Community feedback shapes adopted 2020-21 Budget

Published on 28 July 2020

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Horsham Rural City Council has adopted its 2020-21 Budget, delivering a community support package of almost $500,000 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic while also funding major projects and capital works across the municipality.

The Budget, formally adopted at Monday night’s July Council Meeting, was out for public comment for the past 10 weeks.

Council received 12 public submissions, and that feedback has directly influenced the inclusion of additional items. 

Highlights include a Business and Community Assistance Program to help the community recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and an unprecedented second edition of HRCC’s popular Community Grants Program.  

All of the $484,000 raised from a two per cent rate raise will go towards a Business and Community Assistance Program which will target the hardest hit areas of business and community.

Mayor Mark Radford said the Budget had been developed in extraordinary circumstances with a focus on supporting the community to rebuild the local economy when Council was able to move from pandemic relief to recovery.

“We would like to thank everyone who contributed whether it was via a formal submission, completing a survey, dropping into the pop-up shop or commenting online,” Cr Radford said.

“We appreciate the effort that people took.”

Council’s core services, roads and rubbish, again receive the most allocation.

The capital works program includes $3.845 million for rural roads reconstruction, $1.876 million to rebuild urban roads and waste management will cost $3.255 million.

Rural roads at Wail, Brimpaen and Jung are among those set to be upgraded while major footpath and road works will occur in several streets in Horsham North.

Among a long list of projects, funding has been allocated for the refurbishment of the Wesley Performing Arts Centre ($545,000 funded by the Wesley Committee), a skate park upgrade ($164,000) and footpaths and cycle ways ($429,000). The full list of works can be found on Council’s Community Map.

The following specific items will be actioned in response to the submission process: 

  • $5,000 to engage a speaker for a community building initiative for local groups
  • $20,000 is included in COVID-19 support package for Business Horsham
  • $70,000 to improve existing river crossing at Walmer funded from Federal Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program
  • $10,000 to fund Old Hamilton Road cycle track.

Following the adoption of the Budget, Cr John Robinson foreshadowed a rescission motion which will be considered by Council at its meeting on Monday 3 August.

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