PIAA backs Qld budget

The PIAA is supporting a focus on training in Queensland’s latest budget, with the state allocating funding to the vocational training, apprentices and facilities.

The Palaszczuk Labor government is investing $770m in the Vocational Education and Training (VET) Investment Plan, $85m in Tafe facilities over three years and a further $1m to support Qld apprentices.

The $770m investment into the VET Investement Plan includes a $20m boost to the Skilling Queenslanders for Work Initiative, which has also been extended for another two years.

Payroll tax rebates for apprentices and trainees will also be kept at 50 per cent for another year, being backed with $26m from the government.

Walter Kuhn, PIAA president and owner of Queensland print business Kuhn Corp  says, “Australian wide, one of the biggest issues for printers is attracting the right people, keeping them and training them.

“They have done a number of good things, such as giving $770m to training and allocating $85m to Tafe facilities, which is great, it helps businesses everywhere.

[Related: PIAA and AMWU update Printing Award]

“Largely training and power are the main issues for the sector.

 “When it comes to apprentices, employers face the brunt of costs. For the first twelve months of their placements, apprentices are inactive because they are training and gaining new skills, that is what it is all about. The government could look at absorbing some of those costs, to help employers with taking on trainees.

“Energy is a massive issue, the Qld government should look at reducing costs, that is a big concern for our industry. There was not anything about energy in the budget.

“The government has also given $26m for the payroll tax rebate and that is great for employers.

 “We are working with the state government on facilitating training and we are working with other state governments across Australia to lift training back up in the industry.

“I cannot speak for other printers, but with a budget you cannot satisfy everyone, you can just hope it aligns to your industry. We hope the government looks more towards the visual communications sector in future planning.”

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