Draft plans outlining council projects and services across the Mid Coast region during 2022-23 are available for public comment until June 8.
These plans guide MidCoast Council services and activities and outline how projects will be delivered, funded and resourced, general manager, Adrian Panuccio said.
The budget for 2022-23, which forms part of the public exhibition, outline council income and expenditure.
Major projects will include:
- Cedar Party Creek Wingham bridge replacement;
- Stage two of the Bucketts Way corridor upgrade;
- the upgrade of the Nabiac water treatment plant including the expansion of the borefield, and
- expansion of the Hawks Nest Sewerage Treatment Plant.
Mr Panuccio said as well as delivering services such as road maintenance, repairs and upgrades, swimming pools, libraries, sporting fields, parks, gardens, and waste, water and sewer services, council also will undertake a number of environmental, cultural and community projects.
To work towards delivering on its commitment to zero net emissions council will:
- Installing solar power systems at Taree Waste Management Centre, Manning Point, Hallidays Point, Coopernook and Hawks Nest sewage treatment plants;
- Undertake a landfill gas capture trial;
- Starting a smart water meter trial to reduce water loss, and
- Transitioning our street lighting to renewable energy sources.
The annual and four-year plans are developed to achieve the objectives identified as priorities for the local community in the Community Strategic Plan, which has also been reviewed this year, Mr Panuccioa said.
"We are asking for the community to have a look at these documents and give us feedback. In doing so, you are helping to shape what we deliver for you."
These documents guide our services and show what we are doing to make the Mid-Coast a better place to live, work and visit.- MidCoast Council general manager, Adrian Panuccio
Improving local and regional roads, improving development approval times, streamlining processes, and improving environmental performance are also major focus areas for council in the coming year.
"In the 2022-23 year, council will manage an income of $310 million, $104 million of which will be spent on our transport network, $87 million on water supply and treatment, $72 million on sewer services and $35 million on waste services."
Council has applied to Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) for a 2.25 per cent rate increase for the 2022-23 financial year.
This was prompted by the low-rate peg advised by IPART for all NSW councils of 0.7 per cent which has been adjusted to 0.9 per cent for the Mid-Coast taking into consideration of a population growth factor.
As a result of a State-wide lobby by NSW Councils, the State government has advised that councils could apply to IPART to increase next year's to the level they have been budgeting for, a maximum of 2.5 per cent in the case of MidCoast Council.
Eighty four per cent of councils across NSW have applied for either the additional increase or have existing increases already in place above the 2.5 per cent.
"Over the coming year we will be developing strategies to establish the future direction for areas such as economic development, open space and recreation, and community preparedness."
"We will also be continuing our work on consolidating our Mid-Coast Local Environment Plan and Development Control Plan, reviewing our Integrated Water Cycle Management Strategy and implementing our Information Technology Strategy."
The Information Technology Strategy has been developed to support a business transformation program which focuses on making it easier to do business with council.
"More than just focusing on the year ahead, our challenge has always been looking after our infrastructure into the future; we will continue to work with elected councillors to balance this with meeting our community's needs," Mr Panuccio said.
A visual breakdown of income and expenditure can be found on page 31 and 32 of the Draft Operational Plan, while budget summaries are also included along with detailed budget statements.
To read the 2022-23 Draft Operational Plan, annual budget, and proposed fees and charges, and to provide feedback visit www.haveyoursay.midcoast.nsw.gov.au before the public exhibition period closes on June 8.
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