Douglas ratepayers can expect ‘modest rate rise’ ahead of budget release



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Douglas Shire Mayor Julia Leu. IMAGE: Newsport.
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THE Douglas Shire Council budget will be released next week at a special meeting in Mossman.

In a statement released today, Mayor Julia Leu said a majority of ratepayers can expect a ‘modest rate rise’.

“This will allow Council to invest in essential infrastructure and provide many vital projects the community has been asking for,” Cr Leu said.

“Douglas Shire is on the verge of a really exciting future where we will experience the fiscal benefits of a strong and capable shire.”

A number of projects ‘that will provide essential services and inject value across the region’ are also expected to be outlined next week.

The Mayor said Council was readying itself for a ‘final stretch of a five-year journey to financial sustainability’ and the goal of a balanced budget ‘was right on track’.

“This is what happens when you stay fiercely committed to a plan,” the Mayor said.

“We have been chipping away at this deficit and it has been a long road, but the ultimate destination is within reach.”

The statement also pointed out that Council outlined in 2014 a blue print to financial sustainability in the 2019/2020 financial year ‘after recording a $5 million deficit to accounting for de-amalgamation costs’.

“Council has delivered three record capital works programs worth almost $50 million in the past three years and shaken off loan borrowings to achieve a debt-free status,” the statement continued.

“Council has also worked through several challenges, such as unexpected changes by the Queensland Valuer-General to rural land valuations.”

The Special Budget Meeting will be held at Council Chambers in Mossman next Tuesday January 19.


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