Council's budget to foster growth
AS TODAY is the start of the new financial year, I thought I would dedicate this column to a brief look at the city's budget and aims for the next 12 months.
Some people find the budget documents a little confusing because of the different time scales. Just to clarify, under the Local Government Act, council is required to prepare a four-year delivery program outlining the activities it will carry out to help achieve the objectives of the MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan, which covers the current four-year term of this council.
Underneath the delivery program sits the operational plan, which details what the organisation will do over the next 12 months.
As with every year, 2017-2018 is looking very busy. There is an enormous range of day-to-day services and facilities - many of them we almost take for granted - that council provides to ensure the quality of life we enjoy in the Coffs Harbour area.
These include the provision of water and sewer services, waste management, development assessment services, environment protection programs, tourism and economic development services, the library network, lifeguard services, community programs and sports, arts, cultural and community facilities - the list goes on.
In addition, the next four years will see the roll‐out of important new projects including further stages of the Jetty4Shores Project, city centre revitalisation works, the implementation of the Woolgoolga Town Centre Masterplan, the upgrade of Diamond Head Drive at Sandy Beach, airport upgrade works, more public amenities improvements and hopefully, if we are successful in our grant application, the C.ex International Stadium grandstand expansion.
I touched on the need to focus on the future repair or replacement of public assets in my last column and the importance of our ongoing internal restructure, plus the approved special rate variation, in helping us bridge the cost gaps of renewing these assets.
I'm glad to say that the recently adopted delivery program and operational plan underline that council is now positioned to manage the city's infrastructure with confidence for years to come.