Coun­cil cuts debt, lifts rates by 2pc

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS -

RATES will rise by a gen­eral 2 per cent, and the in­fra­struc­ture levy will be dumped this fi­nan­cial year.

Whit­sun­day Re­gional Coun­cil handed down its 2015- 16 “Com­mu­nity Bud­get” yesterday.

Coun­cil’s debt has been re­duced to $ 58 mil­lion, the low­est in four years, and it has cash in the bank and is poised to be­gin a $ 28 mil­lion cap­i­tal works pro­gram.

But coun­cil­lors were di­vided, with Deputy Mayor An­drew Will­cox, Dave Clark and Peter Ra­m­age vot­ing against the bud­get. Cr Clark ac­cused Mayor Jen­nifer Whit­ney of elec­tion­eer­ing ahead of next year’s lo­cal gov­ern­ment elec­tions by pro­duc­ing a squeaky clean bud­get.

But Mayor Whit­ney said coun­cil had no choice but to im­pose aus­tere mea­sures as it had been on the brink of in­sol­vency.

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