Tuesday, 11 May 2021
Appropriation Bill (No. 3) 2020-2021, Appropriation Bill (No. 4) 2020-2021; Second Reading
That these bills be now read a second time.
I seek leave to have the second reading speeches incorporated in Hansard.
The speeches read as follows—
APPROPRIATION BILL (NO. 3) 2020-2021
Today, the Government introduces the Additional Estimates Appropriation Bills. These Bills are:
- Appropriation Bill (No. 3) 2020-2021
- Appropriation Bill (No. 4) 2020-2021.
These Bills underpin the Government's expenditure decisions.
These bills ensure there is sufficient appropriation to cover estimates variations related to existing programs, for instance changes in costs for demand-driven programs. These bills also pay for the first year costs for measures announced in the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook and subsequently-announced new measures.
Appropriation Bill (No. 3) 2020-2021 seeks approval for appropriations from the Consolidated Revenue Fund of just over $2.5 billion. This Bill is necessary to support the Government's COVID-19 recovery strategy and to ensure that life-saving vaccinations against COVID-19 are available for all Australians.
I now outline the more significant amounts provided for in this Bill.
Firstly, the Bill will provide an additional $701.2 million to the Department of Health including $539.1 million for the COVID-19 vaccine rollout during the remainder of 2020-21
Secondly, the Bill will provide the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications with an additional $408.2 million for policies and programs to support economic recovery from COVID-19 through improving transport access and supporting regional development and local communities.
Thirdly, the Bill provides an additional $253.3 million to the Department of Defence including $194.8 million to reimburse Defence for foreign exchange movements across 2019-2020 and 2020-2021, with additional funding being provided for Defence operations including Operation COVID-19 ASSIST.
A further $237.5 million will be provided to the Department of Education, Skills and Employment to assist recent job seekers impacted by COVID-19 to re-join the labour market, through employment services programs such as Transition to Work and Jobactive.
The Bill proposes an additional $199.4 million for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, including $89.3 million for the ongoing support of Australia's international interests and supporting Australians through the COVID-19 pandemic when they are overseas; and importantly, $62.1 million to support COVID-19 vaccine access in the Pacific and Southeast Asia.
An additional $142.1 million is proposed for the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources. This includes
$42.7 million to provide an interim production payment for the major oil refineries that recognises the importance to Australia of the refining sector's fuel security. Funding will also be provided to decommission the Northern Endeavour floating production storage and offtake facility and remediate the Laminaria-Corallina oil fields.
Details of the proposed expenditure are set out in the Schedule to the Bill and the Portfolio Additional Estimates Statements tabled in the Parliament.
I commend this Bill.
APPROPRIATION BILL (NO. 4) 2020-2021
Appropriation Bill (No. 4) 2020-2021, along with Appropriation Bill (No. 3) 2020-2021, which was introduced earlier, are the Additional Estimates Appropriation Bills for this financial year.
This Bill seeks approval for appropriations from the Consolidated Revenue Fund of approximately $141 million. These bills also ensure there is sufficient appropriation to cover estimates variations related to existing programs. Due to relative proximity of the 2020-21 Budget Appropriation Bills, the Bill is comparatively small compared with previous years.
I now outline the most significant items provided for in this Bill.
The Bill proposes $45.1 million to the Department of Home Affairs. Most of this amount, $31.5 million, will be provided to support the development of a secure digital platform for the collection and management of incoming passenger information.
Secondly, the Bill proposes a further $21.6 million to Services Australia for IT systems to support additional costs for the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine, delivery of the New Employment Services Model, and greater flexibility for families reporting income for Child Care Subsidy.
The Bill also proposes $12.4 million be provided to support the Office of the Special Investigator investigate potential criminal matters identified in the Inspector-General of the Australian Defence Force's Inquiry into the conduct of Australia's Special Operations Task Group in Afghanistan between 2005 and 2016.
Details of the proposed expenditure are set out in the Schedule 1 to the Bill and the Portfolio Additional Estimate Statements tabled in the Parliament.
I commend this Bill.