Big projects in budget mix

Holly ThompsonSouth Western Times
Donnybrook shire president Brian Piesse chats with chief executive Ben Rose.
Camera IconDonnybrook shire president Brian Piesse chats with chief executive Ben Rose. Credit: South Western Times

Donnybrook-Balingup Shire Council adopted its 2019-20 budget last week, which includes millions of dollars for various projects.

Items in the budget include $1.5 million for the Apple Fun Park redevelopment and about $2 million for the Donnybrook Town Centre Revitalisation Project.

The council adopted the budget at a special council meeting on August 21.

Despite the number of projects planned for the next year, the rates increase will remain at 1.95 per cent, the lowest in years for the Shire and one of the lowest across the South West.

Shire president Brian Piesse said this had been possible due to the surplus from last year’s budget.

“We did forecast a surplus but we ended up with a bigger one than expected,” he said.

“We have taken on board the economic environment at the moment, we know people are struggling and have managed to keep rates low while still undertaking the projects we have planned.”

He said all areas of the community would see the benefits of the 2019-20 budget, as the upcoming projects covered a wide variety of areas.

“Major capital projects in the budget include the Donnybrook Town Centre Revitalisation Project, now open for public consultation and the Bridge Street Affordable Housing project,” Cr Piesse said.

“There is also major upgrade works to the Apple Fun Park planned, which has been supported by the Federal Government.”

As well as a host of key capital projects, Cr Piesse said the budget also made provision for planning around the next tranche of key projects for the Shire.

“I am excited about the projects we have on the drawing board through the budget and the way they will help improve the Shire,” he said.

Prior to the adoption of the final budget, council members passed a draft budget which made it possible for businesses and the community to provide feedback.

The council received one submission which asked for additional budget allocation and a review of the Local Planning Scheme.

While it was acknowledged a review was needed, the additional budget allocation was not granted.

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