Tus­sle over train­ing

HIGH YOUTH UN­EM­PLOY­MENT DRIVES DE­BATE

Mandurah Coastal Times - - ADVERTISEMENT -

A WAR of words has de­vel­oped be­tween Lib­er­als and La­bor over Tafe fund­ing prom­ises.

The State Gov­ern­ment an­nounced last week that funds from the pro­posed par­tial sale of West­ern Power would be used by a re-elected State Gov­ern­ment to build new spe­cial­ist train­ing cen­tres at the ex­ist­ing Peel and Mur­doch Tafe cam­puses.

The Peel cam­pus pro­ject would in­clude a new $18.4 mil­lion hos­pi­tal­ity, tourism and events man­age­ment cen­tre.

Ac­cord­ing to Deputy Premier Lisa Har­vey, the promised fund­ing was a once-in-a-gen­er­a­tion op­por­tu­nity and the par­tial sale of West­ern Power would bring older Tafes up to date and stim­u­late the econ­omy.

She said the two projects, along with a new fa­cil­ity at Ar­madale, would cre­ate 1000 con­struc­tion jobs and at­tract in­ter­na­tional stu­dents.

But Man­durah MLA David Tem­ple­man de­scribed the an­nounce­ment as “too lit­tle, too late” and claimed the State Gov­ern­ment had closed Man­durah’s Work­force Devel­op­ment Cen­tre in 2014, which only re-opened fol­low­ing his pres­sure in Par­lia­ment.

Mr Tem­ple­man said Man­durah’s youth un­em­ploy­ment has con­tin­ued to be one of the high­est in the na­tion, yet the Lib­eral Gov­ern­ment had stood by for eight years and done noth­ing.

“Their prom­ises are all con­di­tional on the sale of West­ern Power,” he said.

“They want to sell off Gov­ern­ment as­sets that make us money but once they are gone, they are gone for­ever.’’ Mr Tem­ple­man also crit­i­cised the Gov­ern­ment for plan­ning to spend mil­lions on a new spe­cial­ist train­ing cen­tre while a train­ing cen­tre, cater­ing par­tic­u­larly for wet-trade train­ing in Man­durah, went un­used be­cause the State Gov­ern­ment had pro­vided no fund­ing for the de­liv­ery of cour­ses.

He said the state-of-theart cen­tre should have been open and de­liv­er­ing trade cour­ses from the start of this year.

He had met with the Mas­ter Plumbers and Gas Fit­ters As­so­ci­a­tion and lo­cal en­ter­prise Old School Train­ing Inc, and they were “champ­ing at the bit” to de­liver cour­ses if fund­ing could be found. A Lib­eral Party spokesman said a new cen­tre would en­sure ap­pro­pri­ate train­ing and fa­cil­i­ties across the re­gion.

The State Gov­ern­ment had in­vested $288 mil­lion in Tafe fa­cil­i­ties since 2009, sub­sidised the cost of de­liv­er­ing all train­ing by 85 per cent and re­cently in­creased the fee con­ces­sion rate from 50 per cent to 70 per cent.

David Tem­ple­man says ex­ist­ing fa­cil­i­ties could be used.

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