Draft Budget 2015-16: Investing in our growing community

The 2015-16 Draft Budget will fund the biggest infrastructure program in Hume’s history, to support one of the fastest growing municipalities in Australia.

Hume Mayor, Councillor Adem Atmaca, said Council would invest in new and better roads, bridges, parks, and major leisure facilities, as well as increased services for Hume’s rising number of families, including people in need.

"The Draft Budget funds the services and projects that our community needs," Cr Atmaca said.

"We know how quickly the city is growing and we are working hard to deliver the programs, facilities and road upgrades that need to keep pace with our growth.

"We want an even more vibrant community, which enjoys high quality parks, streetscapes, footpaths, and sporting facilities."

The proposed budget includes a record $64 million in new capital works.

Council has budgeted for an operating income of $265.32 million, and an operating expenditure of $210.26 million, which will generate an operating surplus of $55.06 million.

Major initiatives in the 2015-16 Draft Budget include:

• $21.4 million for major leisure facilities, including the new Hume Regional Aquatic and Sports Centre at Craigieburn, a warm water pool at the Sunbury Aquatic Centre, and ongoing works to add a basketball court and additional community facilities to Greenvale Recreation Centre;
• $11.41 million to build or upgrade parks and reserves, including to refurbish changerooms, add additional training lights and construct fencing at John Ilhan Memorial Reserve, Broadmeadows, as well as investment in the new Greenvale Lakes Recreation Reserve and Craigieburn’s Newbury Recreation Reserve;
• $11.05 million to build or enhance roads, such as to upgrade Potter Street in Craigieburn, reconstruct Nicholas Street and Avalon Avenue in Broadmeadows, and to reconstruct and duplicate the Wildwood Road bridge near Martin Dillon Reserve in Wildwood;
• $9 million in investments in civic buildings, including the planning of a new civic centre in Sunbury and to design a redevelopment that enables the iconic Broadmeadows Town Hall to accommodate a variety of uses;
• $6.08 million for new or rehabilitated footpaths and drainage, including to construct the Meadowlink path between Seabrook Reserve and the Broadmeadows Central Activity District, and a bike path along the Merri Creek between the M-80 Ring Road and Barry Road, Campbellfield, with both of these projects subject to Victorian Government funding;
• $2.62 million for community facilities, such as to refurbish the Langama Park Pavilion 1 in Sunbury and to build or upgrade a range of public toilets;
• $1.25 million to upgrade local shopping centres, including a major refurbishment of the Dallas shopping area, on the corner of Dargie Court and Dobell Place; and
• the continuation of Together 3047, which supports residents in our area who are experiencing social and economic challenges.

Cr Atmaca said that Hume City Council would also invest in a greater number of services, thanks to the 2015-16 Draft Budget.

"In the next financial year, Council will collect more than 62,000 tonnes of household waste and remove about 26,000 cubic metres of hard rubbish," he said.

"Council officers will facilitate around 606,000 visits to Hume libraries, eradicate 21,000 square metres of graffiti, and register about 18,000 dogs and 5,200 cats.

"Council will provide additional investment in Hume’s neighbourhood houses and community learning centres to support programs that assist many residents."

Hume City Council has proposed a general rate increase of 5.0 per cent and a total rate increase of 5.3 per cent, of which 0.3 per cent is payable to EPA Victoria due to an increased landfill levy.

Hume Chief Executive, Domenic Isola, said Council’s strong financial management had withstood a number of budgetary challenges.

"Council has designed a prudent budget to meet very significant financial pressures, such as the freeze in indexation of funding from the Victoria Grants Commission," Mr Isola said.

"We have kept our rate increase in line with what Council outlined last year in the Strategic Resource Plan, and that’s because, where possible, we’ve maintained expenditure at or reduced expenditure below 2014-15 levels and produced efficiency gains.

"We’ve been very careful to act in a balanced way so that Council can continue to provide the community’s vital services and infrastructure, in a manner that minimises the impact on the household budget."

The Draft Council Plan and Draft Budget were presented to Council at its General Meeting on Monday 11 May 2015.

Members of the Hume community are invited to comment on the proposed plan and budget, and submissions will be accepted until Wednesday 10 June 2015.

Feedback should be submitted in writing to: The Chief Executive Officer, Hume City Council, PO Box 119, Dallas VIC 3047 or via email@hume.vic.gov.au

Posted on 12:00 AM, 12 May 2015

Updated : 8:59 PM, 28 May 2015

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