Council on the road to explain budget
WHITSUNDAY Regional Council is holding a series of public forums to explain the current financial year’s budget.
The forums, called the One Region Budget Roadshow, will be held in Cannonvale, Proserpine, Bowen and Collinsville over the next two weeks.
This follows a meeting in Bowen with some ratepayers and organisations last week. The meeting included many controversial topics including the new water charges and the Council’s current loan repayments.
There was also concern about the lack of communication between Council and ratepayers.
Mayor Whitney said the meeting covered numerous topics and involved lengthy discussions with each stakeholder group given the opportunity to express their concerns and provide feedback.
She said some people at the meeting had genuine concerns.
“We’ve met with business and industry stakeholders, and we’ll now be moving to the broader community with the roadshow, reviewing the concerns raised,” she said.
Cr Whitney says the roadshow would provide an opportunity to “directly engage with our community and ensure that they have access to accurate, factual information and that their concerns are addressed”.
Meanwhile, Bowen resident Chris Monsour is still planning to hold a meeting in Airlie Beach to explain his perspective on Council’s budget and the new rates and charges.
Mr Monsour is an agricultural scientist with his own consultancy business and he has particular concerns about the new water charges and says there should have been more community consultation before such a major change.
He said he became interested in this issue after seeing his own rates notice and doing his own calculations.
Mr Monsour has not yet confirmed a date and venue for his meeting. He has already held public meetings in Bowen and Collinsville.