Council’s record spend

Mayor Adele Hegedich described the draft budget as a “responsible and considered” plan. 187961_01

By Alesha Capone

Wyndham council is proposing to spend a record $201 million on infrastructure and capital works in its draft budget for 2021-22.

The proposed budget, which was presented to a council meeting last week, is now open for community feedback.

Mayor Adele Hegedich described the draft budget as a “responsible and considered” plan focused on protecting the local environment, building healthy and resilient communities and maintaining essential services.

Cr Hegedich said the council was proposing to spend $33 million on parks, open spaces and streetscapes.

In Point Cook, $8.6 million has been earmarked for construction of rectangular fields and a tennis complex at the Bensonhurst Parade Reserve and $5.6 million for Brookdale Road Reserve landscape, pavilion and carpark works.

Another $27.2 million has been set aside for upgrading and building roads.

Cr Susan McIntyre welcomed the proposed reconstruction of Sneydes Road, from Lennon Boulevard to Hacketts Roads.

She said she was also glad to see $1.05 million allocated to signalise the “long-overdue and dangerous” intersections of Dunnings Road and Lennon Boulevard, and Miles Franklin Boulevard and Boardwalk Boulevard.

Roads in Little River will be widened at a cost of $5 million and $4.8 million has been set aside for the Armstrong Road extension design (from Ballan Road to Sayers Road).

Cr Mia Shaw said the trial of an extended operating season at Werribee Outdoor Pool would also be continued under the draft budget.

“We have listened to community feedback about the pool closing in the middle of the day and this won’t happen unless there is a school carnival,” she said.

Other big-ticket items proposed include:

-More than $13 million for Werribee tip, including $6.63 million to construct cell seven.

-$12 million for the regional soccer facility at 1 Sayers Road, Tarneit, which will become home to Western United Football Club.

-$12.31 million to deliver the Truganina South East Master Plan and $12.17 million to implement the Tarneit North Master Plan. Both plans consist of sports fields, pavilions, family centres and other services for residents.

– $7 million for the Black Forest Road South Level 2 Community Centre in Wyndham Vale.

-$6.7 million for the Truganina Level 2 Community Centre.

Proposed rate increases for 2021-22 have been set at 1.5 per cent, in line with the state government’s cap.

The waste management charge paid by each household is proposed to increase from $289 to $347, due to the increase in the EPA levy (from $65.90 to $105.90) and costs associated with bin lid standardisation.

The draft budget documents said the council’s operating surplus for 2021-22 was proposed to be $181.3 million, including gifted subdivision assets, developer contributions and capital grants.

Once these three things are taken out, the council has a surplus of $68.1 million.

However, once depreciation and amortisation are taken into account, the council has an underlying deficit of $42.4 million. Details: