The City’s 2021-2022 Budget was adopted at a Special Meeting of Council on Tuesday, 22 June, and looks quite different from the previous year, with a strong focus on sustainability and key community projects.
This Budget carries over some COVID-19 measures valued at nearly $1 million and includes $41.7 million committed to capital works, continuing the rapid pace of works fast-tracked in the last financial year to provide an economic boost in response to the pandemic.
City of Melville Mayor the Hon. George Gear JP highlighted that while the 2021-2022 budget presented no change to the rate in the dollar for each rating category compared to 2020-2021, the COVID-19 rate concession would not apply this year and this would see a 13.8% overall increase on rates revenues for City.
“The 2021-2022 budget carries over some of the COVID relief measures offered as part of the Melville Community Stimulus Package in 2020-2021, in support of our community, many of whom we recognise are still impacted by COVID-19,” said Mayor Gear.
“The continued measures include free parking for the first hour across all City managed parking, reduced interest rates and no instalment administration charges and merchant fees.
“We are also pleased to have approved some key community projects in this budget. These include an accelerated change room refurbishment program for our sporting clubs and groups which particularly reflects increasing female participation in sport, $1.5million for a new future men’s shed which has been a project in the pipeline for a number of years and $2.7million for underground power in Kardinya South which will bring positive returns for those residents.
“Melville is one of the first local governments to embed Sustainable Development Goals in its Corporate Business Plan 2020-2024, and our 2021-2022 budget reflects this, with a smart LED streetlight replacement program to the value of $6 million included.
“This will be a transformational project with the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 65% on our current standard streetlights and potentially up to 40% in energy savings. This would be huge win for our community and environment.
“The budget also allows for the development of a Climate Action Plan in line with a decision at the June Ordinary Meeting of Council, and embraces further opportunities with a focus on customer experience and digital transformation.”
In total, the 2021-2022 Budget provides for $41.7 million in capital works, key items include:
- $10m for works on City-owned buildings, including $1.1m for the Tompkins Park Redevelopment Stage 3, $1m for refurbishments of the swimming pools at LeisureFit Booragoon, $1m for design work on the New Library and Cultural Centre, $959,180 for change room upgrades and $817,888 for the Disability Access and Inclusion Plan Upgrade program.
- $10m on Roads and Carparks including $835,100 for Le Souef Drive, $650,000 for Leeming Recreation Centre Carpark - Stage 1, $864,000 for The Strand renewal works.
- $3.3m on Playgrounds including $2.4m for Bob Gordon Premier Playspace
- $2.3m for Paths including $420,000 for Jeff Joseph Reserve Shared Path and $308,116 for Murdoch Drive Shared Path Stage 1
- $1.9m for Streetscapes and Precincts including $1m for Urban Forest
- $1.7m for Parks and Foreshores
- $1.2 m for Irrigation Program
- $1m for Drainage Pipe Relining program
- $1m for Foreshore Restoration program
Mayor Gear said the budget was designed in line with the City’s long-term financial planning that had placed the City in a financially sustainable position for a number of years and ensured it could provide financial relief to ratepayers at a time when it was needed the most.
“Our long-term financial plan ensures we set aside enough reserves for renewal of assets and that our operating expenses are largely met from our own revenue sources,” said Mayor Gear.
”I thank our elected members, CEO and staff for all of their work in preparing this budget, during what has been an extremely challenging time and we’ll continue to work together later this year, when we update our Long Term Financial Plan again to plan for our future.”
- The City will experience an increase in its rates revenue of 13.8% when compared to the 2020-2021 budget, due to the removal of the COVID-19 rate concessions applied in 2020-2021 and no changes being applied in 2021-2022 to the rate in the dollar for each rating category.
- Annual rates are calculated as a percentage of the gross rental value (GRV) of properties, with a typical residential property in the City of Melville calculated at an annual GRV of $23,091 per annum or approximately $444 per week. In 2021-2022, the average improved residential rate will be $1,804 inclusive of a $57 security charge
- The City’s total rates income net of concessions of $91.8 million has been carefully allocated to ensure operating service levels are maintained, together with an appropriate level of investment in the City’s assets. The City includes the $14.6 million cost of residential waste collection and disposal within the general rates. This allows eligible seniors and pensioners to access State rebates on this component of their annual rates.
The 2021-2022 budget includes funding from both State and Federal Government programs, including Roads to Recovery and Main Roads Regional Grants.
Ratepayers can expect to receive their rates notice from Friday, 23 July if they have signed up for electronic rates or up to a week after if receiving by post.
“The rates notices will be sent out in July, and ratepayers who pay using BPAY or pay their instalments on time will have the chance to win one of seven prizes,” said Mayor Gear.
“Paying using BPAY contributes towards our community’s Clean and Green aspiration and sustainability goals, while also helping to saving administration costs, and this year you could win a cash prize of $1,000 or a bonus prize of $750 should you use this payment method.”
Mayor Gear said it was also important to show support to our local business community, who were still coming out of a difficult year and recovering from the impact of COVID-19.
“If you pay your instalments on time using any payment method, you will go in the running to win $250 credit to spend at a local business of your choice along with a Healthy Life PLUS 12 month membership at our LeisureFit Recreation Centres valued at $1,445 each, helping to support the community’s Healthy Lifestyles aspiration,” said Mayor Gear
More information on the Rates Prize Draw including terms and conditions will be released later this month.
To find out more about the City’s rates and charges, visit our Rates pages or call 1300 635 845 | 9364 0666.