Getting back to basics?
IT’S been dubbed the “Back to Basics” budget by Gladstone Regional Council, with some charges blamed on state government decisions.
Gladstone Mayor George Creed said in his budget report the state government’s decision to remove the 40 per cent subsidy on water and sewerage trunk infrastructure led to a $36 per property per year increase in charges.
“We are talking about a 5.3% increase in rates which is largely driven by construction costs,” he said.
Cr Creed said a significant proportion of council’s costs were construction based which had increased by just over 7% in the past year.
“CPI for this period was just under 3%. Given these impacts, council believes that a 5.3% increase in the general rate is a realistic increase that maintains its ability to deliver key services to the community.
“The 10% cap on general residential rates has been maintained as has the 15% cap on business, commercial and light industrial properties.”
Other features in the budget include revenue of $216 million, $1.5 million for the replacement of the Gladstone Aquatic Centre circulation and treatment plant, $490,00 for the progression of the Memorial Park redevelopment in Gladstone and $45,000 for a Master Plan for the Marley Brown/Harvey Road precinct as a regional multi-sport facility.
A total of $32.74 million will be spent on the Gladstone Airport upgrade, including $600,000 for security upgrades, $100,000 for the installation of northern boundary security fencing and $40,000 upgrade of the closed circuit television recording system and equipment.
Council has allocated $440,000 for traffic studies of the region, $16 million for the finalisation of Kirkwood Road Stage 3 and $800,000 for the widening of Calliope River Road through Yarwun.