Business support and road spend highlights Budget 2020

States given ‘use it or lose it’ deadlines on infrastructure funds

Business support and road spend highlights Budget 2020
Newell Highway upgrades are part of Budget 2020


While much of the headline federal Budget road and rail spending was foreshadowed yesterday, new spending and detail emerges in the Budget papers and subsequent announcements.

Business support and incentives are the focus of the treasurer Josh Frydenberg’s  2020 Budget jobs plan.

Those with an aggregated turnover of less than $5 billion can deduct the full cost of eligible capital assets acquired between October 6, 2020 and June 30, 2022, with additional concessions also available for small businesses turning over less than $10 million.

This is expected to make 99 per cent of Australian businesses eligible to write off capital equipment expenditure through June 2020.

The government is introducing a new JobMaker hiring credit of $4 billion in cash incentives for businesses to hire certain employees aged 16-35.

This is additional to $1.2 billion in JobTrainer wage subsidies to stimulate business investments in apprentices and trainees.

Other initiatives to stimulate business confidence include tax concessions for businesses turning over less than $50 million per year and Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) exemptions for retraining and reskilling employees for all employers.

 Read about the big spending Budget items noted earlier, here

The government has committed $10 billion in new road and rail projects, road safety and community infrastructure, including $2 billion for road safety works and $5.5 million for the establishment of a National Road Safety Data Hub. 

"Road safety is everyone’s responsibility and the government is playing our part by investing in road safety projects to get people where they need to be sooner and safer," federal transport minister Michael McCormack says.

"We are committing an additional $2 billion over 18 months under a new Road Safety Program to deliver an estimated 3,000 kilometres of lifesaving road improvements and support thousands of jobs right across the country. 

"The program will deliver works such as new shoulder sealing, rumble strips to alert drivers they are moving out of their lane, median treatments to prevent head-on collisions and barriers to prevent run-off-road crashes and protect against roadside hazards.

"The program will be delivered in three, six-month tranches and on a ‘use it or lose it’ basis.

"Funds that States and Territories do not spend will be re-allocated to those that can, with jurisdictions required to provide road safety data as a key condition of funding.

"We are ensuring this road-safety package can roll-out quickly, saving lives and reducing injuries."

Those major road spending items with a freight focus noted as attracting new funding include:


Northern NSW Inland Port – Narrabri Ettamogah Rail Hub,  Inland Rail – grade separating additional road interfaces, Prospect Highway Upgrade, Heathcote Road Upgrade, Hammondville to Voyager Point, M1 North Smart Motorway – ANZAC Bridge to Warringah Freeway, Pooncarie Road (Wentworth Shire), New England Highway – Singleton Bypass, Newell Highway Upgrade – heavy duty pavement upgrade, Newell Highway Upgrade - Dubbo Bridge; Newell Highway Upgrade – Parkes Bypass, Newell Highway Upgrade – overtaking lanes, Hogbin Drive; Coffs Harbour Airport freight access


Shepparton Rail Line Upgrade – Stage 3, Warrnambool Rail Line upgrade – Stage 2, Western Rail Plan – further planning, North East Rail Line supporting infrastructure; Barwon Heads Road upgrade; Western Port Highway upgrade; South Road upgrade; Narre Warren North Road upgrade; Improving connectivity to Port of Melbourne – business case


Coomera Connector Stage 1 (Coomera to Nerang); Centenary Bridge upgrade; Riverway Drive Stage 2 (Allambie Lane-Dunlop Street), Beams Road open level crossing; Mt Lindesay Highway – Johanna Street to South Street; Bruce Highway upgrade strategy; M1 Pacific Motorway upgrade program - Exit 45; Cooktown-Weipa corridor upgrade – Cape York community access roads; Border Upgrade - Gulf Developmental Road - pavement strengthening and widening; Townsville to Roma corridor upgrade – Dawson Highway (Banana-Rolleston) – Roundstone Creek Bridge overflow upgrade

Western Australia

Kenwick Intermodal Terminal; Reid Highway Interchange  – West Swan Road; Roe Highway widening and Abernethy road upgrade; Freight Vehicle Productivity Improvements Program; Albany Highway – Kelmscott to Williams pavement rehabilitation and Hotham River Bridge replacement; Brand Highway (Muchea-Gingin) pavement rehabilitation and widening; Broome-Cape Leveque Road Upgrading and Community Access Roads; Goldfields Highway (Wiluna to Meekatharra) construct and seal priority sections; Wheatbelt timber bridge replacement; Port Augusta to Perth (WA) – Coolgardie-Esperance Highway – Emu Rocks; Alice Springs to Halls Creek Corridor Upgrade (WA) – Tanami Road Upgrade; Newman to Katherine Corridor Upgrade (WA) – Great Northern Highway Upgrade – Ord River North Section, Stage 3; Newman to Katherine Corridor Upgrade (WA) – Great Northern Highway Upgrade – Broome to Kununurra; Newman to Katherine Corridor Upgrade (WA) – Port Hedland Airport Deviation

South Australia

Princes Highway Corridor: intersection improvements, overtaking lanes, safety and signage improvements, shoulder sealing, rest areas


Tasman Bridge Upgrade; freight bridge upgrades; Midland Highway Safety Works Package – Powranna Road to south of Symmons Plains and Tunbridge; Hobart to Sorell Corridor – Midway Point Causeway (including McGees Bridge) and Sorell Causeway; Bass Highway targeted upgrades between Deloraine and Devonport; West Tamar Highway targeted upgrades between Exeter and Launceston; Bridport Road freight efficiency and safety upgrades

Northern Territory

Carpentaria Highway Upgrade; Northern Territory National Network Highway upgrades, Stuart Highway upgrade at Coolalinga


Canberra – South West Corridor upgrade package.


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