Livingstone Mayor reveals council's budget rate rise
LIVINGSTONE mayor Bill Ludwig says this year's budget will have a clear focus on job creation and the importance of partnership support from all levels of government.
Cr Ludwig last week presented the draft 2017/18 Budget to his fellow Livingstone Shire councillors for their consideration.
He said the council had been able to contain rate increases and charges to a 3.9% increase across all rating categories, utilities and charges.
The budget is set for formal adoption at a special council meeting on Tuesday, June 27.
Cr Ludwig said this year's budget was the culmination of an ongoing commitment to optimise service delivery for ratepayers, while rolling out a significant number of "once-in-a-generation” major infrastructure projects that would provide immediate an economic uplift and valuable employment opportunities for local residents.
"This year I am proud to announce that council will invest a record $97m in capital works right across Livingstone Shire, made possible and largely funded through council's proactive partnership approach and ongoing successes in securing more than $95m in Queensland and Federal Government funding over the past three years,” Cr Ludwig said.
"By securing this level of State and Federal funding for critical infrastructure projects, council has been able to play a proactive role in creating local jobs and facilitating economic recovery following natural disasters like cyclones Debbie and Marcia, as well as the challenges presented by the downturn in the tourism, resource and construction sectors.
"Major projects funded in this budget include completion of the next stages of the Yeppoon and Emu Park Foreshore and Town Centre Revitalisation Projects - including the much-anticipated Yeppoon Lagoon Precinct - made possible through an unprecedented $43.5m joint investment across both projects from the State and Federal Governments, and forecast to create more than 200 full-time jobs during construction.
"Council's Strategic Rural and Urban Road Network will see an investment of $24.5m over the next financial year, more than half ($13m) of which will be funded through other levels of Government, including the 'big ticket projects' at Statue Bay and the completion of Panorama Drive.
"The Queensland Government will also contribute one third of the total cost ($5m) to upgrade the Yeppoon Sewerage Treatment Plant to cater to the Capricorn Coast's rapidly growing population.
"To partially offset rate increases for eligible pensioners on fixed incomes, a rebate of $280 will once again apply, which is on top of the $200 available from the State Government for eligible concession card holders.