The Bundaberg Council Chambers. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail
The Bundaberg Council Chambers. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail

BUDGET AMENDMENT: How capital and cash flow are impacted

The half year amended budget for the 2020/2021 Financial Year has been completed and presented to the Bundaberg Regional Council for adoption.

One of the recommendations put to councillors at today's Ordinary Meeting was that the council adopt the amended budget as tabled and endorse the following policies: Revenue Policy, version 4 and Revenue Statement, version 3.

The motion was seconded by Cr Tracey McPhee and all councillors voted in favour of the recommendation.

In the background for the recommendation it states the half year amended budget for the 2020/2021 Financial Year is complete and presented to Council for adoption.

This amendment has reportedly increased the budgeted operating deficit to $5.3 million, up slightly from the original budget.

"The long-term financial forecast has positive operating surplus ratios within the target range based on the price and growth increases in the adopted Long-Term Financial Plan," the agenda states.

As for capital, the capital works programming has seen an increase in capital expenditure this year of $12.3 million to $118.4 million.

"Capital revenue has increased by $7.3 million to $37 million," the agenda reads.

"The strategic land acquisition adjacent to the airport has been included in the revised budget.

"This acquisition has been majority funded from sales of non-community use land.

"The long-term Capital Investment Plan has been amended to reflect the movement in works programming and updated estimates in project costs where applicable.

"This has resulted in an overall increase of $47 million to the 10-year capital program."

While the overall cash is expected to increase by $0.2 million at 30 June 2021 to $89.5 million.

Mayor Dempsey noted this was one of the largest capital programs in the council's history.

The revenue policy tabled in the meeting agenda, unchanged to that published with the initial budget, states consideration may be given by the council to granting a class concession in the event all or part of the Bundaberg Regional Council area is declared a natural disaster area by the State Government or impacted by a Pandemic called by the Australian Government.

Under section 2.1, the council will apply concession for rates and charges for pensioners, with the council acknowledging that certain classes of pensioners have a reduced capacity to pay on demand and the full quantum.

The council will also apply concessions for rates and charges for community, sporting and welfare groups, as it recognises the contribution of non-for-profit community, sporting and welfare groups based on the level of their community assistance and economic value to the region and community.

These people and groups were previously identified by the council when the budget was adopted. 

This policy will be reviewed annually or in response to the changes to law or best practice.

Under the Concessions and Rebates sections of the revenue statement states, the council's Pensioner Rate Concession Policy provides an annual rate rebate to approved pensioners and the pensioner concession will only apply to freehold land owned and occupied by the pensioner.

"For the 2020/2021 financial year, council grants a total rebate of up to $165 per annum ($82.50 per half year levy) on rates and charged for approved pensioners," the statement reads.

"The rebate is provided in addition to any Pension Subsidy Scheme operated by the Queensland Government."

The council is also set to grant a rebate of up to a maximum of $1700 per annum for the financial year 2020/2021, towards the payment of rates and charges, except water consumption charges for numerous halls, sporting clubs and other community organisations under the Community Service Obligations.

The council will grant a full concession for all rates and charges, except water use, for the Bundaberg, Elliott Heads and Moore Park Surf Life Saving Clubs.

While the council will grant a full concession for all rates and charges to all Rural Fire Brigade properties.

These community service obligations are applicable to the current financial year.

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