean Territories $636,000

The Roads to Recovery funding allocations for local councils in each State and Territory are located below.

Supplementary Roads to Recovery Program

The Supplementary Roads to Recovery program provided local government with additional funding of $307.5 million for upgrading local road infrastructure.

Funding conditions

The Roads to Recovery Program operates uniformly across Australia. Under current arrangements, each council is guaranteed a share of the total available funding. Under simple administrative procedures whereby spending decisions are made locally and reported to the government, money is paid directly from the Australian Government to each council. Much of the administration is via the internet. The councils then run tenders for the work.

Money provided under the Roads to Recovery program is not intended to replace council spending on roads or State and Territory Government assistance to councils for local road construction or maintenance.
Local councils nominate the projects to be funded. Councils have so far used the money to repair and upgrade approximately 27,000 road sites.

However, there are large parts of Australia, mainly in remote areas, where there are no councils and where State Governments provide council services to small communities, and these areas are known as 'unincorporated areas'.  Special program provisions apply to these areas and to the Indian Ocean Territories.

Current Developments Progress on transport infrastructure projects continues, with the Australian Government working closely with states and territories to fast-track approvals for projects under the Plan. New Roads to Recovery Program Funding Allocations 2009- 2014 
The Funding Local Governments undertake their own tendering processes. For further details contact your Hawker Britton consultant.
Program: Black Spot Program
Program Scope

Funding of $150 million has been allocated for safety improvement projects under the Black Spot Program as well as extra money for Repairing Regional Roads.

The Government will allocate an additional $30 million in 2008-09 and $60 million in 2009-10 to extend the coverage of the Black Spot Program.

This is on top of the Government's announcement in December 2008 that it would more than double Black Spot funding for 2008-09 from $50 million to $110 million.

Program Aims The Black Spot Program is part of the National Road Safety Strategy and Action Plan.  The Black Spot Program aims to reduce the national road toll by targeting road locations where many crashes are occurring. By funding measures such as traffic signals and roundabouts at dangerous locations, the program reduces the risk of crashes.
Current Developments The projects announced to date are:

The Funding Local Governments undertake their own tendering processes. For further details contact your Hawker Britton consultant.
Program:  Building the Education Revolution program
Program Scope $14.7 billion over three years.
  • Primary Schools for the 21st Century –building or upgrading large scale infrastructure, e.g. Libraries and halls, in every primary school, special school, and K-12s school in Australia.
  • $1 billion Science and Language Centres for 21st Century Secondary Schools –build 500 new science laboratories and language learning centres in schools that can demonstrate need and capacity to complete construction by 30 June 2010.
  • $1.3 billion Renewing Australia’s Schools –refurbish and renew existing infrastructure and build minor infrastructure in all schools, including $200,000 to every Australian school for maintenance and renewal of school buildings.

The Federal Government has also brought forward $110 million of funding for the Trade Training Centres in Schools Program, from 2010-11 to 2009-10. This will provide additional support for the economy now and also fast-track measures to improve the skills base of the workforce.

A further $2.6 billion and $511 million will go to families and students to assist with the cost of education in the 2009 academic year through the Back to School Bonus and the Training and Learning Bonus respectively.

The Training and Learning Bonus will also provide assistance with education costs for eligible income support recipients wishing to return to study.

Program Aims The program will fund the building and rebuilding of primary and secondary school infrastructure and maintenance in Australia’s schools, including combined schools and special schools. The program will also provide funding to build around 500 new science laboratories and language learning centres in secondary schools.
Current Developments The maintenance and renewal of school buildings is due to commence next in April 2009 and the construction of larger scale school infrastructure such as libraries and halls in every primary school, special school and K-12 school across the country is set to start from May 2009.
The Funding Funding will be distributed through State and Territory Governments (see State and Territory tender websites here) and relevant Block Grant Authorities subject to Commonwealth approval.  Further information about funding conditions and timeframes is available in the Building the Education Revolution Guidelines (pages 4, 8 and 10).


Program:  Social Housing
Program Scope

$6 billion over three and a half years for new social housing.

$400 million over two years for repairs and maintenance of existing public housing dwellings.

Program Aims

Repairs to more than 10,000 social housing dwellings.

These initiatives will also stimulate the building and construction industry and are estimated to support 15,000 jobs over the next two years.

Current Developments Bids have been received from jurisdictions for the first stage of the new construction element of the social housing funds which amounts to $692 million. The Australian Government expects to approve proposals by 1 April and construction will commence this year.
The funding Initial funding of $50.1 million has been provided to the States and Territories to allow this work to be undertaken for social housing repairs and maintenance.
State and Territory tender websites are listed here.
Program:  Defence Housing
Program Scope $251.6 million for Defence Housing Australia.
Program Aims The Australian Government will provide an additional funding to Defence Housing Australia for the construction of an extra 802 residential houses, to be built across Australia.
Current Developments The first seven contracts have been signed worth $24.5 million to build 100 Defence houses in Brisbane, Adelaide and Ipswich. Construction on the first of these will begin shortly.

Defence Location No. of homes
Adelaide 100
Brisbane 103
Ipswich 133
Toowoomba 8
Townsville 118
Cairns 5
Canberra 10
Darwin 185
Hunter 30
Point Cook Victoria 27
Sale 13
Regional Victoria 16
Hobart 10
Nowra 16
Sydney 20
Wagga Wagga 2
Wodonga 6
The Funding Defence Housing Australia advertises tenders online at www.tenders.gov.au.
List of Rail Projects

The 17 rail projects to be completed by the ARTC following the $1.2 billion equity injection are:

Sydney – Brisbane New, Extended & Upgraded Loops (NSW)
This project will provide additional long loops to break-up long sections on the Sydney – Brisbane corridor, and complete upgrading of loops to high-speed turnouts.

Melbourne – Junee Passing Lanes (Vic/NSW)
This project will construct two additional passing lanes to improve opportunities on the Melbourne – Junee corridor for trains to pass each other at speed.

Seymour – Wodonga Track Upgrade (Vic)
This project will provide for the completion of concrete sleepers along the entire length of the Melbourne – Sydney corridor.

Cootamundra – Parkes Track Upgrade (NSW)
This project will upgrade the Cootamundra – Parkes section to a standard consistent with the rest of the interstate network.

Western Victoria Track Upgrade (NSW/Vic)
This project will upgrade sections of poor quality track in Western Victoria, including re-railing, increasing ballast depth and providing for the completion of concrete sleepers between Melbourne and Adelaide.

Wodonga Bypass Duplication (Vic)
This project will lead to the construction of the Wodonga Bypass as double track.

Cootamundra – Crystal Brook New & Extended Loops (NSW/SA)
This project will allow for two additional long loops by 2010 and a further four by 2011 in the corridor between Cootamundra and Crystal Brook to ensure transit times are maintained as volume grows.

Melbourne – Adelaide Extended Loops (SA)
This project will allow projected growth to be accommodated while maintaining current transit times, and increase maximum train length in the Melbourne – Adelaide corridor to 1800 metres.

Adelaide – Kalgoorlie New & Extended Loops (SA/WA)
This project will provide additional crossing loops of 1800 metres length to allow projected growth to be accommodated while maintaining current transit times.

Border – Acacia Ridge Track Upgrade (QLD)
This project will complete concrete sleepering on the Sydney – Brisbane corridor and provide narrow gauge access between Acacia Ridge and Bromelton.

Hunter Valley: Liverpool Range New Rail Alignment (NSW)
This project will see the development of a new rail alignment across the Liverpool Range that will ease expected capacity restrictions when forecast increases in coal demand are realised.

Hunter Valley: Bidirectional Signalling, Maitland to Branxton (NSW)
This project involves the upgrading of signalling systems through replacement of old unreliable equipment with modern equipment. This will improve productivity by allowing trains to travel in either direction on either track, ensuring that Hunter Valley coal volume production and export capacity is optimised.

Hunter Valley: Minimbah Bank – Third Rail Line (NSW)
This project will provide a significant boost to capacity on this congested section of the Hunter Valley rail network and contribute to optimising Hunter Valley coal volume production and export capacity with the construction of a third track along the length of the Minimbah Bank starting from the north of Whittingham Junction.

Hunter Valley: St Heliers to Muswellbrook Duplication (NSW)
This project will contribute to the improved Hunter Valley coal volume production and export capacity by extending the existing double track, which currently ends in St Heliers as far as Muswellbrook.

Hunter Valley: Minimbah to Maitland – Third Rail Line (NSW)
This project will contribute to improved coal volume production and export capacity in the Hunter Valley by increasing rail capacity and eliminate bottlenecks with the construction of an additional track between Maitland and Minimbah.

Hunter Valley: Ulan Line Passing Loops and Duplication (NSW)
This project will involve the construction of new passing loops at Bylong, Warondi, Aerosol Valley and Radio Hut to increase the number of return paths available to coal trains and improve operational flexibility of trains travelling between Ulan and Muswellbrook.

Advanced Train Management System (Phase 2)
The trial of this system will potentially remove the need for physical land based signalling infrastructure across the network through the use of satellite based Global Positioning System (GPS) and Broadband Data and Voice communications to manage train movements.

Attachment B

List of Road Projects

The 14 roads projects being brought forward are:

Bulahdelah Bypass (Pacific Highway, NSW)
This project will provide an 8.6 kilometre bypass with divided carriageway. It will also improve safety and amenity for the Bulahdelah community.

Sextons Hill Section, Banora Point (Pacific Highway, NSW)
This project provides a 2.4 kilometre realignment outside the urban area. The upgrade project will improve the efficiency and safety of travel on the Pacific Highway.

Tarcutta Bypass (Hume Highway, NSW)
The completion of the Tarcutta Bypass will provide a duplicated bypass of 6.8 kilometre section and remove the 50 kilometre per hour speed restriction that currently applies through Tarcutta.

Woomargama Bypass (Hume Highway, NSW)
This project will provide for the completion of the Woomargama Bypass, a duplicated bypass of 8.9 kilometre section (1.5 kilometres shorter than the current route of the road through Woomargama) and remove a 70 kilometre per hour speed restriction across a 1 kilometre length.

Ipswich Motorway Upgrade – Dinmore to Goodna (QLD)
The project involves widening of the existing Ipswich Motorway from four to six lanes between Dinmore and Goodna, a distance of approximately 8 kilometres.

Duplication of the Douglas Arterial Road – Townsville (QLD)
This project will result in the duplication of the existing two lane Douglas Arterial Road to a four lane motorway standard from Angus Smith Drive to Riverway Drive.

Pacific Motorway Transit Project (Section B) – Springwood South to Daisy Hill (QLD)
This project will upgrade the Pacific Motorway from Springwood South to Daisy Hill, including the Loganlea Road Interchange.

Goulburn Valley Highway – Nagambie Bypass (Vic)
The project will improve the efficient flow of traffic along this section of the Goulburn Valley Highway which currently carries 7,500 vehicles per day (of which 21 per cent are commercial vehicles) and thus reduce travel times and improve reliability.

Princes Highway East – Traralgon to Sale Duplication (Vic)
This project will upgrade the Princes Highway East to a four lane, two carriageway freeway between Traralgon and Rosedale (approximately 20 kilometres) and Rosedale and Sale (approximately 25 kilometres).

Western Highway – Anthony’s Cutting Realignment (Vic)
This project will lead to the construction of a four lane two carriageway freeway on a new alignment approximately 5 kilometres in length between Harkeness Road West Melton and
Bacchus Marsh between the western end of the Melton Bypass and the eastern end for the Bacchus Marsh Bypass.

Western Ring Road Upgrade and Capacity Improvement (Vic)
The proposed works include additional lanes and enhanced traffic management systems over the 38 kilometre length of the Western Ring Road.

Mandurah Entrance Road (WA)
This project involves construction of a 7 kilometre road from the New Perth-Bunbury Highway to the City of Mandurah.

Northern Expressway (SA)
This project involves the accelerated construction of the new four-lane freeway standard 22 kilometre road between Gawler and Port Wakefield Road and an upgrade of an 11 kilometre section of Port Wakefield Road to the Salisbury Highway.

Midland Highway – Brighton Bypass (Tasmania)
This project will lead to the construction of a new alignment for the Midland Highway to bypass Brighton to the west.

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