With Canberra still under strict stay-at-home orders, ACT Chief Minister and Treasurer Andrew Barr presented his second pandemic budget from behind a Perspex screen in the Legislative Assembly on Wednesday evening, 6 October 2021. He had some good news for the ICT market, however, announcing over $110 million in new ICT initiatives funding, bringing digital transformation back into focus after the previous budget’s pandemic pause.
The lion’s share of new ICT funding can be found in the Chief’s Ministers portfolio, including allocations for critical ICT infrastructure ($22.8 million), digitising government services ($22.8 million), and data analytics ($17.3 million). The ACT will also establish a Cyber Security Centre, using $10.3 million in new and previously allocated funding.
Of the ongoing initiatives, digital health is the largest item of digital funding, with $88 million earmarked over five years. The majority of this ($73 million) will go to aligning ACT Health IT Systems with the territory’s Digital Health Strategy, particularly the implementation of its digital health record (MyDHR).