Townsville City Council has shared details of their $957.5 million 2022-23 Budget, with 80 per cent of the budget going towards delivering fundamental services.
Releasing the $957.5 million 2022/23 budget, Mayor, Jenny Hill, said the Council is committed to continuing its strategy to grow Townsville, while delivering high quality services across the city and minimising cost-of-living pressures on ratepayers.
80 per cent of the budget, equal to $774 million, will go towards the delivery of services like asset maintenance, water, waste and wastewater treatment.
“Our budget is fiscally responsible, recognising the cost-of-living pain residents are feeling while also having a plan to deliver throughout the coming financial year,” Cr Hill said.
Cr Hill said the council’s strong financial management was recently recognised by both the Queensland Treasury Corporation and the Queensland Audit Office and had positioned the city well to deal with the current rising costs environment.
“This budget was possible due to our well managed fiscal strategy and means we can continue giving Townsville locals the lifestyle they expect while delivering the critical infrastructure and services they need.
“The 2022/23 budget details Council’s strategy to maintain services and standards while continuing to invest in Townsville’s future, growing our community into a sustainable and globally connected city.”
Planning and Development Committee Chair and Deputy Mayor, Mark Molachino, said the 2022/23 Budget was the second in a five-year plan of capital and operational commitments for Townsville residents.
“Council’s prudent and responsible financial management over the past nine years has delivered six budgets in surplus and one balanced budget during that time,” Cr Molachino said.
“Our $957.5 million budget will balance the delivery and maintenance of services and infrastructure with reducing the impact that rising land valuations could have otherwise had on ratepayers across the city.
“Our population has just passed 200,000 which means it is more important now than ever to get our fundamental services right for our community.”
Townsville Water and Waste Committee chairperson, Russ Cook, said Council invested the large, 80 per cent of its budget, in major infrastructure because it was essential to supporting homes, businesses and industry both now and into the future.
“It is expensive infrastructure that people don’t see, we can’t hold an event to open or showcase it, but it is critical for our homes, businesses and local industry,” Cr Cook said.
“Townsville is one of the most arid regions in Australia, which is why water supply and management will continue to be one of our biggest areas of strategic investment.
“This record investment in water security is vital both to bringing the community through inevitable droughts and to meet the anticipated future demand in the Townsville region.
Key announcements for the 2022-23 budget include:
- A general rate rise of 2 per cent in the dollar across Council’s rating categories
- $203.8 million in capital investments across Townsville’s mainland suburbs
- $14.2 million in capital investments for Magnetic Island
- $50.6 million was being invested in rubbish collection and resource management
- $1.3 million into the green economy, including the food organics and garden organics program
- A record $214.9 million to continue work on critical water infrastructure projects across the city
- $34.9 million to the pipe duplication project between Ross River Dam and the Douglas Water Treatment Plant, which is partially funded by the Queensland Government
- $22 million for the progression and commissioning of the innovative recycled water treatment facility
- A further $9.6 million has been allocated to finalise the installation of two new clarifiers at the Douglas Water Treatment Plant
The $774 million investment for fundamental services in 2022/23 budget includes:
- $129.5 million for wastewater services
- $297 million for water services
- $201million for road, drains and stormwater management
- $96 million for maintaining parks and open spaces
The budget also includes important liveability investments like:
- $39.5 million for arts, culture and events
- $33.8 million for safe city investments, including CCTV systems, community response vehicle and youth services
- $33 million to support affordability for pensioners and community clubs and organisations
Environment and Sustainability Services budget:
- $1.2 million for coast and catchments (Creek to Coral)
- $4 million for community environmental restoration
- $2.8 milion for environmental operations
- $2 milion for sustainability and solar cities