SDRC looks to the future and strikes a balance with 2019-2020 Draft Budget
21 March 2019
Southern Downs Regional Council is calling for community
feedback on the 2019-2020 Draft Budget which proposes the lowest General Rate
rise in more than 10 years.
General Rates will increase by 2% and SDRC plans to extend
the early payment discount period to 60 days to assist residents impacted by ongoing
Deputy Mayor and Councillor for Finance, Governance and the
Arts Jo McNally said the Draft Budget builds on the strong financial foundation
Council has created and promotes future growth and sustainability.
“Our goal is to balance providing services and secure
infrastructure to our residents without overburdening our ratepayers, and this Draft
Budget strikes that balance,” Cr McNally said.
“The 2% General Rates increase will help Council meet the ongoing
rising costs of doing business that Council has faced over the last 12 months.
“With the lowest General Rates rise in 11 years, Council
will need to carefully manage finances, but with the sound financial practices
this Council has established, we should still be able to put money into infrastructure
reserves and decrease our debt while continuing to provide high quality
services to our residents.”
Council’s financial sustainability has been supported by the
enormous success SDRC has had in securing government funding.
Utility charges for water, sewer and waste will not change
from the 2018-2019 Financial Year and remain at 2.75% which will go towards
renewing and maintaining infrastructure.
SDRC will allocate $35.58 million to capital works projects
in the region to ensure that Council continues to provide essential services
“Council is always looking for new ways to improve the
region’s liveability for our residents and communities and that’s why the Draft
Budget focuses on spending significant funds on roads, water and wastewater,
waste management and community facilities for our residents,” Cr McNally said.
“Some of the proposed projects include street sealing in
Glen Alpin, replacing Palmer Bridge at Freestone, commencing work on a new
waste transfer station for Stanthorpe and extending the region’s recycled water
Southern Downs Councillors endorsed the Draft Budget at a Special
Council Meeting in March and are now seeking input from the community before
finalising the budget for the next financial year.
Throughout April, SDRC will host information sessions across
the region and provide an opportunity for residents to share their views and
ideas. Residents can also submit feedback via the “Have your Say” form on
“These information sessions and feedback forms are the
community’s opportunity to suggest how Council should spend funds and tell us
what projects are important to them,” Cr McNally said.
“In past years, residents have suggested projects during the
feedback process that Council then funded and delivered in that financial year.”
Residents can view the Draft Budget, submit their “Have Your
Say” forms or find the dates and locations for the information sessions on the SDRC
For more information, residents can also contact SDRC on
1300 697 372.