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Council releases draft Council Plan, draft Budget for comment

Monday 15 April

East Gippsland Shire Council has released its draft Revised Council Plan 2017-2021 and draft Budget
2019-20 for public feedback.

 

The Council Plan is council’s major strategic document that guides the projects and activities that need to be undertaken over Council’s four-year term to help council achieve its vision for the region.

 

Mayor Cr Natalie O’Connell explained Council must review its Council Plan each year to ensure it continues to meet the aims of the community.

 

“The Council Plan is a crucial document for Council. It outlines our objectives and what we will do to achieve them,” Cr O’Connell said.

 

“To keep our priorities in focus, the Council Plan includes measures that are reported against in council’s Annual Report. We are now entering the third year of this plan and I am looking forward to continuing to improve the East Gippsland region.”

 

Alongside the draft Revised Council Plan 2017-2021, council has released the draft Budget 2019/20 for public feedback.

 

“The Council Plan guides the development of the Annual Budget,” Cr O’Connell said.

 

“In developing the 2019/20 budget, Council has acknowledged that businesses, farm enterprises and family are being adversely affected by an extended dry period and propose committing $500,000 to respond to affected communities without the constraints of external funding criteria.”

 

The draft Budget 2019-20 proposes a 2.5% increase in rates and charges, in line with the Victorian Government’s Fair Go Rates System.

 

Chief Executive Officer Anthony Basford said the rate cap did not apply to all fees and charges.

 

“Rates and charges are proposed to increase by an average of 2.5 per cent for the 2019/20 year. User fees and charges are proposed to increase by 2.5 per cent or the industry benchmark for a like service.

Statutory fees and charges are set by the Victorian Government,” Mr Basford said.

 

The draft Budget 2019/20 forecasts an operating surplus of $13.868 million after raising rates and charges of $58.629 million and capital revenue of $9.234 million. Excluding non-recurring capital funding, an adjusted underlying operating surplus of $3.909 million is forecast for 2019-20.

 

The draft Budget includes the following capital works projects to be delivered in the coming financial year:

 

  • Roads ($10.827 million) – including road reseal program - $4.160 million; gravel resheet program - $1.5 million; reconstruction of McMillan Street and Phillips Lane, Lucknow - $1 million; Upgrade to Pearson Street, Bairnsdale - $1.2 million;
  • Bridges ($3.708 million) – including Timbarra Bridge replacement - $1.357 million;
  • Drainage ($1.199 million) – including Jones Bay McMillan Street, Bairnsdale - $500,000; Gully Road, Lake Tyers Beach - $500,000;
  • Footpaths and Cycleways ($2.020 million) – including Omeo Mountain Bike Trails- Stage 1 - $1 million; Eastwood/Great Alpine Road Pathway - $500,000;
  • Buildings and Improvements ($3.451 million) – including building renewal - $950,000; Construct new pavilion, Mallacoota Recreation Reserve - $1.013 million; East Gippsland Livestock Exchange Bairnsdale Facilities Sheep Pen renewal $400,000;
  • Recreation, Leisure, Parks and Open Spaces ($3.905 million) – including Lucknow Recreation Reserve change rooms and netball court upgrade - $1.005 million; Bairnsdale Skate Park – Stage 1 - $442,000; Streetscapes in Orbost and Lakes Entrance - $1.3 million;
  • Plant and Equipment ($6.591 million) – including renewal of vehicles, plant and machinery - $3.320 million; Information and communication technology upgrades, shire-wide - $2.862 million;
  • Waste Management ($2.685 million) – including Lakes Entrance Transfer Station upgrade - $1.5 million;
  • Other Infrastructure ($5.406 million) – including Lakes Entrance Seawall Reconstruction Stage 2 - $1.350 million; Jemmys Point, Lakes Entrance – Stage 2 - $1.5 million; East Gippsland Livestock Exchange, Bairnsdale sheep pen renewal - $1.250 million.

 

The community is encouraged to have their say on the draft Revised Council Plan and draft Budget. The documents, and information on how to make a submission, are available from council’s engagement portal and its Customer Service Centres and Outreach Centres.

 

Submissions close on Friday, May 10 at 12.00 pm.

 

Council will consider adopting the documents, with or without amendment, at its Ordinary Council Meeting on Tuesday, June 25 at 1.00 pm.

 

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