But it is not all bad news, with the budget also expected to include tax cuts and incentives to lure global companies to the state, as well as already-announced boosts for mental health and social housing.

Details obtained by AAP show the Andrews government will undertake record borrowing which will grow net debt to $86bn in 2020/21, before reaching $154bn by 2023/24.

The state was already borrowing billions for major infrastructure projects before the pandemic hit.

Interest rates are at record lows, so increased borrowing is among the best ways to revive the economy and support Victorians, Mr Pallas says.

“This is a budget that puts the Victorian people first, with the support they need to recover and rebuild,” he said in a statement on Saturday.

“We’re following the blueprint of jurisdictions around Australia and the world, who are using their own budgets to protect household and business budgets.”

With economic output plummeting and unemployment skyrocketing as a result of the pandemic, much of the money borrowed will be spent on job-boosting infrastructure projects and social and business supports.

The government’s infrastructure spend is forecast to average $19.6bn each year over the forward estimates – which the treasurer says is four times the 10-year average prior to 2014.


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