Council to drive works program
SOUTH Burnett Regional Council will maintain its staff levels this year to help carry out the largest road maintenance program ever undertaken in the history of this council.
The council has reduced full-time staff numbers from 330 to 302, with some vacancies in the past three years, to save on costs.
But on Friday, Mayor Wayne Kratzmann said there would be no reduction of staff this year because of the large capital works program.
The $6 million road maintenance program will see 103 roads resealed from Benarkin to Murgon.
“Our workforce puts approximately $560,000 back into our local economy each fortnight,” Cr Kratzmann said.
“Add to this the council’s buy local policy and we are a major contributor to our regional economy and should be recognised to the same extent as other large employers.”
But he warned that the council could see a reduction of 4% next year if the size of the capital works program was reduced in the 2015/16 budget.
Cr Kratzmann said with flood works winding up, it was important to maintain a strong capital works program to keep people employed in the region.
“If we can’t maintain the amount of roadworks the following year we would have to look at 4% cut,” he said.
Cr Kratzmann said there were early indications that there would be more Road to Recovery funding in 2015/16.
To maintain employment in the region the council was also spending $4.2 million to replace the Sunday Creek Bridge on the Gayndah-Hivesville Rd and the Stuart River Bridge on the Kumbia-Brooklands Rd.
“I can tell you that CMC have won the tender to replace those bridges,” he said.