Below is an updated Message from the Chair in light of Tuesday’s federal budget.
On a pre-budget Sunday, at the time of writing today’s e-Bulletin, I was reeling from the news that the proposed 0.5% increase to the Medicare levy would be scrapped, and that secure funding for the NDIS was in jeopardy. I am therefore very relieved that that the 2018-19 Federal Budget secures the funding for the NDIS for the foreseeable future. Hoorah! The budget has put $43 Billion in the kitty over the next 4 years. This adds up to about half of the projected total costs of the scheme, with the balance being made up by the States/Territories, and the forward projections take us into the realms of full rollout. This is the funding certainty that people with disabilities were looking for and it is certainly welcome news.
Now we need to turn our attention to ‘value for money’, sensible planning and sensible spending. We want to fix current implementation glitches, so that our dinner table conversations can turn to discussion of the opera or footy results, rather than swapping Plan Anomaly stories.
I am filled with hope again that we can get this right and make the NDIS the most significant social reform of our generation, so that all people with disabilities can be part of the rich fabric of life as contributors to the community.