Still paying for council split 3 years after de-amalgamation
NOOSA is still paying for its de-amalgamation from the Sunshine Coast Regional Council more than three years on from the historic local split.
And just how doggedly the Noosa Council is working to reduce a parting 'gift' of about $40 million in debt became clear at a special budget meeting at council.
Councillor Ingrid Jackson asked corporate services director Michael Shave to clarify the council debt policy as financial statements indicated more than $32 million in borrowings for 2018 before tailing down to less than $13 million in forecasts by 2027.
Was de-amalgamation worth the cost?
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"On average each year we're paying off about $3 million from our current borrowings," Mr Shave said.
"Next financial year we're proposing to borrow only $1.2 million relating to the planning scheme and the North Shore camp ground redevelopment.
"Obviously there's a net difference there of $1.7 million which will reduce our overall debt balance.
"You'll see in the borrowing lines there $32 million.
"You can see that progressively over time reducing because of the fact we're not planning to on borrowing too much in the future until such time we identify such projects to borrow."
Last year the council borrowed to help fund the Rufous St precinct redevelopment and for the sealing of Dr Pages Rd. This year it was borrowing to pay for the development of the new planning scheme.
Cr Jackson asked why would council be borrowing extra when it has a cash surplus?
Mayor Tony Wellington said council does this because it wanted to spread the "impact on ratepayers across more than one year".
"If it's something like Rufous St or Dr Pages Rd you say, 'well this is going to benefit people for the next 20 years, therefore why shouldn't ratepayers in 10 years be paying for it as well', rather than make everyone now pay for it."