Bold proposal for new Australian state
A Victorian MP has put forward a bold proposal for Australia to have a new state comprising regional parts of Victoria and NSW.
The state's Parliamentary Budget Office published the radical policy proposal on Friday after state Liberal MP for Northern Victoria Tim Quilty requested "independent advice" about the "economic character" of a new state.
Major Victorian regional centres such as Ballarat, Bendigo, Mildura, Wodonga and Shepparton would be included in the new state, according to the report.
While major regional NSW hubs such as Wagga Wagga, Albury, Orange, Bathurst and Griffith were also part of the plan.
According to Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) data from June 30 2019 the population of the proposed new state would be about 1.34 million - greater than the combined population of Tasmania, the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory.
The formation of the new proposed state would reduce Victoria's population by 0.80 million and NSW by 0.54 million.
"Compared with the remaining areas of Victoria and New South Wales, the proposed new state would have higher proportions of people aged 51 and over and with vocational certificates or high school as their highest level of education," the Parliamentary Budget Office Report said.
"Using data from August 2016 (ABS), the proposed new state would have a lower unemployment rate than the other areas of Victoria and New South Wales, however it would also have a lower participation rate - the proportion of the working age population that work or want to work."
Compared with the remaining areas of Victoria and NSW, the report also mentioned the proposed new state would have a higher proportion of households with weekly income less than $1000
Business comparison also revealed the proposed new state would have a higher proportion of workers employed in the agricultural and health industries.
The following Victorian and NSW geographical areas were included in the report as being part of the proposed new state:
- North West
- Lachlan Valley
- Young - Yass
- Goulburn - Mulwaree
- ▪Lithgow Region
Originally published as Bold proposal for new Australian state