Mildura Rural City Councillors yesterday endorsed the Draft Budget for the coming financial year, and are now inviting the community and ratepayers to have their say on this important document.
The $132.36 million draft budget was endorsed at a Special Council Meeting this week, and will be funded through $38.75 million in State and Federal Government grants, $72.51 million in rates, plus income from fees, charges, contributions and other sources.
Mildura Mayor Simon Clemence said the budget reflected a financially responsible approach to delivering the more than 100 vital services, infrastructure and facilities Council provides, while also funding new projects to improve our community.
“Finding the balance between ensuring our residents can access the services they need with delivering projects that will help our region move forward is always a difficult challenge,” Cr Clemence said.
“I believe this budget manages to strike that balance and I encourage the community to take the time to look at the document and let us know their thoughts.”
The proposed budget includes a $44.06 million suite of capital works projects. Highlights include:
- $17.61 million on building and building improvement projects (compared to $5.04 million in 2018-19) including Mildura South Regional Sporting Precinct, upgrade and extension of the Old Aerodrome sporting complex pavilion and construction of an isolation building at the Mildura Animal Shelter.
- $10.72 million on roads (which includes Federally funded Roads to Recovery funding).
- $2.48 million on parks, open space and streetscapes, including Stage 3 redevelopment of the Deakin Avenue median strip between Seventh and Eighth Streets, Mildura riverfront precinct works and erosion mitigation works at the Mildura Boat Ramp and mouth of Marina Bay.
- $2.96 million on recreational, leisure and community facilities including, upgrades to the Cardross Recreation Reserve cricket pitch and upgrades to the Blackburn Park synthetic bowls green.
Cr Clemence said the inclusion of the long-awaited Mildura South Regional Sporting Precinct represented a major step forward for the region.
“Project like this are vitally important, not just for the social and economic wellbeing of people who currently live in our municipality, but to attract new residents and businesses, and I firmly believe that helping to fund this project will help us achieve that,” he said.
“Equally, it’s crucial to ensure existing facilities and services are maintained and improved.”
Cr Clemence said one of Council’s important considerations in drafting the budget was cost pressures on the community.
As a result Council has once again limited the rate increase to the 2.5 per cent cap, in line with the Victorian Government’s Fair Go Rates System.
Council’s Draft 2019-20 Budget is now on public exhibition and Cr Clemence encouraged the community to review it and provide feedback. Copies are available online at www.mildura.vic.gov.au/HaveYourSay, at Council Service Centres and Council Libraries.