The front of Moncrieff Entertainment Centre, in Bourbong St. The centre closed from March 16 in response to social isolation protective measures. Picture: Brian Cassidy.
The front of Moncrieff Entertainment Centre, in Bourbong St. The centre closed from March 16 in response to social isolation protective measures. Picture: Brian Cassidy.

Council’s Moncrieff target suffered in isolation build-up

TWELVE of the 101 quarterly goals set by the Bundaberg Regional Council were unable to be achieved due to COVID-19 restrictions.

But the current quarterly report, which shows insight into the council’s performances throughout its organisations, was compiled at the end of March, around the time when council assets such as its libraries and galleries were in the transition of being closed.

Impacted targets related to community programs, revenue collection, and potentially the completion of routine projects.

The most dramatic impact was the number of patrons attending Moncrieff Entertainment Centre, which had fallen 62.5 per cent short of its target, even though the centre closed until further notice from March 16.

The expected number of patrons to visit during the three months was 8000, if the pandemic did not happen, but had fallen to 3000.

“Quarter three is always a slower quarter for live entertainment due to the Christmas, New Year period,” the report said.

“Because of this, Moncrieff scheduled substantial Capex work in this quarter, meaning that only 18 days were available for events of 91 days in the quarter.

“Chinese New Year was cancelled due to COVID-19 in February and there have been impacts due to the virus closures this quarter from March 16.”

The report said there had been three live events which had been held during this time, which had good attendances. There had also been seven cinema events.

A representative of the Bundaberg Regional Council was asked for comment on the extent of the COVID-19 impact on the council’s assets, such as the Moncrieff.

The council was also asked if performance targets would be adjusted to suit the current quarter, which would likely be further impacted by COVID-19 restrictions.

The spokesman acknowledged that the Moncrieff was closed, and so the COVID-19 impacts were ongoing.

“At this stage there is no intention to change performance targets because we don’t know when business as usual will resume,” the spokesman said.

“Council will provide more information about the impact of COVID-19 as part of the budget.”

Governance portfolio spokesman, councillor Steve Cooper, said he agreed with the council spokesman’s statement, and that it was premature to determine the full impact of COVID-19.

In regards to the current budget, Cr Cooper said, “we are going to have to work hard to make everything fit.

“We’re in a whole new environment, the world has changed as we all know.”

But he also said the council was also impacted by policies of state and federal governments.



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