Have your say on new proposed budget
ALTHOUGH Southern Downs Regional Council has already approved the draft budget, there is still time for the public to have their say.
In a first for the region, the 2016/17 Southern Downs Regional Council budget will be available publicly before it is passed.
Council made the decision last year and claimed that it would allow for greater transparency.
Tonight there will be an information session in Stanthorpe and feedback submissions will be open until May 29.
The budget includes a further 4% rate rise that will keep council in line with their Long Term Financial Forecast.
There will be a surplus of $159,000 in a budget that council says will reduce debt by around $2million.
There is also approximately $23.4million in the draft for the Capital Works program.
The works include:
$500,000 for Stanthorpe Aerodrome safety improvements
$145,000 for the upgrade of the Stanthorpe Flood Early Warning System
$400,000 for Old Stanthorpe Road Safety improvements
$450,000 for Nundubbermere Road improvements
$183,000 for Sugarloaf Road Mount Tully Road, Stanthorpe improvements
$80,000 for Mt Marley Lookout upgrade
Federal and state government grants have been slashed by over $500,000 and unlike the previous financial year, there are no grants for pest animal control or community drought support.
The draft budget is available on council’s website. An information session will held tonight at the Council Chambers at the Stanthorpe Administration Building at 6pm.