Western Plains Regional Council starts financial year 2016/2017 with first combined budget

Western Plains Regional Council adopted its first Annual Operational Plan and Budget for the 2016/2017 financial year at an Extraordinary Council meeting on Wednesday 29 June 2016 in Wellington.

Council’s Administrator Michael Kneipp said this is an important milestone for the new Organisation and allows Council to commence the financial year with a clear direction on the projects, priorities and services expected to be delivered over the next 12 months.

“I am very pleased that Council has been able to prepare the Annual Operational Plan, place the Plan on Public Exhibition, amend and adopt the Plan prior to the start of the new financial year,” Mr Kneipp said.

“This is three months ahead of what was required by the Proclamation and means Council is able to quickly move ahead with key projects,” he said.

The overall operating budget for Western Plains Regional Council is some $195 million and comprises two components, a Dubbo component and a Wellington component and includes amendments made following the Public Exhibition period.

Mr Kneipp said 15 submissions were received addressing 17 issues and changes were made to proposed fees at both Dubbo City Regional Airport and Bodangora Aerodrome.

Airport passenger fees at the Dubbo City Regional Airport will be increased by the CPI of 1.8%, not the 2.8% as originally proposed and the proposed pilot fees for the use of Bodangora Aerodrome have not been included in Council’s revenue policy.

“The slightly lower passenger fees at the Dubbo City Regional Airport and the waiving of landing fees at Bodangora Aerodrome acknowledges the needs of users and the desire to promote economic activity wherever possible,” Mr Kneipp said.

The 2016/2107 Operational Plan and Budget also includes a range of capital projects including: Village and Rural road reconstruction and sealing; seal extension of Old Mendooran Road and Ponto Falls Road; commencing the Boundary Road extension in Dubbo; upgrades at the Dubbo Regional Livestock Markets and the Wellington Caves complex; and renewals and upgrades at Bi-Centennial Park in Wellington, the Wellington Showground and the Dubbo Aquatic Leisure Centre.

“These important infrastructure projects which are to be undertaken in the coming 12 months will benefit the development of Dubbo, Wellington and the smaller communities and continue to strengthen the development and growth of the region overall,” Mr Kneipp said.

In other matters relating to the 2016/2017 Operational Plan and Budget Council also resolved the following:

• That Council liaise with Dubbo Buslines with a view to establishing the likelihood of bus services being introduced to The Outlook Estate for further consideration of a bus shelter being installed at the entrance to this Estate.

• That should savings be identified at the completion of the 2015/2016 financial year,  an amount of $60,000 be allocated to Council’s Recreation Planning and Program function for the purposes of undertaking recreation planning and business case development for an indoor multi-sport facility in Dubbo .

• That an audit be undertaken of indoor sporting facilities in the urban area of Wellington and findings be incorporated into subsequent recreation planning reports to Council.

• That a report be provided to Council regarding the findings of the recreation planning and business case development for an indoor multi-sport facility.

MEDIA CONTACT:

Western Plains Regional Council Corporate Communications
6801 4000

Last Edited: 04 Jul 2016

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