Queensland 2023-24 State Budget
On June 13, 2023, Queensland Treasurer Cameron Dick delivered the 2023-24 Queensland Budget, marking the eighth budget of the Palaszczuk government.
The Treasurer has dubbed this “the budget for tomorrow” with substantial investments in infrastructure, education and health. The budget also includes substantial cost-of-living relief measures in the form of rebates, designed to provide relief to Queensland families without exacerbating inflationary pressures.
To view the complete Queensland Budget Papers’ click here.
Following growth of 4.4 per cent in 2021–22, the Queensland economy is forecast to grow by a further 2 per cent in 2022–23, and strengthen to 3 per cent growth in both 2023–24 and 2024–25.
Higher interest rates continue to filter through to borrowers, with consumption growth expected to slow materially over the coming year as household budgets are impacted.
The economic growth profile also reflects temporary domestic and international supply constraints, which have negatively impacted private investment, especially housing construction, and the overseas trade sector in 2022–23.
The 2023-24 Budget operates at a net operating surplus of more than $12 billion.
The General Government Sector revenue is estimated to total $87.6 billion in 2022–23, up $13.4 billion compared with 2021–22. This is $13.7 billion higher than estimated in the 2022–23 Queensland Budget, with this upward revision largely driven by:
- $10.5 billion increase in royalties, reflecting the strength in coal and oil prices across 2022 and early 2023
- $1.7 billion increase in tax revenue, reflecting the strength of the state’s domestic economy, including the state’s job growth and labour market performance.
General Government Sector borrowing in 2023–24 will be $8.7 billion lower compared to the 2022–23 Budget and remain $2.2 billion lower by 30 June 2026 compared to the 2022–23 Budget estimate.
Employment growth is expected to remain strong at 3¼ per cent in 2022–23 and Queensland’s unemployment rate is forecast to stay low at 4¼ per cent in 2023–24.
Cost of living
To address the cost of living crisis, the budget allocates $8.2 billion in total concessions funding in 2023–24. This includes:
- $645 million over 4 years for 15 hours per week of free kindy for all 4-year-olds
- $120 million to retain workers in the sector
- $1.48 Billion for additional electricity bill support to households and small businesses:
- $550 Cost of Living Rebate on electricity bills to all Queensland households
- $700 Cost of Living Rebate on electricity bills for vulnerable households, in addition to the existing
- $372 under the Queensland Electricity Rebate Scheme, bringing total rebates for this group to $1,072
- $2.7 million over 2 years to extend and expand school breakfast programs in areas experiencing hardship across Queensland
- $315,000 to provide grant funding for Foodbank to deliver critical food relief.
- The budget doubles the Housing Investment Fund to $2 billion, to support the commencement of 5,600 social and affordable homes by 30 June 2027.
- $250 million for housing and homeless support services.
- $1.1 billion for the delivery and supply of social housing across Queensland through the Housing and Homelessness Action Plan 2021–2025.
- Tax concessions to support developments that provide at least 10 per cent of dwellings as affordable housing at discounted rents.
- $7.5 million over 2 years to support Economic Development Queensland undertake detailed site investigations of mixed tenure residential and housing developments, including social and affordable housing.
- $10 million to convert Brisbane’s Pinkenba quarantine facility into emergency accommodation.
- $968 million over 10 years to establish a strategic land acquisition fund for new school sites
- $358 million for Queensland state schools for new general and specialist learning spaces
- $259 million over 3 years to expand the school halls program
The 23-34 Budget increases health spending by 9.6 per cent.
$2.9 billion has been allocated for various programs and initiatives that enhance ambulance responsiveness, mitigate the issue of ramping and reduce wait times for surgeries and specialist clinics.
- $10.8 million in 2023–24 for 40 new ambulance vehicles
- $586.1 million towards a new 10-year agreement with LifeFlight Australia
- Up to $70,000 for medical practitioners and $20,000 for healthcare workers to relocate to Queensland
- $5,000 cost-of-living allowance for nursing and midwifery students doing placements in rural and regional Queensland
- $150 million for a new mental health facility as part of the staged expansion of Redland Hospital.
- $21.96m has been announced for allowances to attract nursing and midwifery students to the regions.
- $70.3 million over 4 years to increase assistance to regional patients through the Patient Travel Subsidy Scheme.
$9.785 billion (over 6 years) has also been allocated through the Capacity Expansion Program to bolster the health system by delivering approximately 2,200 additional overnight beds and expanding its overall capacity.
Renewable Energy and the Environment
The 23-24 Budget Commits:
- $19 billion across the forward estimates to support the Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan
- $6 billion in funding for the Borumba Pumped Hydro Energy Storage project
- $1 billion investment in CopperString 2032 will deliver a 1,100-kilometre transmission line from Townsville to Mount Isa
- $217 million for CleanCo renewables projects in Central Queensland and the Swanbank Battery
- $673 million for Stanwell to develop the Wambo and Tarong West Wind Farms and large-scale batteries
- $312 million for CS Energy to invest in Central Queensland wind farms and large-scale batteries.
- $38.6 million for Managing the Country with First Nations peoples
- $152 million to deliver a suite of initiatives to enhance Queensland’s disaster recovery and resilience, jointly funded with the Australian Government from the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements Efficiencies.
This Budget delivers on the Queensland Government’s $50 billion Infrastructure Guarantee. Funding is allocated towards:
- $983 million Fitzroy to Gladstone water pipeline
- $1 billion to construct Cooroy to Curra (Section D) of the Bruce Highway Upgrade Plan
- $350 million to construct a new road to connect the Bruce Highway with Mackay−Slade Point Road
- $336 million towards a bypass of Tiaro
- Provision for $1.9 billion over 4 years to commence delivery of venues infrastructure for the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games
- $6.9 billion in 2023–24 towards integrated, safe and efficient transport infrastructure across the state
- $171.2 million over 4 years from 2022–23 to enable the construction of trunk road, water and sewer infrastructure.
- $44 million for the Paralympic Center of Excellence
- An additional $25.8m will be added to the more than $44m per annum in Indigenous councils’ funding arrangements.
- Up to $150 for eligible children aged 0 to 4 years for learn-to-swim activities
- $96 million for Youth Co-responder Teams who engage with young people to break the cycle of youth crime
- $50 million for infrastructure development at priority Queensland Police-Citizens Youth Club (PCYC) sites to improve frontline social program delivery and intervention initiatives for vulnerable youths
- $37 million to ensure repeat offenders spend less time on remand and more time serving their sentences, supporting the government’s amendments to the Strengthening Community Safety Act 2023
- $64 million for policing responses including high visibility patrols and specialist youth crime rapid response squads
- $15 million to empower communities to develop local solutions for youth crime issues