NSW 2017-18 budget: Hospital and schools the winners

UPGRADE: Paramedics at Albury Hospital's emergency department.
UPGRADE: Paramedics at Albury Hospital's emergency department.

A $30 million upgrade to Albury Hospital’s emergency department has lead big wins for education and health in Tuesday’s 2017-18 NSW budget.

The works has been promised to “completely re-imagine, expand and reconstruct a 21st century emergency department”, addressing issues of overcrowding, staff security and improved service for patients.

The budget also provided more than $120 million for Albury-Wodonga Health’s nurses, doctors, treatment and services plus funds to rebuild and upgrade Tumbarumba and Culcairn’s Regional Multipurpose Services.

James Fallon High School will receive a new multi-million dollar hall complex and all government high and public schools will get a wireless connectivity upgrade.

The government’s roads package included further funding for stage 2 of the $11m Riverina Highway upgrade, $488,000 for road maintenance in Albury Council, $2.19 million for Greater Hume Council and $1.728 million for Federation Council.

The Albury electorate will also gain $2.12 million towards more social housing and $920,000 will be spent to build a new Henty fire station.

Councils were also encouraged to apply for a slice of the new $1.3 billion Regional Growth, Cultural and Strong Country Communities funds, $400 million Fixing Country Rail Fund, $200 million Bridges for the Bush Program and $500 million Fixing Country Roads Fund.

Albury MLA Greg Aplin welcomed the budget spending in his electorate.

“A huge amount of planning, lobbying and effort has gone into this budget, which sets out the road map for the continual upgrading of Albury’s resources and infrastructure,” he said.

“I also welcome the NSW Government contribution of $500,000 towards safety upgrades to Nolan House,” said Mr Aplin.

“I am most proud of the redesign and upgrade being planned for Albury Hospital’s emergency department and to see my work for James Fallon High School find success.

“These have been hard fought battles and I thank Leigh McJames at Albury-Wodonga Health and our education director Dr Brad Russell for their support and enthusiasm.”

Mr McJames also welcomed the “significant” NSW government funding.

“It will address the growing demand on our emergency services and will see a significant enhancement in capacity and capability of the Albury campus ED,” he said.

“It will also assist in further consolidation and enhancement of acute medical services for our community.”