Smaller, community-driven projects are the cornerstone of a conservative City of Greater Bendigo budget, which includes marked increases in waste disposal charges.
The city has tightened its financial belt in its draft 2017/18 budget after a mammoth spend last year, with a $221 million budget revealed on Wednesday.
However, it is looking to increase revenue through $26.5m in fees and charges.
Charge increases include; a 20 per cent hike in the cost of supplying a new organic bin, disposal fees at Eaglehawk Landfill up $5/tonne to $170/t, including a 94 per cent jump in mattress disposal costs at the site.
Planning application charges to change or allow a new use of land (Class 1), have skyrocketed 147.15 per cent from last year to $1,240.70, however this change is a directive of the state government.
Daily parking charges are up 30 cents per day in Zone 1 areas, while long day care charges will jump $15 per week.
Rates and charges will account for 57 per cent of councils overall $192m revenue – up 6 per cent on last year.
A $58.4 capital works budget includes funding for two new dog parks, in Kangaroo Flat and California Gully, an Eaglehawk regional play space ($800,000) $100,000 toward replacing Sun Loong, and $100,000 for Christmas decorations.
A further $800,000 will be spent on the Albert Roy pavilion, while the QEO has been a big beneficiary of funding, with $250,000 slated for spectator shelters and $80,000 put towards designing netball change rooms at the facility.
About $10m of the overall operating costs of $163.3m will be spent on updating and maintaining our regions parks, $11.4m on roads and footpaths, $12.8m on community services, including aged and maternal care, and $6.4m toward capital venue and events.
City of Greater Bendigo's chief executive Craig Niemann said the capital spend had returned to normal levels following a $96m outlay last year.
“We had to grab those opportunities,” said Mr Niemann, announcing a 2 per cent rate rise for 2017/18 in line with state government rate-capping directions.
Mayor Margaret O’Rourke said a rate capping environment would make council more reliant on government funding for infrastructure projects.
Council has budgeted for $8.8m in grants in 2017/18, compared to the $31m it received last year.
The City of Greater Bendigo has budgeted for an operating surplus of $28.8m in 2017/18.
Part of the $58.4m capital works budget caters for ongoing funding for big ticket infrastructure projects, including; the Greater Bendigo aquatic and wellbeing centre ($2.5m), Bendigo stadium expansion ($5.7m), Bendigo tennis pavilion construction, Bendigo botanic gardens ($534,000) and the RSL soldiers memorial institute refurbishment ($3.1m).
The capital works budget will see $2m go towards building new and upgrading and expanding existing footpaths across the municipality.
Across the municipality, $9.2m will go towards renewing sealed roads, $3.2m towards renewing unsealed roads and $3.3m towards maintaining drainage.
The budget will be publicly exhibited for a month on April 22, with submissions considered by council on May 24 before the budget is adopted in June.
Capital works funding
- · $800,000 for the Albert Roy Pavilion construction
- · $800,000 for the Eaglehawk Regional Playspace
- · New dog parks in Kangaroo Flat ($42,000) and California Gully ($32,000)
- · $100,000 towards the replacement of Sun Loong
- · $100,000 for new Christmas decorations
- · $75,000 for shade sails at Cooinda Park
- · $176,715 for the design of the Bendigo Botanic Gardens visitor hub
- · $150,000 for the detailed design of the Strathdale Community Centre
Sports facilities funding
- · $300,000 for stage two of the Bendigo Regional BMX Facility redevelopment
- · $325,000 for stage two of the Spring Gully soccer club rooms redevelopment
- · $324,000 for cricket nets at Dower Park
- · $300,000 for netball/tennis courts at Dower Park
- · $75,000 for the design of change rooms at Dower Park in Kangaroo Flat
- · $372,000 for swimming pool maintenance and renewal
- · $1.5M for synthetic pitch replacement at Garden Gully hockey facility
- · $900,000 for track resurfacing at the Flora Hill athletics track
- · $270,000 for tennis/netball court lighting and resurfacing at Strathdale
- · $75,000 for the North Bendigo Recreation Reserve
- · $125,000 for the Derwent Drive playground in Long Gully
- · $80,000 for the Olympic Parade playground in Kangaroo Flat
- · $310,000 for stage three of the Strathdale Park upgrade
- · $125,000 for detailed design for the Raywood Master Plan
- · $60,000 for design of the Redesdale Community Hub
- · $50,000 for the Heathcote Integrated Services Project detailed planning and design
- · $100,000 for Heathcote Court House and Council offices
- · $810,000 for the renewal of Elmore-Barnadown Road (from English’s Road to Ellis Road)
- · $409,500 for renewing Lockington Road (south of Elmore-Mitiamo Road)
- · $10,000 towards mobile phone towers in Mia Mia and Raywood
- · $35,000 towards the implementation of the Rural Communities Strategy
- · $20,000 for the Lake Eppalock Development Plan
- · $300,000 for renewing public toilets in Heathcote
What you will pay more for:
Rate increases will this year be capped to 2 per cent in line with the State Government’s rate cap.
Changes to fees and charges:
Parking in Zone 1 will increase from $1.60/hour and $6/day to $1.70/hour and $6.30/day and in Zone 2 it will increase from 0.80c/per hour and $3.20/day to $1/hour and $3.50/day.
Long day care fees will go from $122.60/day to $125.10/day
The fees to deposit rubbish at the Eaglehawk Landfill will increase from $165/tonne to $170/tonne, and increases to all other charges to dispose of rubbish at landfill sites.
There will be new fees applied to illegal building works on commercial properties.