Employers of regional apprentices and trainees will receive a funding boost through an increase in the travel and accommodation allowance, as part of the State Government’s Skilling South Australia initiative.
Minister for Industry and Skills David Pisoni said increasing the accommodation allowance by more than double reflects the State Government’s support for regional South Australians.
The travel and accommodation allowance is a contribution to the costs incurred by employers when apprentices and trainees are required to travel more than 150kms away from their place of residence or work.
“The Skilling South Australia initiative is significantly increasing apprenticeships and traineeships to ensure South Australia has a skilled workforce to meet the future needs of industry,” Minister Pisoni said.
“We want regional apprentices and trainees to have every opportunity to take up this pathway and complete their training by relieving the costs to their employer.
“Under Skilling South Australia, and following extensive consultation with regional South Australian communities, we are more than doubling the accommodation allowance and increasing the travel rate to ease the costs of accessing training, which can be claimed by employers.
“For intrastate travel, the accommodation allowance will increase from $24 per night to $60 per night, and from $60 per night to $110 per night for pre-approved training delivered in other states. Allowance payable for travel increases from $0.24/km to $0.30/km.
“The South Australian Government has invested $100 million to create 20,800 apprenticeships and traineeships over four years, with a further $103 million provided by the Australian Government under the Skilling Australians Fund National Partnership Agreement.”
Director HR Ben Norman, from grain storage and handling company Viterra, said the company is keen to provide long term employment opportunities for people in regional areas.
“We welcome the Skilling South Australia initiative which includes a more generous travel and accommodation allowance for apprentices and trainees,” Mr Norman said.
“We are a major employer in regional South Australia and we want to expand career opportunities for people in regional areas.
“From a trades perspective, we primarily have roles for people with electrical and mechanical qualifications and this initiative gives us greater opportunity to consider hiring local apprentices and investing in their future.
“The funding assists in participants’ obtaining good quality training and gaining different experiences outside of their local area.”
The allowance is a contribution towards the total cost of the travel and accommodation and costs, and to be eligible, an apprentice or trainee must have an approved Training Contract registered in South Australia. The student would have to travel more than 150 km in a round trip between their normal place of residence and the nearest training venue offering the qualification.
For more information, visit vet.skills.sa.gov.au or call 1800 673 097.