Tuesday, 22 November 2022
Appropriation Bill (No. 1) 2022-2023, Appropriation Bill (No. 2) 2022-2023, Appropriation (Parliamentary Departments) Bill (No. 1) 2022-2023; Second Reading
I'm very pleased to rise to speak on the all important Appropriation Bill (No. 1) 2022-2023, the Labor government's first budget. It is a budget that has been crafted for a very difficult time—after profligate spending by those opposite with no real economic dividend. Nine years with not an economic dividend to show for their investment; a trillion dollars of debt with nothing long term to show for it. This is a budget that starts the all-important budget repair task but also, importantly, makes those investments that are so important at this time to start that building, that economic investment, that economic reform that's so desperately needed in this country.
It is a difficult time when it comes to cost of living, and there were some politically easy things to do, but this government has had to take the responsible course and make cost-of-living support where it was responsible. It does deliver and it does start the building blocks for a better future, particularly delivering on many of our election commitments: our cheaper childcare plan, better access to healthcare and medicines, cheaper and cleaner energy, expanding paid parental leave to six months, more affordable housing, getting wages moving.
I want to talk about Labor's cheaper childcare plan. This is an incredibly important reform that will make child care more affordable for around 1.26 million Australian families. Under these measures, which are going through the Senate right now, I hope—with the bells ringing—is indeed a package that will ensure that no family will be worse off. It is, importantly, investing in families and—
A division having been called in the House of Representatives—
Sitting suspended from 1 6 :21 to 1 6 :40