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Costs under control in Western Downs

15 June 2016

Mayor Paul McVeigh and Spokesperson for Council Facilities Councillor Ray Brown inspect the Dalby Aquatic Centre which is one of Council's major facilities where solar technology is planned.

Mayor Paul McVeigh and Spokesperson for Council Facilities Councillor Ray Brown inspect the Dalby Aquatic Centre which is one of Council’s major facilities where solar technology is planned.

In response to shrinking revenue sources Western Downs Regional Council has continued to tighten its spending belt by reducing expenses by $20.3 million in its 2016/17 Budget.

  • Council significantly reduced its operating expenditure last year and with continued budget and financial controls in place it has proactively reduced its operating costs by 13%;
  • Lowering the cost of running Council has been achieved by adapting how we do business in response to changes in the local economy;
  • Savings have been made by creating operating efficiencies in the procurement of materials and services, better project management, and better management of our workforce;
  • The 2016/17 Budget will see Council revenue fall by $18.2 million as a result of contraction in the resources sector and anticipated decreased Government funding.

Western Downs Regional Council Mayor Paul McVeigh said Council’s action to reduce expenditure comes as it adjusts to the reduction in revenue that is a result of anticipated decreased contributions from the energy sector and the Government.

“We are up to the challenge of keeping our expenses under control and I’m proud of how our Council and staff have risen to the challenge by delivering some innovative solutions,” he said.

“A great example of this is investment in solar to power some of our major facilities. A one off investment in solar technology will save us in the longer term through reduced power bills for decades to come.

“Importantly, we’ve balanced spending constraint with investing in the things that make a difference to our communities.

“We’ve continued to invest in road and bridge maintenance and upgrades across the region with $61.6 million budgeted in 2016/17.

“There’s also our signature investment in open spaces like developing a master plan for the new Chinchilla Botanical Gardens, the upgrade of Myall Creek Parkland in Dalby and Anzac Park in Miles, to make our towns more attractive and enjoyable for tourists and local residents alike.

“It’s all about getting the balance right, and I believe we have with this Budget.”

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