Council’s cash crisis

CONCERNED ratepayers gathered at a public meeting on Tuesday to hear more on the financial crisis enveloping Gloucester Shire Council. 

General manager Danny Green speaks to residents at last Tuesday’s meeting.

General manager Danny Green speaks to residents at last Tuesday’s meeting.

The meeting was one of the first public consultations to be held by council ahead of a proposed application for a special rate rise. 

As it stands, council is proposing an 18 per cent cumulative rate increase to come into effect from July 1 next year.

Currently, an increase in rates is restricted by the pegged limit.

The special rate variation would help generate revenue to address Council’s $74 million backlog of works.

This includes maintenance of existing assets, 93 per cent of which are roads and bridges.

The additional $36.3 million generated from the rate increase would go towards bringing local roads to an average quality, with more than half the shire’s roads currently of poor quality.

Other cost-saving measures such as service restrictions to the pool and changes to waste management are also being considered, but will not raise sufficient revenue to aid council’s backlog.

General manager Danny Green said without the 18 per cent increase, council would need to consider other options such as amalgamation. 

 Residents are encouraged to provide feedback on the matter to council.

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