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De-amalgamation costed at $2m

THE report that could split the region has revealed it could cost more than $2m to de-amalgamate Livingstone Shire Council from Rockhampton Regional Council.

Former Livingstone mayor and current Rockhampton councillor Bill Ludwig hand delivered the 84-page de-amalgamation submission to the Local Government Minister's office on Wednesday, the last day of submissions.

Cr Ludwig had the support of 6600 signatories to the submission petition. But, if de-amalgamation occurs, the cost must be borne by Livingstone.

Cr Ludwig brushed off any financial worries de-amalgamation might bring, saying both councils would be in a surplus budget position. He said according to modelling based on previous Queensland Treasury Corporation amalgamation costing, de-amalgamation could be achieved without a rate rise for Livingstone residents.

"Under the Rockhampton Regional Council current rating system the Livingstone area, which represents 29.7% of the population, has been contributing up to 37.3% of the general rate revenue," he said.

The submission detailed a "twin-cities model", with the two councils working together but having different focuses.

The report went on to say that the Capricorn Coast had population growth forecasts well above the state average and the amalgamation had limited that growth.

Cr Ludwig said he hoped a new Livingstone would sport a new name more suitable to the region - Capricorn Coast Regional Council.

Capricorn Coast Independence Movement chairman Paul Lancaster is confident the report will pass Minister David Crisafulli's scrutiny and be given to Queensland Boundaries Commissioner Col Meng.

If Mr Meng recommends the de-amalgamation, the proposal goes to a community poll that will happen by March next year.

If the poll favours de-amalgamation it must still be approved by the State Government, then transition will begin and elections for new councillors will be held by March 2014.

 

ESTIMATED COSTS

Councillors

$490,000

CEO

$220,000

2013 poll

$13,000

2014 election

$100,000

ICT systems

$875,000

buildings and relocations

$160,000

change management

$50,000

statutory plans

$90,000

branding

$75,000

reform process

$40,000

other (insurance, etc)

$115,000

TOTAL

$2,228,000

 

DE-AMALGAMATION POINTS

Capricorn Coast Regional Council (Livingstone Shire Council) and Rockhampton Regional Council de-amalgamation submission:

"twin cities model" with Rockhampton and Yeppoon as bases and councils working together

Capricorn Coast regional growth has been hampered by social and economic projects scrapped by Rockhampton-based councillors

downward trend in growth from 1.7% to 1.5% in 2010 and 2011 would change with more coast focus

Rockhampton city versus growing coastal and rural areas has resulted in diversion of resources

Topics:  council, de-amalgamation, rockhampton




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