The Sunday Mail reported recently that Redlands’ average rates are the highest in south east Queensland. Other Councils have average rates up to $500 per year less.
Do we have the right people running our City and managing its finances?
Other Councils have made serious efforts to reduce costs. Noosa has cut perks like cars from the entitlements for the Mayor and CEO.
Redland City continues to employ more than 20 “communications” staff whose main function appears to be the production and distribution of spin and propaganda for the Mayor.
The Mayor recently put forward her Budget and Operational Plan 2014-15 which budgets for a $11.2 million operational deficit in 2014/15. This was not foreseen in the Redlands Financial Strategy 2014-2024 published just a few months earlier which assumed a small operational surplus for 2014/15.
Council’s Budget document suggests that the 2014-15 operating deficit of $11.2 million is:
“…due in part to the investment of $7.5M of inter-generational projects including Redlands Planning Scheme Review, Priority Development Areas and Cleveland Central Business District Revitalisation.”
This raises more questions:
- Why are we spending (wasting?) so much of ratepayers funds on these activities?
- Why were these items of expenditure not anticipated when the Financial Strategy was prepared?
- How can we believe any of other figures in the 10 year strategy, if the Budget figure for Year 1 varies so much?
For more comment about the Mayor’s 2014-15 Budget refer to: Redlands Budget is full of holes.
Redlands2030 has already commented on the fact that Redlands residents are being overcharged for water by about $15 million over the period 2013/2014 and 2014/15. In her 2014/15 Budget, the Mayor does not explain how and when this money will be returned to water users as part of her “price smoothing” strategy.
Redlands2030 plans to shine a light on the costs that are being imposed by this Council on Redlands residents and ratepayers. We already know that the Redland City Chamber of commerce is “disappointed” with commercial rates increasing by 15%, according to the Redland City Bulletin.
Redlands2030 would like to understand the actual increase in dollars per year that will be experienced by other categories of ratepayers.
If you want to help by providing us with some data (no personal details will be published), send an email with your contact details to theReporter@redlands2030.net