"Business friendly" budget for the South West

Forrest MP Nola Marino has said the federal budget announced last week will create a stronger and more secure South West community with funding for local investment and essential services. 

"Our plan balances the books - this ensures we can pay for what we promise, create more local jobs by backing our businesses, lowers taxes so more families keep more of what they earn and guarantees critical local services," she said.

Mrs Marino said the South West would benefit from investment in infrastructure, safer roads through the Black Spot program and the listing of critical medicines on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

Bunbury Geographe Chamber of Commerce and Industry chief executive Mark Seaward described the budget as business friendly. 

"The biggest takeaway for Bunbury is that this budget has something for most people either as an individual taxpayer or a local business," he said.

"The $122 million Federal injection into the Bunbury Outer Ring Road project was a welcome addition to the previous funding as this will be required due to some route changes that are being explored.

"The forecast budget surplus in 2019-20 is very welcome as we cannot go on racking up debt, $11 Billion in the budget for interest payments on our current debt has to be reduced."

Mr Seaward said he hadn't seen anything in the budget that should be cause for concern for Bunbury residents. 

"Highlights are the instant asset write-off value has also increased from $25,000 to $30,000, providing the backbone of Bunbury's economy with more funds to innovate, grow their operations and create more employment opportunities," he said. 

"More income for low and middle-income households will hopefully see local families having a greater disposable income to spend in our local economy."

Bunbury MLA Don Punch said he was pleased to see more funding for the Bunbury Outer Ring Road but was concerned other parts of the budget overlooked people living in the South West.

"The stimulus the federal government was talking about isn't as strong for our area," he said.

"Because we have such a high proportion of low income earners the benefits aren't flowing into this area as much as they do in other areas and that has a follow on impact in terms of the ability of those people to drive consumption and support our retail sector."

Mr Punch said he was also disappointed at the way the budget addressed provisions for aged care. 

"We know we have an aging demographic so that is something that I think needs to be addressed urgently," he said.