Council's Budget 2020/21
On 23 June 2020, Council adopted the Golden Plains Shire Council Budget 2020/21.
On 23 June 2020, Council adopted the Golden Plains Shire Council Budget 2020/21 for the purpose of Section 127 of the Local Government Act 2020.
The Draft Budget was endorsed by Council in April for public exhibition. Following extensive community consultation, 9 written submissions were received addressing 14 issues and 4 residents spoke at Council’s Special Budget Meeting on 9 June.
In the adopted Council Budget 2020/21, the following amendments to the Draft Budget were approved:
- Reduction of the Waste Management Charge from $340 to $335;
- Allocation of $100,000 towards Council’s COVID-19 Financial Hardship Policy to further assist ratepayers financially affected by the COVID-19 pandemic;
- Confirmed allocated funding of $1.33 million from the Federal Government’s Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program;
- Additional $100k Financial Assistance Grant allocated for the general purpose grants;
- Increase in MAV membership of $3,000;
- Confirmed Working for Victoria grant funding of $1.1 million from the Victorian Government as part of its COVID-19 response, to provide fixed term employment to unemployed people;
- Rate calculations updated with Stage 4 valuation data; and
- Inclusion of the budget submission for the provision of water supply to Maude Recreation Reserve’s toilets at a cost of $15,500.
KEY FEATURES OF BUDGET 2020/21
- $43.9 million investment in Council’s more than 60 services to the Golden Plains community
- $15 million for capital works
- $2.8 million to maintain Council’s assets
- $2.3 million for Active Ageing and Disability Services
- $1.6 million for local kindergarten
- $1 million for Community Planning and Grants
- $900,000 for resealing local roads
- $600,000 for gravel re-sheeting of local roads
- $500,000 for local road improvements
- 2 percent rate cap, down from 2.5 percent in 2019/20
- Waste Management Charge: $335, change of $5 from 2019/20 and 2018/19
- Municipal Charge: $306, change of $6 from 2019/20
A large rural Shire, Council maintains more than 1,744km of local roads across Golden Plains and the 2020/21 Budget maintains its commitment to improving, resealing and re-sheeting local roads, and new infrastructure including bridge replacements, kerb and channelling, and widening existing roads.
KEY CAPITAL WORKS PROJECT IN BUDGET 2020/21
- Teesdale Bakers Lane Stage 4 Development
- Shelford–Mt Mercer Road Improvements
- Meredith-Shelford Road Upgrade
- Improvements to Russells Bridge Road in Sutherlands Creek (subject to government funding)
- Rehabilitation of Slate Quarry Road Bridge in Meredith (subject to government funding)
- Replacement of Geggies Road Bridge in Rokewood (subject to government funding)
- New female friendly change rooms at Bannockburn Soccer Facility
- Club rooms upgrade at Inverleigh Sporting Complex
COUNCIL’S 2020 RATING STRATEGY REVIEW
At its February 2020 Ordinary Meeting, Council approved an extensive review of the Rating Strategy to further increase equity across the Shire.
Key features of the Rating Strategy Review:
- All residences will now be charged the same rate in the dollar
- New differentials will be established for all farm properties, based on size and land use. Farms that are considered income generating will be charged at a different differential to farms used for residential use.
- Every vacant land block in the Shire will be charged the same rate in the dollar.
- All business, industrial and commercial properties in Bannockburn will be charged 120% of the rate in the dollar. Businesses outside of Bannockburn will be charged 100%.
The new rating principles are applied in Council’s Budget 2020/21.
RATES SUPPORT IN COUNCIL BUDGET 2020/21
In April 2020, Golden Plains Shire Council confirmed a package of financial relief options for local residents and businesses to support the Golden Plains community in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. These measures have been funded in Council’s Budget 2020/21, with the addition of $100,000 allocated to additional relief for ratepayers and residents experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Council’s Rates Support in the Council Budget 2020/21 includes:
- Introduction of a Special COVID-19 Financial Hardship Policy for Golden Plains Shire Council ratepayers.
- Suspension of all current debt recovery action for unpaid 2019/20 rates through to 30 September 2020.
- Waive interest on overdue 2019/20 rates through to 30 September 2020.
- Waive penalties for late payment on pet registration fees through to 30 September 2020 (all pets must be registered).
- New payment plans available for animal registration renewals.
Council’s Financial Hardship Policy also includes a range of support for local businesses and a commitment to continue budgeted capital works as scheduled to maximise local business and employment opportunities. The COVID-19 Financial Hardship Policy is available here.