Roads, sport, tourism and water big winners in Council’s budget

Kempsey Shire Council

Mid North Coast High Performance Centre

The infrastructure for transport, activity and natural resources is set to be greatly improved in our shire over the coming financial year.

Kempsey Shire Council announced the proposed Operational Plan for 2021-22 at the April ordinary meeting, which includes $82 million spending on 114 projects.

The document, which is the local government equivalent of the Federal Budget, will go on public exhibition for 28 days then changes will be considered based on the public response. Additionally, the impact of the March flood which occurred after the development of these documents will also be incorporated.

Kempsey Shire Mayor, Liz Campbell, called on the community to take this opportunity to read and respond to the most important document Council produces each year.

“This document is a summary of all the actions, programs and services that Council proposes to deliver in the next financial year within the framework of our long-term strategic plans,” said Cr Campbell.

“This is your opportunity to be involved in the planning and to step up, be an influencer, be a connector, be part of creating your own destiny, have your say in the planning rather than complaining after the direction is set.”

During the public exhibition period there will be opportunities for community members to engage Council staff face-to-face and the Operational Plan and related documents will be made available at Council’s Customer Service Centre, Library branches and at the various community engagement opportunities to be organised across the shire.

The documents are also available online and submissions can be made through the Your Say Macleay platform at ksc.pub/21-22-plan as well as via email and in hard copy form. A Q&A tool is also set to be published on Your Say Macleay to assist with community understanding.

General Manager, Craig Milburn, described the Operational Plan as recognition of Council’s ongoing work to improve internal processes and financial sustainability, as well as a commitment to delivering on a number of big projects.

“Over the next 12 months, the organisation will focus on consolidating the strong gains achieved through the organisational transformation that has been underway over the past three years,” said Mr Milburn.

“In securing significant government grant funding in recent times, we have a substantial capital works program planned over the coming years. This huge program of works will deliver renewal, replacement and refurbishment to infrastructure across the Shire.”

Some of the key items identified in the draft Operational Plan for 2021-22 include:

  • Significant investment in refurbishing and maintaining our roads and bridges network
  • Progress on water treatment plants at Crescent Head, Willawarrin and Steuart McIntyre Dam and sewer projects in Stuarts Point and South Kempsey
  • Delivery of key aspects of the Central Kempsey Sports Precinct, South West Rocks High Performance Centre and Macleay Valley Adventure Park
  • Implementation of Council’s Economic Development & Tourism Strategy
  • Construction of a new waste landfill cell at Council’s waste management centre.

The level of capital expenditure is high compared to historical levels thanks to Council’s success in applying for state and federal grant funding for projects.

The Operational Plan and associated documents will be on exhibition until 19 May 2021.

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