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Funds for Education Commissions

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The Federal Government has approved funds totalling 3700 million to enable the four Education Commissions to plan their programs until the end of 1976. ยท

The funds are to cover expenditure in the second half of 1976 and bring the total allocation for the calendar year 1976 to 31,400 million.

The Australian Minister for Education, Mr Kim Beazley, announced the allocations today.

The programs: of the. commissions cover universities and colleges of advanced education, which are fully supported by the Australian Government, schools, technical colleges and similar institutions throughout Australia.

Mr Beazley said the funds would be indexed to the value as at June 30 this year so that their value would be maintained against cost increases. This could cause the amounts to rise.

Funds for capital projects in 1976 as a whole were less than those provided in 1975. But provision had been made for moderate, growth in the second half of the year.compared with the first six months. .

Recurrent funds for salaries and school operating costs were greater than in 1975 and had been allocated on an even level of activity throughout the year. -

Mr Beazley said that even though capital funds were lower than last year, there was no .accurate comparison.

The year 1975 was the second year of a program extending over two years and costing about $270 million for schools. Of this about $70 million had been spent in the first year and $200 million in the second year - in effect a "bulge" in spending.

"You cannot compare capital spending of any one year of a biennium with capital to be spent on a one-year plan", he said.

Mr Beazley said the Government had announced that 1976, which normally would have been the first year of a new triennium, would be treated as a year outside the triennium. ,

The commissions had been asked, accordingly, to submit revised proposals for the next triennium to begin in 1977.

The total amounts approved for each commission for the 1976 interim year are:

S M.

Recurrent Capital Total

Universities 470.4 38,8 509,2

CAE's 291,0 . 72.0 363,0

TAPE 33.5 . . 27,0 60,5

Schools . 343,0 122,2 465.2

TOTAL: 1,137.9 260.0 1,397.9

Mr Beazley said each of the commissions was now preparing detailed recommendations on the allocation of funds between the various States, inttitutions and programs. .

He expected to be able to release their proposals and the Government’s decisions on them shortly,

Inquiries: Arthur Heinrichs, Press Secretary

Phone - 731343 (w)