• Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull Country Liberal party candidate for Ligiari Jacinta Price (left) and Senator Nigel Scullion (right). (AAP)Source: AAP
The deals involve the three levels of government coming together with community leaders to set priorities for a region.
NITV Staff Writer

8 Aug 2018 - 3:14 PM  UPDATED 8 Aug 2018 - 3:15 PM

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull would consider a "city deal" in all regional areas of the Northern Territory to boost jobs, investment and improve community services.

He met with community leaders in Alice Springs on Wednesday, just weeks after meeting with representatives in the remote town of Tennant Creek.

During that visit Mr Turnbull unveiled plans for a "regional deal" - mirroring the multi-million dollar city deals his government has been rolling out - for the NT’s Barkly Region.

Tennant Creek visit fallout: Pat Dodson slams PM over 'savage' cuts to Indigenous housing
Labor Senator Pat Dodson has criticised Malcolm Turnbull’s visit to the troubled town of Tennant Creek and repeated warnings that Indigenous housing will fall into disrepair.

The prime minister said that while a similar deal was not yet on the cards for Alice Springs, he would be discussing its potential with Mayor Damien Ryan.

"You can't snap your fingers and do this all at once," Mr Turnbull told the ABC.

"But every region, every city - you would have a regional deal or city deal where you have the federal government, state government and the local government working together."

Government's Indigenous budget strategy blasted for failures and hundreds of millions to non-Indigenous organisations
The Indigenous Advancement Scheme was supposed to be a reset for Commonwealth funding to the Indigenous sector, but four years on, the problems are piling up.

The deals involve the three levels of government coming together with community leaders to set priorities and objectives for a region, as well as economic and social development plans.

The Country Liberal Party is hopeful its candidate Jacinta Price will win the federal seat of Lingiari, held by veteran Labor MP Warren Snowdon, at the next election due by mid-May 2019.

Last year, Alice Springs Town Council told a parliamentary committee the town of 27,000 residents was prepared to put in $800,000 towards a "city deal".

The council said Alice Springs was an ideal place for the relocation of government agencies, such as the prime minister's department, Indigenous affairs and the science agency CSIRO.

"As such, council anticipates collaboration with the Australian government and Northern Territory government, in the interests of ensuring economic growth, as well as suitable investment and reform, to ensure revitalisation of the Alice Springs CBD," the council said in its submission.

While the overall unemployment rate is five per cent, for Indigenous people it is just under 20 per cent.

The council is also keen to pursue solar energy, having previously benefited from $40 million in federal grant funding.

There have been local concerns about the treatment of young people in detention, as well as overcrowding and pressures on local youth justice workers.

Elders protest overcrowding at Alice Springs detention centre
Inmates at the understaffed youth prison have been sleeping on mattresses or flown 1500km to Darwin's Don Dale Youth Detention Centre.

Work is underway on implementing the findings of a royal commission into youth justice.

“The royal commission made it very clear that money – shortage of money – was not the issue,” Mr Turnbull said.

“There was plenty of money available for the Territory to do its job and provide proper child protection services. The issue was how the money was spent. What the royal commission did was [say] the Territory has to step up and do its job.”

With AAP

Garma 2018: Indigenous truths cut through government inaction
First Nations voices were heard and felt right across the country during the four days of the 20th annual Garma Festival.