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Media Release by The Hon Larry Anthony MP

JPET services funded to June 2004

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Larry Anthony, today announced that current Jobs Placement Employment and Training (JPET) services have been offered to have their funding extended to 30 June 2004.

“Funding arrangements with current JPET providers were to finish at the end of 2002. The Department of Family and Community Services had been undertaking an open tender process to allocate funding for the next three years to 2005.

“Following complaints from applicants about the business allocation process an investigation was instigated late last year by my Department. The Department has decided to discontinue the process following recommendations from the investigation.

“All applicants were advised yesterday by the Department of my decision to offer an extension of existing service providers funding to June 2004 and were given the recommendations of the report.

“The Department will respond to the report in full when they have had the opportunity to consider it in depth.

“I am pleased the Department has been responsive and moved quickly to deal with complaints made by the community sector. This course of action has been well received.

“Funding levels will not be affected. In fact, we will be increasing funding from $18 million last financial year to $18.5 million this financial year.

“The Labor Party has a record of factual inaccuracies on JPET and they are flying blind. In a press release of 7 November 2002, they correctly recognised that I was at arms length from this business allocation process and now they are looking to make political milage out of a dead issue.

“The fact is that prior to their latest press release, all applicants had been informed of the funding decision. My priority has been to ensure those concerned were informed of developments. I would have been more than happy to advise the Labor Party if they’d cared to ask,” Mr Anthony said.