Council's draft budget focuses on community needs
Published: 27 Apr 2021 10:56am
Wagga Wagga City Council’s draft budget for 2021/22 continues to focus on the needs of the community amid the ongoing challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The draft combined Delivery Program and Operational Plan 2021/22, as well as the draft Long Term Financial Plan 2022-2031 and draft Fees and Charges, were tonight endorsed to go on public exhibition for 28 days until 25 May 2021.
The community is being asked to view the documents and provide its feedback.
The 2021/22 budget features a total budget of $216.9 million, including $131.2 million in operating expenditure and $85.7 million in capital project allocations. Council has also again committed more than $2.1 million in contributions, grants and donations to the community next financial year.
Mayor of the City of Wagga Wagga Cr Greg Conkey acknowledged that Council has continued to support the community during the 2019/20 and 2020/21 financial years with fee waivers and fee reductions due to the pandemic.
He said the pandemic continued to have an impact on Council’s future operational budgets, in particular with operations at the Wagga Wagga Airport.
For the 2021/22 financial year, Council has forecast a balanced budget for the first year of the Long Term Financial Plan, with deficit budgets for the remaining nine years of the plan.
Cr Conkey said Council remains committed to progressing key strategic capital works projects. It is estimated that in excess of $85 million will be spent on works across the city this coming financial year.
Some of those projects include the Riverina Intermodal Freight and Logistics Hub subdivision, rail siding and terminal, Riverside Stage 2 upgrade, the Active Travel Plan pathways and Lake Albert Road Stage 3A upgrade.
He said the pandemic had presented many challenges and Council now had an important role to play in ensuring the community continues to feel safe and enjoy a life that is as close to normal as possible.
“While 2020 resulted in great uncertainty, we are determined to continue delivering the services that keeps our city functioning, whilst rebuilding our local economy,” Cr Conkey said.
“We are committed to delivering another significant capital works program in the 2021/2022 financial year to cater for the growth of our city.”
The documents can be viewed at wagga.nsw.gov.au/public