Childcare will be more affordable for Australian families following an investment of an additional $1.7 billion as part of the 2021-22 Budget. This major investment will cut costs for around a quarter of a million families and enable about 40,000 parents to work an extra day per week, boosting workforce participation. We are also abolishing the annual cap of $10,560, benefitting some 18,000 families. This package will help parents with more than one child return to the workforce so they can continue to progress their own careers and help grow Australia's economy.
National disaster agency
The Prime Minister has announced the establishment of the new National Recovery and Resilience Agency to support local communities with relief and recovery efforts. The agency will advise the government on policies and programs to mitigate the impact of future major disasters. It will take responsibility for supporting communities rebuilding after the recent floods in NSW and Qld, and the cyclones in WA. It will be led by coordinator General Shane Stone and oversee the $2 billion National Bushfire Recovery Fund.
Backing clean hydrogen
Australia's clean hydrogen industry has received another significant boost after the Morrison government announced three large-scale hydrogen plants in WA and Vic. Construction on the projects is being fast-tracked with the support of $103 million in conditional funding through the Australian Renewable Energy Agency. Once complete, the three new facilities will be among the largest in the world and provide new employment opportunities for their regional communities.
Major boost for the GP vaccine rollout
In a major boost to Australia's COVID-19 vaccination program, GPs across Australia will receive up to three times the weekly number of doses of AstraZeneca from next week. Practices which have been receiving 50 doses per week, will now receive 150 doses, while those receiving 100 doses, will now receive 200 doses per week. General practice is leading the rollout of the AstraZeneca vaccine to people aged 50 and over, with primary care vaccination sites having administered more than 1.4 million vaccinations.