TOWN of Claremont council released its draft budget 2016-17 for public comment at Tuesday night’s council meeting.
Focused on maintaining and upgrading the Town’s assets to ensure Claremont’s roads, parks and community facilities will be funded by a rate increase of 2 per cent, which takes into account the Consumer Price Index (CPI) increase of 1.5 per cent plus an additional 0.5 per cent.
Town of Claremont Mayor Jock Barker said this year’s draft budget was a testament to the Town’s strong financial management.
“Our Town has a unique identity and distinct sense of character that must be retained and protected,” he said.
“Our leafy green streets, numerous parks and open spaces and well utilised community facilities are part of our charm.
“Through stringent financial management we have been able to produce a budget that focuses on maintaining and upgrading the Town’s assets for future generations.
“Our focus, this financial year, will be to deliver on our core business so as not to put an unnecessary burden on ratepayers during these challenging economic times. As such we are proposing a conservative rate increase of only 2 per cent.”
Just over $3 million has been allocated toward capital works such as the renewal of roads, footpaths and parking areas.
An additional $1 million has been earmarked for the upgrade of the Claremont Golf Course.
A further $1,391,200 will go toward the renewal of the Town’s buildings including $700,000 to redevelop the Freshwater Bay Museum including a new public toilet in adjoining Mrs Herbert’s Park.
It provides $300,000 in infrastructure funding for the planning and design stage of the Claremont Aquatic Centre redevelopment.
“The redevelopment of the Claremont Aquatic Centre and the redesign of the Claremont Golf Course by world class golfer Terry Gale are two very exciting new projects that will kick off next financial year,” Cr Barker said.
It also includes $221 000 in upgrades and maintenance to the Town’s parks and gardens and will see the Town provide a further $500,000 towards its Underground Power Reserve.
An additional $42,000 has been allocated to arts and culture to fund initiatives such as the Town’s Art Transforming Claremont Festival and Art Award and Exhibition.
The Town will again match the $120,000 raised by a Specified Area Rate on businesses located in the Claremont Town Centre.
The Draft Budget 2016-17 is available for viewing online and at the Claremont administration office between 8.30am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.
Residents and ratepayers are invited to submit their comments on the draft via email to email@example.com, post PO Box 54 Claremont WA 6910, or in person at the Town’s administration office by 5pm Friday 3 June 2016.