The State Government’s latest Budget has revealed a number of announcements which will impact youth crime prevention, health care and the cost of living in the Gascoyne and Mid West. Easing cost-of-living and poverty pressures were the main focuses of the Budget, with $715m allocated to support households with measures such as a $400 electricity rebate, and another $450m to build social housing across the State. The Gascoyne will receive funding for a handful of projects, including $10m to support renewable energy projects in Exmouth, and $2.3m will go to Carnarvon’s Gwoonwardu Mia Aboriginal Cultural Centre. The Target 120 Program, a youth crime intervention initiative which was brought to Carnarvon last month after a delay and is also underway in Geraldton, will receive $11.7m “We are committed to keeping the community safe in the Gascoyne, with our Budget including important investments into regional policing and programs targeting at-risk young people,” Premier Mark McGowan said. The $10.4m Banned Drinkers Register, which was introduced to Carnarvon in March, only has funding secured until 2025-26 according to the Budget, but a Department of Racing and Gaming spokesperson said the Government was not planning to end the system soon, and it is likely it will receive more funding in next year’s Budget. For the Mid West, $55 million will be spent to maintain and renew Indian Ocean Drive between Jurien Bay and the Government said it is potentially expanding the Warradarge Wind Farm, located near Eneabba, from 51 turbines to 70, making it the largest wind farm in the State. Geraldton’s West End will get a $5m makeover with the Radio Theatre building becoming an arts and retail space, $9m will be spent on an education support facility at Waggrakine Primary School to support low and moderate needs students, $10m on a boat building precinct at Geraldton Fishing Boat Harbour, and the Nangetty-Walkaway Road Bridge will also be replaced. “The State Budget features major investments into the issues that matter to people in Geraldton — regional health and housing, plus initiatives to build safer, stronger communities,” Geraldton MLA Lara Dalton said. Another $9.2m was allocated to aid post-cyclone Seroja recovery efforts, but it was also revealed $25.2m less than expected had been spent in the aftermath of the disaster, which the Government said was because of insurance covering more people than expected. Opposition leader and Moore MLA Shane Love said it was a sign funding was not being directed effectively, and more money should be provided for relief efforts. “You go to communities like Northampton, like Kalbarri, there’s still damage two years on,” Mr Love said. To support regional WA, an additional $3m has been pumped into to the Affordable Airfares program to subsidise flights between regional towns and Perth, $175m will go to the Commonwealth-State funded Regional Road Safety Program, and $2.2b per annum will be spent on regional health and mental health.