Councillor Stephen Schwarten, Cr Rose Swadling, Cr Cherie Rutherford and Cr Tony Williams watch on as Mayor Margaret Strelow delivers the draft budget for 2015/16.
Photo Rachael Conaghan/The Morning Bulletin
Councillor Stephen Schwarten, Cr Rose Swadling, Cr Cherie Rutherford and Cr Tony Williams watch on as Mayor Margaret Strelow delivers the draft budget for 2015/16. Photo Rachael Conaghan/The Morning Bulletin Rachael Conaghan

Budget process whets readers' appetite for detail

Hi readers, there's nothing like a deep dive into the inner workings of a council budget to whet the appetite for insight and explanation.

Our reports on the Rockhampton Regional Council Budget 2017-18 were our top subscriber stories over the last seven days.

That's not surprising as the Budget affects all of us in some way through the supply of essential services, roads, lifestyle options and, not least of all, through the hip pocket.

A major issue this year was councillors being frustrated that a workshop, where they could advocate separately for spending for their divisional constituents, was missing from this year's process.

Councillors speak out on 'frayed edges' of budget

Mayor Margaret Strelow stood behind the budget rules and said if the Act had not given power to the mayor to formulate the budget, she doesn't believe she would have been able to "pull the budget around” as well as she has.

It's the mayor's budget

Since being returned to office in 2012, $35 million of debt has been repaid.

"I absolutely need councillor support, but sometimes you need someone to draw a line and hold it,” Cr Strelow said.

"It would be lovely to make everybody happy but it is not the right thing for our future.”

Mayor Margaret Strelow budget.
Mayor Margaret Strelow budget. Allan Reinikka ROK260618abudget1

But Cr Neil Fisher said the current budget process left councillors out of the final decision.

"We're the ones on the ground talking to people in our division,” he said.

Another story that got readers revved up was our report and video on the inaugural CQ Crane Hire Gold Rush Hill Sprint up the Mount Morgan Range.

Range to race track: CQ centre stage for national race event

The race held on the weekend was a huge success and we applaud the Central Queensland Motor Sporting Club and its president Craig Jervis for pulling off such a large scale event with such precision.

Another success story to grab your attention was the exciting plans for increased training and 200 new jobs at Teys Brothers abattoir at Lakes Creek,

Huge CQ business to employ 200+ locals & host Asian students

While we are talking success, I must include the organisers and contributors behind the Rockhampton River Festival for putting on a fabulous three days of fun, food and festivities.

Thousands gather to celebrate River Fest 2018

Record breaking River Fest sets bar high for next year

That was terrific.

L-R Michelle Hansen and Sally Hansen at the River Festival.
L-R Michelle Hansen and Sally Hansen at the River Festival. Liam Fahey

The great thing going forward is we have so many more fabulous festivals, fairs and shows coming up.

We will be previewing these events and reporting on them so stay tuned for more extensive coverage.

Rocky Swap's huge donation

Iconic award-winning singers hit the stage at coast festival

Until next time, may your days be prosperous, progressive and safe.

Frazer Pearce

Editor

The Morning Bulletin



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