The Council Budget is an integral part of Council’s overall strategic planning framework and resources the directions in the Council Plan. It focuses on delivering quality services to the community through a combination of existing programs, new initiatives and capital works. The Council Budget is integrated with the Long Term Financial Strategy, Long Term Infrastructure Plan and the Rating Strategy.
The 2020/21 budget is for the year 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021 and is prepared in accordance with the Local Government Act 1989 and Local Government (Planning and Reporting) Regulations.
The budget includes the following financial statements:
- Comprehensive Income Statement
- Balance Sheet
- Statement of Changes in Equity
- Statement of Cash Flows
- Statement of Capital Works
These statements have been prepared for the year ending 30 June 2021 in accordance with the Act and Regulations, and are consistent with the annual financial statements, which are prepared in accordance with Australian Accounting Standards.
The budget also includes information about the rates and charges(PDF, 449KB) to be levied, the capital works program to be undertaken, the human resources required, and other financial information Council required in order to make an informed decision about the adoption of the budget.
You've told us what's important to you and we've listened. Following consultation with the community, significant investment has been made in important local projects and infrastructure.
You can see what's being funded below.
Community Budget Submissions
Council received 238 submissions from the community for consideration in the 2020/21 Budget, Council Plan annual Budget, Long Term Financial Plan, Rating Strategy and Long Term Infrastructure Plan.
This included 92 early submissions received in November/December 2019 identifying the community’s top priorities for Council, and 146 submissions during the formal budget exhibition period held in June/July 2020 in accordance with section 223 of the Local Government Act 1989.
At a Special Council Meeting held on Wednesday 5 August 2020, Council heard submission presentations from 26 community members and groups for consideration in the Budget and supporting documents.
As a result of community input, the following projects totalling $1.14 million have been included in the 2020/21 Budget:
- $150,000 for detailed design works of improvements identified in the Drouin Township Plan in preparation for delivery in the 2021/22 financial year.
- $120,000 towards the commencement of a Settlement Plan for the Yarragon township.
- $120,000 towards the preparation of an Economic Land Use Strategy to guide and facilitate economic land use activities and the provision of necessary infrastructure.
- $90,000 for network planning for sporting reserves within Precinct Structure Plan (PSP) areas.
- $75,000 for design works to improve the Rokeby-Noojee Trail (subject to external funding).
- $70,000 for a renewed strategic partnership with Lardner Park (and early payment of the 2021/22 contribution).
- $60,000 for design works for a multi-use sporting pavilion at Baxter Reserve in Warragul.
- $55,000 to commence detailed feasibility work and support progression of the proposed Logan Park Cycling Precinct.
- $50,000 towards a stage 2 COVID-19 community and business support package (in addition to the $440,000 stage 1 support package released in April 2020).
- $50,000 towards the commencement of a master plan for the Walhalla township.
- $50,000 to commence design works for a new carpark at Bellbird Park in Drouin.
- $40,000 to commence design works for a new footpath at Sand Road in Longwarry.
- $30,000 to support the Ride Nation Gippsland pilot program to encourage local participation in cycling.
- $20,000 towards the Communities That Care initiative aiming to reduce youth problem behaviours including harmful substance use, low academic achievement, early school leaving, sexual risk-taking and violence.
- $20,000 to commence design works for new path lighting at Linear Park in Warragul.
- $8,000 for construction of a tennis hitting wall at Trafalgar.
Council continues to make a major investment in infrastructure totalling $32.2 million comprising of the following:
Key strategic projects - $6.4 million
- $2.9 million for a new synthetic soccer pitch for Baxter Reserve in Warragul (subject to external funding).
- $1.5 million to begin construction of a multi-use pavilion at Trafalgar Recreation Reserve.
- $1.5 million for an Accelerated Footpath Program, in accordance with the Paths and Trails Strategy 2019.
- $500,000 to plan and design the Drouin Community Hub.
Infrastructure renewal - $14.7 million
- $6 million for road reconstruction and resealing to address poor road conditions.
- $1.9 million for renewal works on Council buildings and community facilities.
- $1.5 million for gravel road re-sheeting works.
- $1 million for storm water and drainage reconstruction and rehabilitation works.
- $700,000 for bridges and major culverts $500,000 for gravel and sealed footpath improvements.
- $500,000 for a major upgrade of Kydd Parke Oval in Jindivick (subject to external funding).
- $400,000 for sports oval lighting upgrades at Longwarry and Thorpdale Recreation Reserves.
Infrastructure works - $11.1 million
- $2.65 million to upgrade Copelands Road in Warragul.
- $1.3 million on road safety improvements across the Shire.
- $850,000 for the Erica to Rawson intertown trail.
- $650,000 on LED street lighting upgrades.
- $600,000 for a stormwater harvesting project to use recycled water for irrigation at Western Park ovals.
- $503,000 for a new skate park and recreational vehicle parking area in Rawson.
- $370,000 to upgrade McCarthy Court in Warragul to better service the new Warragul Early Learning Centre.
To see the full list of projects funded for 2020/21 view our capital works program.
To learn more about the Budget, including information about the impacts of COVID-19, operating expenses, rates and more, please select from the drop down menus below.
The 2020/21 Annual Budget represents income of $100.1 million, expenditure of $86.1 million, resulting in a surplus of $14 million.
The $14 million surplus is then converted into an adjusted underlying result that better reflects Council’s level of financial sustainability. The underlying result is based on the surplus that then excludes non-recurrent infrastructure grants and capital contributions from other sources, to arrive at the adjusted deficit of $250,000. This reflects a financially sustainable position and is a sound measure of Council’s ability to achieve its service delivery objectives.
The Budget has been prepared in the unprecedented times of dealing with COVID-19. As such, it includes an estimate of the financial impact of providing important support and stimulus to the community.
The Budget is adjusted for not being able to provide events at the West Gippsland Art Centre, not collecting some fees and charges, and including funding for community activities once the health threat has passed.
Council’s annual expenses are expected to increase by 3.78 per cent.
Employee costs are expected to increase by $1.33 million, or 4.6 per cent. This increase is primarily due to a small increase in approved employee positions due to a change in service delivery requirements, salary increases in order to comply with Council’s Enterprise Bargaining Agreement, and individual employee progression within salary band levels. Additional new positions in Emergency Management and Business Concierge are funded by external grants. Depreciation expenses has increased 9.4 per cent following completed infrastructure projects.
Revenue has increased by 1.8 per cent predominately due to an increase in operating grants, which is offset by a reduction in capital grants.
As a result of COVID-19, Council launched a $440,000 stage one community and business support package to financially assist residents, sporting clubs, community groups and local businesses. This included a deferment in rate instalment deadline and interest payments, waiver of some fees and charges and local businesses grants totalling $100,000 (now fully exhausted). Additionally, there will be reduced income from the West Gippsland Art Centre due to events not being held.
The budget includes new operating initiatives with a net cost of $560,000. This includes several key strategic initiatives - 2020 Local Government Elections and development of Preferred Neighbourhood Character Guidelines for Warragul and Drouin. There are also new several fixed term or recurrent positions, the majority of which are either grant funded or will result in income to Council. This includes critical roles in emergency management, parking and planning enforcement.
Rates and charges income have increased 3.6 per cent mainly due to the impact of the 2 per cent rate cap and supplementary rates and waste service charges for new properties and or/existing dwellings representing growth within the municipality.
Rates and Valuations
Click here to download the Baw Baw Shire Rating Strategy 2020-21.(PDF, 1MB)
The rate increase is capped at 2 per cent in line with the Victorian Government’s Fair Go Rates System (FGRS). Rates are calculated as a percentage of the Capital Improved Value (CIV). The 2 per cent increase applies to the total rates revenue received by Council, not to individual ratepayers.
The residential garbage charge per rateable property for 2020/21 increased by an average of 2 per cent, rounded to the nearest dollar, compared to the prior year 2019/20 levels. The average residential garbage charge is $392 per rateable property.
Total revenue from rates and charges for 2020/21 is $62.6 million (including supplementary valuations and interest on rates and charges).
From 1 July 2018, land valuations were centralised under the Valuer-General Victoria with a new annual cycle of valuations for rating and taxing purposes. All rateable properties within Baw Baw Shire Council have been revalued at 1 January 2020 and are effective from 1 July 2020. The change in rates will be different for each property due to the CIV of each property.
For further details please refer to the Rates and Valuations fact sheet(PDF, 449KB).
Fees and charges
Existing fees and charges are to be increased in line with Consumer Price Index (inflation) or market levels.
A high-level Strategic Resource Plan for the years 2020/21 to 2023/24 has been developed to assist Council in adopting a Budget within a longer-term prudent financial framework.
The key objective of the plan is financial sustainability in the medium to long term, while still achieving Council’s strategic objectives as specified in the Council Plan.
The adjusted underlying result, which is a measure of financial sustainability, continues to reflect an ongoing surplus that provides additional funding for investment in Council infrastructure, with surpluses in future years.
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