COUNCIL BUDGET: Rates Reprieve, New Projects for Islands
Redland City Council’s 2015-16 Budget will deliver a rates reprieve for Southern Moreton Bay Island residents in addition to more than $9 million in capital projects.
Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said this year’s Budget would see the rates for a typical SMBI property with a land valuation of $44,000, with average water consumption and including all rates and utilities, fall by almost 5per cent, saving residents about $113 a year.
“This is great news for Southern Moreton Bay Island residents and has been made possible through Council absorbing external cost increases and the removal of the infrastructure levy previously imposed on bay island properties,” she said.
“Obviously residents’ final rates bill will depend on the State Government’s revaluation, which is out of Council’s control, but Council has worked hard to deliver a budget that provides for the entire community, including the islands.
“This rates reprieve has been achieved while handing down a balanced budget which predicts a surplus of $106,000 and falling debt, providing a secure financial future for the city.
“This continues Council’s strong financial performance over the previous two years, including a surplus in 2013-14, a predicted surplus for 2014-15 and ongoing surpluses in future years.
“The Southern Moreton Bay Islands will also continue to have access to TransLink services under this Budget, providing islanders with fantastic transport options including free intra-island ferry services.”
Division 5 Councillor for the Southern Moreton Bay Islands and Council’s financial services spokesperson Cr Mark Edwards said the Budget also included important community projects as part of the $78 million capital program.
“This includes more than $5 million for the Macleay Island car park and foreshore upgrade. This project will deliver additional car parking, new recreational boat ramp and improved beach access,” he said.
“The community has been calling for this project for years, so residents will be very pleased to see it included in the Budget.
“We have also committed $1 million for sealing roads on the Southern Moreton Bay Islands, taking Council’s total roads commitment to $4 million over the past three years.
“This work will see Council use its new ‘green sealing’ method, which has already seen more than nine kilometres of road across 29 bay island roads during the last year. Residents have told us they need this work completed faster and we have listened by implementing this green sealing program.
“An $800,000 upgrade of the Macleay Island barge ramp will also be completed, a much-needed project that will provide a safer more reliable barge landing.
“Work will also be completed on the Russell Island sports and resilience centre which began recently.”
Visit Council’s website www.redland.qld.gov.au for a full Budget breakdown. To see what the Budget means for residents go to our Budget Highlights Info graphics
CR. EDWARDS SAYS . . .
The exciting thing is that the hard work over the last years to get our Council finances right, have positioned Council to provide more for the islands and the wider city in years to come. Over $9 million will be spent on island infrastructure projects over the next year, more than has been spent in any previous year. From next year’s election, Council will have the financial capacity to accelerate road sealing to eliminate dusty roads for good and keep pace with delivering ongoing infrastructure and services. I feel that SMBI is on the cusp of a great revival.